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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Got Algae?

Photo By Paul Michael Van Langen

Algae is an issue that can arise in any tank at any time. Algae can form in both new and old aquariums and can be troublesome to get rid of. Not only can algae be a pain but it is unsightly as well.

Today, The topic of discussion is: Why algae occurs and how can it be prevented.

First, let's find out why the algae develops in the aquarium.

Algae can occur for many different reasons:

- Too much light. Have you recently relocated your aquarium to a new sunny location in the house? The sunny window can be to blame. Have you been running the lights on the aquarium more than you should? Using the lights for too long or too often can cause algae growth.

- Overfeeding. Overfeeding can cause algae when the uneaten food sinks to the bottom. It begins to decay and will form algae.

- Undercleaning. If you don't clean the gravel, plants, and decorations thoroughly, algae will form on those items.

Steps you can take to help control or prevent algae include:

- Purchase an algae eater(s). Algae eaters such as plecos can help keep the algae under control. Keep in mind though, plecos do need to eat more than the algae. They need a varied diet just as much as the fish do.

- Snails. Snails can be very beneficial to your aquarium for more reasons than eating the algae. They are also a very nutritious food for fish. Snails eat the algae, then provide food for your fish. What more could you ask for?!

- Live plants. Live plants can help keep algae under control because they consume the same nutrients that the algae feeds on. Live plants can also make your aquarium look great!