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SEVEN WAYS TO WAVE GOODBYE TO ALGAE<= /p>
A Little Food Go=
For most aquarist, the real joy of owning an aquarium is seeing the wealth of activity at feeding time.† Most foods available in the aquarium tr= ade recommend feeding aquarium inhabitants 2-3 times a day.† This is fine if all of the food is being consumed.† Itís when fish are overf= ed that the real issues arise.† Fish s= hould be observed the first few times during feeding.† The fish should be consuming most all of the food introduced into the aquarium within the first minute or two.† If excess amounts of food falls to the bottom of the aquarium, then overfeeding is taking place.† Overf= eeding can cause an excess of nutrients like Ammonia and Phosphate.† These nutrients are the primary source = of nuisance algae. †Try to feed only o= nce per day or either really small portions if multiple times per day is preferred.† This will help to keep = the unwanted algae under control.† Reme= mber that underfeeding is much better than overfeeding.† =
Monitor Your Lig=
In nature the sun comes up and in turn goes down.† Try to recreate the same environmental conditions in your aquarium.<= span style=3D'mso-spacerun:yes'>† Stop by your local hardware store or pe= t shop and pickup an appliance timer for your aquarium lights.† If you have a planted aquarium or a reef setup, set the timer to no more than a 12 hour period. For ornamental or fi= sh only setups only keep the lights on for about 8 hours per day. †Also, aquarium bulbs should be changed e= very 6 months due to a diminished spectrum and intensity.† This can cause increased algae growth a= s well.
Monthly Water Ch=
In nature, rain and water currents refresh wa= ter conditions by diluting and carrying away excess nutrients before it can bui= ld up to excessive levels. †In your of= fice or home, you are trying to recreate a miniature lake, ocean or river in a closed aquarium system.† You will n= eed to manually replicate what happens in nature by physically removing the excess nutrients from the aquarium.† Ideal= ly a 30-50% water change should be done once per month.† By having regular water changes done, y= ou can ensure that your aquarium will have fewer algae causing nutrients.= span>
Test Your Tap Wa=
Many municipalities and public water sources = add phosphate based chemicals to the water supply.† Also, if you are near or on farmland, runoff from nearby pastures can seep into well water causing excess phosphates and silicates in tap water.<= span style=3D'mso-spacerun:yes'>† It is of utmost importance to routinely= check your tap water to see if the algae causing nutrients are present in your ta= p. †If you have phosphates or silicates comi= ng out of your tap, you will need to purchase a tap water purifier or either an RO unit, in order to not introduce these nutrients into the aquarium. <= o:p>
Change Your Filt=
Choosing filter media such as Phos-zorb or Po= lyfilters will help remove phosphate and heavy metals.† The carbon in your aquarium will help to remove excess nutrients whi= le keeping the water crystal clear.† T= he carbon should be changed once per month because it looses its capacity to remove toxins and excess nutrients from the aquarium.
Add Live Plants =
Absorb Excess Nutrients!
Live plants require the same nutrients to sur= vive as does the bad algae.† Adding live aquatic plants to an aquarium will help to absorb the nutrients that the ba= d algae needs to grow.† This can even be accomplished in Marine aquariums by introducing Caulerpa algae.† Caulerpa adds an i= ntense decorative green color to the aquarium while helping to absorb excess nutri= ents and also helps to feed a wide range of herbivorous fish.
Stock Your Aquar=
With Algae Eaters!
Introduce fish or invertebrates into your aqu= arium to work on cleanup duty.† For fresh= water, Plecostomus are a great choice for removing algae from glass or decorative surfaces. †In saltwater, introducing snails, hermit crabs, and reef safe starfish will help to combat algae issues.† †