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Help need - fighting stagorhorn?

hassafz

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29 Jul 2022
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8
Location
london
Hi guys,
I'm struggling with algae on old leaves, I'm not even sure what time of algae this is.
Specs below
Tank : Fluval spec V 5 Gallon
Light Chihiros series a version 2 running on 40% for 6 hours -1 hour ramp and down time.
High flow with an upgraded pump
Co2 running stable with lime green drop checker - starts and hour before lights switch on and turns off and an hour before lights switch off
3 pumps a week of Tropica specialised ferts
Substrate ADA Amazonia version 2

I was also getting the same algae and BBA on my drift wood but once I increased the ferts that went away.
The lights been decreased from 50% to 40% for almost a month now but thats not helping with the algae on old leaves
 

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xZaiox

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31 Mar 2022
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155
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Maidstone, UK
How long has your tank been running? Also have you done a pH profile yet? I.e is your CO2 at the correct levels when the lights are first turned on? The start of the photosynthesis period is the most important for plants.

I can't speak for BBA, but in my first ever tank setup I had copious amounts of staghorn algae, and I'm convinced that it's appearance is due to high organics/decaying matter (although I welcome someone to correct me on this if wrong). I don't appear to see any livestock in your tank - are they hiding or is it only plants? Do your plant leaves sway in the flow? Is your filter cleaned regularly? Do you use a siphon during water changes to remove detritus etc? How new/old is that substrate? I'm aware these types of substrates can leech ammonia for a while after setup.
 

_Maq_

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23 Jun 2022
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622
Location
Czech Republic
There are several opinions as to what may cause these algae to appear. Me, I believe in organic pollution, perhaps in concurrence with some other factors, like water flow. I'd suggest changing water more intensely and inserting activated carbon or Purigen into your filter. Also, rearranging your filter so that water flow changes its course may be worth trying.
 

hassafz

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Thread starter
Joined
29 Jul 2022
Messages
8
Location
london
How long has your tank been running? Also have you done a pH profile yet? I.e is your CO2 at the correct levels when the lights are first turned on? The start of the photosynthesis period is the most important for plants.

I can't speak for BBA, but in my first ever tank setup I had copious amounts of staghorn algae, and I'm convinced that it's appearance is due to high organics/decaying matter (although I welcome someone to correct me on this if wrong). I don't appear to see any livestock in your tank - are they hiding or is it only plants? Do your plant leaves sway in the flow? Is your filter cleaned regularly? Do you use a siphon during water changes to remove detritus etc? How new/old is that substrate? I'm aware these types of substrates can leech ammonia for a while after setup.
-I do 80% water changes every week and syphon the substrate (at least the places that I can reach) and clean the filer media once a month
-I belive the ADA leeches ammonia/nutrients for 4 weeks
-stocking wise, i only have two ottos in there.
-Flow wise yes the leaves are swaying
 

hassafz

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Thread starter
Joined
29 Jul 2022
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london
There are several opinions as to what may cause these algae to appear. Me, I believe in organic pollution, perhaps in concurrence with some other factors, like water flow. I'd suggest changing water more intensely and inserting activated carbon or Purigen into your filter. Also, rearranging your filter so that water flow changes its course may be worth trying.
i dont think I can get away with turning the flow up even more its already really strong, it'll most probably uproot the monte carlo/.
 

dw1305

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UKAPS Team
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7 Apr 2008
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14,585
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Welcome to UKAPS. The first thing to say is that the tank, and plant health, looks really good.
I'm struggling with algae on old leaves, I'm not even sure what time of algae this is.
It looks like you might have a mixture of Stagshorn, Black Beard (both "Red Algae (Rhodophyta)") and a Green Algae.
I had copious amounts of staghorn algae, and I'm convinced that it's appearance is due to high organics/decaying matter
We don't know what causes any algae, but Stagshorn (Compsopogon caeruleus) does look to be <"associated with high levels of organic matter"> have a look at the linked thread <"Filter media, flow and algae"> and links from it for some more information.

The Green Algae are <"physiologically very similar to higher plants">, so snails may <"be your best option">.
and clean the filer media once a month
What filter media do you have in your filter?

cheers Darrel
 

hassafz

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29 Jul 2022
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london
Hi all,
Welcome to UKAPS. The first thing to say is that the tank, and plant health, looks really good.

It looks like you might have a mixture of Stagshorn, Black Beard (both "Red Algae (Rhodophyta)") and a Green Algae.

We don't know what causes any algae, but Stagshorn (Compsopogon caeruleus) does look to be <"associated with high levels of organic matter"> have a look at the linked thread <"Filter media, flow and algae"> and links from it for some more information.

The Green Algae are <"physiologically very similar to higher plants">, so snails may <"be your best option">.

What filter media do you have in your filter?

cheers Darrel
Thanks Darrel, ill check out the links.

I use Seachem Matrix Bio Media 500g which apparently is over kill for a 5 gallon and a sponge
 

dw1305

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14,585
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
I use Seachem Matrix Bio Media 500g which apparently is over kill for a 5 gallon
That should be more than fine, planted tanks don't actually need much biological filter media, the plants <"do most of the fixed nitrogen removal">.

It was just whether you had any fine sponge or floss in the filter that might retain organic matter and limit flow (<"and oxygenation">).

Biohome is an <"interesting media"> and I'm not, personally, very keen on its vendors <"advertising strategy"> but there isn't anything wrong with it.

cheers Darrel
 

xZaiox

Member
Joined
31 Mar 2022
Messages
155
Location
Maidstone, UK
It was just whether you had any fine sponge or floss in the filter that might retain organic matter and limit flow (<"and oxygenation">).
Darrel - I've seen on various threads that you're quite opposed to filter floss, and whilst I understand it reduces flow, I'm curious what you mean by the comment "retain organic matter" - isn't the alternative for the matter to be floating around in the tank? I would have thought logically that filter floss would aid in removal of organics because the floss is typically changed every 1-2 weeks.
 

dw1305

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14,585
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
isn't the alternative for the matter to be floating around in the tank?
I like it to <"be decomposed"> in the <"complete oxidation process">. I have an occasional vacuum of anything remaining, (when it is lying on the sand surface) and I have a <"big pre-filter sponge"> that I squeeze out every week.
......... When you open the filter up you can tell a lot about the oxygen levels in the filter by the nature of the biofilm. If it mainly consists of a lot of fine black particles these are the (largely carbon) remnants left when the microbial "low hanging fruit" (short chain carbohydrates, proteins etc.) have been consumed ("oxidised")........
I'm not too worried abou the residual matter once all the "goodness" has gone out of it. I have a crew of <"tank janitors"> that mop up most dead leaves etc for me. You can think of the little faecal pellets that shrimps, or snails, leave, they are unsightly but they have very little BOD, and are not very polluting: <"Detritus in the aquarium">.
I would have thought logically that filter floss would aid in removal of organics because the floss is typically changed every 1-2 weeks.
Yes, the floss will perform the same role as the tank janitors, if it is changed regularly, but I'm a <"pretty shoddy aquarist"> and I know that I wouldn't open the filter body frequently enough.

cheers Darrel
 
Last edited:

dw1305

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nr Bath
Hi all,
your post has been super informative
I'm pleased it has been useful. Realistically I'm super lazy and I just like to follow the <"line of least resistance">.

I'm also <"really tight with my money">, so <"low cost alternatives"> are always of interest to me and additionally I have no interest <"in aesthetics">, growing rare plants or <"optimal plant growth">.

It is going to sound a bit funny, but I think that working with <"waste water">, visiting sewage farms and landfills etc has allowed me to think a lot more clearly about <"what is important"> and if plants, oxygen, invertebrates etc, can do the <"heavy lifting for me">? I'm good with that.

cheers Darrel
 

hassafz

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29 Jul 2022
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Location
london
So I've been doing 80% water changes weekly, co2 has been stable, also been cleaning the filter weekly.
no changes to the algae still striving.

anyone able to guide me ?
 

hassafz

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29 Jul 2022
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Location
london
also if I was to do 2 x 50 water changes a week do i dose the same amount after every water change?

E.g.
old schedule - 80% water change with 3 pumps of tropica ferts
New schedule - 40% x 2 water changes with 1.5 pump after every water change?
 

hassafz

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Thread starter
Joined
29 Jul 2022
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Location
london
Hi all,

That should be more than fine, planted tanks don't actually need much biological filter media, the plants <"do most of the fixed nitrogen removal">.

It was just whether you had any fine sponge or floss in the filter that might retain organic matter and limit flow (<"and oxygenation">).

Biohome is an <"interesting media"> and I'm not, personally, very keen on its vendors <"advertising strategy"> but there isn't anything wrong with it.

cheers Darrel
Sorry forgot to tag you, replies above.
 
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