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Anubias: Low Light and Algae Control
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bozistheboss
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Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: 2011.04.18(Mon)20:15    Post subject: Anubias: Low Light and Algae Control Reply with quote

Hi guys,

Sorry - I'm going to be posting in multiple forums with varying topics. I'm looking at purchasing a 46g bowfront tank. Because of my new job, I am left with little extra time for tank maintenance aside from weekly water changes, I am looking at setting up a tank consisting of pool filter sand for substrate, a few granite stones, and some manzanita driftwood for a stark rockscape. I'm bouncing between Cichlids (aragonite sand instead of pool filter in that case) or community (looking at a half-dozen Corydoras catfish - peppered or panda, and maybe 10-12 Tiger Barbs for livestock).

The tank will have a 36" 25 watt strip light.

To add a few splashes of color and some extra hiding places, I'd like to grow some anubias on some of the stones in the tank. Will this light strip be enough to ensure these plants remain healthy? Will they grow without fertilizer additives? Finally, what is the best way to clean or prevent algae on the leaves?
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.04.18(Mon)20:47    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd lean towards probably OK. Anubias are pretty hardy, single strip light should do it. Wouldn't bother with fertilization, the fish will produce plenty if those are all you're growing in the tank.

I find the best way to keep them clean is to grow them in the shade of another plant, or make sure the lighting is low enough that algaes can't take hold. I always end up getting a little bit of green/black algae on the ones I grow in direct light, not immediately but it builds up over months.

Could also consider some java fern and floating plants. I quite like narrow leaf java and frogbit. Cichlids will probably eat the latter though.
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bozistheboss
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Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: 2011.04.19(Tue)19:07    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks unissuh. Huge help as always. Much appreciated. Smile

A question about frogbit - floating plants, in my experience, often end up resting against the sides of the tank or filter machinery, and out from under the strip light. (At the moment, I have water wisteria floating in the top of mine and it seems to manage even in the shady spots, LOL.) Is there a way to prevent this?
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.04.19(Tue)19:23    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not really, things just stick to the sides via tension. A little detergent might stop it, but I'm not so sure thats a great idea for other reasons. Razz

Are the sides of the tank shaded? The light over most of my tanks is high enough that this is not a problem, perhaps there is a way to raise your light slightly? Alternatively just stick with wisteria if it works, personally I just toss things that don't grow.
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bozistheboss
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Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: 2011.04.19(Tue)21:22    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, if I were going to stick with a planted tank, I'd just suspend or elevate a light, but since I want to stick to a pretty basic setup, I'm just going to go with a strip light laying across the top.

At least frogbit is a fern so I figure if at least one part gets shaded, it'll creep its way back into the light. Smile
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keithkyli
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Joined: 27 Apr 2010

PostPosted: 2011.04.20(Wed)0:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not going to talk about plants, but my experience was tiger barbs nipped the heck out of my peppered corys. The dorsal fin was reduced to a single spine. The corys outlived the tiger barbs though, thanks to a chemical catastrophe, and they are now free to sway their fins in the current.
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bozistheboss
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Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: 2011.04.24(Sun)18:26    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input, keith. Always much appreciated. Smile

I've heard lots of different accounts about barb behavior. From what I understand, the more barbs you have, the more they'll pick on one another rather than other fish, so I'm definitely going to try to have a large school.

Nevertheless, I intend to provide plenty of hiding places for the cats and I'll definitely keep an eye on them to make sure they stay happy and healthy.
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Cinder
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Joined: 16 Jan 2006
Location: Colorado

PostPosted: 2011.04.25(Mon)15:54    Post subject: Reply with quote

My Anubias have always grown with very little lighting.. a single strip has always sufficed even when I had my 55 gallon up and running. I agree that because they are so slow in growing themselves they may end up with algae trying to take over. If you can have a couple of fast growing plants that will help, if not, just keep an eye on the leaves so they don't get overtaken with algae down the road.

I found with Tiger Barbs, in my tank, through trial and error, that having at least 15 helped a great deal in them leaving other fish alone. Eighteen or more was actually more ideal. I never had mine mess with my Cories but I'm guessing that's because I have a heavily planted tank with lots of hiding spaces for my Cories so they could keep away from the Tigers.
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DaleJr
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Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: 2011.05.03(Tue)8:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have seen some of the best algae free anubias in very low light setups. I keep anubias in the shadiest places in my tank (high light) and still have algae on the leaves.
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