Green Water

Nutmeg613

hi! i just recently got glo fish. i have a 20 gallon tank with a sponge filter, heater, two live plants, and gravel. once a week i change 1/3 of the water and vaccuum the gravel. there are 5 tetras, a glo beta, and a young common pleco.

after the most recent water change (done on saturday) the water has been staying green. there is no algae build up anywhere. when i tested the water a few days ago everything was good.

my guess is it was time to replace the sponge filter but since i’m new to glo fish i wanted to see if there was any other reason why the water might be staying green??

i just now replaced the sponge filter and did another water change. i can test the water levels in a bit if that would help y’all help me figure out why my water is green. i will update in a few hours if replacing the filter helped the green go down
 

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ilikefish98765

hi! i just recently got glo fish. i have a 20 gallon tank with a sponge filter, heater, two live plants, and gravel. once a week i change 1/3 of the water and vaccuum the gravel. there are 5 tetras, a glo beta, and a young common pleco.

after the most recent water change (done on saturday) the water has been staying green. there is no algae build up anywhere. when i tested the water a few days ago everything was good.

my guess is it was time to replace the sponge filter but since i’m new to glo fish i wanted to see if there was any other reason why the water might be staying green??

i just now replaced the sponge filter and did another water change. i can test the water levels in a bit if that would help y’all help me figure out why my water is green. i will update in a few hours if replacing the filter helped the green go down
You should siphon the gravel and try cleaning the tank a bit.
 
Upvote 0

Flyfisha

That may be green water which is a floating microscopic algae. True green water is very green.

At a glance that looks cloudy. Cloudy water is a bacteria bloom often associated with the early stages of the nitrogen cycle .

Green water is from sunlight and excessive nutrients. Vacuuming on its own will not help.

Cloudy water from a bacteria bloom in an uncycled tank is a serious situation.
Do you have nitrates in the tank?
Do you have a test kit Nutmeg613 ?

A snapshot of True green water in an outside tank that has no fish but is a source of food for fry.

4C0BED9B-DB71-42DD-B272-D5193F32327B.jpeg
 
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Nutmeg613

Is your tank cycled? If not, it’s probably a bacteria bloom. Fill out Fish Emergency Template | Freshwater Fish Disease and Fish Health Forum | 376562 and hopefully we’ll be able to help you out a bit more.
i’m not sure exactly what tank cycled means? i’m still relatively new to keeping anything other than betas.
You should siphon the gravel and try cleaning the tank a bit.
i gravel vaccuum and wipe the sides every saturday
That may be green water which is a floating microscopic algae. True green water is very green.

At a glance that looks cloudy. Cloudy water is a bacteria bloom often associated with the early stages of the nitrogen cycle .

Green water is from sunlight and excessive nutrients. Vacuuming on its own will not help.

Cloudy water from a bacteria bloom in an uncycled tank is a serious situation.
Do you have nitrates in the tank?
Do you have a test kit Nutmeg613 ?

A snapshot of True green water in an outside tank that has no fish but is a source of food for fry.

4C0BED9B-DB71-42DD-B272-D5193F32327B.jpeg
i will test the water in an hour or so, i just did a water change and replaced the filter so i wanna give it time to cycle that. i have easy strips which do test nitrites and nitrates, will i need something more advanced than that?
 
Upvote 0

Flyfisha

Ok .
The long name is ”A full working nitrogen cycle “
This is the name given to two kinds of bacteria that turns any container into an aquarium.
With this bacteria that fish are in danger.
If you have ammonia in the tank you do not have enough bacteria.
If you have nitrates you have bacteria. Nitrates are bacteria poop.
Only a water test will tell you/ us mate.
 
Upvote 0

Nutmeg613

That may be green water which is a floating microscopic algae. True green water is very green.

At a glance that looks cloudy. Cloudy water is a bacteria bloom often associated with the early stages of the nitrogen cycle .

Green water is from sunlight and excessive nutrients. Vacuuming on its own will not help.

Cloudy water from a bacteria bloom in an uncycled tank is a serious situation.
Do you have nitrates in the tank?
Do you have a test kit Nutmeg613 ?

A snapshot of True green water in an outside tank that has no fish but is a source of food for fry.

4C0BED9B-DB71-42DD-B272-D5193F32327B.jpeg
reading that thread you added, i think it’s a green cloudy water. i need a better timer for the lights (it’s been faulty) and this tank is my closest to the window. i’m gonna leave the light off and do 1/4 water changes every day for a bit and see if that clears it up.
 
Upvote 0

AggressiveAquatics

i’m not sure exactly what tank cycled means? i’m still relatively new to keeping anything other than betas.
All fish including bettas need their tank cycled. If you read about the nitrogen cycle is will tell you more about it. For now what are your exact water parameters
 
Upvote 0

Flyfisha

It’s hard to kill the floating algae. It may be possible to stop it with just water changes and less sunlight/ artificial lighting. If multiply small temperature matched conditioned water changes over many days do not stop the algae you may have to use a UV light .

It’s safe to change up to 50% of the water. Changing 45% every day may give you the best chance. Lighting for 8 hours maximum. Or no artificial lighting if you are near a window.

edit.
There are many UV lights on the market this is just one.

Mini Green Killing Machine Aquarium UV Filter Sterilizer with 3W UV Bulb Inside: Amazon.com.au: Pet Supplies
 
Upvote 0

Nutmeg613

All fish including bettas need their tank cycled. If you read about the nitrogen cycle is will tell you more about it. For now what are your exact water parameters
i’m still not quite understanding what it means to have a tank cycled. all my tanks have sponge filters and get partial water changes once a week. i will try to read about the nitrogen cycle more.
as of right now my tank:
nitrate: between 0 and 20
nitrite: 0
hardness: very hard (my apt has hard water)
chlorine: 0
alkalinity: 40
ph: 7.8
that is all my test strips test for. but i did another partial water change and replaced the filter about half an hour ago.
 
Upvote 0

Maryellen

i’m still not quite understanding what it means to have a tank cycled. all my tanks have sponge filters and get partial water changes once a week. i will try to read about the nitrogen cycle more.
as of right now my tank:
nitrate: between 0 and 20
nitrite: 0
hardness: very hard (my apt has hard water)
chlorine: 0
alkalinity: 40
ph: 7.8
that is all my test strips test for. but i did another partial water change and replaced the filter about half an hour ago.
You should definitely read into the nitrogen cycle before investing in fish. however, while it’s risky, you can do a fish in cycle. you should really read up on it. to try and explain it very simply, good bacteria needs to build up in your tank to be able to get rid of the bad. Without this balance the bad bacteria will become plentiful and hurt your fish. the nitrogen cycle allows good bacteria to build up to a good level to be able to detoxify some of the back bacteria. theres plenty of resources out there to help you better understand and teach you how to do it. Good luck and I hope your fish do well
 
Upvote 0

Flyfisha

I added an edit to the previous post.
You have nitrates. The tanks are cycled/ the tanks have the bacteria that poop nitrates.

However read up on the nitrogen cycle. In particular read up on how we do not change the filter sponge, filter fabric, or filter cartridge for years. Only after two years the sponge or cartridge is falling apart and we replace it. Most of the bacteria live ON the sponge/ fabric/ cartridge.

I would suggest if you still have the old filter put it back in the water NOW.
 
Upvote 0

AggressiveAquatics

i’m still not quite understanding what it means to have a tank cycled. all my tanks have sponge filters and get partial water changes once a week. i will try to read about the nitrogen cycle more.
as of right now my tank:
nitrate: between 0 and 20
nitrite: 0
hardness: very hard (my apt has hard water)
chlorine: 0
alkalinity: 40
ph: 7.8
that is all my test strips test for. but i did another partial water change and replaced the filter about half an hour ago.
A cycled tank basically means you have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and some nitrates. Ammonia and nitrites are very toxic to fish. Do you happen to know what your ammonia levels are? And how long has this tank been set up
 
Upvote 0

Nutmeg613

It’s hard to kill the floating algae. It may be possible to stop it with just water changes and less sunlight/ artificial lighting. If multiply small temperature matched conditioned water changes over many days do not stop the algae you may have to use a UV light .

It’s safe to change up to 50% of the water. Changing 45% every day may give you the best chance. Lighting for 8 hours maximum. Or no artificial lighting if you are near a window.

edit.
There are many UV lights on the market this is just one.

Mini Green Killing Machine Aquarium UV Filter Sterilizer with 3W UV Bulb Inside: Amazon.com.au: Pet Supplies
i think what i have is a fluorescent that mocks UV? because i know it’s a fluorescent bulb but it has the UV effects for the glo fish. i did a 45% water change today so i’ll do the same the next few days. and get a better timer for my light (the one i’ve been using doesn’t seem to ever turn the light off haha). hopefully that helps.

it doesn’t seem to be affecting the fish at all but it’s so ugly lol. i can’t even see my fish
You should definitely read into the nitrogen cycle before investing in fish. however, while it’s risky, you can do a fish in cycle. you should really read up on it. to try and explain it very simply, good bacteria needs to build up in your tank to be able to get rid of the bad. Without this balance the bad bacteria will become plentiful and hurt your fish. the nitrogen cycle allows good bacteria to build up to a good level to be able to detoxify some of the back bacteria. theres plenty of resources out there to help you better understand and teach you how to do it. Good luck and I hope your fish do well
okay so they are cycled. i just didn’t know that’s what it was called. all my tanks right now are upgraded from smaller tanks, so when started they had gravel, some water, and the filter from the previous tank. and i always test levels before adding new fish. i just really don’t understand the terminology haha
A cycled tank basically means you have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and some nitrates. Ammonia and nitrites are very toxic to fish. Do you happen to know what your ammonia levels are? And how long has this tank been set up
is ammonia the same as pH? what’s a goal number for that? i may need to buy new test strips.

this tank has been set up for almost a month now
I added an edit to the previous post.
You have nitrates. The tanks are cycled/ the tanks have the bacteria that poop nitrates.

However read up on the nitrogen cycle. In particular read up on how we do not change the filter sponge, filter fabric, or filter cartridge for years. Only after two years the sponge or cartridge is falling apart and we replace it. Most of the bacteria live ON the sponge/ fabric/ cartridge.

I would suggest if you still have the old filter put it back in the water NOW.
i switched back but i’m wondering when/how i do switch to a new filter? this filter has been carried over from two different tanks to help with startup. it is a little small for a 20 gallon. and it’s about a year and a half old.
 
Upvote 0

jkkgron2

I think it’s because the tank is overstocked. That common pleco needs a bigger tank, and is probably creating a lot of waste. Once they grow up they need a 75g+ tank. I would look into rehoming it.
 
Upvote 0

Nutmeg613

I think it’s because the tank is overstocked. That common pleco needs a bigger tank, and is probably creating a lot of waste. Once they grow up they need a 75g+ tank. I would look into rehoming it.
he’s still pretty young! only about 8” big. does he need a 40 gal by now?
 
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jkkgron2

he’s still pretty young! only about 8” big. does he need a 40 gal by now?
If he’s that big he needs a 55g IMO.
 
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Nutmeg613

If he’s that big he needs a 55g IMO.
i will look into upgrading or rehoming him!
 
Upvote 0

The2dCour

he’s still pretty young! only about 8” big. does he need a 40 gal by now?
Holy cow, I wouldn't want him in my 40g at 8" thats huge.
 
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jkkgron2

i will look into upgrading or rehoming him!
A 55g wouldn’t work as a permanent home, so if you upgrade I would do a 75 gallon.
 
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Nutmeg613

A 55g wouldn’t work as a permanent home, so if you upgrade I would do a 75 gallon.
well i have a spare 55gallon, so that i could get started on upgrading today. how long could he live in the 55? we generally upgrade our tanks at christmas. could he be in the 55 til christmas?
 
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jkkgron2

well i have a spare 55gallon, so that i could get started on upgrading today. how long could he live in the 55? we generally upgrade our tanks at christmas. could he be in the 55 til christmas?
I think so, but you’ll need to do 50% water changes twice a week and you’ll need to monitor the parameters closely. Depending on how fast he grows you may need to upgrade sooner.
 
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Nutmeg613

I think so, but you’ll need to do 50% water changes twice a week and you’ll need to monitor the parameters closely. Depending on how fast he grows you may need to upgrade sooner.
i can handle that. what size will he need to be in 75g?
also is there a thread on how to cycle when upgrading? since i’ll be using same media and filter?
 
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jkkgron2

i can handle that. what size will he need to be in 75g?
also is there a thread on how to cycle when upgrading? since i’ll be using same media and filter?
I think that right now a 75g would be ideal, so as soon as you can get the 75g I would. As long as you move over the same media and filter, and monitor the ammonia levels I don’t think you need to do anything special. If there is a ammonia spike just do a water change.
 
Upvote 0

The2dCour

i can handle that. what size will he need to be in 75g?
also is there a thread on how to cycle when upgrading? since i’ll be using same media and filter?
Used media is just like any fish-in cycle except it is much much shorter. If your bioload is already exceptionally high and the filter has been handling it, it may take only a day or two to cycle the new tank, you just have to keep your eyes on the parameters until its done.
 
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Nutmeg613

Used media is just like any fish-in cycle except it is much much shorter. If your bioload is already exceptionally high and the filter has been handling it, it may take only a day or two to cycle the new tank, you just have to keep your eyes on the parameters until its done.
and where do i keep the fish until it’s cycled?do i just take the gravel/filter out of their tank and leave them in it for the day or two? also the sponge filter will be pretty small for the 55 gallon (and based on this post and the green water i’m not sure it’s handling the bio load.) how do i introduce a new sponge filter
 
Upvote 0

Flyfisha

Post #14 .
You ask how do I switch to a new filter?

Running both filters in a tank is not a problem for most species. Long finned betta may have a problem with high flow?
Its common practice to wait 3 or more weeks for the new filter to be considered seeded.


Green water is not harmful to fish. It’s a soup of food for fry. Yes it’s not a good look I agree.
DAD6F08F-66F0-4B43-A66E-01D6B543C85C.png
 
Upvote 0

The2dCour

You can buy the filter/sponge now and start using it to get a jump start on seeding it, it will only mature with a source of bacteria and ammonia present. You keep the fish with the filter, so they'd go in the new tank. You keep your ammonia and nitrite in check with a water conditioner and keep at the water changes daily until your readings are 0.
As far as timing the size upgrades, the sooner the better. 8" fish in a 24" tank is like a betta in one of those .5 gal bowls, 40g is kinda like saying to the betta here's two fish bowls! 55 is like the fish can finally swim back and forth but it's hard for him to turn around. 75 is wider, much easier to maneuver.
 
Upvote 0

Nutmeg613

You can buy the filter/sponge now and start using it to get a jump start on seeding it, it will only mature with a source of bacteria and ammonia present. You keep the fish with the filter, so they'd go in the new tank. You keep your ammonia and nitrite in check with a water conditioner and keep at the water changes daily until your readings are 0.
As far as timing the size upgrades, the sooner the better. 8" fish in a 24" tank is like a betta in one of those .5 gal bowls, 40g is kinda like saying to the betta here's two fish bowls! 55 is like the fish can finally swim back and forth but it's hard for him to turn around. 75 is wider, much easier to maneuver.
so move EVERYTHING over now, run both filters, and keep checking water daily?

i just don’t think i can afford a 75 gallon right now but i’m going to start saving up for it so hopefully in a few months.
 
Upvote 0

The2dCour

Post #14 .
You ask how do I switch to a new filter?

Running both filters in a tank is not a problem for most species. Long finned betta may have a problem with high flow?
Its common practice to wait 3 or more weeks for the new filter to be considered seeded.


Green water is not harmful to fish. It’s a soup of food for fry. Yes it’s not a good look I agree.
DAD6F08F-66F0-4B43-A66E-01D6B543C85C.png
Lol, or you could start a colony of daphnia!
so move EVERYTHING over now, run both filters, and keep checking water daily?

i just don’t think i can afford a 75 gallon right now but i’m going to start saving up for it so hopefully in a few months.
Sounds like a solid plan, he'll be much happier in the 55. When I look at tank vs fish size for these larger fish I always compare the width (front to back) vs their actual size, if they need to do a 3 point turn to do a 180 es no bueno.
 
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