Latin name, , 19
Algae control in tanks:
using one or several of the Daphnia species?
It would seem to be a very natural approach, as the Daphnia population
would increased quickly with increased algae bloom, and correspondingly
decrease with algae consumption. You couldn't have many fish (except
algae eaters), but then fish aren't crucial to a planted tank. I have
controlled green water with Daphnia many times. I normally grow my plants
without fish, but I have some tanks with fish. I find that I have to
take all the fish out, even Corydoras catfish. The Daphnia multiply
rapidly and clear up the green water. I don't think it is a good idea
to return the fish immediately. Wait a few weeks or months and let the
plants get well established, even to the point of being a bit crowded.
Reintroduce the fish gradually. The tank should stay clear. On some
occasions my daphnia have not multiplied and cleared up the green water,
and I have always found that adding nutrient solution makes the green
water become brighter green, and then the Daphnia start multiplying.
Apparently, if deficient in nitrogen, and possibly other nutrients,
the algae doesn't have enough nutrition to allow the Daphnia to multiply.
I have seen this requirement for additional nutrients perhaps a dozen
times, and the Daphnia have always responded to the addition of nutrients
and done their job. I even worked out a kind of 'Daphnia cage' that
can hold Daphnia in a tank with fish and protect them from the fish.
The water circulates through the cage and the Daphnia can keep it clear
while you have fish in the tank. I did an article about the Daphnia
cage in The Aquatic Gardener a few years ago. Paul Krombholz Tougaloo
College, Tougaloo, MS 39174
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