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Dec 18, 2019
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Good day.
I have this brown stuff- algae? Debris? on most of my plants and inside my canister filter and tubing. Help! What is it and what can I do about it?
I have ....
20 gallon long tank with penn plax 500 canister filter with foam and sponge filter media.
this week added fluval prefilter, biomax and purigen.
Lifegard 30” nano led plant light hung 6” above water
Temp 83 degrees because that is my room temperature
I add remineralizer due to use of RO water. Our area is bad for nitrates and tha is for any help hard water from the tap.
Animals had for past 6 months minimum- female betta, 3 Cory cats, 3 otto, 4 female platys, mystery snail, 2 racer nerite snails, 1 cherry shrimp.
Animals added 3 weeks ago- 10 cherry shrimp, 3 mystery snails, 4 nerite , 1 rabbit snail.
two weeks ago checked full parameters with liquid test kit. Nitrates were 20-40ppm. First time ever registered above 0. pH 7, GH & KH 35, ammonia& nitrites 0.

tested replacement RO WATER and it had nitrate level 15-20ppm. That’s why I bought new stuff for filter.
I’m not concerned about the green algae on my amazon sword plant- new snails are making short work of it. The rest of the tank decorations are free of all algae.
problem is this brown sludgy stuff. I cleaned the intake cover and it after only 4 days already has the slots covered in the brown stuff. The floating java moss balls I added three weeks ago and within two weeks they had the brown stuff on them. I have to clean my canister every two weeks or even could be done weekly to remove the brown sludge. What is it? What do I do about it? It was present before the addition of the new animals.
Suggestions re nitrate elevation?
thanks for any help


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thanks. If I try to siphon it actually won’t come off the moss balls or plant. There is detris I get when I vacuum the sand sized aquarium gravel. I do this weekly. The canister filter is full of it and my tubes lined in it. Nothing is disturbing the substrate other than me when I vacuum.
nothing else seems to be obviously covered. My substrate is black. The fake things in the aquarium are free of it. I cleaned the intake guard and within three days the slots were completely covered in it again.

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