Algae Issue.

danhutchins

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Just in the last couple days I have noticed a larger amount of algae in my tank. It looks like beard algae or hair algae. It's not very long right now but is growing on almost all the plants in my tank. I haven't done anything different since I got the tank going and it has been going for 2 months completely cycled. It's a 55 gallon with only 14 fish. I do have a bunch of fish that are supposed to help with the algae but it seems as though they have become lazy. I do keep up with water changes and gravel vacs so I'm at a loss as to why it has gotten this bad. I have heard that excel is a good algaecide and was thinking of getting some and spot treating with it but wanted to get some advice first. I use pressurized co2 and lighting is medium high. I dose thrive according to directions on the bottle. Any input and help would be amazing, thanks.
 

FriarThomasIII

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Excel has a habit of melting a good bit of plants. Be careful when using. I would suggest ghost/amano shrimps to eat the algea. They absolutely adore all algae. You can also just rub it off. You could cut back lighting an hour or two, and stop dosing for a few weeks.
 
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danhutchins

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FriarThomasIII said:
Excel has a habit of melting a good bit of plants. Be careful when using. I would suggest ghost/amano shrimps to eat the algea. They absolutely adore all algae. You can also just rub it off. You could cut back lighting an hour or two, and stop dosing for a few weeks.
I actually haven't dosed in 4 days. My water changes are on mondays and haven't dosed since the last one. I have just noticed the algae within the last 3 days. Could it be lack of ferts? I could cut back the lights 2 hours since they are on 8 hours now. Is it possible for the a algae to stop growing if I do these things? I would think that a complete black out for a couple days or excel. I have used excel befor in my early years in the hobby when I thought it would be good carbon for my plants, I know now it isn't, but it does work well as an algaecide. I will cut down the lights 2 hours a day and see if that helps. I also think I should does ferts again to, don't want to mess with the health of the plants to much. Thanks for the info. Oh, also, I do have amano shrimp and snails and siamese algae eaters, hence why I say they have gone lazy.
 
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danhutchins

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TexasDomer said:
What kind of algae eating fish do you have?

Can you take a pic of the algae?
I have amano shrimp siamese algae eaters and a bunch of Malaysia trumpet snails. I know the snails don't bother with it but the others were recommended by my lfs and were recommended here.
Will post a picture in a few.
 
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danhutchins

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TexasDomer said:
Looks like staghorn algae to me.


I would continue your ferts and increase your water changes for a little while, to see if that helps.

What kind of light do you have?
Was running a beamswork and a nicrew. Took the beamswork off the tank to see if that helps. I grew dwarf hairgrass with the nicrew so it could have been the second light, but I have been running both since I set up the new tank with no issues till now. I also had them both on the old tank, same size, with no issues as well. I also pulled some of the plants in the first pic out and a ton of the leaves fell off so it could have been the dead leaves, didn't notice them until I pulled out the plants, so we will see.
Not so sure stag horn is it I tried pulling it off the leaves and uprooted the plant, it was attached pretty well and it looked black not grey.
 
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danhutchins

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Will also up the water changes as you suggest. I'm just confused as to how this even happened.
 

TexasDomer

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The pic of staghorn algae on that page isn't very representative of what it looks like on plants - it can be dark as well. It doesn't look bushy or soft enough to be BBA, but maybe it's just the pic?

It happened because there's an imbalance somewhere - with ferts, lighting, or CO2. What works one month may not the next, if something else changed (fish stock change, plants grew more, etc.).
 
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danhutchins

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TexasDomer said:
The pic of staghorn algae on that page isn't very representative of what it looks like on plants - it can be dark as well. It doesn't look bushy or soft enough to be BBA, but maybe it's just the pic?

It happened because there's an imbalance somewhere - with ferts, lighting, or CO2. What works one month may not the next, if something else changed (fish stock change, plants grew more, etc.).
The plants have definitely grown more. Should I cut back on ferts a little the larger they get or add a bit more? I would think you would add a bit more ( though I haven't yet) but I just don't know. It seems like if you don't have enough you get algae and if you have to much you have algae. I almost feel like giving up on plants in the tank but they make it look so nice when they are not covered in algae. I removed one of the fixtures and it already seems like there is less of it I did a water change yesterday and will do another tomorrow. Also put the canister back on to see if that helps. I never put it on the new 55 when I got it but it was on the old 55 and dont remember having as much of an issue with algae. Guess it's just a waiting game for a week or two. If what I am doing now doesn't help I'm going full black out for 3 days and seeing where that takes me.
 

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No, don't cut back on ferts - larger and more plants need more ferts, right? So cutting them back wouldn't be good. Tom Barr has shown that excess ferts doesn't cause algae - that's why the EI dosing method works. It's usually an imbalance elsewhere (too few ferts, lighting, CO2, water circulation, too few water changes, etc.) that causes issues.
 
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