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Old 11-10-2012, 02:50 AM   #1 
SpookyTooth
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String algae and snails

Hello,

I have a bit of 'string algae' (not sure of the exact species but it's like a very pale green hairy substance in a 7cm wide clump floating around), no problem really as I can just remove it but the issue I'm having is that lots of my baby snails have made it their home. I'm not particularly good with my fingers and wouldn't be confident in removing the baby snails successfully so I'm wondering if any of you have any advice as to how I can proceed.

The algae was found in a 7.5gal tank packed with live plants, 12 hour photoperiod, stocked with a single mate betta spledens, an assassin snail and a multitude of snails (bladder, Malaysian trumpet, ramshorn) and lots of microorganisms. It receives fertilizers in the form of a daily product known as Ferropol24 (manufactured by JBL). 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, about 10ppm nitrate. Not sure of pH. It has been moved to my 3.5gal tank.

The algae started showing itself after some plants were added so I'm going to assume that that is how it got into the tank. I have no other algae issues at all.

I have briefly wondered if string algae would actually be beneficial to a red cherry shrimp tank to serve as cover but really I don't know if that is wise. Any advice regarding this would be appreciated. I'll likely just get a bunch of different mosses but you don't know if you don't ask.

Thank you.
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:16 AM   #2 
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Wow one assasin did not solve the problem maybe two would. If you have a filter you can put peace lilies, Pothos, and lucky bamboo in to help with nitrates Pothos would be best. Marimo is good for algae problems. If you can get a 5 gallon buy a dwarf indian puffer put your Betta temparily in the 5 have the puffer in the 7.5 and have the assasin in the 5 too. when the problem is done swap tanks.
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:42 AM   #3 
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Hair, sting, thread type algae can sometimes be caused by old light bulbs, too high of watts, wrong color temp and if the light source itself is too close to the water surface...among other things....Even the partition between the light source and water can be a cause- due to light penetration issues.

Over fertilization or if water changes are not made enough or between adding ferts.

It normal and expected to get some species of algae in the tank and it can even mean the system is healthy, however, since it is a closed system-even the good algae needs manual removal on occasion-along with control.

Snails, especially in planted tanks-some common snails can be a good thing, however, they can over populate and we have to manually remove them on occasion. I like to trap them by either using a small baited jar or a piece of leafy greens-like spinach or lettuce-Place in the tank at lights out and first thing in the AM-pull them out and properly discard. I also will use a larger meshed net to collect snails that have gathered around some bait and scoop them out-This way I can also kinda sift the sand too and brighten it up some when it starts to look dingy...
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:48 AM   #4 
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Thank you both for your insightful responses

I actually lowered the light relatively recently and hadn't had any issues before so I'm going to raise it a little again and see if that stops the algae from reoccuring (or reduces the rate at which it does). The snails themselves aren't a real problem, my assassin snails (one in each tank) are doing a wonderful job at keeping numbers healthy so I'm trying to keep as many babies as I can. The clump of algae I took out from my 7gal (now in the 3.5gal) also has lots of duckweed grown into it -- it's very pretty but I don't want it taking over so I'm going to compost it after trying to hook the snails out. I may get a pair of blunt tweezers and try it that way...
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Old 11-10-2012, 02:30 PM   #5 
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My two have been eating flakes for months and love burying themselves in sand.
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Old 11-12-2012, 11:48 PM   #6 
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it sounds like a cute ball of algae.. i say keep it :D
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Old 11-13-2012, 02:04 AM   #7 
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I had considered it! I have a few stainless steel grids designed for moss that I may weigh it down with and see what it does. I haven't decided yet but I think I'm going to sort the tank out soonish, it's making me sad seeing it empty. Thank you.
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Old 11-22-2012, 02:44 PM   #8 
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They make algae killer and marimo outcompetes other algae.
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