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Black out and BBA

Tucker90

Member
Joined
28 Feb 2016
Messages
353
Location
Derby
The low tech has been neglected with the arrival of my second baby.

Due to lack of water changes and a poor fert routine BBA has taken over.

Question is,

Will a black out kill BBA,

And if so, will live stock survive? Or shall I re-locate?

41e1e96376a9ea32b5135f26e732d762.jpg



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Diogo Sousa

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23 Jul 2017
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129
Location
SE London
I wouldn't be able to tell you if the blackout will work, I simply spot dose with liquid carbon if there's any BBA. But if you do go for it,
And if so, will live stock survive? Or shall I re-locate?
Livestock will be just fine. Don't dose any ferts or co2 during the blackout and make sure the water is oxygenated (some surface movement is enough in most cases).

You can also spot dose with H2O2 Hydrogen Peroxide instead of liquid carbon.
 

Tucker90

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Thread starter
Joined
28 Feb 2016
Messages
353
Location
Derby
I wouldn't be able to tell you if the blackout will work, I simply spot dose with liquid carbon if there's any BBA. But if you do go for it,

Livestock will be just fine. Don't dose any ferts or co2 during the blackout and make sure the water is oxygenated (some surface movement is enough in most cases).

You can also spot dose with H2O2 Hydrogen Peroxide instead of liquid carbon.

Thanks for the reply!

The picture is a small example of a the algae, the tank is riddled with it! Soot dosing would take an 3L of excel


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Diogo Sousa

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23 Jul 2017
Messages
129
Location
SE London
I've been doing something similar in my low-tech to combat thread algae:
Part 1: gradually up my Glute (Excel) to 2x the recommended daily (non WC) dose. This I did with no ill effect. Seen increased growth in stems. Doesn't seem to have affected the epiphytes though. Livestock appear oblivious.
Part 2: Prior to weekly WC:
(a) Switch off / remove the filter, and dose 1ml per 3L of 3% H202 (I took my sponge filters out temporarily).
(b) Put a powerhead in for 15 mins to make sure the H202 is properly circulated everywhere.
(c) Do W/C.
(d) Put filter back in.
(e) Immediately do daily dose of glute (I saw this described as 'hit the algae when it's down').
I did this for two weeks in a row and the thread algea has gone. I'm now pausing on the H2O2 but carrying on with the glute, will wait and see if it comes back.

Cheers,
Simon
Shamelessly stealing this idea from @Karmicnull
Note he used it to get rid of thread algae but this should work with BBA as well.

Another option would be to almost drain the tank and spray a 50/50 water and liquid carbon solution in the affected areas. When dosing large amounts of liquid carbon I'd recommend rehoming any livestock, that stuff is nasty.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think a blackout really won't help you against BBA.
 

MichaelJ

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9 Feb 2021
Messages
603
Location
Minnesota, USA
An alternative to pummel the tank with Glute/Carbo/Excel and possibly jeopardizing the livestock, you can try spot treating. I've tried it with varying degrees of success a couple of times way in the past. The best approach I've found, besides setting expectations fairly low, is to take the plant out of the tank, let it dry just a little bit and use a small paint brush to spot treat infected areas of the leaves that appears salvageable with a tiny amounts of Excel - be careful the Excel don't get on the roots! When done, let the Excel sit on the leaves for a minute or two and put the plant back into the tank. Leaves that are severely covered in algae will not recover and are better removed right away - keeping the severely infected leaves around, will only drag down the rest of the plant and delay recovery. The approach where you dip the whole plant (minus the roots) into a mixture of water and Excel and let it sit for a few minutes never worked for me - its possible the mixture was too strong when I tried it. BBA are almost impossible to remove mechanically... and will likely be back if light intensity vs. CO2 and maintenance are not up to par.

I do not know if blackout helps - never tried it - I guess without light everything will eventually die.

Cheers,
Michael
 
Last edited:

bazz

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Joined
24 Jan 2009
Messages
234
Location
Lincoln
Hi,
I personally believe that the length of time needed to rid your tank of BBA using the Blackout Method will be far more detrimental to your plants than the BBA.
For me when I have dealt with it in the past, Spot Dosing EasyCarbo and meticulous Manual Removal of badly affected leaves worked best, if wanting to avoid Crypt Melt and having your Fauna swimming around in a toxic soup etc...
Making life easier was spraying a weak solution of EC on all affected areas with an atomiser, while the tank was empty ish during a 90% water change.
What ever method you use, it will be a labour of love.
Cheers!
 

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