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Old 07-24-2009, 12:21 PM   #1 
maxworth
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Another Beginner running into problems

First of all, thank you to whoever lends me some of their wisdom.

I have a betta named bomber living in a five-gallon hex planted aquarium. It is filtered and cycled. Ammonia and Nitrite are at 0 and Nitrate has been between 5 and 20 ppm. PH is about 8. It is 78 degrees with a 10 watt fluorescent bulb on 12 hours a day. There is some Anacharis and Java moss.

Now to my problems:

He has fin rot. I have tried salt baths for about a week but they aren't working too well so I think I should try some medication in a 1 gallon quarantine tank. Should I use Maracyn or Tetracycline or something else?

Next is the Cynobacteria. It came with my java moss, which I should have quarantined in hindsight. To get it off of my plants, would a bleach dip work? I have heard conflicting info on this. I can just scrape it off the rocks but it sticks to the plants stubbornly. I just don't want to do it if it does nothing to kill the bacteria.

Anyway my plan of action so far is to seperate Bomber for treatment. Bleach the plants and replace the filter. Wipe off all the algae and cynobacteria. I also want to replace my gravel because I hate the current color. However I would leave the old gravel in for a couple of weeks until the new stuff is cycled.

I am curious as to how effective my plan is. Am I overreacting? I do 10% water changes weekly because I read that was the right amount but I have heard others say up to 50% considering my parameters I am not sure what else I can do to keep the algae at bay.

Thank you again for suffering my long post and helping in any way you can.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:31 PM   #2 
neenjar
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If salt baths are not cutting it I would go with jungle fungus eliminator.

I do not know how those plant would hold up to bleach dip, I have only ever dipped anubias which make it through fine.

10% weekly is not nearly enough. Minimum 25%. I do 25% twice a week, only vacuuming the gravel once though, the other is just water replacement.

I would get a few otto's to help keep algae at bay, they are wonderful little guys. I added them to a freshly cycled tank rich in brown algae and within 48 hours there was not a spec of algae to be seen :)

When combating it though many small water changes are the key. 10% a day. doing 10% a week the algae feeds off the nitrates and likes to go crazy.
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Old 07-24-2009, 03:19 PM   #3 
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I agree with what neejar said. I had a huge algae problem, so I got myself some otos. They are the best little cleanup crew! Plus if you get the otos, the plants will help with keeping the algae at bay.

Welcome to FishForum and good luck!
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Old 07-24-2009, 03:42 PM   #4 
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But the otocynclus will not eat cyanobacteria, and this is of course actually not an algae. It can be difficult to get rid of them, they are a very hardy bacteria!

There is probably some medicine available to use in the us, but i prefer the more natural ways. Applesnails can in some occasions eat blue algea or cyanobacteria, i've seen this in my own tanks!
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Old 07-24-2009, 04:44 PM   #5 
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I realize that cyanobacteria aren't actually a true type of algae. However they are commonly known as "blue-green algae" But leaving the light on for 12 hours a day is most likely going to cause algae to begin to grow. I still think getting some otos in the tank is a good idea - they help keep the tank so much cleaner.

Have you tested your water lately? Hard water is supposed to make it hard for cyanobacteria to grow. Also, circulation in the water is supposed to help. I read this on another site: "The flow of your powerheads or circulation should exceed the tank volume by 20 to preferably 30 times and not allow dead spots.
Example, my 25g has a powerhead rated at 400gph. This gives me 16x my tank capacity in flow per hour. My skimmer pump is rated at 200gph which gives me another 4x tank volume flow per hour, with my ac filter, I have another 4x tank volume flow per hour. So, the total flow is 24x my tank volume per hour. Also, make sure there are no dead spots (where there is no flow at all) Arrange your rock so there are spaces where water can flow thru, avoid solid walls. DO regular water changes at 10 to 20% with r/o water if you have a skimmer, and 40 to 50% if you don't."
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Old 07-24-2009, 07:46 PM   #6 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dr2b View Post
I still think getting some otos in the tank is a good idea - they help keep the tank so much cleaner.
I would to, didn't say in my previous post but like neenjar and dr2b said these guys make a very good algea cleanup crew ...

Usually when cyano appears something has changed in the tank, could be a lot of things. Try testing the water and changing on an more regular basis if you didn't do so. Also, change your filters on time to avoid problems, and you can try and temporary lower the lighting period and see if this has effect.

Quote:
Also, circulation in the water is supposed to help.
This is very true, so you can try and increase it, but I wouldn't suggest increasing it to 20-30 times your tank volume, this is a advice for saltwatertanks, your betta would't know wat hit him

In my saltwatertank the watercirculation is about 50 times the watervolume in one hour, and my fish and corals love it!

Last edited by Ajsim; 07-24-2009 at 07:47 PM. Reason: spelling error
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Old 07-24-2009, 08:43 PM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ajsim View Post
I would to, didn't say in my previous post but like neenjar and dr2b said these guys make a very good algea cleanup crew ...
They make good entertain also :)

Quote:
This is very true, so you can try and increase it, but I wouldn't suggest increasing it to 20-30 times your tank volume, this is a advice for saltwater tanks, your betta would't know wat hit him
I wasn't saying to for sure turn the circulation up that high, I was just showing the example that I saw posted to prove the point of what they were saying. I actually think that was on a saltwater discussion I had saw - but it did get the point across (I hope) that I was trying to make.
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Old 07-24-2009, 10:47 PM   #8 
maxworth
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Thank you to everyone with your help. I will definitely increase my water changes and consider otos. I have a small five gallon and I think I have read that they require schools. It is feasible to house them in such a small tank. I have been considering African Dwarf Frogs for a while but maybe I should go otos instead.

Someone mentioned that cynobacteria usually occurs when something changes in the tank. I added the Java Moss and withing a day my tank was littered with the stuff. I'm certain that it was introduced by the plant and hopefully water changes will improve the good fight.

Thanks again to all your help.
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Old 07-24-2009, 11:09 PM   #9 
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I have two otos and a betta in my 5 gallon tank. I am thinking of eventually going to buy one more. But my 2 otos seem very happy together in the 5 gallons.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:37 AM   #10 
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Zeus' tank is horrendously overstocked right now. 5.5 gallons with him, 6 ottos and 6 ghost shrimp. As soon as Ares tank matures I am moving 3 of the shrimp and 3 ottos over to his. If I do not give the ghost shrimp to a friend tomorrow, then just he ottos.

Zeus' tank is staying stable with the over stocking do to good filtration, the plants and daily 10% daily water changes, with 25% twice a week. I do not want to keep it this way too much longer, just a couple more weeks!
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