PM's 54 Liter Journal.

JamesM

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The BIG End, South Wales
beeky said:
I'm still not sure I understand this idea of "poor CO2 causes X algae". If this statement were true, then every low tech tank (i.e with no additional CO2) would always be plagued with algae. It must be some sort of ratio/relationship with CO2. I have hair algae in a low tech tank lit with two T8 tubes. I definitely have poor CO2 - I don't add any.
Its usually unstable co2.

I had a hell of a time trying to control algae in my low tech tank, but then Clive suggested I do very little or no water changes at all. The fresh water will contain higher levels of co2 and o2, upsetting the balance of the tank. Plants hurry to use this like a drug addict... and like a drug addict, when the fix is gone the plants fall apart which causes ammonia and algae.
 

ceg4048

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Hair algae is closely associated with poor CO2, however, "poor CO2" comes in various flavors:

If the CO2 content in the water were zero and the KH were zero (or if the plant were unable to use CO3/HCO3) then this magnitude of "poor CO2" would be fatal. This almost never happens though because as long as there is CO2 in the atmosphere then a tank exposed to the atmosphere will have the CO2 dissolve from the atmosphere into the water at some equilibrium value, simply due to the partial pressure of the gas.

The other flavors of "poor CO2" are always within the context of how much light the leaf is being bombarded with. Photon energy collision with chlorophyll in the leaf starts a chain chemical reaction which requires CO2. The more energy received by the leaf the more CO2 is required by that leaf. The most frequent of this type is:
a) high light and poor injection.
b) high light and poor flow/distribution which fails to deliver the CO2 to the leaf.
c) combination of a) and b)

The final flavor is where the injection levels may be OK but the concentration levels are unstable. This is see in the following cases:
d) CO2 is not turned on early enough before lights on enough to saturate the tank. The level is too low at lights on but may rise further into the photoperiod.
e) injection rate varies during the day. pH controllers can be guilty of this, but constantly fiddling with the needle valve can also be a culprit.
f) low light, non-injected planted tanks when water changes via tap are performed.

Any combination of the above will undermine CO2 uptake and is exacerbated by the light energy. Lowering the light should always be the first step because light causes a demand for CO2, CO2 causes a demand for nutrients.

Further details can be found in these threads:
co2 and water changes
Stable CO2 - What does it mean exactly?

Cheers,
 

neil1973

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6 Jul 2007
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Stirling
Years ago when i first started a planted tank i had a lot of light and didn't have the nutrients properly sorted and ended up with a tank full of algae that looked just like yours. Sorting out the nutrients and CO2 were obviously important in me fixing this long term but i found a pair of rosy barbs very useful in clearing the initial mess, pretty much cleared a 120l tank of this stuff in 48 hours. I wouldn't like to promise that they will always do this, pehaps mine were special :D . They can be a bit hard on some plants in the long term though.

cheers
Neil
 

PM

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15 Dec 2007
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London
Small update, I've cut my light to just 24watts of Osram 6500K. Algae is more under control but there's still a lot, CO2 seems more stable, just need to get the plants in good cond again. Plus I think the fish like less light TBH. Why have I got a 4x24w unit when I'm only using one! :rolleyes:
 

PM

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I just pruned and re-planted everything:

3118107954_9bc7114037_b.jpg


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I would like to get some Neon Tetras, :) I have 6 Rummies, 5 black neons, 2 ottos and 2 amano shrimp. If I didn't have any black neons, how many neons do you think I could get? (54L tank)

Ta
 

PM

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Huff, I can't keep battling with algae this way (I only have 24w of T5), how can I go more low tech??

Endless thread type fuzzy algae :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad:
 

PM

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15 Dec 2007
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London
Hi, just replanted the whole tank pretty much and cleaned it out.

Here's some pics:

It needs to grow in again, and I want to get some bigger pieces of wood for the right side eventually, fish are hiding due to the massive overhaul yesterday.

Front
3910115404_1fb4e8f0f3_b.jpg

Closeup (front)
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Left
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These were taken with a cheapo cam as my DSLR battery is on charge...

Gonna clean the filter out tomorrow too.

When I am happy with this tank, eventually I have my heart set on an opti 60x30x36 from Aquarium LTD. Anyone know how much they are?
 

samc

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28 Oct 2008
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1,381
i really like this

it will look great when the hm has grown in
 

PM

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15 Dec 2007
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London
Thanks, people on this forum never cease to amaze me with there upbeat attitudes, it's very refreshing compared to many forums.

I'm a million miles from being happy with the layout, hardscape needs (well a new hardscape)!

But I just want it to grow healthily without algae first before I start messing around even more!
 

PM

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15 Dec 2007
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611
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London
I did have a pair of rams but they died after two months :(

Shame, they were so pretty and always out 'exploring' haha

3600486771_29a636db73_b.jpg


Just gonna stick with Rummies and eventually get some Neons too when my Black Neons go, (if they ever do)!

This one makes me chuckle too! :D

3910201996_3ab79c1d15_b.jpg
 

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