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Green water

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Green water

Post  kat12 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:54 am

My main 55 gallon tank is clear as can be..... my bottom 55 gallon tank is a lovely shade of lime green.   it's not that glass, that's clear, it's the water.   I did about a 20% water change last night - still green, I did about a 50% water change tonight - still green.   The fish and snails are all happy and healthy and loving it.....   it's just hard to see the background of the tank.

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Re: Green water

Post  Doxiemom on Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:23 am

Kat....this is a common problem..easy fix!! You have an algae bloom in your water column. A total blackout for about three to four days. Cover that tank with a blanket or towels so NO light can get in. One of my breeder/grow tanks had this last month, my bad because I left the lights on too long. This should fix it right up...no chemicals needed!!
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Re: Green water

Post  Amp2020 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:59 pm

Common causes are: lights on too long, nitrates too high, an ammonia spike occurred, over feeding, over stocked, not enough filtration, or the tank is receiving direct or indirect sunlight.

A sure fire way to clear it up is with a UV sterilizer. Or a DE filter (Diatomaceous Earth filter) works well. Cheaper options are to block 100% of light for several days as Doxiemom suggested. I'd recommend taping black trash bags to all sides and keep the tank lights off till the water clears up. The slightest visible light entering the tank can cause the algae bloom to live longer.

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Re: Green water

Post  williemcd on Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:04 pm

I had, a couple of years ago, a 125 that looked like pea soup. Someone lent me a UV but it was undersized for the gallons I had to clean up... So I did cover the whole tank for 4 days solid along with the UV running. After the 4 days, I then did a 50% w/c to rid the tank of dead algae... (based upon logic only, not research)...

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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:17 pm

if the water is testing good and the fish are happy is it really a bad thing?

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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:39 pm

move the light fixture for that tank to my main tank, so let's see if we get some mega growth in the top tank now Very Happy

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Re: Green water

Post  williemcd on Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:49 pm

I'd think it'd deplete some of the O2 levels in the water column... especially if you experience a die off in which case you'll see some fatal spikes in the water chemistry...

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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:07 pm

algae produces oxygen so why would it deplete o2 levels?

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Re: Green water

Post  williemcd on Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:56 pm

As an old fart going back to my younger years I'll be dredging the gray matter. Photosynthesis.. During lighting periods algae/plants will take the light and produce O2... However, during the dark periods, the opposite occurs in the form of heterotrophic and the process is reversed! Plus.. any dying algae will also burn off? and consume O2 if I remember correctly... Then again, I could be 100% wrong on this one! It was more than a few decades ago I learned all that stuff...

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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:41 pm

williemcd wrote:As an old fart going back to my younger years I'll be dredging the gray matter.  Photosynthesis.. During lighting periods algae/plants will take the light and produce O2... However, during the dark periods, the opposite occurs in the form of heterotrophic and the process is reversed!  Plus.. any dying algae will also burn off? and consume O2 if I remember correctly... Then again, I could be 100% wrong on this one!  It was more than a few decades ago I learned all that stuff...
well the light's off the tank and it has an airstone and I'll do water change again in a couple days and see how it goes!

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Re: Green water

Post  williemcd on Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:13 am

Kat.. if ANY ambient light gets to the tank, your efforts will be defeated... I wrapped my 125 with a number of bed covers... Amps suggestion of black garbage bags would be much easier! NO LIGHT at all reaching the water column
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Re: Green water

Post  Amp2020 on Thu Nov 28, 2013 2:48 am

Even though the fish may appear ok, the cause of the green water is likely to cause harm. Resulting in sick fish later or other harmful effects. Don't be fooled by what you see. Unless you test the water daily, you'll be unaware of any Ammonia spikes, pH cashes, high nitrates, or low O2 levels. Its likely that there was an ammonia spike that has already weakened the fish's immune system. Most people don't test their water until they notice something is wrong, and this case it's the green water. But the algae bloom has already consumed the ammonia and the nitrite spike is very quick which most people miss also. Many believe that nitrates are not harmful to fish, but just because something doesn't kill you doesn't mean that its harmless. Levels over 80ppm cause fish to look dull in color and unhappy.

I've had tanks that I use to leave the lights on 24/7 and never had green water. So the green water is a sign that something is wrong and potentially harmful to the fish. You can't go wrong with doing water changes if you see something wrong with the tank.

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Re: Green water

Post  Doxiemom on Thu Nov 28, 2013 10:11 am

Thanks for that post, Amp.....good, good advice there! Kat...cant stress the TOTAL blackout thing enough. I used a solid black blanket that covered the WHOLE tank. I'd only lift a corner a tiny bit to feed. Your fish will become more and more unhealthy Crying or Very sad if this isn't corrected.
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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Thu Nov 28, 2013 7:41 pm

Did another 66% water change and seeing an improvement.   wiped the algae off the intake tube and the ramp of the outlet and rinsed the filter media in tank water so let's see if this helps some more. oh and cleaned the java moss.

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Re: Green water

Post  williemcd on Thu Nov 28, 2013 7:54 pm

Keep at it Kit-Kat! Bill

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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:36 am

did a 75% water change on the 29 gallon, and put the cover back on it, but both are looking much better now. think we're out of the woods.

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Re: Green water

Post  neogeo20041 on Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:47 am

Still keep it covered.
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Re: Green water

Post  kat12 on Mon Dec 02, 2013 4:00 am

they are, I said I put the cover back on!

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Re: Green water

Post  Doxiemom on Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:00 am

LOL.....I think she heard us ALL the first 50 times we suggested that!! Good job, Kat...hopefully it'll be cleared up in a day or two. I think my 55 took 4 whole days with no WC..only total black. I love crystal clear water!!Smile 
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Re: Green water

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