BBA problem

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Tropical Tony

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Hi guys,

I’ve got a 150L planted tank with Co2. The last few months I’ve had a BBA problem mainly growing on Anubis leaves, Java fern leaves and the Co2 tubing. I’ve tried everything from reducing light, reducing Co2 and frequent water changes but nothings getting rid.

Co2 about 1.5 bps
Lights on for around 5.5 hours a day.

Is there anything I can do to help kill this off. Or any fish/shrimp that are really good at eating it?

Thanks,
TT
 

Rocky998

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Following cause I also need help and have tried a lot 😅
 

Byron

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"Problem" algae like black brush occurs from an imbalance of light and nutrients. Things are probably not too far off here, an observation which I make based upon the plant species mentioned.

Java Fern and Anubias are both slow growing aquatic plants. That means they need less intense light and fewer nutrients than faster-growing plants. I don't know if you have other species of plants, but that is an important factor in dealing with this algae. If these two are the only plant species, reducing the light intensity and reducing the nutrients might be necessary; but if there are other and faster-growing plants, the balance may be OK for them, in which case moving the Java Fern and Anubias out of direct light can help--such as with good floating plants. I saw this algae on these plant species, and growing them in shade solved the problem.

A photo of the entire tank would help with this assessment. I should also note that duration is not a substitute for intensity, if the intensity is not in balance to begin with.

Every species of fish that might eat algae will not eat every species. There are two fish that are said to sometimes be effective, one is the Siamese Algae Eater and the other I can never remember. But this is ot advisable unless what these fishneed can be provided. The SAE for example is a shoaling/schooling fish needing a number more than five or six, and they grow to 5 inches plus, and the are not always effective at eating this algae. A 150 liter (40 gallon) tank is certainly insufficient space for this species. If memory serves me, the other fish sometimes mentioned has even more problems.
 

Alice B

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Hi guys,

I’ve got a 150L planted tank with Co2. The last few months I’ve had a BBA problem mainly growing on Anubis leaves, Java fern leaves and the Co2 tubing. I’ve tried everything from reducing light, reducing Co2 and frequent water changes but nothings getting rid.

Co2 about 1.5 bps
Lights on for around 5.5 hours a day.

Is there anything I can do to help kill this off. Or any fish/shrimp that are really good at eating it?

Thanks,
TT
I did big water changes, changed from non-adjustable LED lights to an old fashioned 40 watt fluorescent, and started feeding the plants. I seem to have beat it, I get some brown algae I don't understand entirely what is, but I no longer get the red cyanobacteria I was getting
 

2tank

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I find bba where there is alot of flow, like filter outlets.
 

seangee

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Is the problem that you have BBA or that it is spreading / growing uncontrollably? As @Byron points out if its the latter its an imbalance which can be tough to pinpoint. Too much or too little light, or flow or a particular nutrient are equally likely to be the cause.

I do have BBA on the oldest leaves of my anubias but it doesn't spread or grow much so I just leave it. If it gets to the point that those leaves are unsightly I will remove the affected leaves.
 
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Tropical Tony

Tropical Tony

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Thanks for the replies guys. I’ve attached some photos below. I’ve got a few fast growing plants at the back I usually cut them every week and replant a few of the stems. My Monte Carlo hasn’t seemed to bed in either which I thought would be fast growing. I’ve read that rubber plecos might be good for tackling BBA. Has anyone had any success with them?

I don’t know what to do next is it worth dropping the light to 4.5 hours? The tank is a ciano emotions 80. It has a white LED strip light as standard and I also bought the RGB LED plant strip light for it.

Thanks.
TT
 

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Byron

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Thanks for the replies guys. I’ve attached some photos below. I’ve got a few fast growing plants at the back I usually cut them every week and replant a few of the stems. My Monte Carlo hasn’t seemed to bed in either which I thought would be fast growing. I’ve read that rubber plecos might be good for tackling BBA. Has anyone had any success with them?

I don’t know what to do next is it worth dropping the light to 4.5 hours? The tank is a ciano emotions 80. It has a white LED strip light as standard and I also bought the RGB LED plant strip light for it.

Thanks.
TT

From the photos a couple things are now clearer. Which lights are actually on, the "white" or the RGB, or both? I askbecause the hue is on the purplish side which usually means higher blue and lower green, and blue does promote algae given the chance.

What fertilizers are you using?
 
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Tropical Tony

Tropical Tony

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From the photos a couple things are now clearer. Which lights are actually on, the "white" or the RGB, or both? I askbecause the hue is on the purplish side which usually means higher blue and lower green, and blue does promote algae given the chance.

What fertilizers are you using?
Both lights are on for the 5.5 hours. Yes there’s more reddish lights in the RGB light. Some blues and I think very few green In terms of ferts I’ve actually stopped putting them in. I was using flourish excel but thought it was making the problem worse.
 

Byron

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Both lights are on for the 5.5 hours. Yes there’s more reddish lights in the RGB light. Some blues and I think very few green In terms of ferts I’ve actually stopped putting them in. I was using flourish excel but thought it was making the problem worse.

Do you know the spectrum for the white light itself? The Kelvin or the CRI will give us this.

You are using diffused CO2 so there is no benefit in Excel. Everyone here knows my opinion of this toxic substance. I no longer debate it.

If you are not adding the other needed nutrients, then CO2 itself will promote algae, as will any light. You need a comprehensive supplement. You are in the UK so get a bottle of TNC Lite. Highly recommended. I see signs in the plants that this should rectify. And if the plants can use the light and CO2, algae will be thwarted.
 
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Tropical Tony

Tropical Tony

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Do you know the spectrum for the white light itself? The Kelvin or the CRI will give us this.

You are using diffused CO2 so there is no benefit in Excel. Everyone here knows my opinion of this toxic substance. I no longer debate it.

If you are not adding the other needed nutrients, then CO2 itself will promote algae, as will any light. You need a comprehensive supplement. You are in the UK so get a bottle of TNC Lite. Highly recommended. I see signs in the plants that this should rectify. And if the plants can use the light and CO2, algae will be thwarted.

I don’t know the spectrum I’ll try and find out. Ah ok. I’ve just rooted through my cupboards and I do have a bottle of aquadip plant food and a bottle of tropica specialised nutrition. Could I dose either of these before I buy a bottle of TNC lite?

Thanks
 

Byron

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On the light, the white alone is ideal. I would turn the RBG unit off if you can, and keep the white. I would increase the duration to 7 hours, and use the fertilizer so things are more likely balanced. The better light and some nutrients may do the job here.

As for the fertilizer, do not use the Tropica. From the ingredients it will encourage problem algae, and interestingly they even say that in the description on their web site. Nitrogen and phosphorus are the real culprits here, as they obviously know. Do not use it.

As for the "aquadip plant food" I cannot find this on line so no idea what it is. I would be very wary to use it though. A small bottle of the TNC Lite will I can all but guarantee make a difference here.
 

Rocky998

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What do you do if you cant ONLY have the white lights on? Like mine has white but it also has blue and red that is on with the white...
On the light, the white alone is ideal. I would turn the RBG unit off if you can, and keep the white. I would increase the duration to 7 hours, and use the fertilizer so things are more likely balanced. The better light and some nutrients may do the job here.

As for the fertilizer, do not use the Tropica. From the ingredients it will encourage problem algae, and interestingly they even say that in the description on their web site. Nitrogen and phosphorus are the real culprits here, as they obviously know. Do not use it.

As for the "aquadip plant food" I cannot find this on line so no idea what it is. I would be very wary to use it though. A small bottle of the TNC Lite will I can all but guarantee make a difference here.
 

Byron

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What do you do if you cant ONLY have the white lights on? Like mine has white but it also has blue and red that is on with the white...

It depends upon the situation. Your light may be fine as is, but in the case in this thread there is to me a definite light issue. But the nutrients also factor in, as without sufficient, or with excess, it throws off the balance.
 

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