Light and food?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by shadow2, Apr 21, 2010.

  1. shadow2

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    They told me at the LFS that if i reduce the time my lights are on, it will help the brown algae that is all over my plants and decorations. Is that true? Driving me nuts all the brown gunk! I cleaned it off and 2 days later it is back again. Good news is tho my tank has finally cycled and all my readings were perfect.

    Oh, my lights are on 10 hrs. a day.

    One other quick question. I bought the omega one tubifex worms today as a treat for my cories. But I can't get them to stick to the acrylic tank. It just keeps coming loose and floating to the top. Any tricks that u experts out there know of?? If no solution, I will just return to the store.
  2. funkman262

    funkman262Well Known MemberMember

    If your tank isn't planted, there's no need to have the lights on for that long. I'd reduce the lighting by a few hours and typically that helps with algae problems. Is the tank located in direct sunlight? That would also encourage algae growth.

    Is it possible that the tank isn't actually cycled but it seems that way because the excess algae is utilizing all of the nitrogen? If so, they're using it more quickly than the bacteria which is inhibiting the bacterial growth and when you remove all of the algae, the tank will go back into a cycle.
  3. OP

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    Forgot to mention I have artificial plants. No, it is not in direct sunlight.

    I will try reducing the hours and see if it helps.

    Pretty sure it is done cycling because I finally got the nitrite down to zero and the ammonia down to zero.

  4. funkman262

    funkman262Well Known MemberMember

    The reason why I brought it up is because plants/algae can bring those readings down just like how the nitrifying bacteria can. Your tank is fully cycled when the bacteria grow to large enough numbers that they can completely convert all of the ammonia and nitrite. But if there's algae that's out-competing the bacteria, then the bacteria growth will stop (and possibly die) but the ammonia/nitrite levels will still be zero because the algae is consuming it. I'm not saying your tank isn't cycled, I was just curious about this and hoping that another member could maybe comment on this :)
  5. OP

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    Yikes! and I was so hoping my tank was cycled. I am a newbie so I don't understand the bacteria thingee. LOL! What the heck is a nitrifying bacteria? Have to go look that one up.

    Thanks for your input, maybe some others might have an idea or two also.
  6. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    Nitrifying bacteria are the good bacteria that convert fish waste into nitrates. I actually disagree that reducing your light hours will help with the 'algae'. It sounds to me like you have Diatoms. They are very common in newly set up aquariums & reducing length of lighting will have little effect on them. Sometimes an increase in light intensity (brightness), will help with them but reducing or increasing lighting hours has little effect IME. Time is the best cure for Diatoms. They will pass as the aquarium matures more. Sometimes in just 2-3 months but they can last up to 18months. Otocinclus catfish & Bristlenoses eat diatoms & will help keep them under control. The tank size & what you intend to stock in it will decide which if either or those fish you can keep.
  7. Butterfly

    ButterflyModeratorModerator Member

    I don't think anybody has good luck with getting any brand of tubifex cubes to stick to the glass for long :) I usually just let them float :) the fish will chase them around.
  8. ryanr

    ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    +1 Nutter. I agree, it is most likely to be Diatoms, and they will disappear over time.

    Being a 5G, a bristlenose will more than likely outgrow the tank, an oto may be fine :;dk

    Some people have had success with Nerite snails, or grazing shrimp.

    Personally, if you can hold out, I'd just wait for the tank to age enough that the diatoms disappear.

  9. OP

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    Hey Nutter, thanks, I read online exactly what u said, that reducing light will not make a difference. 18 months! Yikes!! Double Yikes! I have to look at brown gunk for a long time. Guess I will get used to it. I was afraid it would get on my pretty blue betta.

    Thanks Carol, I will try your float method.

    Ryanr, yep, I have a small tank, going to upgrade in a few months.

    I did read those otos are kinda aggressive or nippy. But I had considered one of those, maybe when I get a bigger tank. Would they get nippy with my cories?
  10. cm11599ps

    cm11599psWell Known MemberMember

    +3 on diatoms.

    If it's on the glass then look into this

    Just be sure it's for acrylic tanks since you said that's what you have.
  11. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    I only mentioned the BN & the Otos because I wan't sure if this was your 5gal Betta tank or another tank seeing as you mentioned that there are Corys & they are not in your aquarium profile. Seeing as it is your 5gal I wouldn't add any fish at all to it. Maybe a couple of nerites would be ok though. Otos are not the slightest bit aggressive. They are super peacefull & I don't think they even have the ability to nip at other fish. They are a sucker mouth catfish. They just arn't designed to nip other fish & they don't have it in them anyway. They get along fantastic with Corys. Minimum 10gal tank for a few of them though so wait until you upgrade to get some.
  12. OP

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    I actually bought the mag-float designed for acrylic tanks and I am pretty sure it scratched my tank. I was pretty careful not to get close to the gravel too.
    But thanks anyway. I started using my microfiber cleaning cloth and it works great!

    Hey Nutter, yeah I should have mentioned the algae is in my betta tank, but I also have brown algae in my cory tank too. Not quite as bad tho.

    I will keep in mind the otos, I guess u have to have more than one huh? Worth it if they do a good job on the algae.

    Can't wait to get a bigger tank, planning on getting a 20 gallon. I am so in love with the platy fish, they seem so laid back, for fish that is. LOL!
  13. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    A group of 4 Otos would normally be considered the minimum & they need at least a 10gal tank. I've got about 8 or so in one of my planted tanks & they do a fantastic job cleaning up most forms of algae. They love resting on the stems & leaves of broad leaf plants so make sure you have a couple of those in a tank with them to.
  14. OP

    shadow2Valued MemberMember

    Thanks! Good to know, otos sound like good friends to have for that nasty algae.

    So funny u mention the otos resting on the broad leaves of plants. I was in Petsmart today and there was a small Pleco resting on a big leaf, that always looks so comical to me. I love to watch them do that. I bought my betta one of those leaves they are now selling for beds for bettas but he did not use it so I put it in with my cory cats and my new Julii is loving it.