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Thread/string algea ?

Discussion in 'Algae' started by tinkerman, May 11, 2008.

  1. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    I have a small problem with thread algea right now and was hoping to get some feedback as to rid my tank of it. I have a 125 gal tank 2x96 watt cf for 9-10 hrs, 2x96 watt cf 2x36 watt cf and 2x 30 watt florecent for 6 hrs a day. Fert rotian is 2 tsp nitrate, 3/4 tsp phosphate, 3 tsp potassium, 1/4 tsp iron, 3/4 tsp plantex 3x per week. Pressurized co2 with drop checker. The areas I notice it in is current areas when filter output hits plants it grows and spreads along these current lines and in my parrot fether plant seems to grow it very well also. any comments welcome and thanks in advance.
     

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  2. Pat7676

    Pat7676 New Member

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    Thats strange usually i get this stuff when i don't have enough water movement but you say your getting it where the current is.
     
  3. Pat7676

    Pat7676 New Member

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    Long green strands. Easy to pull off by hand. I've seen strands of this stuff over 4 inches long.
    Primarily a problem when there is excess iron in the water. High iron normally results from excess fertilization, but some water supplies have high iron levels (especially well water). When I was over-dosing my 29g tank with Seachem Flourish, I got lots of this stuff. Reducing dosage of iron containing fertilizers completely eliminated the problem. I've seen my Tiger Barbs, SAEs, and Algae-Eating Shrimp all nibble at this stuff.
     
  4. JDowns

    JDowns New Member

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    Everything I've read regaurding thread algea discusses excess iron. And it seems to me you are adding alot of extra iron on top of CSM+B. I also add iron to my CSM+B trace mix but only a quarter of what you are adding extra for my 150 gallon tank.

    Experiment by limiting out just your iron concentration to see if that is the contributing factor.

    Manually remove as much as you possibly can. Try a tooth brush and twirl the algea like spaghetti.

    Do your water change and reset the tank.

    Dose less iron for a week and see if you notice an improvement. Try whatever decreased amount you are comfortable with, and do things in gradual steps.
     
  5. Fikus

    Fikus New Member

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    Any available shot of your algae? Just to be sure that we're talking about same alga as I also currently have some of those on my Hairgrass, Mosses and glosso.

    Regrds,


    Filip Todorovic - Fikus
     
  6. waterfaller1

    waterfaller1 New Member

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    I am glad you posted this, thanks. I am having trouble with this algae as well. I will back off on the iron and see what results.
     
  7. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    Here are a few pics of algea I have at the moment.

    I have tried cutting out the iron dosge and we'll see how it goes. These pics where taken tonight and after removing as much as i could on mon during a water change. I thank everyone for there help.
     

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  8. JDowns

    JDowns New Member

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    Is it very coarse to the touch? Rub it in between your fingers. Also if you pull a strand out does the algea have branches? The first and second photos look like clado and not thread algea.

    If it is clado then another approach is in need.
     
  9. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    The first and second pics I believe is clado, it comes out in clumps, easy to pull off logs and other objects and feels like a ball of soft hair. The third and forth pics are what I was asking about feels like thread harder than the other algea to remove I have pulled whole plants out tring to remove with a filter brush. Now the clado is low nitrate and low co2 which I find hard to believe as the last time I tested it was like 60 ppm now I didn't calibrate the test.
     
  10. JDowns

    JDowns New Member

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    Well IME both of those algae's are both easy and hard to eradicate. It really depends on the methods used.

    A blackout of at least 3 days with water changes can be very effective at diminishing thread algae's but will have little effect on clado.

    Spot treating with H202 can also be very effective at killing both of those types of algae's and should be done in small doses concentrating on a specific area at a time.

    Constant manual removal is a great method to remove both types. Hair algae's can be problematic though since you run the risk of dislodging portions only to have them spread to other areas of the tank. Turning off filters/powerheads during manual removal followed by a vacuuming of the area will help greatly.

    More importantly you need to determine why you are getting the algae in the first place. There are two obvious scenario's. Either your tank has an issue that is causing the issue or the introduction of new plants introduced the algae's.

    IME both of those algae's are caused by poor tank maintenance. In the aspect that there are areas in the tank that have OM buildup. Try and identify area's where organic material has built up and has been overlooked.

    Its hard from your other photos of the tank to determine the flow in the tank. I see a powerhead on the left with a sponge that has the flow directed down towards the crypt and wallichi. Also another outflow in the back right side directed towards the center of the tank.

    I would venture a guess that Pics 2 and 3 being under the powerhead on the left probably don't have a great amount of circulation. This would be an area where OM would be collecting. Especially under the Sub. Check that area for excess waste building up.

    Pic 4 is a heavy flow area in the current of the powerhead and the thread algae is just getting caught up on the plants

    Pic 1 would also appear to be an area of diminished flow.

    Any easy test for flow areas. Use a product like Seachem's Clarity. Pour a recommended dose in front of a outflow. As the water clouds you will be able to see in the tank what areas take the longest to appear cloudy. I would bet the areas in Pic's 1 and 2 would take the longest or would be areas of flow that dead end. Waste in the water column has to end up somewhere. Identifying those areas are important so when you do do your WC's those are the areas that should be targeted first for cleaning. I know from experience Pelia or Sub-tan seem to be magnets to collecting debris underneath. So your mixing a slow growing species with areas of high OM buildup. The same can be said for mosses, which seem to appreciate high flow areas.

    Also I noticed in previous posts you added additional lighting due to poor growth from the wallichi.

    Was this growth poor due to not enough mechanical lighting or was it poor due to the plant mass behind it had grown to the surface and began to shade it?

    Did the growth improve due to the additional lighting or did it improve due to the trimming of the plant mass behind it giving the wallichi direct lighting once again?

    I ask those two scenarios because its difficult to get the timeline from multiple posts/threads.
     
  11. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    JDowns thank you for your advise. The flow is a powerhead on the left and a rena xp4 on the right both aimed at the middle of the tank. Your conclusion of the om buildup I guess could be contributing as thier is old plant leaves and mulm collecting in the left and right corners of the tank, it is a sand substrate and don't vac all that much so I wil try and get this out the next wc. The wallichiiI think was a low potassium dosage, I have had it for some time and in my old tank and never did really well as the only trimming it required was to remove algea as now I can get usable trimmings from it. The additional light was added in hopes it would bring more red out of the plants, which between the additional potassium and light it seemed to help. Sorry , yes I am a bit of a lerker as it is construction season again and between work and summer activities I don't post as much as I would during lay off time. Thanks again for your advise I will give it a try and keep everyone posted.
     
  12. Guillermo

    Guillermo New Member

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    Great post JDowns, I think it will be helpfull to combat this algae.

    Hey tinkerman, good luck in the battle against this thread/clado !

    I have noticed that if DIY Co2 is used, it's critical to try to have it in a stable dosage, if it's not done, this algae blooms. The No3 have to be stable also. It happens in my office's 6.6 nano. In my case, Fe dosing is a big no no, it only makes it worse. I have a decent water flow in there. My .02 FWIW.

    Regards.
     
  13. york

    york New Member

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    I wish you luck with the hair algae. I believe their are many critters that will eat it. (Shrimp,plecos,rosey barbs,SAE's,goldfish etc. )
    But if anyone knows how to elliminate clado that would be a HOMERUN!!!!
     
  14. Guillermo

    Guillermo New Member

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    That's a good one York, lol. Clado is almost immortal :29:

    Regards
     
  15. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    Well I have ben vacing the tank really well for the last couple weeks and removing as much as I can. It seems to be helping but has not gone away. The stuff in the pelia is almost gone and doesn't seem to be growing. The thread algea takes a few days before it starts growing after removal and vacing. So I think I will try vacing removal and 3 day blackout in the next week or so as I'm starting to get sick of spending 30 mins a week reming the stuff.
     
  16. JDowns

    JDowns New Member

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    Sounds like your getting it under control.

    A blackout can work wonders though. When I had thread algae it took nearly a month to completely get rid of it.

    Double, triple check your CO2. Move your drop checker around the tank and be sure your getting good flow.

    After the blackout do a good water change and clean the filter.

    Then assess your nutrients.

    It takes time and patience.
     
  17. tinkerman

    tinkerman New Member

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    Just an update. 3 day blackout did not work. Finnally got mad toke all the plants out and removed algea and rescaped. City sent me a water report and said iron is 1-2 ppm. I have cut the plantex completly out and making sure co2 stays green, algea is still present but takes only 45 min to trim tank and remove algea now.
     
  18. J House

    J House Moderator Staff Member

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    If I read your lighting specs correctly you have roughly 500watts over the tank. That is alot of light and gives you very little wiggle room in terms of organics buiding up in the tank. Most algae issues IMO are caused by light and waste, not fert dosing. If you reset the tank do yourself a favor reduce light to a 8 hr or less period, I would start with 7 hours and have the full lighting setup on for only about 3 to 4 hours. Especially if you reduced plant mass. I love to hit these things from all sides. Reduce lighting, increase biofilter (both plants & biomedia) add something like Purigen to filter to help absorb organics and whatever your feeding your fish reduce it in half. I think this wil help greatly.
     
  19. Anti-Pjerrot

    Anti-Pjerrot New Member

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    You cant stop using ferts with Iron. The iron in the tab water is not chelated and cant be used by the plants. Try to be on top with the ferts and CO2, then the plants should take off faster than the algae.
     
  20. chillaquaplants

    chillaquaplants New Member

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    This past weekend I did approx 80% water change using a siphon to suck as much algae out as I could. Then I did a major overdose with Excel along with cutting 1/3 of my lights off and quit dosing all ferts for a week and I think my battle is over. All the algea is now grayish instead of green. Another bonus is that some of my plants that were struggling are starting to show some color :celebrate:

    This has been about a month long battle for me.
     

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