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Algae Questions


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  • Regular Member

So I have what looks like brown algae in my tank. Now I understand that this isn't really algae, but what is it? Is it harmful?

What is it caused by?

How do I get the pretty green stuff? I know it has something to do with the light, what kind of light do I need?

Can I have both brown stuff and green stuff or do I need to try and remove the brown stuff before the green stuff will grow?

:huh:

Sorry for so many questions. Thanks for your help.

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Guest OzzMosiz

can't remember the name of the brown stuff, but it's not harmfil.

If you want to grow green algae then keep the light on for longer.

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  • Regular Member

Ah, should I just leave the light on longer? I realize that I probably only leave it on 10 hours a day. I thought I had a fill-spectrum light though I suppose there's no way to tell now.

I willl try and find an apple snail and leave the light on longer.

Thanks for the replies!

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  • Regular Member

Fluorescents diminish in strength with time, so even buying a new bulb will increase the light output.

Also, make sure any glass between the bulb and the tank is clean. The build up that occurs on glass can cut down on a lot of the light that reaches the tank.

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  • Regular Member

The apple snails are safe. I would only get one, though, unless you want tons of snail babies all around! I had two of these snails in one of my tanks for less than a week, and already there's snail eggs in there. Wow!

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Guest jshearman

I'm having a green algae bloom. How to I get rid of this? Just reduce the light and keep doing regular water changes? I don't mind a little, but the the water is starting to get a bit murky (although the quality seems OK).

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  • Regular Member

As an aquarist with very little experience, I've heard two different opinions on this, to leave it alone and it'll take care of itself. And to use a chemical water clearer (which will bond with the algae so that the filter can suck it up). But I don't know which is preferable.

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  • Regular Member

If I were you, I would lessen the duration of the light, and step up the water changes to lower the nitrate.

BTW, how what kind of lights are you using, and how long are you leaving them on?

Also, green water is actually not harmful for goldfish, but good for them :D

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Guest jshearman

Nitrates aren't high (10 ppm), but the tank is bare. I've just read that algae blooms are more common in bare tanks. That coupled with the light was probably the culprit. Charlie is swimming around happy as a clam, but I'd like to be able to see him!!! I think I'll try reducing the light first to see if that helps. Thanks for all the advice. :)

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  • Regular Member

You could also try adding some plants, such as hornwort. Hornwort isn't planted, it is left to float, but you can use plant anchors to anchor it to the tank bottom if you wish. It uses up a lot of nitrates and can help outcompete the algae. Also floating plants, such as water wisteria is good.

Your goldies will not likely eat the hornwort, either. I read that hornwort supposedly has a compound that deters algae, however, I don't know if that is true. Worth a try, though.

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  • Regular Member

Hornwort is a plant that doesn't grow roots. It is unusual in that way and it gets all of its nourishment from the water, so it is really good as a water purifier. You can "anchor" it down by putting a plant anchor around it, or you can just let it float free. It is not expensive, and you can usually get a good handful of it for a few dollars.

It is attractive, too :)

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