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Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1

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    Post Lessions learned on Alage and Phosphates


    0 Not allowed!
    For plants to work and algae to fail one must be very careful about nutrients in the water - these are needed to feed the plants, but these vital substances must remain in balance and must be removed if levels start to accumulate above desirable values. There are many ways to achieve these objectives but there are far more ways for the balance to fail and then algae to grow.

    Unless you have very dense plants (which also means high light/CO2 injection) than you will almost always have high phosphates. This most often has to do with feeding fish in a closed system like a tank and the fact that the tank water does not turn over numerous times per day with fresh water like streams do in nature.

    So, first off, I suggest a phosphate test kit (Seachem.) Such a kit gives you a handle on this troublesome nutrient. That, along with a nitrate test kit will help you keep your plants properly fed without incorrect levels of these nutrients occuring, which can often lead to algae growth.

    If phosphates get high (anything approaching 1 ppm is getting there in a low density, low light system) than water changes are either not big enough and/or often enough.

    If water changes are an issue for any reason (cost/difficulty) and/or large WC's cause nitrates to keep getting too low (bad for plants yet very good for algae growth), consider a small, in tank algae scrubber - mine has dropped my normally 2-3 ppm phosphate level (even with water changes of over 50% twice a week) down to the 0.05 ppm level. I also tried phosphate absorbers but that was $$$ and doing the weekly testing of phosphates levels to determine absorber replacement times was both a bother and ran through test kits rather fast.

    Of course, one must feed nitrate if these levels drop below 2-3 ppm in the tank due to a scrubber (not an issue with absorbers) but that is rather easy, and low cost.

    Avoid all solid or liquid fertilizers with phosphate since fish will provide more than enough even with a scrubber or absorber (unless you decide not to keep fish.)

    This issue has been a battle for me for some time and only recently have I learned these solutions - the hard way.
    Knowledge is fun(damental)

    A 75 gal with eight Discus, fake plants, and a lot of wood also with sand substrate. Clean up crew is down to just two Sterba's Corys. Filters: continuous new water flow; canister w/UV, in-tank algae scrubber!! Finally, junked the nitrate removal unit from hell.

    For Fishless cycling:http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...ead.php?t=5640

  2. #2

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    0 Not allowed!
    I just want to add that excess silicates are also an algae promoter.

  3. #3

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    Phosphates, for me, are 2 right out of the tap. I believe phoshpates should be around .25-.50 for planted tanks. And of course food contains phosphates, as well.

  4. #4

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Cermet
    If water changes are an issue for any reason (cost/difficulty) and/or large WC's cause nitrates to keep getting too low (bad for plants yet very good for algae growth), consider a small, in tank algae scrubber - mine has dropped my normally 2-3 ppm phosphate level (even with water changes of over 50% twice a week) down to the 0.05 ppm level.
    Cermet-

    This is a very informative post. Could you please provid a link to an illustration of the in tank algae scrubber.

    I found a Wikipedia entry on an algae scrubber here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Algae_scrubber

    How is the in tank design different?

    Thanks

  5. #5

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by jeffs99dime
    I just want to add that excess silicates are also an algae promoter.
    Excess silicates promote diatoms. I didn't realize excess silicates promoted algae as well?

  6. #6

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    0 Not allowed!
    Do you have a link explaining what an algae scrubber is and how to set one up?

  7. #7

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by dmagerl
    Do you have a link explaining what an algae scrubber is and how to set one up?
    Here's one that I used. I have also found people with Fresh water set-ups using the same set-up as the ones typically found in marine aquariums

    http://algaescrubber.net/forums/show...cs-The-Summary
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]

  8. #8

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Taurus
    Excess silicates promote diatoms. I didn't realize excess silicates promoted algae as well?
    Diatoms are brown algae.

  9. #9

    Join Date
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    Smile


    0 Not allowed!
    I will get a picture of an in tank algae scrubber soon - it is just two microwave plates with magnets. The complete unit is very small and can be easily hidden in a tank (even a small tank.) The outside plate (in the air) has red LED's and the underwater unit has a short section of air hose with holes and a standard roughen screen glue inside. This very small unit keeps a 75 gal very low in nitrates and phosphates. A commercial version (either as parts or completed or just a free license to build one) is available and searching past posts should turn it up.
    Knowledge is fun(damental)

    A 75 gal with eight Discus, fake plants, and a lot of wood also with sand substrate. Clean up crew is down to just two Sterba's Corys. Filters: continuous new water flow; canister w/UV, in-tank algae scrubber!! Finally, junked the nitrate removal unit from hell.

    For Fishless cycling:http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...ead.php?t=5640

  10. #10

    Join Date
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    Latest gifts & ribbons:

    Happy Christmas - MuckyFish   thanks for advising on vegetables for my kribs! so here is a discus - ScottishFish   You help a lot - PhillipOrigami   For the bank account, and thx for the rep - Cliff   beautiful discus! - Crispy   

    Smile


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Hobbs
    Phosphates, for me, are 2 right out of the tap.
    Ugh! and to think I complained about my tap water nitrates being 10 ppm (my phosphates from the tap are undetectable so below 0.01 ppm)! Your phosphate readings are rather high; for plants, your lower number range sounds right on.
    Last edited by Cermet; 10-24-2012 at 05:47 PM.
    Knowledge is fun(damental)

    A 75 gal with eight Discus, fake plants, and a lot of wood also with sand substrate. Clean up crew is down to just two Sterba's Corys. Filters: continuous new water flow; canister w/UV, in-tank algae scrubber!! Finally, junked the nitrate removal unit from hell.

    For Fishless cycling:http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...ead.php?t=5640

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