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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, fighting an algae explosion battle at the moment that finally appears to have moved in my favor.

The brown algae in my tank exploded last weekend and seemed get worse and worse, so I undertook a final solution by upgrading my DIY CO2 rig to three reactors instead of just one, and walla, Today much of algae has died back- most of my plants are showing signs of green where they were once covered, and last night constituted about an inch of growth in all of my plants- including new sprouts, etc.

Unfortunately, when I turned on the light today, fish were very very sluggish. All of my surface-mid fish were huddled near the filter and the cats were resting on the bottom. I immediately disabled one of the reactors and agitated the surface to try and relieve them, which seems to have worked- fish death is not an option- They weren't showing symptoms of CO2, but they very well could have been in PH shock from the massive increase in CO2 over the course of 12 hours.

I intend to leave 2 reactors on, since it doesn't seem to bother the fish and has definitely aided the fight on top of rather drastic water changes to kill back phosphates and ammonia.

So what should I do next? I'm thinking grabbing a couple Oto's might be the best solution since I believe the caked algae is killing older growth on my plants thus leading to more phosphate and decay. I've also debated quarantining my fish and just cranking the CO2 up in my main tank since it appears to be the biggest factor in empowering my plants to fight the algae.

I do realize that brown algae almost always goes away on its own when the water is very established, but I refuse to let any of my fish die if it's in my power. Not changing the water for a long time during a tank crisis doesn't seem like a particularly good idea while I have fish still living in the tank.

Also considering culling ALL the old growth and pruning off the healthy segments to replant(currently all the plants in my aquarium are rather prolific cutting reproducers).

What's the best course of action? I am serious about keeping my fish alive, so any help is welcome.
 

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Queen Platy
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932 Posts
Fish will not die from brown algae and it goes away on its own. I had it for 2 weeks after setting up my tank and after that it was completely gone.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Since I made this post green algae has replaced everything else in a big way, plus I believe my substrate may be making my fish ill. Thinking I'm going to redo the tank and just shell out the cash for some eco-complete or flourite.
 

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Queen Platy
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What kind of substrate do you have? If it is soil based then that explains why you have the brown algae. The nutrients are leaking into the water column. Or it can be low light and high nitrates. And for the green algae, what kind of green algae are you talking about cause there are some that even grow in the healthiest of aquariums. Who told you to not do water changes during a crisis? Right now water changes will remove some of the nutrients and lower the brown algae problem. Over time your plants will absorb in the nutrients and your brown algae will disappear.
 
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Aspiring Aquarist
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I still don't know a whole lot about this kind of stuff, but I would do both. You could start with the QT and re-establish your tank and the otos could help prevent further outbreaks maybe? Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just aerated and thoroughly rinsed soil beneath gravel. Right now thread algae is the big thing, but I've decided to just let nature take it's course while doing weekly 30% WC's. Seems like the algae is taking care of itself. My Oto has gotten fat and happy on what it finds edible.

I believe that by doing WC's and just being patient the algae will work all the extra crud out of my tank, at which time I'm going to start using PMDD.
 
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