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Fighting green algae in an aquarium

maintenance, care, compatibility

  • An aquarium with a large number of aquarium plants, algae will still be there, but they will not grow rapidly.
  • Good aeration of water – high oxygen content inhibits algae growth.
  • Filtration and mixing of water to remove organic residues and nitrates
  • Full coverage – no more than 12 hours a day, and with sufficient power.
  • A moderate number of fish in the aquarium, with a large number they create nitrates, which do not have time to digest plants.
  • Fish that feed on algae – molly, antsistrusy, loricaria, CAE (Siamese algae), ottsinklusy, hirinoheylus.
  • Moderate feeding, rotting food residues – the main supplier of nitrates.
  • Regular cleaning of the aquarium and replacement of the water.

The nitrogen cycle has not yet been established in newly launched aquariums, and the probability of an algal outburst is especially high in them.

By itself, the appearance of algae in the new aquarium – is normal. In the first 2-10 weeks since the launch of the new aquarium, you can see the rapid growth of brown algae. This happens if the level of nitrates in water exceeds 50 mg per liter.

Filtration and partial replacement of water solve this problem.

As soon as the plants take root and grow, they will take food away from the algae and the growth of the latter will slow down or stop. In a well-established aquarium, there is always a struggle for balance between plants and algae.

Fish that help fight algae in an aquarium:

  • Ancistrus
  • SAE
  • Ototsinklyus
  • Gerinoheylus
  • Brocade pterigoplicht

In addition, the plant snail neretina perfectly cleaned.

Located in most aquariums in the form of green dots or green film. These algae love a lot of light.

Green algae grow only if the amount of light and nitrates exceeds the level that higher plants can absorb. In densely planted aquariums, green algae develop extremely poorly, since higher plants consume nutrients and absorb the light necessary for the rapid growth of green algae.

Without condemning the use of plastic plants in an aquarium, I note that living plants look better and create the conditions for the normal development of the entire biosystem.
However, they can massively develop in aquariums with CO2 systems, due to fluctuations in carbon dioxide levels during the day. An outbreak of green algae growth can occur suddenly, especially when the level of phosphates and nitrates in the water is elevated.

Usually they look like green dots covering the surface of the glass and the bottom of the aquarium. The recommended countermeasures are reducing the amount of light and the length of the day, and mechanical cleaning is done with special brushes or a blade.

Mollies and somas, for example, ancistrus, eat green algae very well, and I keep a few specially for this purpose. The snail neretina also copes well with xenococus and other algae.

Brown algae grows quickly if there is too little light in the aquarium. They look like brown bloom covering everything in the aquarium.

Usually plants loving light are in poor condition or disappear. Plants that tolerate blackout well, such as Javanese moss, pygmy anubias, and other types of anubias, can be covered with brown foil; tough anubias leaves can be rubbed to get rid of brown algae.

Again, aquarium cleaners, antsistrusy or ottsinklyusy will help well. But the simplest solution is to increase the intensity and duration of daylight.

Usually brown algae quickly disappear, one has only to bring the lighting in order.

Brown algae are very often formed in young aquariums with an unsettled balance (younger

3 months), with the wrong spectrum of lamps and with too long daylight. An even greater increase in daylight hours can lead to even worse consequences.

Green water in the aquarium is obtained due to the rapid reproduction of unicellular algae – euglena green. Manifested as turbidity of water to completely green.

The water loses its transparency, the balance in the aquarium is broken, the fish suffer. As a rule, water blooming occurs in spring, with an increase in the amount of light, and water blooming in natural water bodies, from which we get water. To combat the flowering of water, you need to reduce the amount of lighting in the aquarium to a minimum;

The most effective method is a UV lamp installed in an external filter.

A very effective way to combat the blooming of water is to make a substitution and completely shade the aquarium for 3-4 days (for example, cover with a veil). Plants will survive this. Fish too.

But the water usually stops blooming. After this, make a substitution.

The filament in an aquarium consists of several species – edogonium, spirogyra, kladofora, rhizoclonium. All of them are united in appearance – similar to a thin thread, green balls.

This filamentous green alga. How to deal with the thread in the aquarium?

An effective method of control is the use of algaecides – agents that help fight algae in an aquarium, they can be purchased at pet stores. The simplest and most accessible method is manual removal.

As a rule, the threads are quite fragile and easily detach from the surface. Also, some types of floss are happy to eat shrimp, for example, a flock of Amano shrimp can easily clean a large aquarium from floss.

Its appearance and growth depends on the nutrient content of water. This is usually caused by the fact that too much fertilizer has been poured into the aquarium, or there is a substrate in the aquarium, it releases nutrients. And there is nobody to absorb them. In such cases, help replace and fast-growing plants (nyas and elodeya, hornolistnik)

Algae in the aquarium are a sign of an established biobalance. They appear on plants, stones, glass walls, and even on equipment.

However, their rapid growth means that fundamental changes are taking place in the aquatic environment. In an aquarium where there are a lot of plants, algae will not appear in large quantities.

Good aeration and water filtration will stop their growth. Timely removal of food residue and dirt contributes to the purity of water.

If you notice that brown formations appear in the reservoir, it means that brown algae have settled in it. How to get rid of kelp and suspend their reproduction?

The origin of brown algae, symptoms of formation

Brown algae spread very quickly, the parasite cells from one plant quickly pass to the neighboring leaves. In addition, brown patina can be a substrate for another parasite – a black beard, which is derived even more difficult.

What to do in order to prevent the growth of algae in the aquarium and destroy them forever?

  1. The aquarium should be lighting 10-12 hours a day, no more. Do not place the tank in place of direct sunlight. Bacteria that are sources of algae multiply easily by light.
  2. The overpopulation of the nursery with fish is a source of nitrates that the plants do not have time to assimilate. If you have a lot of fish, the tank should be spacious.
  3. If there are such fish in the tank as mollies, Siamese algae, antsistrusy, loricaria, catfish ottsinklyusy, then they will help to fight with a brown touch, eating it. Also, algae love snail neretina.
  4. Do not overfeed fish, remove food debris from the bottom with a siphon or a net.
  5. Regularly replace your aquarium water with clean water once a week.
  6. If a nitrogenous cycle is not established in a recently launched aquarium, an algae outbreak is more likely. The process of forming a biological balance lasts 1-2 weeks, at this time do not settle there fish and do not make large water changes. If the water level of nitrates 50 mg per 1 liter, the water should be well filtered and replaced with a new one. Take measurements of water parameters constantly.

See how you can get rid of the brown algae in the aquarium with the help of Theodoxus snails.

If you notice that brown algae appeared in a newly launched aquarium, and they began to spread in large quantities, then the fight with them will be easy. Observe the correct mode of maintenance of the tank, and in 2-3 weeks the problem will be solved. Carry out regular cleaning of the aquarium, change 20-30% of water once a week.

When aquarium plants begin to grow, the algae will disappear due to the large amount of dissolved oxygen.

When an algae outbreak happened in an aquarium with “old” water, it is necessary to replace the water already 2 times in 7 days, changing 30% of the volume of water. When replacing it is necessary to thoroughly clean the tank from excess food, waste products of fish.

Use a scraper to clean the glass of the aquarium, wipe the bottom, clean the decorations and plants with a toothbrush or a clean sponge.

Check the degree of contamination of the filter, if the filtration rate has decreased, then the filter is clogged. Clean the filter, but do not change its contents.

Reduce the length of daylight hours to 6 hours a day for several days, and the next 2 weeks bring it up to 10 hours gradually. If the lamps work for 1 year, it is better to replace them with new ones, but not all at once, but in turn.

Brown scurf appears in the tank in a week, and it takes almost a month to fight it.

There are chemicals that can affect diatoms. Some funds worsen the situation, delay the reproduction of beneficial microorganisms, from which the fish will suffer. Drugs that can help with the removal of brown plaque, should be used according to the instructions.

Be careful and cautious – some chemicals can harm not only parasites, but also plants with fish.

  • Tetra Algetten – drug in the form of water-soluble tablets, used for the prevention and destruction of algae. It dissolves gradually over a month, the number of parasitic formations decreases gradually. After 4-7 days, the first changes will be noticeable. Dosage – 1 tablet per 10 liters of water.
  • Sera Algovec – the tool destroys all types of algae in the aquarium. Dosage: 5 ml per 20 liters of water. After applying the drug, it is necessary to slice away all dead residues mechanically, there should be good aeration in the water.

Filamentous algae in an aquarium how to fight-photo description video.

If blue-green algae started in the aquarium, this is a serious signal, indicating that the residents of such a glass house immediately need help. It is important to know that such harmful algae are capable of destroying all living things that are in their “field of vision”, so they provide unbearable conditions for aquarium inhabitants.

First of all, they absorb all the nutrients, oxygen, and emit poisons, which in turn affect negatively all living things.

The worst consequence of such an unpleasant moment, like green algae, is the accumulation of cyanide secreted by cyanide bacteria. It is so dangerous that it can kill all living creatures in an aquarium.

At the same time, a pronounced unpleasant smell is heard from it, which sometimes becomes unbearable. These poisonous bacteria infect stones, soil and any other objects.

Fighting dangerous pests that have already appeared is not easy. In this case, a thorough treatment of the entire aquarium is required.

A very dangerous moment is the lack of oxygen for fish, snails and other aquatic inhabitants. It is observed when dangerous bacteria settle.

They provoke the release of nitrogen, increase its concentration to high values. Meanwhile, the oxygen becomes so little that it becomes difficult for living beings in such an environment to breathe and maintain normal activity.

In other words, the pathogenic bacteria that cause the appearance of blue-green algae, lead to the death of fish and other living underwater creatures.

If green pests are noticed in an aquarium, you need to understand that this is a direct threat to the life of fish, snails, crabs and many other aquatic inhabitants. In this case, there is such a thing as a relapse.

In this situation, it means the development of “aquarium disease” even if such a dwelling of fish was processed and the water was changed in it. The fact is that even the smallest remains of such evil bacteria can cause repeated trouble.

Cyanobacteria are so tenacious that it is very difficult to kill. It is much easier to prevent their appearance.

You can detect such a nuisance by feeling the stones and the soil on the bottom. If it became slippery and covered with a blue-greenish film (even the thinnest), we are talking about such a bacterial lesion.

The waste products of these ill-fated bacteria are capable, in the direct sense of the word, of complete contamination of the aquarium’s spaces.

In order to survive and multiply, cyanobacteria are fed from the aquarium water, using all the useful substances due to the fish for their insidious purposes. They are able to affect not only the soil, but also various stones, snags and even various plants. They are very persistent and survive even in catastrophic conditions for them.

Even the most enduring plants that are difficult to “kill” can envy their vitality.




Green algae in the aquarium – the structure of the fight with them photo video reproduction.

The aquarium should always be kept clean. There are situations when the owners have no time to take care of him and after a while they notice such a serious nuisance as the blue-green algae in the aquarium. They appear for a reason, there are reasons why this may be the case:

  • poor care of the aquarium;
  • excessive warming of the water (rays of the sun, battery, etc.);
  • presence of decomposing organic matter at the bottom;
  • rare change of water;
  • ingress to the aquarium of harmful substances.

Most often, the blue-green algae in the aquarium appear because the owners forget to change the water in time, and a large number of pathogenic bacteria begins to accumulate in it. Those are able to multiply very quickly and destroy the useful flora in aquariums.

It is in this way that blue-greenish deposits appear on the walls, which require immediate action.

If the aquarium is exposed to light and a large amount of solar radiation enters it, it contributes to the rapid growth and reproduction of blue-green or green algae. It is very important that the room in which he stands is well ventilated. But still an important place in this case is precisely the timely cleaning of aquarium deposits and the replacement of water with fresh one.

The lack of oxygen, clean water leads to pollution and as a result can lead to disastrous results – illness or even death of aquarium inhabitants.


Not all green algae in an aquarium are parasites: some of them belong to decorative species (for example, sparkle). The reasons for the appearance of malicious green Aquarius becomes excessive lighting and a sufficient amount of nutrients in the water.

They harm higher plants because they shade them and absorb nitrates and phosphates intended for them. In addition, this species changes the gas balance of water, which leads to a violation of biological equilibrium. In order to overcome this lower vegetation, it is necessary to resort to the following methods:

1. Lighting. It is necessary to change the light mode.

It is necessary to reduce the intensity and duration of both natural and artificial lighting.

2. Water change. In order to remedy the situation, it is necessary to regularly change the water, as well as clean the soil.

It should be done daily, otherwise the situation will only get worse, since clean water can only increase the reproduction of green algae. This method is best used in the case when the minimum number of fish in the aquarium.

3. Ozonation of water. It is necessary to create a strong current of water using a centrifugal pump, and apply a strong oxidizing agent, namely ozone.

With the systematic use of ozone will give good results: soon the flowering of water will stop, and the biological balance will return to normal.


Seaweed – this is not all that grows in water. So called lower, primitive photosynthetic organisms, often consisting of a single cell or several cells collected in colonies or filaments. They live everywhere in the aquatic environment.

They are distinguished from higher plants by the absence of developed organs: stems, leaves, flowers, and also the fact that throughout their history they lived exclusively in water, while the plants were formed on land, and only after that some of them returned to the water .

Why do algae sometimes capture an aquarium?

The laws of nature are such that living organisms settle everywhere where suitable conditions exist for them. The main thing you need to live algae:

Obviously, all this is in any aquarium.

Algae compete with flowering plants for light and macronutrients. Since the latter are more complex and highly organized, in favorable conditions they triumph in this competitive struggle, restraining the growth of their more primitive microscopic ancestors, taking away their nourishment.

However, they are older, smarter, more hardy, patient and less demanding. These, of course, are not properties of their character, but features of biology. Algae can form various types of spores and other structures that can survive adverse times, they need to illuminate a different spectrum, they have other, faster ways of reproduction.

And if the conditions in the aquarium are not ideal for higher flora, there will certainly be purple, diatoms or cyanobacteria, which will not delay to take advantage of this.

There are several sections of algae with different colors depending on the pigments they contain. Next, we describe how the representatives of different departments in the aquarium look and what conditions cause outbursts of their numbers.

Diatoms are unicellular organisms that have a silicon shell in the form of a box, many of which are capable of movement. The significance of diatoms in natural marine ecosystems is simply colossal, since they constitute a significant proportion of plankton and form a huge part of the organic matter of the earth (about a quarter), and their shells after dying are the basis of sedimentary rocks.

But in artificial reservoirs they, like their counterparts from other departments of lower plants, are unwanted guests. Brownish or brown algae in an aquarium, forming a slimy coating, especially in poorly lit places, often near the bottom – these are, as a rule, diatoms. (By the word “brown” – we mean only color, not systematic belonging, since Brown Alga proper is a separate department of highly developed marine organisms with large bodies, thallus).

The development of a certain amount of diatoms almost always occurs in the first weeks after the launch of a new aquarium. In long-running aquariums, diatoms appear in conditions of insufficient – weak and short-term – illumination or light of the wrong spectrum, without a blue and red maximum.

Their reproduction contributes to a pH above 7.5, high water hardness and a high concentration of nitrogen compounds. An outbreak of diatoms can cause an excess of sodium in water, which occurs, for example, after treating fish in a common aquarium by adding salt.

Diatoms (brown) algae in the aquarium PHOTO

Black beard

This type of algae (although several species are meant by this name) is one of the most disliked aquarists because it is very difficult to fight. At first, these algae cover the edges of slow-growing plants, like Anubias, or grow in small bunches. Then they cover all the plants in the aquarium, giving it an ugly look.

For fish they are not dangerous.

Mechanically remove these algae is almost impossible. Blackout or chemistry with them, in principle, can be fought, but then they will grow back.

Some fish (siamese algae eater, for example) allegedly eat it, but on the condition that they are no longer fed.

black beard photo

Other algae species (filamentous, etc.)

These algae are of many species (hair algae, thread algae – filamentous algae, etc.). Hair algae, bright green color, grows on bunches of a ground, stones, etc. Easily removed mechanically or eaten by algae fish.

Thread algae, dark in color, grows in individual long threads. It is easily removed mechanically and usually serves as an indicator of excess iron in water (0.1-0.2 mg / l).

Algae growing on small islands on glass are considered normal for a plant aquarium and are easily controlled by scraping (be careful if you have a Plexiglas aquarium) using a razor or a special scraper. Usually this should be done on the front glass.

Fish, such as antsistrusy, etc., will help keep the glass clean.

filamentous algae photo

What are the chemical means of struggle and how are they bad

There are several chemical agents for algae control. Most of them are adapted from fish farming, where you have to struggle with overgrowing ponds.

An example is simazine, which is available under various brands for aquariums.

Unfortunately, these drugs act on different algae in different ways and are not always effective. In addition, these drugs have a negative effect on plants, causing the death of some plants.

Such as kabomba or vallinsneria, in the case of using simazin, which affects the process of photosynthesis.

The main disadvantage of these drugs is that they do not eliminate the causes of the appearance of algae (excess nutrients for algae in the water) and, accordingly, they will appear again from the spores. The use of these preparations can be recommended, as the last available remedy, in cases when it is necessary to quickly get rid of the algae and then continue the fight in a biological way, as described below.

Other ways are disinfecting plants in bleach. Some use hydrogen peroxide to control certain types of algae.

The introduction of CO2 into an aquarium with the help of various devices provides the plants with a source of carbon and, in the presence of good lighting, can significantly change the balance of forces in their favor. In addition, carbon dioxide acidifies water, which also usually adversely affects the lower flora and beneficially – on the higher.

In addition to these basic measures aimed at improving the conditions for plant growth and normalizing the overall situation in the aquarium, for the fight against algae are used:

  • mechanical removal from surfaces using a scraper or toothbrush;
  • settling algae fish in an aquarium (ototsinklyuy are effective against diatoms, CAE against purple bug and filamentous chlorophyte, labo and hirinoheylus – against scale greens) or, in the case of water blooming, branchy daphnia crustaceans;
  • in rare cases (for example, an outbreak of cyanobacteria or blooming of water) the use of chemical methods of control – antibiotics and algaecides, as well as an ultraviolet sterilizer is justified.

It must be said that the mass development of cyanobacteria is the reason for taking emergency measures: in addition to the already mentioned complete darkening and use of the antibiotic and sterilizer, it is necessary to deprive algae of nutrients as much as possible. To do this, stop feeding the fish in the aquarium (it is generally better to remove the fish for a while), set the filter power to a minimum, at the same time turning on aeration, do not change the water.

Already after the death of most of the blue-greens, general cleaning of the aquarium with a deep siphon of the soil and the replacement of most of the water is carried out.

But such measures to destroy algae give only a temporary effect, which quickly passes without normalizing the overall balance of the aquarium. Therefore, with all due respect to the ancient origin and the enormous ecological role of algae, let us try to create in our aquarium such conditions under which not they, but those for whom we start our indoor ponds — higher plants and fish — will feel comfortable.

How to get rid of green algae in an aquarium :: how to deal with greens in an aquarium :: Care and nurture

Many aquarists at least once, but faced the problem of fouling the aquarium with green algae. They easily adapt to different conditions and grow quickly.

The sooner you start fighting them, the sooner you get rid of them.

The question “How does a little girl retrain to go to the tray (she is 4 months old)? “- 3 answers

1. The most effective means of combating green algae is to reduce daylight hours to 6-8 hours. Also should reduce the brightness of the illuminating lamps.

2 Seaweed they do not like being touched or moved. It is therefore necessary as education to collect them siphon or wound on a stick.

Increase the filter capacity so that a strong stream of water prevents the algae from settling. On the contrary, aeration should be reduced.

Seaweed do not like a small amount of oxygen in the water. Also launch the plants floating on the surface of the aquarium – they will shade the algae.

3. Once you notice the green algae, change the water change mode to aquarium. Try to change 10-20% of water daily.

So you will not let algae get used to the aquarium environment.

4. Pet shops sell special products for the prevention and control of green algae. But carefully read the label – they are harmful to some types of aquarium plants.

Chemicals do not eliminate the cause of algae. They eliminate only the visible greens, but disputes still remain. If you need an emergency method of dealing with green algae, then these drugs are just for you.

After these funds, conduct the above methods for a week for prevention.

If you can’t get rid of green algae, then as a cardinal method you can re-launch the aquarium. To do this, prepare a new distilled water.

Wash the aquarium and all accessories with chlorine.

Some species of fish (catfish, mollies) eat green algae. They will save you from the greenery in those places where you find it difficult to reach.

Snails that feed on algae and food debris can be an alternative to fish.
Before planting new plants in the aquarium, be sure to wash them in a special solution. It is prepared using a 5% bleach solution, which must be diluted with water at a ratio of 1:20.

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