Algae - The Unwanted Guests in Any Aquarium
It is one of the most annoying problems any aquarium can encounter. It comes in various forms and colors, with many different reasons or sources.
Now, before we delve into the harmfulness of algae, let's first acknowledge a fact: algae are a staple diet for many fish in our wild aquariums. Fish often forage on algae, seeking tiny organisms or crustaceans that live in algae growing on rocks and stones. Malawi cichlids, for instance, almost exclusively live on algae covering the rocks of Lake Malawi. Shrimps and some suck-mouthed fish also graze on algae continually.
However, if you have algae in your aquarium, and you didn't invite it, you need to find out why algae has quietly entered your beloved aquarium.
There are several ways to get rid of algae, but even before you try to remove them, it's crucial to determine the reasons algae have gained a foothold. Focusing on one aquarium, we all know how much algae can truly ruin the appearance of a well-designed artificial fish tank. Without swiftly dealing with unsightly slime algae in a quick and efficient manner, the attention to a meticulously planned aquarium landscape and the care for details will soon be overwhelmed by the unsightly slime algae.
Combatting algae invasion can be done in five steps.Step One - Identify the Type of Algae Understanding the algae you're dealing with will determine how you treat it. You can identify algae by closely observing its color and texture. With some research, you should be able to name the invaders easily.
Step Two - Find the Cause Algae doesn't just appear in your aquarium for no reason, and almost all algae issues can be attributed to aquarium errors or slight negligence. Is your lighting setup correct? Too much or too little light can give algae a foothold in any aquarium. Check your CO2 toolkit. Is it empty, clogged, or leaking? Fluctuations in CO2 injection can cause imbalances. Are you feeding enough fertilizers to your plants? The more light provided, the more CO2 your plants can consume. The more CO2 your plants consume, the more fertilizers they need for proper growth.
Step Three - Correct the Issues Once you've correctly identified the primary cause of algae, make necessary changes to correct the problem and prevent further outbreaks.
Step Four - Remove the Identified Algae When you know which type of algae you're dealing with, you can use the recommended methods to remove it properly. Some algae may need a simple tweak in the landscape, while others might require on-the-spot treatment with products. For some types of algae, correcting the issues and maintaining good tank hygiene might be sufficient. That's why following the above steps will help address your problem quickly and reduce the likelihood of recurrence.
Step Five - Maintain Good Practices and Learn Daily Ultimately, the best way to beat any type of algae is to avoid it. If you choose to create an aquascape at home or the office, having a weekly routine is a very practical idea. Some aquascapers document their routines, especially if they maintain several tanks. Each tank has a different regimen based on its requirements.
These five steps will help you defeat your algae invaders, but like anything else, there are many variables. To effectively remove some algae species, you may need to try various removal methods.