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Redreidy

Green Algae issues

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Redreidy

Hi All, 

 

My tank has been running now for approximately 10 months. Its a 16 gal with a single clown occupant and 4 snails (3 nassarius and 1 trochus).

 

Recently I have had real trouble with green algae as you can see on the picture below. I do weekly water changes of about 25% and test for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, phosphate and all are reading 0 currently. 

 

tank.thumb.jpg.6d69261bc533b48d57b8a21e69320190.jpg

 

 

Does anybody have any advice on how to manage this? My country is now on lock down and I have recently purchased an RO/DI unit and am in the process of mixing my first saltwater batch so perhaps I can up my water change frequency while I am working from home if this will help.

 

Any suggestions of steps I can take. I have tried cleaning it off the sand bed myself but it just keeps coming back in a couple of days. My poor macro algae are also suffering somewhat. 

 

Thank you in advance for your advice. 

 

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chunkylovah

Green cyanobacteria. Lots of topics on how to go about fixing it. You can use bacterial dosing like vibrant to out compete it over time (wouldnt do this if you want to keep your macroalgae), or get straight to the point and dose something more aggressive like chemiclean(likely also kills beneficial bacterias).

 

Other then that low flow or even to much light can also be a major part of the problem. Might even look into vacuuming the sand bed if you've never done it (tho be careful not to crash your tank)

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banasophia

Wow never seen that before... interested to follow along, I’m sorry I don’t have any advice

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Redreidy

Thanks for the advice. Unfortunately I don't seem to be able to get either of those products here in the UK. Any UK hobbyist out there with any prove UK alternatives that work to get rid of Green cyanobacteria?

 

I have also been trying to reduce feeding, increase water changes, reduce lighting, siphon the top layer of sand and manual removal and it just bounces back in 24 hours.

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Ratvan

I would try to increase Nitrates and Phosphates personally. When my nitrates are 0 I get all sorts of funky algae’s. Never to the extent of yours.

 

More flow would help as well, my Macros were being choked out by a similar looking hair algae to what I think I see on your red grape

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mcarroll
On 3/24/2020 at 8:43 AM, Redreidy said:

tank.thumb.jpg.6d69261bc533b48d57b8a21e69320190.jpg

10 months in your tank should have matured somewhat by now, but it still looks like the first week or two.  Very likely your ecosystem has been starving from the beginning.  The fact that your macros haven't totally evaporated is a very positive sign that your tank is still ready for a positive turnaround!  👍

 

What's Happening

You have an interesting selection of cyano growing!  Not too many folks get to see the Bright Green in person.

 

It's only a rule of thumb, but cyano tends to grow when other better algae like hair algae CAN'T grow.

 

Your cyano, which can likely fix inorganic nitrogen gas that's in the water from the air and from denitrification in the rock and sand but unavailable to most photosynthetics, is mostly mopping up/conserving trace-, micro- and other macro-nutrients that your macro algae are releasing as they slowly die or maintain their existing mass.  (Are you able to do a count on your snails to say how many are currently left?)

 

The cyano is trying to keep your tank habitable, believe it or not.  If you start working with it (accumulating/adding nutrients) instead of against it, your tank will turn around quickly.

 

As Ratvan indicated, there are currently not enough nutrients for anything else to grow, generally speaking.

 

Stop everything you're doing to remove nutrients from the system.  Remove extra bio-media, stop using filter media, cease water changes, eliminate additives, et al.  Everything Must Go!  If you're still using that canister filter, empty it.  Shut it off and remove it if you think the tank will still have enough flow without it.  (Replace it with a second powerhead if it makes sense.)

 

Feed your fish well.  As much as you can, in fact.  Just don't over-feed.  Feed the highest quality of food you can as well.  That is: live > frozen > processed.  Generally speaking.  There are great options in every category, thankfully.

 

BTW, there're so many live food options that IMO everyone should at least try doing the one that seems most suited to them.  Forget about "ideal" while you're starting out...pick the live food that is the most do-able and that your fish will eat.  That might mean (just to name examples) harvesting wild insects rather than growing brine shrimp, so keep an open mind when you think about the possibilities.  Maybe someone around you is already raising a live food of some kind...they may share the output, or at least their how-to knowledge.

 

What Needs To Be Happening

Bear with me here...I'm about to tell you to grow hair algae.  😉

 

Your tank needs green algae to come.  That will take nutrients.  Lots of phosphorous and LOTS AND LOTS of nitrogen...among all the others.

 

Hair algae would be great (snails love it), but any will do.  If you keep good conditions, with the help of more herbivorous snails, the green algae will be slowly but surely be replaced by coralline algae. 

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Redreidy
5 hours ago, mcarroll said:

10 months in your tank should have matured somewhat by now, but it still looks like the first week or two.  Very likely your ecosystem has been starving from the beginning.  The fact that your macros haven't totally evaporated is a very positive sign that your tank is still ready for a positive turnaround!  👍

 

What's Happening

You have an interesting selection of cyano growing!  Not too many folks get to see the Bright Green in person.

 

It's only a rule of thumb, but cyano tends to grow when other better algae like hair algae CAN'T grow.

 

Your cyano, which can likely fix inorganic nitrogen gas that's in the water from the air and from denitrification in the rock and sand but unavailable to most photosynthetics, is mostly mopping up/conserving trace-, micro- and other macro-nutrients that your macro algae are releasing as they slowly die or maintain their existing mass.  (Are you able to do a count on your snails to say how many are currently left?)

 

The cyano is trying to keep your tank habitable, believe it or not.  If you start working with it (accumulating/adding nutrients) instead of against it, your tank will turn around quickly.

 

As Ratvan indicated, there are currently not enough nutrients for anything else to grow, generally speaking.

 

Stop everything you're doing to remove nutrients from the system.  Remove extra bio-media, stop using filter media, cease water changes, eliminate additives, et al.  Everything Must Go!  If you're still using that canister filter, empty it.  Shut it off and remove it if you think the tank will still have enough flow without it.  (Replace it with a second powerhead if it makes sense.)

 

Feed your fish well.  As much as you can, in fact.  Just don't over-feed.  Feed the highest quality of food you can as well.  That is: live > frozen > processed.  Generally speaking.  There are great options in every category, thankfully.

 

BTW, there're so many live food options that IMO everyone should at least try doing the one that seems most suited to them.  Forget about "ideal" while you're starting out...pick the live food that is the most do-able and that your fish will eat.  That might mean (just to name examples) harvesting wild insects rather than growing brine shrimp, so keep an open mind when you think about the possibilities.  Maybe someone around you is already raising a live food of some kind...they may share the output, or at least their how-to knowledge.

 

What Needs To Be Happening

Bear with me here...I'm about to tell you to grow hair algae.  😉

 

Your tank needs green algae to come.  That will take nutrients.  Lots of phosphorous and LOTS AND LOTS of nitrogen...among all the others.

 

Hair algae would be great (snails love it), but any will do.  If you keep good conditions, with the help of more herbivorous snails, the green algae will be slowly but surely be replaced by coralline algae. 

Wow, I was not expecting that..... so my tank has been cleaned too much? I guess I can follow that advice I gotta be honest it makes me nervous, goes against everything I thought I knew about keeping tanks, but at this point I will give it a go. My number one priority is the wellbeing of the clown. 

 

I only have 4 snails but I started with 5, one died because it had an unhealthy obsession with the outlet pipe but was removed. 

 

So essentially the advice is reduce the amount of biological filtration (just stick to the rock?), stop exporting nutrients for a while, Make sure that the fishes stomach is full with decent food (I have lots of frozen, no live unfortunately). add more snails when the algae starts growing. I can't really leave the house atm but I can probably get another powerhead ordered on amazon. 

 

I'll give it a go!! there is irony to the fact that all the extra work I was putting in has been making it worse!

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chunkylovah

Oo great perspective from @mcarroll . Always fun to read an efficient and easily digestible break down! To be honest thats how i had to handle my algae/cyano issues when i was running a ulns.

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Redreidy

Ordered another Hydor Koralia Nano 900 should two of these be enough for a 16 gal tank flow wise?

 

 

How long do you suggest I keep the filter off? I was actually thinking of building a sump for this system using an old 9gal tank I have so I could start a refugium have easier access. 

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mcarroll
52 minutes ago, Redreidy said:

How long do you suggest I keep the filter off?

More or less indefinitely – basically, until it is needed.

 

With the right balance of food, flow and corals you may not need it… But only time will tell so keep paying attention.

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Ratvan
56 minutes ago, Redreidy said:

Ordered another Hydor Koralia Nano 900 should two of these be enough for a 16 gal tank flow wise?

 

 

How long do you suggest I keep the filter off? I was actually thinking of building a sump for this system using an old 9gal tank I have so I could start a refugium have easier access. 

If it's 900LPH yes two should be more than adequate. 16 gallons is 64 litres or close enough. So should be 28x turnover

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