How to fight Pithophora algae

Fighting algae in the aquarium - this is how it works! ★ Tips ★

Help, I have algae in the aquarium!

Would you like to get rid of the algae in your aquarium? Here you can find out what types of algae occur in aquariums, how to combat thread algae, when you need an algae remover and what black or brown algae mean in the aquarium. But first of all some general algae know-how - if you know your opponent, it will be easier to deal with him.

There are countless types of algae that are incredibly important for life on earth: from tiny unicellular organisms to seaweed that is 60 meters long. Microscopic algae and algae spores even sail through the air. No wonder you have algae in your aquarium. As long as they are not in excess, however, you need not worry. We'll show you how to get your algae problem under control.

Why do I have so much algae in the aquarium?

It does not have to be a lack of care if more and more algae appear in your aquarium. Perhaps you are simply giving your aquarium inhabitants too much to eat. Everything that decomposes in the aquarium is an ideal breeding ground for algae. Dead plant parts, dead fish, snails or shrimps can cause algae bloom just like leftover food.

If your filter is dirty or not performing well, you are guaranteed to have an algae problem at some point. With rainwater, you automatically import algae spores when you change the water - and if your small ecosystem is exposed to sunlight, you will have green algae in the aquarium in no time. Sometimes there is too much lime or phosphate in tap water. Then you will soon have a whole carpet of algae in your aquarium. But maybe you've just neglected to change the water lately.

This can cause an algae bloom in the aquarium:

➥ When retracting, this is normal
➥ Too much fish food
➥ Too high phosphate levels (PO4)
➥ Too hard water
➥ Incidence of sunlight
➥ Rainwater when changing the water
➥ Decomposing organic substances
➥ Too infrequent water changes
➥ Dirty filter
➥ Filter not powerful enough

What kind of algae are in my aquarium?

Run to the enemy! Here you will get to know the most common types of algae in the aquarium. In the next paragraph you will then learn how to specifically combat the various green algae, blue algae and thread algae. Theoretically, you could of course also use an algae destroyer. But there are also natural ways that you can greatly reduce the amount of algae in your aquarium.

Algae in the aquarium:

Thread algae: soft long threads, floating freely
Fur algae: fast-growing, fur-like algae, firmly anchored in plants and technology
Hair algae: light green cotton balls, form cushions
Branch algae, twig algae: bushy growing, heavily branched algae, fast-growing
Floating algae: tiny free-floating algae turn water green
Diatoms, diatoms: brownish algae coating on all surfaces
Point algae: punctiform hard algae deposits on plants and panes
Dust algae: slimy algae coating, sits loosely, "dusts" when removed
Bearded algae: firmly adhering gray algae on leaves and technology, reminiscent of whiskers
Brush algae: bushy, brush-shaped, dark green to black, firmly adherent
Blue-green algae: Slimy blue-green to black bacterial coating, putrid odor

Combat green algae or thread algae biologically

Algae are simply part of the biofilm that you need in your aquarium. But you don't have to grant hospitality to all types of algae.

You can get rid of larger algae like thread algae pretty quickly even without an algae remover. Simply populate your biotope with guppies, carrots or platies. If you feed sparingly, the boys will also attack the algae. The Japanese Armano shrimp is particularly suitable for combating thread algae. Catfish and ramshorn snails are an infallible weapon against algae deposits. If your aquarium residents can't cope with the greens, you can still use an algae killer.

However, if your aquarium water smells unpleasant and you discover a blue-green coating or black algae in the aquarium, you should pull the emergency brake immediately! Then you are dealing with so-called "building algae" - which are actually not algae at all, but a film of bacteria. Sooner or later, blue-green algae will kill all of your aquarium inhabitants.

The only thing that helps ...

➥ mechanical removal of the covering and vacuuming with a vacuum cleaner

➥ an algae remover

➥ Repeated water changes and at least 7 days of dormancy.

➥ During this time you only switch on the aquarium lighting for 4-5 hours a day. You should feed only minimally or not at all - in these light conditions the animals can easily get by for a week with what they find in the aquarium.


For further reading:
Aquariun magazine "Fighting algae in the aquarium"