Possible link to charcoal and algae growth, and/or fin rot?

Discussion in 'Algae' started by Downward Dog, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. Downward Dog

    Downward DogValued MemberMember

    I've been pondering whether my fairly recent removal of all charcoal in my filter could lead to any bad responses in my tank? I took it out so that toxins leaching back into the tank after 3-4 weeks wouldn't ever be an issue, and to restore all the minute good things it supposed takes away from the fish. However, I definitely see more algae growth whenever I do this. And because of this, I wonder if this could also be leading to continued fin rot for my corydora and dwarf gourami? I'm doing water changes every 2-3 days, so I can't imagine there's anything wrong with my water quality to begin with.

    Because I have fin rot in these 2 fish, is there any downside to putting the charcoal back in and changing it every 2-3 weeks to see if that helps?

    As for water quality, is there any correlation to hard well water (which we have, living in the Granite State of NH) and fin rot?

    Can you tell I'm getting a little frustrated at not seeing any improvement in the fin rot??? :;smack

  2. James95

    James95Well Known MemberMember

    I've never heard of the removal of carbon having any negative effects on aquarium inhabitants. How much are you feeding and how often? What are your Ammonia/nitrite/nitrate/pH readings?

    If anything, acidic water is more likely to cause fin rot compared to hard, basic water.
  3. Lexi03Well Known MemberMember

    I have not used carbon in over a year in any of my tanks, never saw a increase in algea.

    How long have you been treating the finrot?
    I treat finrot with waterchanges treated with Prime, and a treatment dose of stresscoat everyday. Garlic is supposed to help too, but the food I feed already have garlic in them so I don't really know on that one.
  4. Shawnie

    ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    Hi Len...Do you have your own test kit? How long has the tank been running? What is the stock in the tank? I dont think removing the carbon has to do with the fin rot..although if you are over stocked, it does help if changed out once a month....IMO it helped me with keeping the water more prestine...of course water changes as well....I dont think our water is a factor either...but every ones is more harsh than others...fin rot is almost always caused by something wrong with the water parimeters ....

    As far as algae, is it the brown kind? or green? etc?
  5. OP
    Downward Dog

    Downward DogValued MemberMember

    My readers are Amm 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate always kept under 20, pH usually around 7.8. I feed a varied diet of Tetra Colors flakes, veggie flakes, dried baby shrimp (for the DG), with algae wafers for the Corydoras (usually 1/2 tab/day). I feed 2x/day and not very much -- it's gone within a couple of minutes (the DG chows, I have to make sure enough sinks down for the cardinal to get).
  6. Shawnie

    ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    If they are still showing signs of fin rot, try upping the water changes to once a day...small changes, with some stress coat+ for a few weeks...fin rot doesnt heal over night :( unfortunately.......try to add some fresh foods such as bloodworms and brine shrimp....soaking/adding some fresh garlic/juice will help build their immune system up as well....if there is any nipping going on, changing the stock might help that....I choose to run carbon as its something I do believe in...to me, its an expense I choose to have to keep my tanks looking better :) I hope things look up for you!
  7. OP
    Downward Dog

    Downward DogValued MemberMember

    Hi neighbor! I use the API Master test kit for my readings. The tank is 20 gal, has been up and running well over a year and I only have 1 cardinal, 1 zebra snail, the DG and 2 corydoras -- don't freak out on the non-schooling numbers of fish I have, I've lost them to what I think was the neon tetra disease these past 6 months. I am not adding anything until I get this fin rot straightened out. This tank has some direct sun every day, so I really do notice that I get more algae (the brown kind on the plants and glass) when the charcoal is out. So that led me to thinking that maybe it changes something else in the water enough to upset the balance. I use Prime with each water change, but I don't use the Stress Coat since Prime provides slime coat, right? I used a garlic solution with my flakes but the DG really hated it and it wasn't ideal with flakes. They sank to the bottom really quickly. Oh, and for the fin rot treatment, I went through a 1 week course of Melafix for the cory and 1 week of weak Melafix with the DG; both received a course of Maracyn 2 and 2 courses of Maracyn (the LFS didn't have M2 anymore). I lost 1 cory in the process immediately, and my other sick cory remains upside down a lot of the time. I'm considering euthanasia because his back fin is pretty darn short and that doesn't help him swim much at all and he just can't be happy laying around like that all day. I don't know what other water parameter I could look at to find the culprit.

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