How to get rid of cyanobacteria...With chemicals?

Chewbacca773

I have small patches of cyanobacteria growing on my substrate and glass. I've heard natural methods don't really work...so how do I get rid of it with chemicals?

It looks like this by the way:
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(I'm extremely proud of this picture by the way.)
 

Fishproblem

I just read that because cyano is a bacteria, it can be eliminated using antibiotics. The most commonly used one is erythromycin, but I found one mention of an aquarist using kanamycin in a pinch. That's what I had on hand, so I just started using it to wipe out the cyano carpet growing in my high tech planted tank. I used Seachem Kanaplex, one even spoonful (the provided spoon) for a 7 gallon system. 25% wc after four days, then dosed again. On day 7 and it's almost entirely gone. I'll probably hit it with one more dose.

It might not be advisable to use a high dosage with fish in, but I haven't got any livestock in the tank.
 
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Chewbacca773

I just read that because cyano is a bacteria, it can be eliminated using antibiotics. The most commonly used one is erythromycin, but I found one mention of an aquarist using kanamycin in a pinch. That's what I had on hand, so I just started using it to wipe out the cyano carpet growing in my high tech planted tank. I used Seachem Kanaplex, one even spoonful (the provided spoon) for a 7 gallon system. 25% wc after four days, then dosed again. On day 7 and it's almost entirely gone. I'll probably hit it with one more dose.

It might not be advisable to use a high dosage with fish in, but I haven't got any livestock in the tank.
I have 3 endlers and 2 nerites, and that's my only tank. What do you recommend?
 
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MomeWrath

I have small patches of cyanobacteria growing on my substrate and glass. I've heard natural methods don't really work...so how do I get rid of it with chemicals?

It looks like this by the way:
You must be registered to see images

(I'm extremely proud of this picture by the way.)
That is a pretty impressive photo!
That stuff is the bane of my existence. Never had it before and now I have it in every planted tank. Seriously about to ditch all of the plants and go back to fake just so I can scrub it off. I have it way worse than this. I spend all afternoon last Sunday sucking it out of my 30 gallon tank's sand and it's back with a vengeance in only 5 days.
 
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Chewbacca773

That is a pretty impressive photo!
That stuff is the bane of my existence. Never had it before and now I have it in every planted tank. Seriously about to ditch all of the plants and go back to fake just so I can scrub it off. I have it way worse than this. I spend all afternoon last Sunday sucking it out of my 30 gallon tank's sand and it's back with a vengeance in only 5 days.
I really want to just decimate it so that I don't have to deal with an invasion of cyanobacteria.
 
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LadyS

See if your LFS stocks chemiclean. It’s specifically targeted at Cyanobacteria. While I only know about it from reefing (it’s used a lot to clear out cyano in reef tanks), I didn’t see a caution for use around live plants on the inter-webs.
 
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Fishproblem

I have 3 endlers and 2 nerites, and that's my only tank. What do you recommend?
I would ALWAYS be wary about using medications with inverts (even chemiclean, which is a great suggestion that i'll be looking into for the future - thanks LadyS ! I imagine it's from the makers of chemipure?)

You should be able to google the answer if you search "is [product name] invert safe?" but even at that, it may be easier and safer just to move the snails to a big tupperware for a week or so. It won't hurt their feelings.
 
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Chewbacca773

See if your LFS stocks chemiclean. It’s specifically targeted at Cyanobacteria. While I only know about it from reefing (it’s used a lot to clear out cyano in reef tanks), I didn’t see a caution for use around live plants on the inter-webs.
I think that it's safe...but I have some sensitive floating plants and I don't know if they'll survive. I also have the capacity to move just my snails into an alternate container.
 
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LadyS

Fishproblem - it is! It’s part of their chemi- line of products.
 
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Fishproblem

I think that it's safe...but I have some sensitive floating plants and I don't know if they'll survive. I also have the capacity to move just my snails into an alternate container but on the interwebs, it's a hit or miss with certain plants.
Well then in that case, I can tell you my stem plants and dwarf hairgrass are all totally unaffected by getting dosed with kanamycin.
 
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MomeWrath

I have seen Chemiclean used in a reef tank with great results. I didn't know it worked on freshwater strains of cyano as well! Cool.
 
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leftswerve

I just read that because cyano is a bacteria, it can be eliminated using antibiotics. The most commonly used one is erythromycin, but I found one mention of an aquarist using kanamycin in a pinch. That's what I had on hand, so I just started using it to wipe out the cyano carpet growing in my high tech planted tank. I used Seachem Kanaplex, one even spoonful (the provided spoon) for a 7 gallon system. 25% wc after four days, then dosed again. On day 7 and it's almost entirely gone. I'll probably hit it with one more dose.

It might not be advisable to use a high dosage with fish in, but I haven't got any livestock in the tank.

If anyone is worried about it being safe, here is a known brand of erythromycin:
API® E.M. Erythromycin Fish Bacterial Infection Treatment
 
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MrBryan723

Hydrogen peroxide is probably the safest and most effective treatment for it I have ever seen. Works in seconds/minuets and will rid the problem in a few days. Also very easy to use.
Step 1 :turn off filter
Step 2: add up to 2ppm H2O2
Step 3: wait 1 hour
Step 4 turn on filter
Repeat daily as needed for up to a week.
Vacuum up the dying stuff as needed. No need for extra water changes aside from removing it. No need to add or remove carbon. Just a beautiful $0.88 solution.
It's important to note that this will kill moss balls and any other algae/fungi/bacteria in the tank.
 
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MomeWrath

Hydrogen peroxide is probably the safest and most effective treatment for it I have ever seen. Works in seconds/minuets and will rid the problem in a few days. Also very easy to use.
Step 1 :turn off filter
Step 2: add up to 2ppm H2O2
Step 3: wait 1 hour
Step 4 turn on filter
Repeat daily as needed for up to a week.
Vacuum up the dying stuff as needed. No need for extra water changes aside from removing it. No need to add or remove carbon. Just a beautiful $0.88 solution.
It's important to note that this will kill moss balls and any other algae/fungi/bacteria in the tank.
will it cause issues with the good bacteria population as well??
 
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MrBryan723

will it cause issues with the good bacteria population as well??
Yes it will. It'll mess them up pretty bad. That's why you turn off your filter. Super imperative step.
The 2ppm you have a bit of wiggle room in both directions tho.
I say "safe" as in if done correctly it won't harm any inverts or fish. Just single celled. If you accidentally dump half a bottle into a tank you'll probably kill everything, so maybe "safe" isn't the best word... but then again if you dump half a bottle of almost anything into a tank you're probably gonna have a bad time.
 
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LadyS

“...you’re gonna have a bad time”

I'm having South Park flashbacks!
 
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Bluejay010101

I've heard successes with Blue Green Slime Remover as well.
 
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an780

Ultralife Blue Green Slime Stain Remover worked very well for me too. Had a severe outbreak. This one worked well. One treatment and it killed it all.
 
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Chewbacca773

Ultralife Blue Green Slime Stain Remover worked very well for me too. Had a severe outbreak. This one worked well. One treatment and it killed it all.
Well this was like 2 months ago. I used one dose of chemiclean and everything was gone.
 
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Fishproblem

Well this was like 2 months ago. I used one dose of chemiclean and everything was gone.
This is super good to know. I have way less these days but it's not all gone. I'll try the chemiclean.
 
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