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Old 03-06-2011, 03:00 PM   #1 
k2ofcu
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Brown spots (that rub off) on my silk plants....

This is a continuing saga from the 'white fuzz in (flaking) betta log' thread (email in to Zoomed).
Am now seeing brown spots (algae?) on my silk plants.

I did rinse them in old (to be discarded) tank water and they came off pretty easily with rubbing & rinsing.

Did notice that my filter ceramics and carbon cartridge filter had some actual green algae growth on rinsing (again, in old to-be-discarded tank water).

Still having challenges with ammonia (will easily go up to 0.5+ ppm without aggressive water changes; no nitrites/nitrates seen).

pH goes to a scary (purple on test kit) 8.4-8.8 unless I degass the heck out of it (for ~ 1 hr) to get it to the (brown on test kit) 8.0-8.2 range (where it stabilizes)- still higher than I'd like but believe it's better than too acidic.

Heater at 78-80F.
Airstone on separate gang valve/pump available- run it for ~ 15-30 min total a day (Fred not a fan of it).
Whisper 10i with added ceramic for biosubstrate (baffled).
Biosponge from reputable fish store buried in gravel.

Betta log was rinsed in bleach water & then copious rinsing/soaks of dechlorinated water before reinstalling in tank. So far no white fuzz (crossed fingers), but the paint is peeling more :( Still no word from Zoomed (email sent).

At this point (since I'm not getting cycling?, just enthusiastic ammonia production- and now I'm getting brown spots on silk plants(and may still get white fuzz on betta log):
I took out four 'betta bulbs' that were guaranteed to grow in 30 days (yeah right- botanical name started with an "A"?) as they smelled fetid to me (and the 30 days were up and they were just decomposing/soggy with no signs of imminent growth). Seemed like they were a plausible source of ammonia (through decomposition)?

Light is on from about 7 am - 11pm (have thought about cutting the light to decrease growth?)

1 small crowntail betta male (Fred Nancois)-seems happy as a clam.
SMALL pinch (cleaned up in < 5 min) of flake food (won't eat pellets/balls) 2 x day.
No other pals yet (one thing at a time, or would a few corys help things?).

Ideas about the brown algae?- or anything else I'm missing?
Thanks!
K2
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:20 PM   #2 
Abby
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id remove the bulbs and the brown algae could be too much light I have LIVE plants and my lights are only on for about 6hrs a day if that.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:37 PM   #3 
k2ofcu
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id remove the bulbs and the brown algae could be too much light I have LIVE plants and my lights are only on for about 6hrs a day if that.
Side note: GORGEOUS avatar- is that one of yours? Stellar!

Agreed on the bulb removal- done.

Didn't realize that I had the light on for too long! -thanks for the insight & will cut the hours!
I just wanted Fred (who is in the LR ) to feel part o' the family! (as he does monitor us and swim along the tank in the direction of activity! lol).

Will the brown algae hurt him?

Should I consider tannins /green /black /indian tea leaves?

Thanks!
K2
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:38 PM   #4 
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It's probably diatoms. They're common in new tanks. You just have to do your best to get rid of them while they're around. They'll go away in time, when your tank matures.

Edit, they won't hurt your fish.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:43 PM   #5 
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It's probably diatoms. They're common in new tanks. You just have to do your best to get rid of them while they're around. They'll go away in time, when your tank matures.

Edit, they won't hurt your fish.
Side note- another gorgeous avatar boy!- terrific!

WOW- I just feel that this whole 'tank setup thing' has been SUCH an education!

(Yes, should have setup, cycled, etc.- but the jar at the dept store was too opaque/mucky to permit that process!- Fred had to come home and get in different water NOW! :-/ )

Am so lucky to have all of the good folks of this forum so cheerfully available (SO APPRECIATED!) (and am lucky that little Fred is so plucky and tolerant! lol)
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:45 PM   #6 
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For the light, you could get a timer that would turn it on and off if you aren't home to hit the switch.

How big is your tank? For corys, you need to get at least four (I think) because they are a schooling fish. If you only have a 5G, you don't have room for more. That said, I don't think more stock will help.

I have diatoms in my tank as well. It cycled recently, but I'm expecting them to go away once the tank matures in a few months. :)
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:50 PM   #7 
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Yeh my Avatars my first bloke
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:50 PM   #8 
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Aw thanks. That's my Tango. He's my little old man.

I know from diatoms. I have them all the time due to phosphates in my water but I keep pond snails to deal with them.

Hopefully yours will go with time. But I know sometimes people report it taking up to 6 months and sometimes they'll just come back out of nowhere.

Abby's right though, try cutting your light back to maybe 8 to 10 hours. It may help.
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Old 03-06-2011, 04:08 PM   #9 
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For the light, you could get a timer that would turn it on and off if you aren't home to hit the switch.

How big is your tank? For corys, you need to get at least four (I think) because they are a schooling fish. If you only have a 5G, you don't have room for more. That said, I don't think more stock will help.

I have diatoms in my tank as well. It cycled recently, but I'm expecting them to go away once the tank matures in a few months. :)
Great idea @ the light- am looking for an appropriate power strip for the tank & could incorporate that! :)

It's a 6 gallon tank, so well aware that I've not a lot of room for company (just Fred in there so far, though he is small).

I do think he'd like company- he is SO interested in what's going on outside of his tank that I'd like to give him company (as long as he doesn't pester them! lol)- but what could I add?

Had thought of splitting the tank, but don't believe that a sparring partner next door is necessarily a solution for company, either.....

Thanks again!
K2
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Old 03-06-2011, 04:09 PM   #10 
k2ofcu
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Aw thanks. That's my Tango. He's my little old man.

I know from diatoms. I have them all the time due to phosphates in my water but I keep pond snails to deal with them.

Hopefully yours will go with time. But I know sometimes people report it taking up to 6 months and sometimes they'll just come back out of nowhere.

Abby's right though, try cutting your light back to maybe 8 to 10 hours. It may help.
Didn't know that diatoms would look like that- such an education here!
THANKS!

(shaking head- have SO very MUCH TO LEARN!!)
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