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Green hair algea

X3NiTH

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I have a tank that grows filamentous algae like this and it's due to too much light and not enough CO₂ (not adding any). I would also add that this tank gets next to no traces added (maybe every couple of weeks maybe longer, it's a neglected tank, although macro nutrients are front loaded on the weekly water change (32ppm Ca, 14ppm Mg, 33ppm K, 10ppm NO₃, 5ppm PO₄). It's a10L bare bottomed tank with duckweed on the surface (showing iron deficiencies) that has Fissidens floating just under the surface which is smothered in filamentous algae, there's also Java fern looking very poorly with brown spots all over it, no fish only a few pond snails.

My Buce filled tank gets the same water as above (remineralised RO/DI, which is near identical to yours in GH and KH), gets as much CO₂ as the fish can handle (apple green dropchecker, drop pH7.6 - pH6.1), too much light (maybe not as much as the above tank) the PAR at and around an inch or two below the surface is enough to fry Buce, but there's enough light to turn my Crypt Balansae bronze while draping itself across the water surface (all 2ft of it in a 12" tall tank), inert gravel substrate. Zero filamentous algae in this tank, only gets BBA on unhappy Buce.

Don't know if there's enough traces in your soil, but I'm dosing Flourish Comprehensive, Flourish Trace and Fe DTPA with some added MnSO4 to target Fe@0.15ppm daily (Comp Fe 0.1ppm, Fe DTPA 0.05ppm, Fe:Mn ratio 3:1). Very positive results from my Buce that get around 50PAR (no holes and leaf melt, yay). If I just dose Fe Gluconate (Flourish Comprehensive) the Fe is gone in one day, I need to add the FeDTPA to have a little residual next day before more gets added. Using the JBL Fe titration test after dosing it clearly indicates iron present, at the end of the photoperiod definite decrease of Fe indicated, the next day before dosing the test barely indicates Fe present.

In agreement with everyone else above, decrease the light and increase the CO₂ (not more than the fish can handle though obviously) but I would also up the traces.

:)
 

Martty

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Thank you all for replays and here is plan. I take a risk. I will make 3 days blackout. I really need kill most of algea for first. Then I can start with fresh new begining. New light setup (20%/6hours), new ferts doses (2x rec.dose Flourish, 1xNitrogen, 1xExcel). If any plant dont make it...I will must replant it with new invitro plants. Its all my fault...I've hurried from the beginning. Too much light, maybe not enough ferts. So, we will see. I'll keep you informed.
 

Martty

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Update info:
- 4 days of blackout are behind me. Part of green algea has disappeared. And plants are in good condition. So, now I must wait and hope, that plants get into good shape and start grow right.

Current setting:
- Light: Twinstar 600S at 20% of power and 6hour per day
- Flourish/Nitrogen/Excel (Seachem recommend. dose)
- lime green CO2 (ON at 2hours before lights and OFF 2hours before lights off)

So, now I will increase the light very carefully. This week keep 20% of total power. Next week try 30% if algea not begin grow back again.

9.týden.jpg
 
Last edited:

Konsa

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Hi
Don't rush with the light increase.Give the plants few weeks first.Keep trimming and removing bad leaves and algae U see.
Regards Konsa
 

Konsa

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Ok, man. I try to dont rush again :) thank you.

Thats the spirit.
In planted tank only algae happens fast.It will be roughly 3-4 weeks for your plants to register any changes U do.
Strict maintenance and patiens atm.
Regards Konsa
 

Martty

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10.week update info:

- routine maintenance
- green hair algea is growing a bit, but not too much
- lighting still on 20%/6hours per day

10.týden.jpg
 

Martty

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I found interesting information about Seachem Flourish at FAQ page of Seachem website: http://www.seachem.com/flourish-iron.php

and they write there, I quote: "Daily dosing with Flourish can lead to unwanted algae growth".

Can be this my problem with green hair algea? I'm dosing Flourish daily diluted with destilated water.

What do you think?
 

ceg4048

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I found interesting information about Seachem Flourish at FAQ page of Seachem website: http://www.seachem.com/flourish-iron.php

and they write there, I quote: "Daily dosing with Flourish can lead to unwanted algae growth".

Can be this my problem with green hair algea? I'm dosing Flourish daily diluted with destilated water.

What do you think?
No.

Hair algae is caused by poor CO2 and has nothing to do with iron or with any other nutrient...

You'll need to fix your CO2 implementation or your flow/distribution.

Cheers,
 

Martty

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No.

Hair algae is caused by poor CO2 and has nothing to do with iron or with any other nutrient...

You'll need to fix your CO2 implementation or your flow/distribution.

Cheers,
I think, that I have good flow at my tank. I have Eheim Ecco Pro 300 (2036). Strong filter for 60 liters with good flow. I have lily pipes. I have skimmer. I have Aquario Neo diffuser. Lime green dropchecker.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I quote: "Daily dosing with Flourish can lead to unwanted algae growth".
Seachem's web-site is a brilliant example of how you can add two and two together and make five. They are incredibly good at implying things (that may not be entirely true), without actually writing anything that is demonstrably false.

In nearly all situations plant growth is limited by the level of one of the essential nutrients (C, N, P, K, Mg, Fe, Ca, Mn, Mo, Cu, Bo, Zn, etc), (this is <"Liebig's law of the minimum">). Adding iron (Fe) in a plant available form can only lead to increased algae growth if iron was deficient before. Have a look at <"Rotala rotundifolia growth ...."> for a more complete discussion, but the issue is that the "green algae" don't have the secondary thickening, vascular tissue etc. and they can show a very quick response to nutrients.
I think, that I have good flow at my tank. I have Eheim Ecco Pro 300 (2036). Strong filter for 60 liters with good flow. I have lily pipes. I have skimmer. I have Aquario Neo diffuser. Lime green dropchecker.
I'm not a CO2 user, and I can't really help with your issue, but if you create ideal growing conditions for the plants you want, you also create ideal growing conditions for the ones you don't. All the green plants (those that possess chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b) are identical in terms of their basic photosynthetic physiology. They form a monophyletic clade (<"the Chlorobionta or Viridiplantae">), with a single common ancestor.

The "green plants" are all the plants we want to grow (mosses, ferns and higher plants), plus some we don't, and we call these ones "green algae".

I have very heavily planted tanks and I also have <"very little biofilm"> of any description, we don't know exactly why heavy planting reduces algal growth, but it does.

cheers Darrel
 

Matt Havens

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Hi Martty,

I had the same trouble in my 130L, here is the link to the video and I will post the link to the discussion as well, you may find some answers, hints or tips from there as I had the same issues.

 

ceg4048

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I think, that I have good flow at my tank. I have Eheim Ecco Pro 300 (2036). Strong filter for 60 liters with good flow. I have lily pipes. I have skimmer. I have Aquario Neo diffuser. Lime green dropchecker.
Everybody thinks they have good this or good that. Only the plants know what things you have that are good or not good, and in this case they know that your CO2 is not good.

Since they cannot speak, we have to determine, based on inference where things have gone wrong.
There are five main things that will stifle CO2 uptake:
1. Too much light intensity.
2.Poor injection technique.
3. Poor injection rate or poor timing of injection.
4. Poor flow rate.
5. Poor distribution of flow.

For item 1., few hobbyists have a clue about what level of lighting they have - unless they have a PAR meter. We have, through experience figured out the typical values when using fluorescent lighting, but LED are still an unknown due to varying specifications of the diodes. Typically, when a CO2 related algae blooms with this type of lighting, we suggest to reduce the intensity to no more than about 20% max.

For item 2. the type of diffuser or reactor can be a factor in the inability to saturate the water properly with CO2. The larger the tank the more difficult it is , but smaller tanks are not immune. If an in tank diffuser is used the location of the diffuser can be an issue, especially if the injection rate is marginal or poor. CO2 is a gas that rapidly exits the tank. That's why we have to keep pumping it in all day. If the disk is placed far away from the filter output then the bubbles tend to immediately fly up and out of the tank. Sometimes it's better to have them cloer to the water effluent so that the current can carry them downwards. The best idea for these is to place the disk directly under or very near the filter intake so that the bubbles will enter the filter. Some filters object to this and can result in gurgling and spitting, but if the filter only does this occasionally then this is the best way to dissolve the gas.
For larger tanks, the best solution is to use an in-line reactor.

For item 3. injection rate may need to be adjusted. The Dropchecker can be used as a guide, but it is not quick enough to determine instantaneous values when problems arise. It's best to have a pH pen and to take repetitive readings every 30 minutes or every hour, from gas on until lights off. The goal is to drop the pH from it's initial value at gas on 1 unit by lights on. The minimum pH value should be reached at lights on ideally. If you find that the minimum value is attained late in the day then this tells you that you have to play with the gas on start time as well as with the injection rate until you are able to achieve this goal. There is no point having a minimum pH late in the day. The first half of the photoperiod, and specifically the lights on time is the most critical time in the day for CO2. The plants don't really care that much about CO2 in the second half. Most CO2 problems in tanks actually happen at lights on when the hobbyists pummel their plants with light but the CO2 concentration levels cannot yet support the intensity.

For Item 4. if your filter flow rating is at or near 10 times the tank volume per hour then this is usually a good thing, however, we note that habbyists, especially those coming from fish-only background tend to stuff their filter to the gills with flow sucking media such as noodles, which are specifically designed to kill the flow rate so that the larger particles will fall out of solution and be trapped. In planted tank, it is not really necessary to use so much media. The filter should be no more than 50% filled with media and the noodles should be replaced by coarse to medium foam if possible. Planted tanks produce a LOT of detritus so the filters ought to be cleaned much more often than in a fish only tank. All of this helps to deter some forms of algae and helps to maintain precious flow rate.

For item 5. as Edvert mentions, the placement of your filter output may not be in the best location. A good indication of good distribution is to observe the plants gently rocking in the "breeze" and this tells us that the flow is actually reaching the leaves. You may need to experiment with the location of your pipe to achieve this.

So it's better to have a look at all of these factors because it could easily be any combination of these that are contributing to the problem.

Cheers,
 

Zeus.

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alto

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Especially important on this rather large tank (in the linked video) which really has quite low CO2 injection ... and only a week after planting

My experience with this type of green filament algae is the window tanks - loads of (sun)light, minimal flow, no added CO2, minimal water changes, lean nutrient dosing
If I do the once (or rarely twice) weekly water changes & maintain filter flow (& trim the plants), the high light, minimal CO2 dont seem sufficient to grow this algae in easily visible amounts

Interestingly I've never had visible BBA in these low tech tanks

Green dust algae on the glass is common (& easily tidied away) ... it's not a given, but is the most common algae I see which in these window tanks

My experiences just don't follow the paradigm of lots of flow, lots of CO2, lots of nutrients, LOW light necessary to obtain a minimal algae, healthy plants tank ;)

Of course I also don't shoot any photos of the tanks I have, so I could be spinning tales o_O :shifty: :angelic:
 

ceg4048

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My experiences just don't follow the paradigm of lots of flow, lots of CO2, lots of nutrients, LOW light necessary to obtain a minimal algae, healthy plants tank ;)
My experiences just don't follow the paradigm of green filament algae is the window tanks - loads of (sun)light, minimal flow, no added CO2, minimal water changes, lean nutrient dosing.

I have no reason to doubt your statements. We know for example that there are many ways to skin the cat and that those skins only seem like different skins because we fail to look at the various scenarios wholistically.

So for example, you claim that sunlight causes filamentous algae, where I claim that there is no direct correlation between sunlight, per se, and any kind of algae unless other factors, such as CO2 and flow distribution, which you dismiss as being irrelevant, are also poor.

Here is a tank "by the window". The photo was taken in the late afternoon.
This tank sat in the conservatory until dismantled after 3 years and never suffered any kind of algal bloom, filamentous or otherwise. So this example refutes your claim of filamentous algae being associated with tanks by windows. This also refutes your claim that GDA is "common".
None of these algal types are common or expected unless flow/distribution and CO2 are marginal to poor.
Now, do many people with window tanks suffer these algal types? Well, yes, because they are not paying attention to flow/distribution and CO2.
Do the blooms occur in low tech tanks? Well, yes, because these tanks do not have the benefit of enriched CO2.

Can sunlight trigger algal blooms generally? Well, yes. Sunlight in this regard is no different than artificial light. Sunlight will trigger algal blooms if it is excessive and if it cannot be compensated for by CO2/flow/distribution, and this is exactly the same for artificial light.

So you claim that you use high light and that there is no correlation between your high light and the blooms. What is your definition of high light?
The problem here is that there are no measurements and when you tell other people that their light is moderate to low, you actually have no idea whatsoever what that persons light out put really is. No PAR data is available or is reported. The problem in the hobby is that what we know is excessive lighting, hobbyists, especially newbies, think is moderate to low lighting. Then they get into trouble and they never suspect that a simple light reduction will solve or avoid their problems. In the tank shown below I experimented by deliberately triggering hair algae. All I had to do was to reduce the injection rate and hair algae would start to occur within a day or two. Restoring the injection rate eliminated the hair algae within a few days afterwards. I did this repeatedly in order to verify that the occurrence and disappearance was not merely coincidence.

In order to draw conclusions about what are causal factors, or to eliminate conjecture about what may be causes, one has to first, be able to grow an algae free tank and then one has to not be afraid to destroy the harmony of the tank. If one's assumptions are correct regarding cause and effect then one can be confident of how to solve these problems. Not only do these paradigms work for me, but they work for others who suffer algal blooms because of having the tank configured in precisely the way you describe as having worked for you.

Neither have I seen any report from you stating that you have actually tried our methods to either confirm or refute the methods efficacy. So I'm not quite sure whether your intent is to simply promote dogmatic principles or whether you have tried this method and failed at it. What I am absolutely sure of is that "lots of nutrients, lots of flow/distribution and lots of CO2" works and can handle any scenario. The method can also be adjusted downward to make life less hectic.

I agree with you that if flow/distribution is excellent one can then reduce the injection rate because the gas that is being injected will be much more effective.

8394068789_31213bbc29_b.jpg



Look Ma, no algae!

9099694230_1628095073_b.jpg


Cheers,
 
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