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Blanket weed

weasel

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6 Apr 2013
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Never really had a problem with blanket weed but this year its come with avengence...

All i can think it could be,is the change of filter,for the better i may add,lots of nitrates bieng produced by the added aeration to the bio stage..

My question is; would EI dosing solve the blanket weed issue in a fish only pond..im not a lover of using chemicals in a koi pond,i know it would not be cheap to do but ive heard its good at removing algea...
 

weasel

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Its only just started getting the sun on the pond ,its a pain in the anus because it grabs the stuff and pump cant take it to the filter making things worse...ive just salt dosed it at 3% and it looks like it may have killed it..
 

sa80mark

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I had a blanket weed problem a few years back and the best method for me was to manually remove as much as possible and then use a product called goodbye blanket weed by nishikoi, it was really effective for me strangely as you say my blanket weed problem came after a filter upgrade to

Mark
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Shade is the best way to reduce the horrible stuff! Like most algaes it thrives in strong light.
Blanket weed is almost inevitable in eutrophic hard water ponds, unless you have a really large plant biomass including Water Lilies etc to shade the surface and remove nutrients.

I have buckets of rain-water outside for the cat to drink from, and even they develop an algal mat at this time of the year. Because phosphorus doesn't have an aerial phase enough phosphorus is being added (from the wind blown moss, leaves and lichens that end up in the buckets) to fuel an "algal bloom".

Have a look at this post: <blanket weed | UK Aquatic Plant Society>

cheers Darrel
 

foxfish

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I have been professional building pond for over 25 years & have witnessed my customers trying every conceivable product available to try & rid the dreaded spring time blanket weed LOL...
If there was a magic cure product, then the producer would be a billionaire!
I always make a point of explaining to new pond owners the benefits of shading the pond & I will always suggest they stretch their budget to an overhead pagoda style canopy for Koi ponds.
Most koi ponds are designed & filtered to produce crystal clear water allowing the sunlight to penetrate deep into the water & encouraging the weed even more!
Some of the more mature ponds I maintain, especially the ones owned by dedicated hobbyist, simple dont get blanked weed for 10 months a year but the dreaded spring time will inevitability get my phone ringing!
The exceptions are the pond that are either inside with no natural light or very mature planted ponds with at least 50% surface cover from mature healthy plants.
 

roadmaster

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Middlin size tub's, (40/50 gal) I use during summer to hold live bait,are planted with pond lillies,and water lettuce.
Between these plant's,,nothing else can grow on the surface for long.
Takes a couple week's for the lillies to get going,but after that,,the two species fight each other for dominance.
Feed the bait fish,and the lillies and water lettuce thrive.
Chicken wire over the tub's to keep out the critter's.
 

weasel

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Pharmaceutical grade zinc oxide gets rid of it sharpish.. 2-3g per 1000ltr..its the main ingredient in EA blanketweed answer but a third of the price..i just fancied doing it a bit more naturally ..a GH of 18 and KH of 24 from the tap is my problem..plus high nitrate doesnt help.. 50% waterchange weekly aswell...
 

weasel

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ha ha,im gona be a billionare;)
 

martin-green

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I have to agree with foxfish, I too have seen lots of miracle cures, none work for everyone.
 

weasel

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I also agree,most treatments are money earners,only salt at 3% or zinc oxide will work..salt is not the best as its normally first thing in the year we get blanket weed and thats the time we get a multitude of parasites showing up and one of the main treatments for parasites is formalin, and you should not use salt with formalin..its also very hard to remove the salt once its in the pond,I used it as i heated my pond through the winter...zinc oxide is the way to go,never heard anyone having any problems with it...
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Dilute solutions of salt (NaCl), zinc oxide (ZnO) (or copper sulphate (CuSO4·5H2O)) or any other biocide (herbicide etc) will work, but they are just dealing with the obvious symptom, rather than the cause. I think the point you need to bear in mind is that they are all broad action biocides are potentially going to have wide ranging and potentially long lasting deleterious effects to plant growth, invertebrates and potentially fish health.

Would I voluntarily add a heavy metal to pond water? not in a thousand years.

Zinc oxide works because it is sparingly soluble in water, but is degraded by most acids, (so HCl would give:
- ZnO + 2 HCl → ZnCl2 + H2O). This makes the likelihood of a sudden catastrophic kill more unlikely, but there still may be long term sub lethal effects.

Whilst the Zn++ ions (Free Ion Activity Model (FIAM)) are in the water column they are toxic to nearly all organisms and also strongly acidic. The RAM of Zn is 65.4 and a 3 microM solution is toxic to Daphnia, so that is about (65.4/1000) x 3 = 0.2g per litre Zn++.

cheers Darrel
 

weasel

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Fair comment Darrel but you'll never sort the problem till you get rid of the blanket weed as it traps allsorts of detritus which only ads to the problem..its been proven that zinc oxide can also reduce the pathogens in the pond...
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
but you'll never sort the problem till you get rid of the blanket weed as it traps allsorts of detritus which only ads to the problem
Personally I'd be much keener on the blanket weed and detritus, rather than the zinc. Shading like "Foxfish" suggests is a much safer option, and if "Plantbrain" picks this thread up he may be able to suggest appropriate herbicides, and he may also be able to tell you if he thinks that zinc oxide is a good option <Ecological Stoichiometry & Algae. | UK Aquatic Plant Society>.
...its been proven that zinc oxide can also reduce the pathogens in the pond...
For me that is the problem really, it is like copper (Cu) they are both essential trace elements (for both plants and animals at low concentrations), and highly toxic biocides at higher concentrations.

If you have enough zinc ions in solution to kill your green algae, I would be very surprised if that isn't enough to also have long term health effects on the fish.

Have a look at: "Zinc Hazards to Fish, Wildlife, and Invertebrates: A Synoptic Review"
<http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/infobase/eisler/CHR_26_Zinc.pdf>
Proposed criteria for protection of aquatic life include mean zinc concentrations of <47 to <59 μg/L in fresh water. Results of recent studies, however, show significant adverse effects on a growing number of freshwater organisms in the range of 5 to 51 μg Zn/L suggesting that some downward modification in the proposed criteria is necessary.
Just to show how little zinc that is, the values quoted are much smaller than 1ppm Zn, (1ppm is 1000μg Zn/L).

cheers Darrel
 

weasel

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zinc Zn and zinc oxide Zn0 are totaly different,maybe there getting mixed up here..zinc is leathal to fish i know but zinc oxide is used as food additives,calamine lotion,barrier creams,baby lotions,sun creams,to name a few,if it was bad for the fish then the bacteria in the filter would be wiped out and as far as im aware, it has no adverse affects on the filter,if you dose Pottasium permanganate to the pond the filter is affected, same with any parasite treatment..but these are accepted to be normal treatments...thanks for the links, good reading...
 

weasel

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Funny sketch..Not seen that for years,...
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
zinc Zn and zinc oxide Zn0 are totaly different,maybe there getting mixed up here..zinc is leathal to fish i know but zinc oxide is used as food additives,calamine lotion,barrier creams,baby lotions,sun creams.
I'm not being funny here, or getting confused, but this is just simple chemistry, if the ZnO wasn't converted to Zn++ ions in solution it wouldn't kill anything. By definition you have enough Zn++ ions to kill your green algae.

Any element is only bio-active as an ion in solution. That is where the FIAM comes in <Free Ion Activity Model>.

This is from "Comparative Toxicity of Nanoparticulate ZnO, Bulk ZnO, and ZnCl2 to a Freshwater Microalga (Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata): The Importance of Particle Solubility"
Metal oxide nanoparticles are finding increasing application in various commercial products, leading to concerns for their environmental fate and potential toxicity. It is generally assumed that nanoparticles will persist as small particles in aquatic systems and that their bioavailability could be significantly greater than that of larger particles. The current study using nanoparticulate ZnO (ca. 30 nm) has shown that this is not always so. Particle characterization using transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering techniques showed that particle aggregation is significant in a freshwater system, resulting in flocs ranging from several hundred nanometers to several microns. Chemical investigations using equilibrium dialysis demonstrated rapid dissolution of ZnO nanoparticles in a freshwater medium (pH 7.6), with a saturation solubility in the milligram per liter range, similar to that of bulk ZnO. Toxicity experiments using the freshwater alga Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata revealed comparable toxicity for nanoparticulate ZnO, bulk ZnO, and ZnCl2, with a 72-h IC50 value near 60 µg Zn/L, attributable solely to dissolved zinc.
if it was bad for the fish then the bacteria in the filter would be wiped out and as far as im aware, it has no adverse affects on the filte
Zinc is a biocide, it will kill all living organisms at high enough levels. How many Zn++ ions you get in your water will depend upon pH, O2 concentration, presence of natural chelators etc. It is a ticking time bomb.

cheers Darrel
 
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