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Algae apeared in hi-tech tank - reason?

Discussion in 'Algae' started by Arryl, Apr 15, 2009.

  1. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Hello. I have 17 litres tank:

    1,2 watt per litre light 10 hours
    CO2 - from CO2 tank 24\7 diffused via small pump impeller to micro bubble condition.
    External filtration
    PH - 5,9-6,0
    KH-2 GH 4
    Tank is densely planted with HC, R.spGreen. L.arquata, R.fluitans. E.parvula еtс.
    Daily dosing NPK +trace+Fe (all DIY)
    NPK dosing (weekly concentration) - No3 - 18ppm PO4 1,2 K-26,4.
    Fe 0,1 per day
    Water change - 70% weekly.
    After change I add 20ppm of K, 0,2 0f Fe and double day dose of NPK.
    Everything was fine since start in Jan09.
    But at last week on second day after WC I found small green hairs (probably Oedogonium or fuzz algae) on arcuata leaves, then on the next day on the H.microntemoides and on E.tennelis rubra. I start nervous cause everything was stable. I check No3 level with Tetra test and find 3-5 ppm max (but I add such amount dayly with double dose after wc). Fe level was also checked - 0,5ppm.
    So on next day i change 50% of water and add 6ppm of no3 ant night and 6ppm at today's morning. At evening I check level - aprox 7 ppm - so i decide to add another 10 ppm of no3 (i have separate solution) to give plant no limitation in no3. Did I made correct?

    But the main question for me is - what the reason of the algae activation?

    My assumption:

    1. Im check ph level - and was surprised - may be because of some problems with my co2 system - but ph was 5,56 (its in evening time) (instead of 5,9-6,0). So may be this cause CO2 increasing which stimulate NO3 consumption, its drop to low level and algae activate? - but to do this plants must stop its grows.? isnt it? Or even low concentration of NO3 is enough?
    2. May be HC start grows faster and start eat all nutrition which cause level drop.
    3?? dont know.. seating here and nervous - cause it tank for exhibition and
    not that presaged trouble.

    So I dont want to add some chemistry and do not want to make blackout or something like this, cause it cant affect plant its stop growing and......oh my god.
    Please any advise and assumption will be very helpful

    thanks
     

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  2. Jurijs mit JS

    Jurijs mit JS Admin Staff Member

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    Priwet Arryl :hi:
    I would reduce the lightning, 6-8 hours per day are enough for a high tech tank.
    Do more often water changes, 2-3 x week 50%
    Also you can dose some Easy Carbo - this stuff is liquid carbon source for your plants and works against algae. I would use a solenoid to stop the co2 at night. This will help you to get your PH stable.
    good luck :proud:
     
  3. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Priwet and Hello

    Atually when co2 was 24-7 i had no big co2 fluctuations - may be 6,15 at evening and 5,8 at morning - and all was ok.

    Today my co2 system brakes and on co2 was injected in tank during the day, and ph rised from 5.8 to 6.8 at evening. X-(
    Algae presents now is really noticeable. And I think its not a fuzz or oedogonium algae - cause on all fuzz photos this small tinny hairs grows from both side of leaves. But mine grows only from upper part and not from the bottom. Its like tiny fluff (but not like BBA or GBA).
    So i re-established co2, reduced light period to 8 hours and change another 35% of water + add NPK to maintain 20 ppm by NO3. Unfortun a have no possibility to add Excel. I have only Cidex but actually have no strong willing to use it. Tomorrow will short light to 7 hours....mmmm not in right time this trouble appeared (during start - no algae, during mature - no algae, and now... at nearly finish - bum). :)
     
  4. Shadow

    Shadow Moderator Staff Member

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    dosing regime look ok. Any idea what you did before algae attack? Maybe new light bulb, new plants, direct sunlight, etc. It may tell something.

    Do you have algae crew like shrimps, SAE? They will help clean the algae.
     
  5. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Actually it was new plants (but it was transferred from the 80 gal tank (my second one) and there they feel ok no algae etc.
    I only think that reason is that I maintain low NO3 level (my be 10-12ppm) then I change 70% water (RO)+add 2 dayly dose of NO3 - so probably level was 5-7 ppm and then my CO2 system going slightly mad and that increased co2 injection in tank so Ph level drop from 6,0 to 5,6 - this triggered plant to more active grow and nutritient consumption and NO3 level drop to 1-2 ppm. During this Fe level was approx 0,5 ppm... May be this is the reason... - I did not see any others... may be Im blind..
    Today evening will photo algae - hope you can determinate what is this- cause its not a Fuzz algae....
    I have only shrimps -2 SAE was extremely fast eject themselves from tank :)
     
  6. Supercoley1

    Supercoley1 Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't think CO2 increase would make the plants go crazy fast to remove the N for a couple of reasons unless the CO2 was already low before.

    The most likely reason is that when the CO2 went crazy the plants had to adapt their rubisco to the new higher level and that meant while they were adapting the algae adapted quicker as always and jumped in.

    However if the above is true then a return stable CO2 levels should mean the algae disappears again.

    Don't think its N or you would most likely see problems all over the tank, mainly with the larger plants that need more!!! And that liverwort, riccia wouldn't be pearling if it were suffering N defficiency. Like most liverworts its a nutrient sponge and will suffer earlier than others.

    Reducing the light and then gradually increasing over the next few weeks should help the tank get back on track but keep an eye on the CO2 levels.

    AC
     
  7. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Thanx for advice

    So what level of ph changes is allowable (for example I had 6,12 at evening, before light of and then 5.8 at morning ) This is because CO2 24-7. If I install solenoid valve and will turn co2 at night - will it be better?

    Also shell i add Cidex (glutare aldegide) or better to continue trying without chemistry
     
  8. Supercoley1

    Supercoley1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Don't worry about Ph changes too much within reason.

    there are those who run 24/7 and those who run by solenoid. Each have their own reasons whether it be not wanting to pay for the solenoid or just thinking that the plants prefer the CO2 24/7.

    There is no proof to say which way is best so it is basically user's choice. Personally I have used both routes and didn't see much difference in growth.

    I currently run on solenoid because it means I can crank up the CO2 in the photoperiod to the max knowing that outside of the photoperiod the fish will get a break from the CO2.

    Running 24/7 is much more of a balancing act. You have to limit what you put in so that overnight it doesn't build to toxic levels. That means you are lower during the day. Even with zero surface disturbance CO2 is lost pretty quickly :)

    AC
     
  9. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    So today check the ph at morning and evening (5.7 morning) (6.15 -evening)
    KH-1 GH 3
    NO3 - aprox 20
    PO4 have no test.
    Light period 7.5 hours
    About algae amount - not really sure - from one side they a slightly decreased from another at same level - but. on E.parvula they in bigger amount then yesterday.... oh ok
    Tomorrow will decrease light to 7 hours and add 1 hour light-off in the middle of the light period - your opinion?
    Also I attached some algae photos - please any conclusion... also i find such hair even on front glass (may be this another type but slightly similar)
     

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  10. Supercoley1

    Supercoley1 Moderator Staff Member

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    the light 'siesta' is an idea for DIY CO2 tanks not pressurised. Its for when the DIY is not giving enough CO2 and the assumption is that lights for an hour or 2 gives time for the level to build again.

    As far as I know there is no proof it works and it definately isn't need on pressurised setups.

    the way you are describing reductions of algae in 1 are and increases in another suggests circulation to me.

    The pictures look to me like the beginnings of fuzz/staghorn which is CO2!!! So maybe the circulation or the injection rate itself. Here is a good all round algae guide:
    James' Planted Tank - Algae Guide

    How are you measuring CO2? Do you have Excel/Easycarbo to supplement? What filtration are you using.

    On the dosing front do you notice any water clarity issues for the first hour or so after dosing? I am wondering why you dose Fe on top of trace.

    AC
     
  11. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Concerning algae - on all fuzz photo, hairs grows in both directions from the leaves plate -up and down. Here mostly up. Also this hairs is realy soft anf green instead of Staghorn
    CO2 measuring by DIY dropchecker- its always yellow. As i told daily fluctuation of ph is 5,7 morning-6,12 evening) Plant pearling good.
    No I have no Excel or look like things. I have only Cidex - its glutare aldegide which someone use against algae etc....
    Filtration - mm its very interesting - actually o made DIY "samp" system. Its another small tank which stands closly to main tank. This tank filled with spunges and ceramic rings. Waters comes form main tank by principe of communicating vessels and pulled of to the main tank from another side of this "samp" by small pump. Also to impeller of this small pump i bring pipe from co2 tank with needle on the end. So co2 goes to impeller brake to million bubbles and goes together with water back into the tank. Pupm productively is 90 liters per hour (tank is 17 liters) Of course co2 bubbles slightly decrease flow rate - but the main problem its tiny surface film - due to it - no surface agitation at all - every day i remove it with paper towel.
    Always dosing 3 separate solution:
    1 - NPK
    2 -Micro
    3 - Fe
    One by one actually in same time - No problems with clarity.
     
  12. Supercoley1

    Supercoley1 Moderator Staff Member

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    So CO2 is good. Please explain the DIY DC though. Curious to know the KH solution etc to show 30ppm. Is it still 4dKH?

    I think the Flow due to the Sump is the answer to the problem. I haven't heard great things about Sumps in the planted aquarium but I have no epxerience there.

    I think that if you were to get a powerhead/circulation pump in the tank then the BBA and fuzz in the pictures would disappear (assuming that indeed the nutrient and CO2 are OK)

    Here are 2 threads on sumps. Don't ask me questions as this is chemistry and science. Way over my head :lol: You know more here than me ;) You may have to register to view the threads.
    UK Aquatic Plant Society Forum • Login
    UK Aquatic Plant Society Forum • Login


    AC
     
  13. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    Thnax will check this links - Actually idea of sump comes cause its really no place for filter inside this small tank.
    From other side - its open filtration system a lot of people talks that its better variant then pressurized one.
    Flow rate - actually its aprox 70 liter per hour so its approx 4volume per hour ..its not enough
    About DC -all simple - 1 penicillin mini bottle http://medprom.ru/pictures/mpp_0004744/botl_pen.jpg then add KH4 water and CO2 indicator solution , cut the 2 ml syringe and install it inside - very tight - that’s all.
     
  14. hokveld

    hokveld New Member

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    hi,

    some green algae are a proof of healthy water. i think that your ph levels are way to low en changing for te fish. 70% water change is to much for this size. remember that in little tanks this type of water changes are killing for the biological balance in the tank. Po4 test is a good investment. the most algea feed themselfs with the same stuff as the normal plants. to much feeding of the fish wil result in a higher Po4 level, result more algae.
     
  15. Supercoley1

    Supercoley1 Moderator Staff Member

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    I thought we had gotten away from the old P causes algae myth?

    AC
     
  16. Arryl

    Arryl New Member

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    2 hokveldI think that those algae not a sign of wellness. Also about Ph - my cardinal tetras feels good in ph 5,6 as good as Neocaridina shrimps. So I do not worry about this.
    But 70% WC I agreed with you its a not so good idea. Too much. 50% is quite enough
    Now ph is stable - fluctuation is not so big as I wrote before. But algae on the same activity level.
    tomorrow wich change 50% water - and may be will add some Cidex
    I can not without pain to watch how the plants suffering :)

    2 Supercoley1

    200% agreed high P=algae is myth - now due to I add double dose of NPK to maintain NO3 level - po4 level rised too. Plant start grows fater and faster.
    But from the other side - limitation of P is really good method to supress plants from crazy grow rate.
     

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