Does algae naturally die off when the cause is dealt with?

Discussion in 'Beginner Discussions' started by rezryk, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. rezryk

    rezryk

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    Bit of background - Was cycling a new 30cm tank. Seemed to level out and I got some cardinals. I realised
    30cm was too small so I got a new 60cm long (80lit) tank. I thought that by simply transferring the old filter to a new aquarium, along with the old hardscape, the substrate and plants, I'd be good to go instead of waiting to cycle it. This wasn't the case and I'm busy cycling an aquarium that has livestock and plants.

    Now - The ammonia levels are starting to drop and now the nitrate levels seem to be spiking. I'm performing around a 25% water change every 2-3 days and I'm confident I've gotten through the worst part of the cycle with the fish still alive. I'm now having an issue with algae on my plants.

    My plan to combat the algae growth:

    - Simply keep up with my water changes, as the nitrate levels drop, so will the source of the algae's nutrition. Over time, my plants will grow thus diminishing the algae's nutrition further.

    - Reduce lighting hours, currently I'm on 12hrs a day (9AM - 9PM). I'm planning on reducing it to 9hrs on
    weekdays and 12hrs on the weekends.

    - Introduce a Siamese Algae Eater. I just got a single one (pretty sure it's not a fox) as 2-3 would be too
    many for such a small aquarium. Right now, he's just parking off under the rocks and not doing anything. Might take a few days for him to acclimatise and get hungry before he starts going after the algae. I'm making sure to feed my cardinals just enough that minimal food hits the bottom, forcing him to go after the algae.


    My question is, if the source of the algae's problem (lighting, nitrate levels etc.) are deal with and new algae stops blooming, will the algae that's in my tank vanish or will I have to remove it myself or really on algae eaters and/or snails. I don't mind getting 2 little nerite snails, but I'd prefer to scrape algae off the plants as they're planted pretty well, with fertiliser pellets in the soils and I really don't feel like replanting them.

    Here's some pics of the algae, I'm having trouble identifying the type of algae on the 'spiky' plant at the back (not sure what it's called). Is it BBA? (The little white granules are bits of EasyBalance, I just did a water change)

    IMG_1171.JPG IMG_1172.JPG IMG_1173.JPG IMG_1175.JPG IMG_1176.JPG IMG_1177.JPG IMG_1171.JPG IMG_1172.JPG
     
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  3. pierreschoonraad

    pierreschoonraad

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    Very nice looking aquarium you have there. A lot of plants from the start is a very good way to combat algae from the start. But the problem lies with your lighting period. Normally a newly planted aquarium will start of with 4 hours light per day. This get increases to end up with between 6 and 8 hours. Plants don't need more than this to grow. The main reason we keep lights on for longer periods is because we want to look at the aquarium. If your at work there is no need to have the lights on. Get a timer, not expencive, and set it to be on from 4 till 10 at night when you are at home.

    Sent from my SM-A720F using Tapatalk
     
  4. Cale24

    Cale24

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    Tank looks great! Agree with the above advice- finding a balance is part of any new setup. Depends also how bright the light you are using is - wattage/ PAR etc.
     
  5. Rainstorm

    Rainstorm

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    That's a difficult one, what @Pierré Schoonraad said but also try to keep vaccuuming off the dead algae and keep it as clean as possible, even rub off the dead algae and get rid of it as it tends to settle down and make everything look brown. I find that it's harder to clean bolbitis so I would suggest cutting off the badly infested leaves and actually wait for the new growth (trimming encourages new growth as well).
     
  6. Cale24

    Cale24

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  7. David Kusner

    David Kusner

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    @rezryk very nice scape. Out of interest what substrate is that.

    I had a similar problem with a tank with algea after I added some plants and fertilizer and I think I was a bit heavy at first on the fertilizer in the beginning and ended up with algea everywhere and I mean every where even the heater was cover and you could even see it. I cut all the lighting and added a algae eater and a pleco and a piece of drift wood and some Malaysian trumpet snails. The algae eater and the pleco both sat around and hid for the first 3 days almost doung nothing. But by this morning both are showing them selves and had had quite a good feast over the last 3 days and cleaned the bulk of the algea. The snails have also started doing a good job and are keeping the substrate nice a clean again. The plants are still covered in a bot of a film of algea but I am certain the cleanup crew will sort this out. If not I will add some ancistrus who I find do a good cleanup on plants without damaging them.

    I also added 2 blocks of the algea remover stuff you get at most LFS thats used for tanks and ponds. I have used this stuff for quite a few years and its been my go to stuff whenever I had these types of issues. It seems to control the algea growth in smaller tanks and makes the water crystal clear after a few days and its cheap.

    Their are 2 type of these blocks the white ones for small aquariums and blue ones for ponds that I use on the bigger 300 liters and higher.

    You could also target the algea on the plants with a syringe filled with hydrogen peroxide I have read and seen youtube videos of aqua scapers that do this or remove the plants and spray them with s fine mist sprayer of H2O2 or trim the effected leaves as was already suggested.

    In my personal opinion, once the cycle is done, I feel that in this instance futher over frequent water changes may not help improve the issue but rather aid the issue as the frequent introduction of fresh water will simply add additional nutrients and the algae continues to grow in small amounts.

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  8. OP
    rezryk

    rezryk

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    Thanks for the feedback and compliments, I planted some more P. Helferi on the filter side of the foreground and the tank looks more complete.
    My first priority is to stop the source of the algae, which I believe are the water parameters and perhaps excessive light (I'll stick to 6 hours on weekdays).

    I'll leave the SAE for a few weeks to do his job. If not, I'll get 2 nerite snails to back him up. If the algaes still there, I'll have to uproot the affected plants and manually get them off, I'll try the hydrogen peroxide.
     

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