Brown Algae

  1. Applescruff

    Applescruff Valued Member Member

    i have had brown algae in my tank for weeks now. It wipes off but hasn’t disappeared yet. It sticks to the decor and plants. How can I rid my tank of it for good?
  2. Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    Less light.

    Once it’s there it’s murder to get rid of, not a big deal though to be honest it’s not harmful to the fish.

    You could get a few Nerite Snails they are one of the best algae eating tank cleaners around and they’ll clean it up plus keep on top of it.

    What size tank do you have first of all?
  3. OP

    Applescruff Valued Member Member

    It’s a 20 gallon but it’s a cold water tank. I have a few goldfish in it. Not sure about snails in cold water.

  4. jdhef

    jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Diatoms (also known as brown algae) is very common in new tanks. While unsightly, it is harmless and will go away on it's own eventually. Unlike green algae which thrives with more light, diatoms actually prefer less light, so providing less light will only encourage them.
  5. Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    I like it. Makes the tank look rustic.
  6. W

    Wtd03 New Member Member

    I can chime in on this one and say that you are 100% incorrect about less light.

    I have two tanks that are flooded with brown algea. I clean the tank and after a water change I would leave the light off for 3 days straight. When I turn it on brown algea everywhere again.

    Brown algea comes from silicates and nitrates in the water. Green algea comes from light.

    OP if you can find a way to rid a tank of brown algea I will pay you handsomly. I have tried phosguard. No luck. Phosphate in tap is at 0.
  7. Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    You’ve completely misunderstood what I said. I said “less light” meaning that’s why OP probably has the issue not that he/she should give the tank “less light.”
  8. Dch48

    Dch48 Well Known Member Member

    I agree about the Nerite snails. They seem to particularly like that brown algae. They do fine in water from 65 to 85 F. Put 2 or 3 in that 20 gallon and they will clean it up. It's much better than dosing chemicals. Get ones big enough not to be bothered by the fish though.
  9. Agua86

    Agua86 Valued Member Member

    I know the feeling LOL! I have brown algae in my 10g planted pea puffer tank and have to wait it out. It's been 3 weeks. I'm keeping up with the weekly water changes and since I'm keeping the light on more than usual I added a few additional hideouts for the fish.