Brown Algae

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Aristotle, Apr 14, 2017.

  1. AristotleValued MemberMember

    Hello I have about a 6 month old freshwater tank with a mild amount of white skirt tetras. The tank is not overstocked.

    I have a 50 gal filter etc, but I have had repeating brown algae for the last two months. My fish don't seem bothered by it. It's powder looking, wipes off with ease. I've tried reducing the amount of light in the tank, hasn't helped.

    I stopped feeding twice a day to once a day, still hasn't helped. Can this stuff hurt my fish in the long run? It's turned some of my ornaments pretty ugly but I don't care if it doesn't hurt my tetras.

    Also I have added moss balls but it hasn't helped either. I only run a 15 watt fluorescent and 3 watt blue LED, the tank is not in sunlight either.

    I also run slightly hard water being in upstate New York. Nothing I can do to fix that, but it's within the appropriate range for the tetras.

    I thought about getting some shrimp to reduce the algae but I have someone in my home with shrimp allergy. The only other thing I can think to do is increase water changes and increase filter maintenance. My main concern here is the health of the fish, not aesthetics.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2017
  2. Tiny_TanganyikansWell Known MemberMember

    It depends on what type of algae.. pics?

  3. AristotleValued MemberMember

    I have no pictures because it is a nightmare to upload a picture on this forum. Before I remember having to upload to photobucket or some other third party site then re-link it and then the photos would downgrade in resolution and even turn upside down.

    It's brown; my water tends to run hard, it's powdery instead of slimy and wipes off easily. It's growing on some of the ornaments, and the glass as well as the heater.

    To my understanding there are two different things it can be, but the description of mine is not harmful to the fish? Please community, correct me if I am mistaken.

    Last edited: Apr 14, 2017
  4. jenmurFishlore VIPMember

    With a newish tank it could be diatoms? I currently have that. I've been told it happens in new tanks and it should go away on its own eventually. Just keep wiping it off things.

  5. AristotleValued MemberMember

    I'm hoping for this? I believe it can only be Cyanobacteria or brown algae diatoms correct? There are no bubbles being produced by it, and it makes my front glass rather hard to see through. All have a brown tint to it.

    When I google diatoms it looks pretty much close, when I google " brown " Cyanobacteria it looks not really like it. Again google is horrible for analyzing things I know, but I would rather pull out my front teeth than try to upload another picture to this forum with how long it took me last time, and I'm not exactly new to technology.

    If it is diatoms, that would mean I am reducing the light for no reason correct? So I can go back to a regular lighting schedule?

    It got worse after my gallbladder surgery because I wasn't able to be as obsessive about fish maintenance, and since I have recovered I just haven't been able to get rid of it completely. I wipe it off and it just grows right back.

    I try to upload a 2 MB file size picture and it errors out as being too big, for my fish.. I will try to upload to photobucket and link it here. I love you fishlore but your photo sharing software needs a tuneup.

    Alright guys and gals I got it uploaded to photobucket and I'm not gunna even try to upload that sucker here, learned my lesson last time so I will link the photobucket picture directly below. My fishy friends thank you.

    Examples of brown Algae in the picture captured will be on the screen glass, the ornamental purple tree in the back, on the heater, and the ornamental green marine land plant in the middle.

    Please click where it says " Brown Algae Fishlore " in bold below for the picture.

    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2017
  6. jenmurFishlore VIPMember

    It looks like it to me. Not most fun thing in world but doable
  7. AristotleValued MemberMember

    So I shouldn't be alarmed? Just increase water changes, clean filter more often, add more moss balls and finally does my light schedule impact it at all? Thanks for your time and the community.
  8. jenmurFishlore VIPMember

    Not sure about water changes although they can't hurt (and the fish will enjoy fresh water). Just every water change clean at least some of it off. I do a side each water change and I use my gravel vacuum to very lightly get it off my heater.

    Light wise not 100% sure. More plants would be nice for fish, I just added some Anacharis for my betta and will be getting Java fern as well.
  9. AristotleValued MemberMember

    Thanks, wish you and your beta good life!
  10. CulpritFishlore VIPMember

    Hey! Diatoms are definitely OK! They will not hurt anything. They are caused by high phosphates and high silicates in a new tank. Phosphates and silicates leak out of stuff in the beginning. Right now I have a diatom outbreak because I just added sand. Adding plants will not do anything to decrease the algea but they are great for your tank! Light doesn't matter either with diatoms.

    Yes diatoms are a brown algea that you can pretty much dust off.
  11. AristotleValued MemberMember

    Can you check out my pic hyperlinked in bold up above just to get another confirmation on your end? Thanks. I and jenmur believe it to be.
  12. jenmurFishlore VIPMember

    You're welcome :). Oh I plan on giving Frazier a good life as I can ;)
  13. Mike AValued MemberMember

    Can having tiny freshwater shrimp that are underwater cause the person to have an allergic reaction? That seems almost impossible to me but please do correct me if im wrong.
  14. AristotleValued MemberMember

    The point is they live in the water and that water will have to be periodically changed, filters cleaned, wastes removed etc. Making spills and regular maintenance more of a chore or hazard than they have to be for those who live around the animals. Obviously this will depend on how severe those with the allergies react.

    Ever been on a plane with someone with a severe peanut allergy? It's a similar concept. The entire plane must be cleaned out and passengers forewarned, and while I understand it's not the perfect analogy it's the best I can think of at the moment without any sleep.

    It's just an unnecessary risk. Personally I have no allergies, but have to respect those throughout the home that do. Regardless if it is over calculated or not.
  15. MikeRad89Well Known MemberMember

    That's not diatoms or Cyanobacteria. That's just your run of the mill green algae.

    I use "magic erasers" to wipe it off the glass as that's it where it tends to congregate.

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