NANFA-- algal comments

Christopher Scharpf (
Tue, 26 Dec 2000 12:26:40 -0400

comments from Shireen Gonzaga on algae:

Blue-green Algae. Actually, Cyanobacteria.
This stuff is not an algae. It's a type of bacteria. That's
why an antibiotic like erythomyacin works so well
on it.

There is a very good article on how to deal with it in
It explains how to use erythomyacin -- dosage and

The erythomyacin will kill most of the biological filtration.
The tank can be jump-started by seeding its filter with a
sponge from the filter of a healthy tank. Or, as I like to do,
get some Biozyme. It's a dessicated form of nitrifying
bacteria that will activate in water. It has a long shelf life,
and worth keeping around.

I've also had success removing cyanobacteria (in a marine
tank with macroalgae) by turning off the lights for several
days. Not recommended for planted tanks.

These remedies do not remove the cause of the problem,
which is a high nutrient load in the water column. So after
getting rid of the bacteria, also eliminate the problems that
caused it. Do more freq. water changes. If over-feeding,
cut back. If possible, grow plants in the tank to compete
with the cyanobacteria for nutrients, Plants like watersprite
are very good for this -- my frog tank used to be covered in
algae, but is now spotless.

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