Tag Archives: algae

The Lawnmower Blenny (algae in the saltwater aquarium)

18 Feb

My saltwater tank is getting overrun with algae.  I remove handfuls of Caulerpa and Chaetomorpha but two types of hair algae stay behind and continue to grow.

CAM02550-1

One is a pale greenish-yellow hair algae, not very nice to look at. The other algae I actually encouraged until it started spreading! I think it’s called Turf Algae. It’s a nice bright green and looks like a compact little ball of moss. I like it, but…too much of a good thing.

CAM02659

How to get rid of, or at least control this algae?

Snails? That might work except I have a Green-spotted Puffer in my tank. He would love it if I added a few snails for his lunch.

CAM01610CAM01609CAM01608  A Yellow tang? Great idea , except they can get 6 inches long and nearly as tall and my tank is only 42 gallons. I wouldn’t do that to a Yellow Tang although they are beautiful.

I don't have Yellow tang. This image is from Saltwaterfish.com

I don’t have a Yellow tang. This image is from Saltwaterfish.com

So I decided to buy a Lawnmower Blenny! If you want to know all of the details about the Lawnmower Blenny just Google uh…Lawnmower Blenny and you can read for hours. Find out where they come from, how big they get, all that good  stuff. I’m going to show you pictures of my tank BEFORE the Lawnmower Blenny and sometime down the road I will post pictures of my tank AFTER the Lawnmower Blenny.

I paced the bag in my tank and took two hours of slowly adding my aquarium water to the bag. I put the Blenny into my aquarium and THREW AWAY the water from the fish store.

I placed the bag in my tank and for two hours slowly added my aquarium water to the bag. I put the Blenny into my aquarium and THREW AWAY the water from the fish store.

He's not very colorful but the pattern is interesting and he is fun to watch.

He’s not very colorful but the pattern is interesting and he is fun to watch.

After one week I don’t see any change in the amount of algae in the aquarium. He picks at the hairy stuff growing on the glass but there is a lot in the tank and it may take a long time for him to catch up. I’ll let you know!

Here's a view out my front door last yesterday. See why I am on the computer now?

Here’s a view out my front door yesterday. See why I am on the computer now?

Green Water is algae

1 Jan

If the water in your tank turns green there are 2 reasons. The light is strong and there is organic material for algae to feed on.

I would not recommend pouring in an algae killing “medication”.

I would reduce the light the tank receives. If you have the lights on 12 hours cut back to 10. If you shut the lights off completely the algae will die, but then you will have  poor water quality issues, and when you turn lights on again the algae will come right back.

Put some fast growing live plants in the tank. Hornwort works really well because it floats and tones down the light into the tank. Same with Duckweed but you may not want to deal with the little tiny Duckweed plants that seem to magically spread from tank to tank. These live plants take up the nutrients that the algae would get.

Here's some Water Lettuce growing in one of my tanks. The plants are very small compared to Water Lettuce that is grown outside.

Very importantly, cut back on the fish food.  Fish food= fish poop=plant fertilizer=plants or green water(algae)

Then just wait, be patient, your tank will get back in balance and start to get clearer and clearer.

Clean your filters, too.

Green water can be useful. The fish actually like it unless it is like pea soup. A light green water is very natural and healthy. If you want to raise baby fish and can make a tank of green water for them to grow in they will be the healthiest babies you have ever seen. Not only does green water have algae in it, but millions of tiny animalcules that baby fish would find in the wild.

A little less light. Live plants. Less fish food. That’s all, folks.