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Re: Algae

I had an outbreak of the evil Green Water algae and used a product called
AlgeaFix that I got at That Fish Place.  It worked great.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Andy Berney" <andy@amberney.freeserve.co.uk>
To: <aga-member@thekrib.com>
Sent: Tuesday, September 25, 2001 11:55 AM
Subject: RE: Algae

> Is there any algae killer that I can use that will
> not harm my plants and fish?
> what should I do to combat this problem.
> There are a number of 'algae killers' on the market, but as you don't
> mention which country you live in its a little difficult to be precise. I
> would suggest however that prevention is a far better way than using
> chemicals. That said, the main reason for growths of algae is too much
> nitrate in the water in combination with reasonable lighting. You haven't
> mentioned a reading for ammonia, nitrites or nitrates in your tank,
> you did say that you have only had the tank planted for about a month.
> being the case you may well be suffering from a fairly common problem in
> that your filters and gravel which currently house a variety of bacteria
> haven't yet grown to the position that they can denitrify the tank or are
> doing so too vigourously for your plants at present.
> You say that you are a beginner to fishkeeping/aquaculture. I mention both
> as you have listed an interesting number of livestock. The fish that you
> have chosen to keep are all vegetarian, the shrimps will in my experience
> eat pretty much whatever they can find that's edible. This at the outset
> looks good. The creatures are all removing algae, however at the same time
> they are all producing waste products. Principally unionised ammonia,
> ionised ammonia, urea etc...
> Ammonia is fairly toxic to most forms of aquatic life, in an enclosed
> ecosystem, like an aquarium, it must be removed or evolved in order to
> promote favourable conditions for the creatures within it to survive. The
> cycle for evolving ammonia is performed by a number of bacteria, using the
> ammonia as a food source and evolving it to less dangerous nitrite
> substances. Nitrites are still toxic to fish to a lesser degree (the
> won't like them too much), however these are broken down again by a
> different type of bacteria to the form of nitrates which are relatively
> harmless to your tanks occupants.
> The problem you may well be facing is that the above cycle takes time to
> mature. Bacteria need to grow, and will do so given time to meet the
> amounts of ammonia and nitrites, however as they mature will begin
> larger amounts of nitrates which your plants at this time appear unable to
> use up quickly enough. You may therefore find that you have an abundance
> nitrates in your water leading to the unwanted arrival of algae.
> It can take a few months for your biological filtration to settle down and
> if after checking readings for nitrates you find this is the problem I
> suggest increasing your water changes to around 25%/week.
> You haven't given any characteristics for your local water supply,
> you may well find that the nitrate content is already in the region of
> parts per million. Anything above this is unlikely to be taken up quickly
> enough by your plants and is likely to lead to your problems with Algae
> anyway. There are however a number of products specifically designed to
> remove nitrates from water to allow denitrified tap water, I personally
> to use nitrogon while keeping Discus. Your other alternative is they use
> a reverse osmosis unit to remove pretty much everything from the water.
> downside to RO water however is that you lose all of the trace elements
> want for your plants as well as hardness which can lead to problems with
> flutuations.
> I hope you have some luck in combatting your problems. I would personally
> reduce the amount of light and the duration it is on for. You could also
> a number of floating plants which help reduce permeating light while at
> same time leech nitrates from the water. I would sugest that you check
> water (both in your tank and out of the tap) and hopefully you should get
> better idea of what is causing you grief. Your ideal situation should be:
> Ammonia: Less than 0.1 mg/litre
> Nitrite: Less than 0.1 mg/litre
> Nitrate: 0 - 12.5 mg/litre
> Best of luck.
> Cheers...
> Andy
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