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How I Won The Battle


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I finally won the battle with my brown algae in my established tank......

Thought id put how i did it on record incase anyone else gets desperate enough to follow the steps. It really worked~! =)

My problem was that everyday, diatoms would build up on my glass in a thin, brown layer. Though the layer was translucent and would brush off into a "powder" with the touch of my finger, it was really annoying to clean the glass EVERYDAY and if i didnt it would all build up a pose an obvious problem. Also, i cant clean the rocks everyday, so i was getting brown layers covering my my coralline.

My nitrate wasnt high enough to have such a problem and i use distilled water so I tried a bunch of other options from the net and the problem persisted so resorted to a plan i made.......

Here's what i did-


-I stopped my daily glass cleaning on my entire tank for a week and let the diatoms build a nice thick layer that wouldnt turn "powdery" when i cleaned it.

-At the end of the week i mixed 15 gallons of water and also took small airline tubing and a chopstick and used bread twist-ties to connect the two, leaving the end of the chopstick poking out a cm longer than the tubing.

-I turned off all water flow and started a siphon.

-I siphoned the top layer of sand in my fuge and shook out all the macro into a bucket to get any gunk that has caught on it over time.

-I also used the end of the chopstick and mixed around the top layer of my sand bed, and the tube would suck up all the stuff that came up, but none of the sand.

-I used a kent steelblade (best thing ive ever bought!) in one hand, and the tubing in the other....catching EVERYthing that came off the glass.

-When i was done, i cleaned ALL my equipment....all PH's, filters, skimmer...etc and threw all filter media away.

-I hooked everything back up and ran an aquaclear with a fresh bag of chemipure and a polyfilter pad.

-I also added a nice new handful of some freshly harvested macro.

-Then i added some freshly mixed water to fill in for the siphoned and poured the rest in a huge tub.

-I took a bowl that holds a little under a gallon and every day, i would dip it in the tank once and pour out the water i collected. Then i would replace the water with the same amount from the tub. I didnt heat it up or anything because it was such a small amount and it had no effects on the main tank's temp.

-I did this everyday for 4 days, every other day for a week and then twice a week after that.

-Now instead of doing a waterchange weekly, i do two small ones which i find to be much more convinient anyhow~


NO sign of any brown algae for over a week now!!!!!!!! =)

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this outbreak was so bad that snails werent doing it....When they were grazing on the glass, id never see any kind of trail behind them...its like they move right over the stuff!

i could have had 60 ofem in there and it wouldnt have made a difference~


i stirred up the very top layer....like an invert would.

if you completely mix up your sand bed things can turn out very bad

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wow, i guess that you have some very fat and lazy snails. my guys are really good. i only have to clean the front glass if i want to take pictures because the snails have it cleaned up every morning. in fact, i just noticed the other day that one of the bad patches of hair algae was gone. i mean even the long strands were gone and i don't think the hermits got to it. guys must be desperate for food. now only if they took care to the long brown stuff.

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you might have just changed your water source and reduced the silica that resulted in so many diatoms. no silica = no diatoms =no frustules making your aquarum brown.

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distilled is as good as it gets, but if you are getting water from the same source and still have the phytoplankton issue, the water might not be all that clean. "distilled" water is often city water hit with O3. double check.

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