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Hair algae new tank

chsound

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Joined
6 Feb 2022
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34
Location
Yateley
Hi all,

My tank is coming up 6 weeks old and I just can’t seem to get ahead of the hair algae. It’s the only algae I’m having issues with, no other algae present.

High tech tank, 4ft
C02 fed and chihiros rgb light.

Params are exactly where they should be and dosing daily 2hr aquarist apt zero.

Might also be worth mentioning I have two types of moss in my tank, xmas at the bottom and weeping on the branches. The Xmas doesn’t seem to be doing very well whilst the weeping is picking up. Getting hair algae and brown gunk on the Xmas moss and around some plants. Also my eleocharis mini and parva is dying (not all, some have sent runners).

Any suggestions? It’s not over run by the hair algae but enough to be bothersome and especially when intertwined with some of the stems and moss


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chsound

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6 Feb 2022
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34
Location
Yateley
Might also be worth mentioning the hair algae is more brown than green.. when I extract it using the toothbrush method it comes off the toothbrush looking almost like diatoms would so whether it’s diatoms mixed in with the hair algae I don’t know.


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Zeus.

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1 Oct 2016
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Yorkshire,UK
Need much more detail to be able to help, Filter used/outlets, substrate being used, why are you using APT zero as it has no Nitrogen or phosphate based nutrients? how long is your light on? Co2 on time before lights? Have you done a pH profile to check for a stable [CO2] ? Bio mass level - Full tank pic will help.
 

Witcher

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15 Jan 2020
Messages
304
Location
London
My tank is coming up 6 weeks old ....

This is a very freshly set up tank, I can bet your plants are not stabilized yet. Give them some time, let them root properly and use the power of alleopathy.
Might also be worth mentioning the hair algae is more brown than green...
I'm only guessing but there may be not enough nitrogen or iron in the water column? Algae can adapt much quicker to certain conditions, but if they can't produce chlorophyll, lack of NO3or Fe is the most common case.
Params are exactly where they should be and dosing daily 2hr aquarist apt zero.
Dennis is keeping most of his plants in soft/very soft water and his formulas of nutrients are best suited to soft water environment/plants. So if you have hard water plants/environment, his formula may not be suitable.
 

erwin123

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4 Mar 2021
Messages
851
Location
Singapore
Dennis is keeping most of his plants in soft/very soft water and his formulas of nutrients are best suited to soft water environment/plants. So if you have hard water plants/environment, his formula may not be suitable.



if you check his instagram, his farm tank uses APT EI and his "aquascape" tank uses APT Complete, not APT Zero.
 

Hanuman

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4 Jan 2019
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1,337
Location
Thailand
Screen Shot 2022-05-09 at 12.13.17.jpg
 

chsound

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Thread starter
Joined
6 Feb 2022
Messages
34
Location
Yateley
Need much more detail to be able to help, Filter used/outlets, substrate being used, why are you using APT zero as it has no Nitrogen or phosphate based nutrients? how long is your light on? Co2 on time before lights? Have you done a pH profile to check for a stable [CO2] ? Bio mass level - Full tank pic will help.

Sumped tank, 75L sump, 300L display.
Filter is clarisea 5000, co2 being delivered from the diffuser directly into the return and spread across the aquarium throw twin (each corner) random flow generators.
Substrate, tropica soil, lava rock under layer and sand front layer.
Switched to apt zero as it’s suggested for new tanks, I noticed my po4 and nitrate creeping up. Po4 was above 1ppm and nitrate was around 10-15ppm.
Matrix in the sump as well.

Bio load, 9 choris, 40 armano shrimp (not sure if I have that many left, I rarely ever see over 6)
20 juvi white tip tetras, 9 rummy nose tetras, 2 German blue rams, 6 otto’s (no seimise algae eaters though as The plan is to have dense moss. )
Imo it’s a light bio load, I used to run a show reef tank which had a heavy bioload in consideration to what’s in there now given the size of the tank as well 4ft display.

Co2 is on 2 hours before lights on, otherwise the dropper is showing it’s still rather blueish green. By end of the day it’s very lime green, more yellow side.

Lights were on low, chihiros rgb 2, had them on 40% 8 hours, 1hr ramp. Increased it as wasn’t receiving growth as I think it was too low. Now I’ve got it on 10 hours and 70% (following tropica new tank guide) been on the 10 hour now for a couple of days and the hair algae is getting a lot worse so might need to dial back again.

I haven’t done a ph profile, not sure the process of that. My first aquascape from reef keeping, (I went reef keeping first)
ddc2ddd2a8481ef88205913f19432add.jpg

e3b19a98ad07fad3c3ff6622456bb5f8.jpg

efef0cfcc6c793d14cd8f1463c2eaba0.jpg

9f0fbb432425fd7ee5f04fcc26c92a6a.jpg


Added the picture above as my Java fens are developing black bits in their leaves, also suffering from Anubias rhyzone rot and the mosses aren’t doing well.
6b08b455c03fc291105d094d37e5420d.jpg



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Zeus.

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Co2 is on 2 hours before lights on, otherwise the dropper is showing it’s still rather blueish green. By end of the day it’s very lime green, more yellow side.
Which is telling us the [CO2] is unstable, as a rule of thumb, after the lights have been on 2hrs the DC colour change should remain the same until after CO2 off.
A pH profile is taking the tanks pH from CO2 on every 30mins (and lights on) till CO2 off. The pH ideally should be the same from lights on till CO2 off

Even though you have decent filter output to tank size there doesn't seem much surface agitation/flow in the tank, what filter outputs are you using? I would try to set them up so it generates the much flow and surface agitation as possible, plants should be swaying in the flow.

Lights were on low, chihiros rgb 2, had them on 40% 8 hours, 1hr ramp. Increased it as wasn’t receiving growth as I think it was too low. Now I’ve got it on 10 hours and 70% (following tropica new tank guide) been on the 10 hour now for a couple of days and the hair algae is getting a lot worse so might need to dial back again.

I would turn them down to 50% and five hours until the issues are resolved.

That's a lot of algae, might be even worth thinking about a restart!!! Needs a good clean removing as much as possible with tweezers and remove any leaves that are really badly affected, followed by a big water change. Then every few days remove more algae if possible Even with your fish load and test results, I would still dose a complete fertiliser. Doing a restart is only worth while if you correct the underlying issues
  • unstable CO2
  • Inadequate flow/surface agitation
  • Too much/intense light
  • dose a complete fert
You will learn more correcting the issues than a restart IMO
 

sparkyweasel

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Joined
30 Jun 2011
Messages
2,424
Might also be worth mentioning the hair algae is more brown than green.. when I extract it using the toothbrush method it comes off the toothbrush looking almost like diatoms would so whether it’s diatoms mixed in with the hair algae I don’t know.


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There are diatoms that form long strands like hair algae, and diatoms are comon in new tanks. If the threads feel gritty they are probably diatoms. The good news is that diatoms usually clear up as the tank matures.
 

plantnoobdude

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17 Mar 2021
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754
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uk
There are diatoms that form long strands like hair algae, and diatoms are comon in new tanks. If the threads feel gritty they are probably diatoms. The good news is that diatoms usually clear up as the tank matures.
agreed, diatoms are fairly normal for most tanks and go away with good maintenance:)
 

xZaiox

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31 Mar 2022
Messages
75
Location
Maidstone, UK
These are absolutely diatoms. I had this exact same issue in my tank, you can even check out the link here - Is this filamentous diatoms?

Mine are all gone now. I strongly suspect this type is fuelled by decaying organic matter. It used to be all over my driftwood when the driftwood was new and stuff was constantly coming off it and growing on it. The driftwood is now smooth (likely thanks to my shrimp), and no longer gets this algae. It used to also smother my plants, but only when they were melting after adapting to a submerged state, as soon as they were adapted the algae disappeared.

My advice is dim the light intensity, have them on for a maximum of 6 hours, and optimise your CO2 and fertiliser regime. Basically, you want to get your plants growing as healthily as possible, this will put a stop to any form of algae. I found this particular type of algae very easy to remove with a turkey baster, I use fluval's one. The targeted suction pulls up entire matts of it really easily. I would advise getting something like this, and removing as much of it as you can.
 

Zeus.

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Yorkshire,UK
Sorry for my misdiagnosis, I could of sworn as seen some hair algae in with diatoms, but on second look there isn't :oops:. Others have given the correct advise of time and remove/suck out what you can. :thumbup:
I would still advise getting a more stable [CO2] for the tank, optimise flow, less light and a complete fert.
 

chsound

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6 Feb 2022
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Location
Yateley
I have plenty of shrimp, they aren’t touching it.

I’m pretty sure it’s hair algae, grown back double since a day ago when I pulled a load out. It’s very fine and whispy.. just seems to be getting out of control. Cut the lighting back to 50% and for 6 hours with 2 hour co2 before lights on and 2 hours before lights off.

It’s just all in the eleocharis, moss and on some of the hydrophilia and intertwined within the Java ferns.


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