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BBA?

Byron

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Is this bba on my java moss?
It appears to be black brush algae, the "furry" type. I've dealt with this a few times in tanks.

How did it get there? How do I treat it?
Algae appears in an aquarium often by arriving as spores on something. This does not totally answer the question though, and I don't know. The planted tank monthly columnist in TFF used to frequently write that in her fishroom of some 30 tanks, under near-identical conditions, BBA would be in one or two tanks, but never others, while some other problem algae would appear in this tank but not others.

There is only one way to deal with BBA. It is caused by an imbalance of light/nutrients. In planted tanks, the light (intensity and duration) muyst be balanced with the required nutrients, sufficient for the plant species/numbers. If any aspect of this balance is out, plants are disadvantaged but algae takes advantage because it is no where near as fussy over light or nutrients. So the cure is to restore (or establish) the balance.
 
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wtusa17

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It appears to be black brush algae, the "furry" type. I've dealt with this a few times in tanks.



Algae appears in an aquarium often by arriving as spores on something. This does not totally answer the question though, and I don't know. The planted tank monthly columnist in TFF used to frequently write that in her fishroom of some 30 tanks, under near-identical conditions, BBA would be in one or two tanks, but never others, while some other problem algae would appear in this tank but not others.

There is only one way to deal with BBA. It is caused by an imbalance of light/nutrients. In planted tanks, the light (intensity and duration) muyst be balanced with the required nutrients, sufficient for the plant species/numbers. If any aspect of this balance is out, plants are disadvantaged but algae takes advantage because it is no where near as fussy over light or nutrients. So the cure is to restore (or establish) the balance.
Ok I was thinking of that being the case. It’s probably because I am doing diy co2 so it’s inconsistent. How could I remove this algae?
 

Byron

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Ok I was thinking of that being the case. It’s probably because I am doing diy co2 so it’s inconsistent. How could I remove this algae?
On plant leaves, this is basically impossible as it adheres so strongly. In moss it will mean pulling the moss out and tossing it.
 

Byron

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So how to would you recommend I get rid of it?
First task is to ascertain what is out in the light/nutrient balance. Assuming you want my suggestions (no problem if you want to work this out yourself) I need to know the light data (type, watts, spectrum, duration) and nutrient additives (I know about the CO2, but the others via fertilizers are part of this too). A photo of the entire tank helps as we can see the plant species/numbers.
 
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wtusa17

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First task is to ascertain what is out in the light/nutrient balance. Assuming you want my suggestions (no problem if you want to work this out yourself) I need to know the light data (type, watts, spectrum, duration) and nutrient additives (I know about the CO2, but the others via fertilizers are part of this too). A photo of the entire tank helps as we can see the plant species/numbers.
The light is a 5000k led bulb, which I want to switch to a 6500k soon. I also dose seachem flourish which I also want to upgrade to easy green or EI dosing with the nilocg mixing kit. I have diy co2 which I will also be trying to upgrade to a pressurized system when the pandemic ends. This is the tank
 

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Byron

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The light is a 5000k led bulb, which I want to switch to a 6500k soon. I also dose seachem flourish which I also want to upgrade to easy green or EI dosing with the nilocg mixing kit. I have diy co2 which I will also be trying to upgrade to a pressurized system when the pandemic ends. This is the tank
OK. I'm going to keep this simple (minimal) because I don't want you messing with what is working well for the plants. So my recommendation is to get some floating plants. Not only will this likely solve the algae problem, the fish will be much happier. Forest fish do not appreciate overhead light.

That's the alge issue, now there are a couple other things. Changing to 6500K might be OK. I use 6500K on all single-tube tanks, and when I have double tubes I use one 6500K and one 5500K for the added red. You could stay with the 5000K...red and blue drive photosynthesis and red is the more important of the two. But 6500K also has a high green which has been shown to improve plant growth. So this is up to you.

On the fertilizers...I would not use EI with fish present. Flourish Comprehensive is relatively safe, but it is a "supplement" as the name suggests, intended to supplement nutrients in low-tech or natural systems. In high-tech with CO2 it is a very different game. But EI is a dangerous experiment with fish present. Everything added to the water is getting inside the fish, and this does have consequences. Even diffused CO2 is now believed to cause trouble for fish. They weaken over time from these things, making them more susceptible to other issues which they otherwise would be able to handle easily.
 
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wtusa17

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OK. I'm going to keep this simple (minimal) because I don't want you messing with what is working well for the plants. So my recommendation is to get some floating plants. Not only will this likely solve the algae problem, the fish will be much happier. Forest fish do not appreciate overhead light.

That's the alge issue, now there are a couple other things. Changing to 6500K might be OK. I use 6500K on all single-tube tanks, and when I have double tubes I use one 6500K and one 5500K for the added red. You could stay with the 5000K...red and blue drive photosynthesis and red is the more important of the two. But 6500K also has a high green which has been shown to improve plant growth. So this is up to you.

On the fertilizers...I would not use EI with fish present. Flourish Comprehensive is relatively safe, but it is a "supplement" as the name suggests, intended to supplement nutrients in low-tech or natural systems. In high-tech with CO2 it is a very different game. But EI is a dangerous experiment with fish present. Everything added to the water is getting inside the fish, and this does have consequences. Even diffused CO2 is now believed to cause trouble for fish. They weaken over time from these things, making them more susceptible to other issues which they otherwise would be able to handle easily.
Ok so I should just go for the aquarium co op easy green? Also, I have some green spot algae. I tried to scrub it and boy it did not even budge. How would you recommend that I get rid of green spot? Also, what type of floating plants? Amazon frogbit or silvinia minima?
 

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Ok so I should just go for the aquarium co op easy green? Also, I have some green spot algae. I tried to scrub it and boy it did not even budge. How would you recommend that I get rid of green spot? Also, what type of floating plants? Amazon frogbit or silvinia minima?
From what I can see of Easy Green online, it should be OK. It does contain micro-nutrients.

Green spot algae. I have seen this in some of my tanks. The key is to stop it before it starts, so to speak. I use a sponge-type scraper on the inside front glass at every water change, and that catches algae before you really even see it. If the green spot algae is present, it takes more effort, and here I use a hard scraper. Sometimes a razor blade (I have an old aquarium scraper that actually has a razor blade in it) is needed. But usually the hard plastic scraper will get it, with danger of scratching the glass. And with any hard scraper, always use it at 90 degrees to the length,if that makes sense. Never sideways along the length as this can really scratch the glass. Same as shaving for those like me who still use a blade razor.

Floating plants. I prefer the substantial plants that are true floaters, like Water Sprite (#1), Frogbit, Water Lettuce. Some stem plants left floating can do well, like Pennywort. Then there are the small floaters like Salvinia; I have this in my 40g along with Frogbit. I like the Salvinia, but on its own it is quite "thin" and one of the benefits of the more robust floaters is that fish love to browse among the dangling root masses looking for microscopic live food. Some will spawn in these plants. And fry of many species can survive among them better than without.
 
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wtusa17

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From what I can see of Easy Green online, it should be OK. It does contain micro-nutrients.

Green spot algae. I have seen this in some of my tanks. The key is to stop it before it starts, so to speak. I use a sponge-type scraper on the inside front glass at every water change, and that catches algae before you really even see it. If the green spot algae is present, it takes more effort, and here I use a hard scraper. Sometimes a razor blade (I have an old aquarium scraper that actually has a razor blade in it) is needed. But usually the hard plastic scraper will get it, with danger of scratching the glass. And with any hard scraper, always use it at 90 degrees to the length,if that makes sense. Never sideways along the length as this can really scratch the glass. Same as shaving for those like me who still use a blade razor.

Floating plants. I prefer the substantial plants that are true floaters, like Water Sprite (#1), Frogbit, Water Lettuce. Some stem plants left floating can do well, like Pennywort. Then there are the small floaters like Salvinia; I have this in my 40g along with Frogbit. I like the Salvinia, but on its own it is quite "thin" and one of the benefits of the more robust floaters is that fish love to browse among the dangling root masses looking for microscopic live food. Some will spawn in these plants. And fry of many species can survive among them better than without.
Ok so scrape the gsa off with a blade. Also, if I do get floaters like salvinia or frogbit, how do I contain it so that it’s not flying all over my tank?
 

utahfish

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Amano shrimp will eat black beard algae. Other than that agree with whats been said.
Diy Co2 in my experience leads to algae problems because the distribution of CO2 in a diy set up is so inconsistent which tends to favor algae during the kh and ph swings the c02 creates.
 
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wtusa17

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Amano shrimp will eat black beard algae. Other than that agree with whats been said.
Diy Co2 in my experience leads to algae problems because the distribution of CO2 in a diy set up is so inconsistent which tends to favor algae during the kh and ph swings the c02 creates.
Yep. That’s why I’m switching to pressurized. I just ordered the regulator yesterday
 

utahfish

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Ok so I should just go for the aquarium co op easy green? Also, I have some green spot algae. I tried to scrub it and boy it did not even budge. How would you recommend that I get rid of green spot? Also, what type of floating plants? Amazon frogbit or silvinia minima?
i use easy green, like its name its pretty easy, i also find green spot algae to be the easiest of algaes to manage and green spot algae is usually a sign of a healthy tank or at least one that is more in balance BBA is a sign of an imbalance.
As for the CO2 yeah i had less algae problems when switched to pressurized CO2. Having said that i always keep amano shrimp and/or nerite snails in my planted tanks because they both will eat a wide range of algaes and keep it from getting scarey.
 
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wtusa17

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i use easy green, like its name its pretty easy, i also find green spot algae to be the easiest of algaes to manage and green spot algae is usually a sign of a healthy tank or at least one that is more in balance BBA is a sign of an imbalance.
As for the CO2 yeah i had less algae problems when switched to pressurized CO2. Having said that i always keep amano shrimp and/or nerite snails in my planted tanks because they both will eat a wide range of algaes and keep it from getting scarey.
Ok. My lfs has nerite most of the time and Amano shrimp sometimes. I have tetras but an angel in the tank. Which would be best a nerite or Amano? I have mystery snails in that tank also
 

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