Funny String Algae overtaking Java Moss

Loachlover357

Ok, I'm a housewife with now 4 young children. Youngest born in May. I just found out totally by fluke that my java moss has been like completely replaced by string algea! !! I say I noticed by fluke, bc I bought a new plant the other day from my lfs. Well there was a bonus little hunk of moss in it! Score one for the penny pincher !! I can cultivate a whole new plant!! Well in looking it up online, I discovered this little freebie was, in fact, java moss!!! Ok, so what have I been decorating my tank with? !?!? I have a little bit of an algae problem on the tank glass, and this mystery plant in my tank is stringy. So I look it up, and whaddoya know!!! I've been decorating my tank with string algea! !! Tons and tons of string algea!!! And you might ask, "how in the world did this happen?!?!?" We were battling a snail infestation, like so many I couldn't enjoy looking at my fish. They ate all my hornwart and apparently my java moss too. Well, spent a lot of time hand picking them. Noticed my "java moss" was growing back!! So much I had to anchor it to pots. My hubby got me some clown loaches to help me keep my snails down. Went and got some new plants with my little bonus, to provide more cover at the bottom of the tank so they'd come out more. Found out id been proudly growing and decorating with string algea! ! My question is now what do I do? Can and should I take it out? It does seem like a mess, its starting to grow into my new plant. But I see a lot of the fish either eating it, or the scuds living in it. Any suggestion?
1565096412806.jpg
 

MrBryan723

The fish will pick at the scuds(awesome you have those I love them but haven't managed to find any) in the hair algae but only a few species will actually eat it. Amano shrimp will if you wanted to get those. I would say try to get rid of it if you can because it competes with plants and other mosses and such for nutrients and will eventually start growing on your plant leaves causing harm.
 

kallililly1973

Your best bet will be to remove it and get a couple real plants to out compete the Algae for the nutrients in your water.
 

Fishcat

Put some of it into a little tank with some of the scuds and grow a reserve supply!
 

Loachlover357

The fish will pick at the scuds(awesome you have those I love them but haven't managed to find any) in the hair algae but only a few species will actually eat it. Amano shrimp will if you wanted to get those. I would say try to get rid of it if you can because it competes with plants and other mosses and such for nutrients and will eventually start growing on your plant leaves causing harm.
Thanks MrBryan!! I'm not even sure where the scuds came from, but its like having free live food in the tank. The live in the gravel. I figured id clean it out of there, I just got to replace it with some other plants. If you or anyone else could suggest some cheaper end plants, there's a lot of "java moss" to replace. Lol!
 

Mcasella

Scuds will also demolish mosses in my experience, they took out an entire tankful of it in one of my tanks and left the poor tank so bare.

Java ferns are generally pretty cheap and easy to care for. Anubias are a little more expensive but still low maintenance (slower growing). Most sword plants are fairly cheap, amazon and rosette (compact) are the easier of the varieties to get and maintain.
 

Loachlover357

Thanks Mcasella! I had no idea that scuds ate the java moss too! Now I know to buy a different plant instead buying java moss and losing it to scuds.
 

Mcasella

Thanks Mcasella! I had no idea that scuds ate the java moss too! Now I know to buy a different plant instead buying java moss and losing it to scuds.
Tehy ate the little bit of subwassertang in there as well, a higher light can keep them at bay to allow the moss to grow faster than they eat.
 

Loachlover357

Alrighty. Removed so much algea. Replaced with hornwart. I'll probably be buying more, unless someone could suggest other cheap plants that take up plenty of nitrates. With kids they tend to get alittle overfed.
 

MrBryan723

Belts are highly effective with the overfeeding issue.
 

Loachlover357

Belts are highly effective with the overfeeding issue.
Uhhh....I'm unfamiliar. Is this a fish, a plant, or a joke? My experience, belts aren't necessary when overfed. Pants get too tight! Lol! Please enlighten me. I really don't know how much I should be feeding. This is what I have:
12 gold dust mollies
12 red minor tetras
5 "adult"swordtails 2M 3F, 1M is 3.5"
4" long fin plecos
2 clown plecos
6 clown loaches 2 little, 4 are about 3"
2 hillstream loaches
All fish are 2" or less unless otherwise stated.
I have aquadine flakes, shrimp pellets, and NLS Thera-A/garlic. Since the snail infestation is gone, there's nothing to eat the extra food except the scuds.
This whole ordeal has left me with high ph 7.8 and high nitrates. I posted another thead about that. Somewhere. .. I'm still learning the website too.
 

MrBryan723

Lol it was a joke. You use it on whoever keeps overfeeding. But seriously you have a pretty large stock so your nitrates will just be pretty high normally. A lot of the fish you have are fairly high waste producers too. In the future your tank will be overstocked with the plecos and loaches all getting fairly large. You could look into anoxic filtration or things like matrix or ceramic rings to add to your filter.
Plants are still the easiest way to control nitrates and as mentioned swords do a good job, but you might need root tabs with your substrate as well as some liquid ferts to get them to really take off. Water lillies are another good option that do a good job and grow rather fast once they start growing.
 

Loachlover357

I thought maybe it was a joke. The kids are the overfeeding culprits. They're little so I got to let them all throw a bit in or its "not fair". Lilly pads sound tike a great idea!! Ive also heard pothos in the filter. I do plan on getting a new tank in a couple years. I'm hoping this works for now. I know the clown plecos and the hillstream loaches are full grown. I'm not terribly attatched to the mollies and swordtails, don't get me wrong, I like em, but being livebearers they are constantly reproducing. So when they get big enough I sell em to our lfs. With exceptions of course! I would say there's probably 5 out of all the livebreader I wouldn't give up. Well thanks MrBryan for all the advice in this thread and the others. You've answered a lot of my threads so far. I appreciate you sharing your knowledge. It has been quite a mess getting my aquarium back in shape!
 

tjander

The only way I got ride of string algae was to give the plants a hydrogen peroxide bath. Keep the lights off for a few days and it should go away. As mentioned above your nitrate are high and that might lead to you algae issue. I have never had luck getting algae out with plants.
 

CheshireKat

How big is your tank? Did I miss that?
 

Loachlover357

How big is your tank? Did I miss that?
It's 75 gallons. I can't remember if I put that on this thread. I'm new here snd been asking lots of questions and started a couple threads. I'm new here and everyone has been so helpful!
 

DoraCory

I reckon some Vallisneria would look great in your tank
 

Loachlover357

I reckon some Vallisneria would look great in your tank
I looked it up as I was unfamiliar. I think you are right! Thanks for your suggestion! This says it doesn't need to have soil, is that correct? Seems to be perfect for my swordtail bully problem. I bought some new female red wags swordtails, but one was a male whose sword had been completely nipped off. Bonus! The males were 2x as much! Down side, they spar. I had to put my original in time out. He doesn't chase the other so relentlessly now. He chased a much neater looking swordtail to death! I was pretty upset cause he was the coolest born in my tank so far! Kind translucent with 3 orange lines down his sides and a chartreuse tale lined in black. Wish I had a pic! If any one can identify, that would be great! I tried looking online, but I'm terrible at the internet. Lol!
 

angelcraze

Bahahaha you made my day! I found that hilarious! Well hair algae was soaking up some of those nitrates for you

Yea, vallisneria at the back, crypts and/or Amazon sword in the middle and dwarf sag, stargrass or hygro polysperma or rosenervig kept trimmed short for the foreground. You could also try melon swords for the mid or foreground.

Tip: I like to plant swords in dirted pots. The swords love the soil and the pot contains their roots. I give the pots a piece of root tab every now and then, the nutrients stay right there for the roots.
 

Loachlover357

Bahahaha you made my day! I found that hilarious! Well hair algae was soaking up some of those nitrates for you

Yea, vallisneria at the back, crypts and/or Amazon sword in the middle and dwarf sag, stargrass or hygro polysperma or rosenervig kept trimmed short for the foreground. You could also try melon swords for the mid or foreground.

Tip: I like to plant swords in dirted pots. The swords love the soil and the pot contains their roots. I give the pots a piece of root tab every now and then, the nutrients stay right there for the roots.
I like to make people laugh! thanks for all the plant suggestions. Yeah, I know it was eating the nitrates now. At the time I took it out, I thought it was the cause of my high ph. I did laterfind out my tap starts at 7.6 and raises to about 8.2 after sitting. So I'm still trying to figure out how this is effecting the tank and what to do if anything. Alot of people said not to worry, stable is best. I think you were one of them. I also have hard water according to the citys website. I don't have a test kit for this yet. I'm alittle nervous about live plant bc theyre so expensive here and even more apprehensive about switching to dirt substrate. It was suggested to me to gather wild from ponds nearby, but with 4 little one and a volkwagon beattle, its alittle difficult. Like a clown car, for the 6 of us! Lol!
I really don't know anything about putting dirt in a fish tank. Great idea to keep them in pots though. I'll check lfs. Have has any luck ordering live plants?
 

angelcraze

Did I suggest for you to dirt your tank? I can't remember. Well soil in the pot is a lot easier. Here's what I do:

Add soil to pot halfway.
Moisten soil.
Plant plant roots.
Cover with more soil and moisten until 3/4 way filled.
Add a sand or gravel cap to anchor the plant base and hold soil down.
Slowly lower pot, plant and all into the tank.
Disguise pot if desired with ceramic or even bury with pea gravel.

It keeps the plant from rooting the whole tank footprint and makes for easier moving should you want to move it later. Normally once you plant a sword, it stays there.

Bummer the plants are so expensive there. Stem plants like hygro and stargrass are good to get because they are fast growing, easy to propagate and fill up quickly. Since your tank is harder water, anacharis and wisteria are common stem plants that do well in harder water. Same with vallineria, although not a stem plant. Vallisneria still does fairly well in just gravel, but would do even better with a piece of root tab under it.
 

Mongo75

I'm alittle nervous about live plant bc theyre so expensive here...
Have you tried online plants? I just placed my second order from Aquarium Plants Factory, and so far, have no complaints. Their prices are reasonable, free shipping, and lots of "buy 2, get one free".
 

Loachlover357

Did I suggest for you to dirt your tank? I can't remember. Well soil in the pot is a lot easier. Here's what I do:

Add soil to pot halfway.
Moisten soil.
Plant plant roots.
Cover with more soil and moisten until 3/4 way filled.
Add a sand or gravel cap to anchor the plant base and hold soil down.
Slowly lower pot, plant and all into the tank.
Disguise pot if desired with ceramic or even bury with pea gravel.

It keeps the plant from rooting the whole tank footprint and makes for easier moving should you want to move it later. Normally once you plant a sword, it stays there.

Bummer the plants are so expensive there. Stem plants like hygro and stargrass are good to get because they are fast growing, easy to propagate and fill up quickly. Since your tank is harder water, anacharis and wisteria are common stem plants that do well in harder water. Same with vallineria, although not a stem plant. Vallisneria still does fairly well in just gravel, but would do even better with a piece of root tab under it.
Uhhhhhh........actually you didn't. I just ass-umed. Lol! Thanks for the walk through. I feel ALOT better about them being potted and putting them in my tank. I didn't even think about what kind of water the plants would need. Thanks for the suggestions. It gives me somewhere to start. Would adding plants soften the water? It makes sense to me that they would eat up whatever makes water hard, but what do I know. Maybe you do.

Have you tried online plants? I just placed my second order from Aquarium Plants Factory, an so far, have no complaints. Their prices are reasonable, free shipping, and lots of "buy 2, get one free".
Awesome! ! I was looking at bundles on Amazon, but I hate the thought of shipping. And I don't want to be disappointed. It's great to hear from someone whose ordered from there. I'm guessing you were happy with your plants?
 

Mongo75

Awesome! ! I was looking at bundles on Amazon, but I hate the thought of shipping. And I don't want to be disappointed. It's great to hear from someone whose ordered from there. I'm guessing you were happy with your plants?
The s.repens I ordered are looking good, as they did on arrival. I'm expecting some Water Wisteria either tomorrow or Friday, so we'll see. They're local (an hour away) to me, but don't offer will call, so I have to wait on USPS, just like every one else.

Edit: I forgot to mention, they're on Amazon for sure and I think EBAY too.
 

Loachlover357

Uhhhhhh........actually you didn't. I just -umed. Lol! Thanks for the walk through. I feel ALOT better about them being potted and putting them in my tank. I didn't even think about what kind of water the plants would need. Thanks for the suggestions. It gives me somewhere to start. Would adding plants soften the water? It makes sense to me that they would eat up whatever makes water hard, but what do I know. Maybe you do.
"Assumed". ..sorry moderators. Just making that "assume" joke. It was mostly "just out of me" Lol! While I'm posting, maybe it should be its own thread, I just know I can find this one again...But how hard is CO2? Totally oblivious. Would I have to buy a tank? I love my fish, but I'm not sure I'm ready to take it to the next level. Too many monkeys in the zoo right now! Hahaha! (4children, 5and under)
 

tjander

I have never used CO2 but it’s not for beginners from what I have seen. It’s is very easy to over dose and wipe out your tank. Also from what I have read it’s expensive to do correctly. That’s not to say dosing with Excel is cheep. Though there are alternatives to excel that are less expensive. IMO, do some reading about CO2 get your facts together, then come back and ask for some advise.
 

Loachlover357

I have never used CO2 but it’s not for beginners from what I have seen. It’s is very easy to over dose and wipe out your tank. Also from what I have read it’s expensive to do correctly. That’s not to say dosing with Excel is cheep. Though there are alternatives to excel that are less expensive. IMO, do some reading about CO2 get your facts together, then come back and ask for some advise.
Thanks. This was actually pretty helpful. I'm not really trying to do anything expensive or difficult. I got enough on my plate with children. Maybe in the future.
 

angelcraze

Uhhhhhh........actually you didn't. I just -umed. Lol! Thanks for the walk through. I feel ALOT better about them being potted and putting them in my tank. I didn't even think about what kind of water the plants would need. Thanks for the suggestions. It gives me somewhere to start. Would adding plants soften the water? It makes sense to me that they would eat up whatever makes water hard, but what do I know. Maybe you do.
They will use up KH which could make your water softer, but it won't really make a dent in water that is already hard. Don't worry about your pH or anything, most fish can adapt to harder water and consistency is the key. It's hard water loving fish being kept in softer water that is detrimental since they are missing minerals they really need. So don't worry.

I don't use co2 either, been doing planted tanks for 7 or 8 years. You don't need co2 if you keep lighting low enough and use lower light plants like the ones mentioned. I don't think it's difficult once you know the basics, but not somethimg I need to complicate my life at this point either.
 

Loachlover357

They will use up KH which could make your water softer, but it won't really make a dent in water that is already hard. Don't worry about your pH or anything, most fish can adapt to harder water and consistency is the key. It's hard water loving fish being kept in softer water that is detrimental since they are missing minerals they really need. So don't worry.

I don't use co2 either, been doing planted tanks for 7 or 8 years. You don't need co2 if you keep lighting low enough and use lower light plants like the ones mentioned. I don't think it's difficult once you know the basics, but not somethimg I need to complicate my life at this point either.
Thank you so much! Yeah, ive been doing it 3 yrs now and never got complicated until I picked up that a ApI test kit, lol! Would you think ph and water hardness has to do with the clown loaches I got about 6 weeks ago? The 4 bigger ones just stay in their battleship most of the time, but the two little ones come out. After we got them, I found out they prefer softer water. Thanks, again! You have been very helpful answering my posts.
 

angelcraze

I'm not familiar with clown loaches, so I'll tag coralbandit for that one.

It seems to me they are lazier as they get older. They will also hide away from bright light. Maybe the bigger ones aren't as used to brighter light? I didn't know of them being particularly sensitive to pH.
 

coralbandit

Clown loaches just like to hang out packed into tight spaces if they can..
Feed them during the day so they have to come out ..
They should be fine in whatever water ..Mine have been from well to municipal over the last 15-20 years ..
 

Loachlover357

Clown loaches just like to hang out packed into tight spaces if they can..
Feed them during the day so they have to come out ..
They should be fine in whatever water ..Mine have been from well to municipal over the last 15-20 years ..
Thank you so much I hold you and @ redshark1 the experts on clown loaches. I think I've just been overly worried. They've been my most expensive purchase so far @ $12.99 ×6! I was just concerned the ph 8.2 and hard water and nitates 40ppm was making them sick. I'm in the process of getting them more plants. I'm hoping this will help. Thanks again for being so helpful! You've answered me a couple times now Funny. ...I never had a concern until I bought a test kit! Lol!
 

coralbandit

Sometimes the best test kit is your fish ! If they act funny change water ..Not much more to it really ..
Thank you so much I hold you and @ redshark1 the experts on clown loaches. I was just concerned the ph 8.2 and hard water and nitates 40ppm was making them sick. Funny. ...I never had a concern until I bought a test kit! Lol!
 

ElVictor

Crypts, in my experience, grow like a weed, don't need crazy high light, and are really good at sucking up nutrients! Just don't panic when it pretends to die when you first plant it. And a cheap toothbrush, I have found, is my best weapon in the battle of the hair algae.
Side note, I was in stitches reading this.
 

Loachlover357

Crypts, in my experience, grow like a weed, don't need crazy high light, and are really good at sucking up nutrients! Just don't panic when it pretends to die when you first plant it. And a cheap toothbrush, I have found, is my best weapon in the battle of the hair algae.
Side note, I was in stitches reading this.
How are they with pH? Everyone says don't adjust pH, but mine is at 8.2. This is caused by my tap water. Ro not an option right now. Seems peat and driftwood are my options, but I'm reluctant to start altering pH. Everyone seems happy and healthy, just wanted some other plants besides hornwart.
 

Elkwatcher

They will use up KH which could make your water softer, but it won't really make a dent in water that is already hard. Don't worry about your pH or anything, most fish can adapt to harder water and consistency is the key. It's hard water loving fish being kept in softer water that is detrimental since they are missing minerals they really need. So don't worry.

I don't use co2 either, been doing planted tanks for 7 or 8 years. You don't need co2 if you keep lighting low enough and use lower light plants like the ones mentioned. I don't think it's difficult once you know the basics, but not somethimg I need to complicate my life at this point either.

I'm doing excellent with my plants keeping the LED's at about 60% leaving them on from 8 a.m to about 8 p.m. My 29 gal has a remote with dimmer making it easy to set and today I picked up a Fluval Plant 2.0 for my 40 gal for $160 instead of the $300+ price tag. They were making room for the new 3.0's. The quality of Fluval compared to what I thought good from Amazon is amazing, earlier I paid the about same price for a knock off from China and the switch was done on it in less than 4 months... The Fluval has a dimmer built into it and it's a solid LED! Happy! Not bad for no co2...
29 gallon #1.jpg


29 gallon #2.jpg
 

ElVictor

How are they with pH? Everyone says don't adjust pH, but mine is at 8.2. This is caused by my tap water. Ro not an option right now. Seems peat and driftwood are my options, but I'm reluctant to start altering pH. Everyone seems happy and healthy, just wanted some other plants besides hornwart.
Even though their *ideal* ph range maxes out at about 8.0, they're really quite adaptable and I've heard plenty of success stories of growing them in hard water. I've had mine for years longer than I've had my current tank, it even lived in a rather dark tub with no attention for almost six months at one point! Like I said, just don't panic when they pretend to die, they like to melt down and come back when adapting to new water paramaters.
 

Loachlover357

Even though their *ideal* ph range maxes out at about 8.0, they're really quite adaptable and I've heard plenty of success stories of growing them in hard water. I've had mine for years longer than I've had my current tank, it even lived in a rather dark tub with no attention for almost six months at one point! Like I said, just don't panic when they pretend to die, they like to melt down and come back when adapting to new water paramaters.
Thank you so much! Ive been alittle worried that I was going to order them and they would just die. I'm revamping my tank that has been a little neglected due pregnancy and new baby. Well, I guess I'll pull the trigger on that order and see what happens! Been sitting in my ebay cart for like a week! Lol!
 

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