I Stopped BBA without any chemicals or water change

plantman123

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Been battling it for a month. Using toothbrush to scrape it off plants. The worst part was the sponge filter it loves porus materials.

I didn't think it would work or in fact would make it worse.. but thought I would try it as a last resort option. I completely shut off the co2 and after a week the BBA completely stopped growing and at the 2nd week it started dying back, then the amano shrimp started picking at it and after a month it's almost completely gone.

There are still remnants of it left but it has gone completely dormant and slowly dying back and being eaten.

I am so confused I thought co2 injection would stop it or slow it down but in fact did the opposite? ! ? ! ? ! ?

What is going on here??///

If you are suffering with this try what I did and see if it works!
 

Siege

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Hi plantman,

Pleased the tactic worked for you. Not the best advice to give to someone though.

A couple of thoughts.

Bba loves fluctuating co2, maybe you had this? Now your co2 is stable (none added) bba has gone. If it was on the plants plant growth wasn’t good.

You say it was on the filter sponge, the other thing bba loves is waste organics, hence growing there. Maybe waste organics settling on leaves also? Your heightened maintenance regime probably did more than simply turning off the co2.

Imo you’ll be best turning the co2 back on and concentrating on getting that right with good plant growth whilst continuing the high level of maintenance that you’ve been recently doing.

Just food for thought. You got the result you wanted but perhaps a different reason than you actually think?
 

plantman123

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I think it's the best advice in the entire world! I didn't have to muck around with any chemicals or strip the tank down or remove ornaments.

No I didn't have any fluctuating co2 I kept it on 24/7 to test and the BBA was still growing strong. Drop checker was lime green all the time.

I think now i will let the bba die off and start co2 at a later date or not at all. I don't want to check on it everyday and be obsessed and waste my time mucking around with it at least I have it under control.

This is very good news indeed.
 

Zeus.

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Agree with Siege about the CO2, whats your photo period and CO2 period and did you every do a pH profile.
Most peoples problem with CO2 injected tanks are CO2 related due to fluctuating CO2 and inadequate flow, as soon as you turned off the CO2 your tank became stable CO2 wise and the flow requirements decreased as low tech tanks dont need as much. So you didnt change the flow rate but the flow needed for your tank changed when you turned off the CO2.

Some more details about your tank and equipment would help also and a Full Tank Pic ;)
 

plantman123

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Oh dear that is sad to see that BBA grows with/without co2, but my tank is fine so I must be doing something right.

My lights on are 9 hours a day and there is good circulation from the sponge filter. Very economical on wattage and my shrimp love to feed on it.

Here are some of my parameters:

TDS 207 ppm
GH 10 ish
KH 10 ish
nitrite 0
nitrate 10 ppm

I live in very hard water area so I mix rain water with tap water and all is good no chalky deposits anymore!
 

Geoffrey Rea

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You shut off the Co2. This also changed pH, oxygen availability, microbial colony size within the substrate and filter, the amount of waste products produced by your plants... and so on and so forth. Caution with attributing a change to one variable when dealing with a complex system.

You gave BBA a hard time by cutting off a nutrient (carbon) though.

Using toothbrush to scrape it off plants.
You hassled it to make it difficult for BBA to persist.

after a week the BBA completely stopped growing and at the 2nd week it started dying back
So have your plants. However, they have nutrient stores so it will take longer to show the affect of suddenly being starved of carbon. Some plants adapt, others will struggle.

There are still remnants of it left but it has gone completely dormant
It’s in a different form based on a lower level of Co2.

The question I would be asking is why was it thriving in the first place? Others have already made valid suggestions.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
@plantman123 we have a couple of <"long threads on BBA">, they are worth a read, but don't come up
But there are loads of non-CO2 tanks producing impressive BBA forests
The best BBA I've ever seen was in the, now closed, pet shop in Corsham. Definitely no added CO2, and by the look of it, no water changes ever either. Just like <"Gorilla Fake Fur">.

I noticed the other day that the BBA had almost entirely disappeared from the <"filter sponge"> that has had it for several years, again I have no idea why. This is at least the second cycle of BBA growth and death. It reminded me of the <"Rachel O'Leary"> video.

cheers Darrel
 

Jayefc1

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Swadlincote
Well all I can say is well done and I hope your plants have not suffered and that your bba free tank thrives I to dont believe it was just the turning off of co2 there where probably other factors either way goodluck
Cheers
Jay
 

sparkyweasel

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30 Jun 2011
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A sponge filter won't give you enough flow for a CO2 injected tank, so you've gone from a bad high-tech tank to a better balanced low-tech tank.
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
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they just want you to purchase chemicals and additives to push the market to get rich.
Waiting in line for my kickbacks :D

How long do you think for them to make it to North America?
Though with my luck, Customs will turn ‘em back at the Border :(
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
If you're reading this for the first time, don't believe their posts they just want you to purchase chemicals and additives to push the market to get rich.
I think we have an appropriately skeptical attitude to the claims of the various producers.

Have a look at <"Bedside Aquarium">.
..........And that is the real issue for me, many forums and LFS are advocating methods that definitely aren't best practice and in a lot of cases actively get in the way of people being successful aquarists. I would hope that you would get better advice in Germany, Sweden or the Netherlands.

There is no money to be made by telling people that "oxygen, plants and time" are the most important factors in being a successful fish keeper. If you then tell them that
  • they can use garden soil capped with sand as substrate,
  • that there is no point in trying to change your water chemistry with pH buffers,
  • there are no special phosphors, (unique to aquarium tubes), that promote plant growth,..............
  • cheers Darrel
 
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