Growing BBA

rebel

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4 Aug 2015
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Hi everyone,

My first post here but I have been lurking a little and have kept plants for 2 years.

I have planted tank 165L with 3 SAE. I am keen to give them regular nibbles of BBA but grow them elsewhere if possible. I don't want them to get used to algae wafers etc to see whether they will eat BBA until their senile age. Currently they are munching on my AR mini and other stems a little.

The question is, does anyone know how to grow BBA cheap/efficient and reliably?

Many thanks for your input.
 

Julian

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20 Jul 2013
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First person on this forum I've seen that WANTS to grow the stuff!

Lots of organic waste, mixed with lots of light should do the job.
 

ian_m

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Never was convinced my SAE actually touched the stuff, just completely ignored it algae wafers or not. They did scoff it when the BBA has been killed using liquid carbon, but never when BBA was alive.
 

xim

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19 Mar 2010
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I think you may need to "seed" it first, if all your hardscapes and substrate are new and all the plants are in emersed form, also the fish are from fish-only tanks.
 

rebel

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4 Aug 2015
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Thanks guys. It's interesting to think about the problem in reverse. While I really dislike BBA in my tanks, when it comes to culturing it, I had no idea how to do it consistently. I still have it in my nano which I will continue to use as food for the SAE. Mine devour the stuff usually within minutes of putting it in the tank!

@Edvet, thanks for the link. Very interesting hypothesis indeed.

@xim, I agree with seeding, otherwise it would be random chance for a spore (do they float in air??) to seed the culturing medium!

@Julian and @Ian, appreciate you comments.
 

Jose

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High light, high flow, some organics (so less water changes), some co2 but lower levels (less than 20 ppm), this all might help it appear.
 

sWozzAres

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30 Jun 2010
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Freshwater red algae grow best under low light regimes. Generally they prefer long day, low irradiance. But before you start growing it, you have to trigger it and there is the problem.

I would try varying your tank parameters in numerous ways. Vary the photoperiod, light intensity and light quality. Vary CO2, pH, temperature and ion concentration by doing massive water changes with the lights on. Vary nutrients, get a nitrate/phosphate absorber to simulate deficiency. It's also known that nutrient concentration outside of specific ratio's can also be perceived as a deficiency, for instance if it requires N:p at 16:1 ratio, then a 24:1 ratio could be perceived as a P deficiency regardless of how much P you have. Make sure you have lots of organics floating around and the magic ingredient, lots of ammonia!

Once you trigger it, make sure you have high flow to increase chances of fertilization.

Good luck! :D
 
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