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Old 08-14-2012, 08:39 PM   #1 
Rosebud
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Unhappy Cycling new tank, now have algae mess, HELP!

OK, here's the deal. I have a new tank, and I'm a new fish-mom. I started cycling it on July 7th, using the shrimp-method that I read about here. When I thought it was done, I took out the shrimp and did a 99% water change, but discovered that it wasn't "done," so following advice here I put in another shrimp to keep the cycle going...then read that I shouldn't use shrimp. The shrimp is now "stringy" and gross, and suddenly everything is covered in green algae. I don't know what to do to get rid of it, because if I take everything out and scrub it (although I don't know if that will work), I'll lose the beneficial bacteria I've started (at least I think so).

Here's the particulars:

Housing
What size is your tank? 5 gal
What temperature is your tank? 79-81 degrees
Does your tank have a filter? yes, Tetra Whisper 10i
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? no, stays at consistent temps, even at night
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? none - doing "fishless" cycling

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? yes, with API Master Test Kit and Tetra Easy Strips for Hardness and Alkalinity
If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia: showing at maximum or above, 8.0 ppm
Nitrite: 0.25
Nitrate: 5.0
pH: 7.8
Hardness: 0, very soft
Alkalinity: 180

I'm getting really frustrated and just don't know what to do. I'd love some advice from experienced people here. I really want to get my guy out of his tiny tank and into his "big boy" tank, but it's been over a month and things are getting worse instead of better. Help!!!
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:47 PM   #2 
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What do you have in the tank besides the shrimp ? Like gravel or any decorations ?
The BB will be on your filter but some will stick to gravel and decorations. You could clean your tank but leave the filter alone or just rinse it off with the tank water just swipe it around to get the gross stuff off then put it back. Put some clean water in and start testing again and see what you come up with. But please wait for other advice okay as I am new to tank cycling myself.
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:53 PM   #3 
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I tried to attach a picture, but don't know if I did it right. I have gravel and silk plants and a little cottage decoration.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:08 PM   #4 
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pretty! I don't see any algae?
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:21 PM   #5 
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This picture was taken before the algae outbreak.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:24 PM   #6 
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ooooh. Have you thought about getting a nerite snail? Mine cleaned the tank free of algae in 2 weeks!
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:31 PM   #7 
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I'm not sure what that is. Is it just a little snail that will live in the tank? Will my betta eventually live with it? How do I keep the algae from coming back?

Thanks so much for your help.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:33 PM   #8 
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Here's what it looks like right now. (disgusting)
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:47 PM   #9 
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I would do a big water change like 55 percent and add fresh conditioned water and soak the silk plants and cottage in some clean conditioned water in a bowl or something if you they are really bad and smelly with junk on them. You can use a gravel vac to clean the gravel with if you have one if not they do not cost that much like 7 or 8 dollars at a pet shop or Walmart should have them too. Just stir the gravel around the siphone the dirty water out. Wait a couple of days and start testing again. If the water still looks bad do another water change and use the gravel vac again, they are such time saver I would not give up mine for gold...lol

Love your tank its very nice looking and love the silk flowers and the cottage is adorable, your Betta is going to be happy in there when you get him in. Good luck! I would use fish food like the flakes for the cycle and not use shrimp anymore or buy some ammonia nonscented to use.

Last edited by Perseusmom; 08-14-2012 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:47 PM   #10 
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Is the water cloudy? If so, I don't think it's just algae. It might be what is called a bacteria bloom. Also, what is that in the top right corner? It's not in the first pic.

http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...usually-71518/
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