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cyanobacteria-blue/green algae - expert help needed
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Mike
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Joined: 06 Feb 2003
Location: Derbyshire. England. UK

PostPosted: 2003.09.06(Sat)11:42    Post subject: Reply with quote

well I've got to be a little different here.

For a start - What does this statement mean ?

Quote:
No ammonia, nitrite, or nitrates to speak of


Quote:
I inject CO2, and do around a 45% water change once a week. The pH is 6.7, water temperature 82 degrees. My plants are doing pretty good, with no algae problems with normal alage like hair, black, spot, etc.

What is your KH ?




To revengeishere --
Quote:
I don't know if they are really that sensitive like what most people think(I think the discus only looks sensitive and the fact that its expensive makes it even look more "sensitive").


You couldnt be further from the truth with this statement.

Most fish, I won't to the stage of saying all fish, but all the ones I have ever seen you can treat in the same way.
If you treat Discus like that they will be dead.
Discus have memory, are very stubborn and like very stable conditions. Any change from what is their normal can and may cause lots of problems.

Anyway to the question in hand.

BGA is caused by Too high Nitrates or too low nitrates. Usually the latter. Since it can affix to the available Nitogen in the air, it can be a pain to get rid of.

There is a very easy way though - Normally.

this is where the difference between normal fish and Discus come in.

1st - Never use treatment, Discus will not like it.
2nd - Best way is the blackout method - Now depending upon your fish, you may be able to get away with it or you may not.
I wouldnt on my tank- Too flighty.
3rd, Just reduce lighting and keep to water really clean -

If using blackout method follow the following. (most efficient)

50% w/c
Really good clean off tank of BGA (Discus may not like you messing in tank)
Good thorogh filter clean
Blackout
Never stop feeding !!!
After 3 days or however long it takes.
another 50% water change and good clean of filters.

When water is back to normal -

Dose with KN03 to 15ppm and keep it there (slowly)
Dose with 10ppm of K2SO4
Reset fertilisers balance.
Start lights when CO2 is in the 20ppm range.
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pankis
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Joined: 06 Feb 2003
Location: Colorado, USA

PostPosted: 2003.09.10(Wed)20:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

No nitrates to speak of means when I tested the water, the scale didn't go into the yellow at all - it didn't register any nitrates.

My KH is 10dH. Does the hardness of the water affect the BGA? It comes out of the tap at 10dH, and I inject C02 to lower the pH from 8 to 6.7 - that was a nightmare to get going, but I've pretty much perfected it now, and it stays stable now.

I don't know that my discus would like a blackout. I've been doing more water changes, trying to siphon out as much BGA as possible, but it's not really doing much.

If I somehow get the nitrates up, do you think that might take care of it? Also, what would be the best product to do that with?

-Travis
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naclh2ofly
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Joined: 07 Jun 2003
Location: MD's Eastern Shore, USA

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)5:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

Travis,
You need to eliminate the BGA then up the nitrAtes. For some info on how/what/where check out the site in my last reply to Jen S' post "What exactly does 'heavily planted' mean?".

Mike's info is solid.... I've used the same black out treatment myself, although I still would not feed the fish. They are in the dark so are they going to eat the food??? Of course I have no experience with Discus so......

Would it be possible to move your Discus to another tank for 3~4 days?

Good luck
Fred
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roby
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Joined: 11 Feb 2003
Location: milan

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)6:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,
I had a BGA problem just before the summer when I redid my 24 gallon. I resolved it by cleaning all the plants from it (just took them out and cleaned off the slime), and I sifoned it off the sand and removed it manually or with a net. All my water values were great so I didn't understand how I got it. A LFS owner (who I've found very good and knowledgeable) told me that maybe I had introduced it when I had put in some plants and maybe hadn't washed them properly. I didn't turn off the lights, just reduced the time they were on and I reduced feeding to once every 2 days for a while. I also did 20% water changes every 2 or 3 days. I'm not saying this will resolve your problem, but it worked for me.
HTH
roby
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number6
Moderators


Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)7:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike is right on the ball with his advice.
Of course, that doesn't mean I did it the right way on my planted Discus tank! Smile

Any chance you can simply get a more powerful antibiotic and wipe it out?
Know a Vet? Its what I did....

The other ways I have gotten rid of BGA is increased water flow.

One last way is a UV sterilizer...
Good luck!
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Steve Hampton
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Location: Jacksonville, FL

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)10:22    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Travis, you have received great information and by now it should be apparent that you can eliminate BGA in a variety of ways. Unfortunately there are over a couple of thousand different species of BGA ranging in a variety of colors and requirements. That's why one method will work against BGA and the next time you encounter BGA that same method doesn't work. For the bright green species the blackout method will almost always cause a major die off of the BGA, this usually results in ammonia spikes so large water changes are needed immediately after restoring the lighting cycles. Personally my first method of attack is to direct water flow via a powerhead directly onto the BGA patches/clumps. The green species of BGA seem to hate rapid water flow.

BGA spores float through the air so no amount of plant quarantine will remove to threat of BGA introduction. I haven't seen BGA in a couple of years, I am fastidious about water quality and water changes, I also move the filter outflow direction weekly so that currents are constantly changing in my tanks. I do however battle GSA constantly and wish someone could find the cure for it...
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roby
Members


Joined: 11 Feb 2003
Location: milan

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)11:20    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've heard quite a few frienda of mine who have used antibiotics to get rid of them, especially ERYTHROMYCIN which attacks G(+) and G(-) bacteria. It doesn't have effects on plants, fish. BGA are part of the G(-) bacteria and are usually therefore sensitive to Erythromycin. When treating be careful of the good G(-) bacteria in your filter, adding more good bacteria if possible.
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Raul-7
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Joined: 12 Mar 2003
Location: Torrance, California

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)12:18    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I got a bad case of Blue-Green Algae, I just bought a bunch of Anachris and Najas..they secrete a substance that kills the BGA as they compete for nutrients in the water! So after about a few days the BGA was gone! Razz
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number6
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Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)12:40    Post subject: Reply with quote

roby wrote:
BGA are part of the G(-) bacteria and are usually therefore sensitive to Erythromycin. When treating be careful of the good G(-) bacteria in your filter, adding more good bacteria if possible.

Roby, just to clarify a few items for you,
http://www-micro.msb.le.ac.uk/video/Cyanobacteria.html
Blue green algae consists of a huge family of both gram neg. and positive species. Erythromycin does not attack, nor is gram - easier to kill than gram+ ( though cell wall thickness is indirectly linked to success of anti-biotics).
You will not need to add more bacteria after dosing with antibiotics as an established tank will bounce back.

Raul... Anacharis and Najas do not secrete anti-biotics.... at least not in levels of significance. Remeber BGA is not an algae...

I think you will find the web link of great interest, both of you. it has a ton of information on both good and bad BGA... hey we all love those spirulina flakes for our fish! Smile
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Mike
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Joined: 06 Feb 2003
Location: Derbyshire. England. UK

PostPosted: 2003.09.11(Thu)12:42    Post subject: Reply with quote

The main point is. Look after the Discus. The plants will not get harmed, but messing too much will seriously upset the Discus.

Good Luck.
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