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Old 06-25-2012, 01:29 AM   #1 
SweetNightmare
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Algae in NPT! Won't Go Away!

Alright, I know a little algae can be healthy, but this is getting ridiculous. I scrub the glass almost every day, my plants are becoming choked by it when I don't stop daily to rub it off their leaves, I siphon the pieces out after it's scrubbed(inconvenient because my NPT was supposed to SAVE me water), I even tried adding duckweed and I'm getting NO growth from it. Plant growth is slow to none. I cut back how much I dose Flourish(just normal, not excel because I have a snail and anacharis, both sensitive to it), I shortened the photoperiod by two hours. Should I add more plants? Put in so many there's no way there's enough nutrients left over for the algae? Should I leave the lights off for a couple of days? I don't get it. I don't have this problem in my 2.5 NPT. I get a couple of brownish spots every week or two but I've read it's normal for the first few months. This algae problem has been going for almost a month and I've even completely broken down and redone the tank and it still stayed! I also use a three step internal filter for water movement and to get physical gunk out of the water.

Please, help!
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:17 AM   #2 
ZergyMonster
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I had the same issue in my planted tank. What I ended up doing was getting a lower watt bulb and tossed in a lot of "pest snails" (Malaysian Trumpet Snails, Ramshorns, and Pond Snails) they are able to eat most of the algae that is growing, once they reproduce to the point that the algae is gone, I will most likely remove them from my tank or start feeding them algae wafers.
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:34 AM   #3 
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Nerite snails! Just got some and tank is almost clean. I asked Petco to order them and I got 3, one died and had to be replaced. All doing well now.
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Old 06-25-2012, 10:14 AM   #4 
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What kind of lights are you using, age of bulb watts, kelvin...what photoperid did you start on.....Is there a partition between the light and water.

If you are using soil...you don't need to add any ferts....too high a nutrient load in the water column without fast plant growth and all you will do is feed algae.

What kind of algae is it

Its a balance-the stem plants need to out compete the algae for light and nutrients.....How many and what species of stem and floating plants do you have...

since they are not growing well.....it most likely is light related
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Old 06-25-2012, 01:01 PM   #5 
SweetNightmare
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They were growing brilliantly before the algae showed up. I think it's hair algae, it's long and stringy and bright green. The lightbulb is technically too high a kelvin, but the right kelvin was eight dollars more and this one still had the right color spikes. I started with a twelve hour photoperiod since I've heard that twelve to fourteen is good for plant growth, but now try to keep it around ten. I have a few strands of anacharis and moneywort. I also have a small piece of hornwort floating that I snagged from work, but it hasn't grown anything in a week or so since I clipped off the rest because algae was choking it. I'd love to add snails, but not only do I have an assassin snail that has a history of killing his snail tank mates(how I got him from a friend), the only other snails I have access to are nerite and pagoda. (Never get pagoda snails, btw, they like to munch on plants.) I added ferts (just a drop or two every couple of days) because I was afraid my java ferns, moss, and stem feeders weren't getting enough nutrients. I added some duckweed as well and if you can believe it, the only bits I have still were the bits I took from work! Even in my thriving 2.5 gal. Maybe I got a bad batch?

So, should I add some more stem feeders? Would that help? I mean, I'm seeing new growth on my plants, but just when I thing the problem is solved, the algae's back.
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Old 06-25-2012, 02:41 PM   #6 
Oldfishlady
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With live plants its all about balance....without more information its hard to tell you what that would be.......

Generally with hair algae- it is caused by too high watts, wrong color temp, old light bulbs-light source too close especially with too high watts, wrong color temp and old bulbs as well as the type of partition between light source and water....
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Old 06-25-2012, 03:13 PM   #7 
SweetNightmare
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What is "light partition"? I've listed everything. The kelvins are too high, but it's in the right colors, as I've said the right kelvins was more expensive, and I'm very strapped for cash. So I got the duckweed to try to diffuse the extra light, but of course I'm the one person it won't grow like crazy for. I have a florescent light fixture, if that helps anything. I'm using the Hagen Aquaglo bulb. It is a soil based NPT, and my root based plants are growing well, if a tad slowly. (They wilted when I first put them in but new leaves are starting to come in, I have three small swords I clipped off a big sword at work, three of some kind of micro sword or something similar, and a corkscrew val.) I have around five stems of moneywort and seven or eight short strands of anacharis(originally had four-ish long strands), two clumps of java fern(no idea about individual plant count cause the roots are all bunched together) and a handfull of java moss I moved over from my 2.5. Oh, and two tiny marimo moss balls. Thanks to the algae I keep scrubbing off the water has this gross yellowy tint to it now. I'm still doing as many if not more water changes as when it was a normal cycled ten gallon with fake plants.
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Old 06-25-2012, 05:28 PM   #8 
Oldfishlady
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Until you get the proper color temp bulbs to support plant growth-you have no other choice but to make water changes....and even with the water changes it may still crash unless you have enough active growing stem plants that can take care of the water.
You should be needing to trim the stem plants by the end of the first week of setup-then re-plant the trimmed stems in different areas-Best to plant them so that they get enough light at the base of the plant.

This is a 10gal..right....if so...you should have roughly...-2-4 bunches of 3-4 different species of stem plants..making roughly 40-80 stem planted or 75% of the floor with fast growing stem plants.

Does is have a rotten egg smell.....

The partition I am referring to....the hood...what separates the light bulb from the water....you may need to remove the hood for better light penetration.....or make sure its really clean and free of algae and mineral deposits....

Color temp or kelvin...you want between 5000-7000k...Ideally 6500k....

I do understand about cost.....this is why I don't use aquarium bulbs.....too expensive-especially since they need to be changed every 12 months-I have a lot of tanks...lol........I buy bulbs I get in the lighting dept for a lot less..."Daylight" 6500k..cost about $7.00 at walmart....
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:25 PM   #9 
SweetNightmare
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Alright, then definitely need to grab more anacharis, moneywort, and another plant I've seen at my work that's a stem feeder, I just don't know what kind it is. (It has a similar look to moneywort, just MUCH bigger leaves.) I'll probably get another cup of duckweed as well When I get paid Friday I'll pick up a new bulb from wally world I suppose. It just blows my mind that my ten gallon is doing so less spectacularly than my 2.5. My stem feeders in my 2.5 have grown at least two inches in the past couple of days. (I pruned them down to about two inches as they didn't take the move well.)

EDIT: Oh, and no rotten egg smell either, but it does have that stagnant pond smell. Not a bad smell, just very...leafy? And I have a glass aqueon lid under a fluorescent fixture. I try to keep it nice and clean.

Last edited by SweetNightmare; 06-25-2012 at 09:37 PM.
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