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Content and reproduction of claudophors spherical in an aquarium

Not so much there are aquarium plants, embodying a combination of attractive appearance, unpretentiousness and the presence of useful properties. The number of such ideal inhabitants of the aquarium, meeting all these conditions, includes an amazing creation of nature, called kladofora.

This unusual “shaggy” plant is very popular among aquarists, and not in vain.

Kladofora is a very beautiful, easy-to-care aquarium algae with useful properties.

At one time, the active distribution of cladophora in the natural water bodies of European countries contributed to the rapid study and classification of this plant. The first scientist who described in detail the egagropilu, became the famous Karl Linna.

In the middle of the 18th century, this Swedish naturalist presented his scientific work to the world, in which the plant under study was called Conferva aegagrophilia – “leafless alga” (the closest in meaning, an exact translation into Russian is impossible).

The study of this alga began in the XVIII century

Since then, in scientific terminology, the cladofor designation has been changed several times. Experts could not come to a unanimous opinion until 2002, when biologists decided to call the kladofora in the field of science the Linnea aggropyl (in Latin – Aegagropila linnaei) in honor of the great researcher who first studied this plant.

In contrast to the scientists, who still agreed on the name of the cladophora, simple lovers of aquarium flora call the plant differently:

  • ball moss;
  • mossy ball;
  • lake moss, etc.

Residents of Germany call this plant Russian mossy ball. And the Japanese poetically call egagropilu marimo.

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Favorite aquarists around the world – Kladofora, despite its similar moss-like surface, is not included in the moss department. Moreover, it does not apply to higher plants. Egagropila is a lower plant.

Sometimes Kladophoru is considered to be water moss, but such a classification is erroneous. This is a kind of algae that can take a spherical shape under certain conditions.

The sphere into which the agagropyl is formed during growth has a rather dense structure and almost perfectly round outlines. At its core, it is not a single plant, but a whole colony of small algal organisms that are combined with each other and form an original spherical structure.

The mossy ball cover is as if made of felt material. For the outer part of the plant in the normal state is characterized by a saturated green or dark green color.

A change in color — the appearance of a brown or yellow hue, etc. — signals inappropriate conditions.

The inner part of the clafophora, as well as the outer one, has a green tint and consists of radially directed algae, creating a peculiar frame of the plant. The inner layer of the skeleton is covered with chloroplasts, which are in a “sleeping” state, while the alga is whole, and enter the active phase, if the ball is divided into parts.

In the balls – representatives of the old colonies the inside is completely hollow.

The process of reproduction of cladophora occurs vegetatively, that is, by dividing into separate fragments. The “awakening” of chloroplasts during the disintegration of a plant into pieces is a feature of this process. To start the “mechanism” of reproduction of spherical clavofors, you can either wait until it disintegrates on its own (usually it happens under the influence of temperatures higher than those comfortable for the plant), or you can separate it yourself.

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The diameter of a single plant ball is on average 8–12 cm. The size and growth rate of egagropyl is related to the temperature of the water in which it is located.

This relationship manifests itself regardless of the plant in which the plant lives – in a natural or artificial home.

In cold water at temperatures up to plus 20 degrees Celsius, the Kladofor grows very slowly, adding about 5 mm per year. But already at a water temperature of plus 22 degrees Celsius and above, algal organisms begin to multiply actively, as a result of which the agagropyl rapidly increases in size.

In the cool waters of Icelandic Lake Myvatn, representatives of algal colonies densely populate areas at a depth of several meters and reach approximately 10 cm in size. In the warm Japanese Akane, agagropila grows to very large sizes, several times higher than average values.

One ball that lives in Akane can reach about 30 cm in diameter.

The size of egagropili depends on the water temperature and can vary from 8 to 30 cm in diameter.

As a representative of lower aquatic plants, the kladofora has no root system. The complete absence of roots allows the agagropil to lead a rather unusual lifestyle. The diurnal cycle of this alga consists of two stages:

  1. In the first half of the day it is at the bottom of the reservoir.
  2. In the daytime and in the evening it floats to the surface of the water.

Such a daily routine turns every day the existence of clavofors into a beautiful theatrical performance that can be easily admired through the glass of an aquarium. No matter how magical the process itself looked, such a plant behavior is a simple and understandable explanation.

Algal Egagropil ball – an active participant in the process of photosynthesis. In its surface mossy layer, oxygen bubbles accumulate rapidly and in large quantities.

It is these bubbles that cause the ball to rise to the water surface. In such a “floating” state, the alga is released from oxygen bubbles, after which the wet “moss lump” comes back, dropping to the bottom.

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A representative of the aquatic flora similar to a toy plush ball has become widely known under the name of a spherical cladefor. And also quite often it is called egagropila.

It is hardly possible to find a plant that would attract more attention and adorn the aquarium interior.

To meet the kladofora in natural conditions is quite simple. The area of ​​its natural distribution is vast and almost completely covers the entire Eurasian continent.

The plant is often found on the islands nearby to the mainland, which are part of Eurasia.

As a habitat, agagropila prefers weakly flowing bodies of water with cool water. Especially densely it inhabits the lake:

  • Akan on the Japanese island of Hokkaido.
  • Myvatn in the north of Iceland.

As already noted, one of the key characteristics for which agagropila is so highly valued by aquarists, in addition to its external appearance, is considered to be its unpretentiousness. The content of a clavofor spherical in an aquarium is not difficult and will be within the reach of even beginners.

Since egagagropila is not a specially bred aquarium morph, but an alga of natural origin found in wildlife, many features of its existence in a domestic pond are directly related to habitat in the natural environment.

Kladofora lives on the bottom of the reservoir in its natural environment, it should be placed in the aquarium as well.

Under natural conditions, the Kladofor prefers to be located at the very bottom of the reservoir, where the sun’s rays hardly penetrate. That is, the life of the algae passes, if not in complete darkness, then with minimal illumination.

Therefore, placing the plant in the tank, it is best to choose the darkest areas for it. Algae will feel comfortable:

  • in the corners;
  • behind or under the snags;
  • in the shade of spreading bushes or directly below their branches.

Due to the fact that the cladophora has no root system, it does not need soil. This alga is completely independent of the quality of the soil and its condition.

The nature of the substrate does not affect her life.

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One of the most important conditions of detention can be called water parameters. In order for the agagropila to live “happily ever after,” you need to create a comfortable environment for it to exist. Most aquatic plants can be divided into two groups:

Amazing seaweed Kladofor can be included in the first group, and the second. The inhabitant of predominantly fresh water still prefers brackish water.

This is confirmed by the fact that in the fresh-water Japanese lake Akan, in which the kladofora lives, the density of colonies of algae increases in places where natural sources with brackish water flow into the pond.

Egagropila can live in both fresh and salt water, in the latter the state of the plant improves markedly.

This preference also applies to the existence of cladophores in the aquarium. In brackish water, the alga feels great. Experienced owners of their own “underwater kingdoms” recommend even specially add some salt, if there is a deterioration in the condition of the plant – it begins to turn brown or yellow, and so on.

In general, there are no special requirements for water parameters. The following indicators are recommended for the aquatic environment:

  • alkalinity: medium;
  • pH (pH) – close to the neutral level;
  • rigidity: low (maximum 8 degrees, the result of a higher value will be the death of the plant);
  • temperature: plus 20−22 degrees Celsius (maximum 25).

The plant is easy to propagate, because the kladofora itself disintegrates in warm water and forms new colonies

In the water, warmer than desired, the plant is able to begin to grow rapidly. In addition, overheating can lead to such consequences as the destruction of algae – the balls just fall apart.

On the one hand, this is a negative impact, on the other hand, fragments into which the plant will be divided can be successfully used for breeding Kladofors.

A lot of aquarists around the world are engaged in the cultivation of clavophor. This is not surprising – the plant has the highest decorative properties, is able to live in various tanks and is undemanding to the conditions of detention.

If desired, you can use the formed after the collapse of pieces of egagropily to form new colonies of algae.

If the increase in the number of plant representatives is not included in the plans, there is a way to “glue” a collapsed ball. With timely cooling of water to the norm, the kladofora can gradually recover and return to its spherical shape.

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The recommended temperature range excludes the possibility of keeping most tropical fish species in one tank with a cladophora. For this reason, plant mates usually become cold-water fish.

The various inhabitants of the underwater kingdom are very fond of egagropilu. For example, catfish and shrimp love to hide behind the “plush” balls of clafophora or sit on them.

But, despite such attachments, these same creatures are able to exterminate the plant.

It is quite difficult to find such fish that would not harm the kladofore.

The decorative beauty of this seaweed compensates for the absence of aquatic fauna in the aquarium. If you really want to add aquarium living creatures to egagropila, it’s worth choosing with extreme caution. Neighborhood with individuals plebostomus – certain death for the plant.

Goldfish in relation to this algae are also unfriendly. The category of extremely undesirable neighbors include large crayfish, which do not get along not only with cladophora, but also with any aquatic vegetation.

Like almost all aquarium inhabitants, the Kladofora needs a change of water. In this regard, it is not an exception from the majority of the representatives of the underwater world. Timely renewal of water is very important, it provides:

  • proper development of algal organisms and their growth;
  • reduction of nitrates in water, most of which are placed in the bottom layer, where the plant is located half a day.

It is necessary to frequently change the water; the kladofora, like a filter, absorbs all the garbage in the aquarium.

In addition, water replacement does not allow the algae to become contaminated, and this often happens. Egagropila acts as a biological and mechanical water filter.

It becomes a real aquarium garbage bin – various organic particles get stuck in small mossy cells. The function is useful, but the garbage accumulating on the surface of the plant gradually kills it.

Eagagropila loves cleanliness. In addition to changing the water in the aquarium, you need to ensure good filtration and aeration.

And, of course, in addition to water purification, care should be taken to clean the algae itself. The plant does not require any special purification – it is enough just to rinse it gently in clean water.

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