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jmhart
06-09-2010, 04:50 PM
I see and talk to a lot of people battling black beard algae. A planted tank blog has completed a case study using glutaraldehyde to eliminate BBA. You can read about it here:

http://www.tankspiration.com/tag/bba/

Their method is fairly similar to mine.

When I'm spot treating BBA with glutaraldehyde, I make a 1:4 dilution (that is, 1 ounce of glut and 4 ounces of water) and put it in a spray bottle. Then, during a water change, after I have drained the water out, I spray that dilution directly on the BBA and let it sit for about 5 minutes, then fill the tank up. Within 30 minutes the BBA turns white, and flakes off and disappears within a few days.

This method also kills GDA and GSA on the glass, hardscape, and plants.

However, be careful because not all plants respond well to this strong of a glut solution. I'm sure this list is bigger, but in my personal experience, rotalas, mosses, and vals do not like to be hit with this solution. Again, in my experience, Crypts and Anubias(two that are prone to GSA) respond positively to this solution.

Chris Noto
06-09-2010, 05:38 PM
Jeffrey, the article that you linked to mentions Metricide a brand name, buffered glutaraldehyde product. Is this the Excel equivalent product that you have been using?

jmhart
06-09-2010, 08:36 PM
Jeffrey, the article that you linked to mentions Metricide a brand name, buffered glutaraldehyde product. Is this the Excel equivalent product that you have been using?
Metracide is another branded product, like Excel, typically used in the medical profession for sterilizing equipment. It is also used at industrial strength in ponds to kill algae. It's something like 20% glutaraldehyde, so it can't be used at full strength. Metracide typically comes with some kind of activator(the buffer, I assume) that is added to it before being used to sterilize.

I buy chemical grade glutaraldehyde, so an unbranded product.

MikeATL
10-27-2010, 10:22 PM
I'm having a pretty bad BBA outbreak and was reading about using Excel or glutaraldehyde. I know where I can get Excel. Is there a local (Atlanta area) or online for the glutaraldehyde?

ITZYBITZY
11-16-2010, 11:09 AM
What a great web site for newbies and experienced plant people! I need some of the glutaraldehyde too as I am fighting it too. Anyone know if you can spray it on Java fern without hurting the fern?

Holy Samosa
11-16-2010, 12:01 PM
I'm sure that java fern has tolerances for a direct spraying of diluted Excel, however I do offer a word of warning. Some time ago during a water change I sprayed down my Java Ferns with diluted Excel (I don't recall the exact dilution, but I think it was a dilution recommended by Tom Barr) and probably about 50% of the fern ended up melting away. I definately wouldn't let it sit too long!

zyyoll
01-10-2011, 10:14 AM
Now I understand that the component of fluorish Excel that kills BBA is glutaraldehyde. How can I treat my 55 gal planted tank which is overun with BBA? I can't move the fish during a water change so the treatment will have to occur while the fish are in the tank. Doesn't glutaraldehyde hurt fish if added to the water column? When you say you purchase chemical grade glutaraldehyde how can a lay person obtain this chemical? What is the dilution for use in the water column of a tank? Does there need to be a water change soon after treatment with glutaraldehyde? What are the pros and cons of using a siamese algae eater as an bioorganic alternative to chemical killing? Will a siamese algae eater remove a large infestation of BBA? Thanks for any advice you can give!

Rahnk
01-13-2011, 09:18 PM
I bought a gal. of Glut. from a club member several months ago. Now I have forgotten who it was. I use the 1to4 spray solution and it works well. The thing is to not let the solution linger on the plants. Spray wait a few minutes and fill. You can also remove hardscape spray wait as long as you like and then replace it.

SAE's are great but I have had no luck with them eating BBA

kwseiders
01-14-2011, 05:22 PM
You probably got the gluteraldehyde from JMHart (who hasn't been to the meetings lately, and my container is getting low). He wrote that excellent article on algae that we all remember. And I am surprised that your SAE's don't eat the BBA, mine relish it. Interestingly, every tank of mine that has SAE's in it does NOT have BBA in it (or Taiwan moss for that matter). And one tank has BBA in the half without the SAE, and no BBA in the half with the SAE. If I could just get the SAEs to breed I'd have it made!

n00pster
01-16-2011, 11:05 AM
I dose flourish excel two or three times a week. But BBA is still all over my plant leaves.

jmhart
02-05-2011, 06:20 PM
Sorry I haven't been around for a while guys. I started a new job and things got real hectic real fast. I'm pulling my life a little bit more inside the fold, so I should be around a bit more now.



I'm having a pretty bad BBA outbreak and was reading about using Excel or glutaraldehyde. I know where I can get Excel. Is there a local (Atlanta area) or online for the glutaraldehyde?

Mike,

Sorry for taking so long to get back to you. I prepare and sell glutaraldehyde solutions that dose exactly like Excel. Price is $20/gallon. I live in the city and you can pick up, or I'll be at the March auction.


Now I understand that the component of fluorish Excel that kills BBA is glutaraldehyde. How can I treat my 55 gal planted tank which is overun with BBA? I can't move the fish during a water change so the treatment will have to occur while the fish are in the tank. Doesn't glutaraldehyde hurt fish if added to the water column? When you say you purchase chemical grade glutaraldehyde how can a lay person obtain this chemical? What is the dilution for use in the water column of a tank? Does there need to be a water change soon after treatment with glutaraldehyde? What are the pros and cons of using a siamese algae eater as an bioorganic alternative to chemical killing? Will a siamese algae eater remove a large infestation of BBA? Thanks for any advice you can give!

Hey, as far as getting glut, like I told Mike, I put together gallon bottles of it for $20. It's the exact same concentration as Excel, so for water column dosing, you dose exactly like it says on a bottle of excel. For spray treatment, you make a 1:4 dilution of my stuff and spray it on rocks, wood, glass, and glut-friendly plants for 5 minutes or so. Then just fill your tank back up or give the surface a good rinse with water. Within 30 minutes BBA will start to turn reddish brown (meaning its dead). Within a day it'll all be white. At that point you can just let it decay on it's own, or you can scrap and suck.

When you dose the water column, you don't have to do anything extra. Normal dosing as a carbon supplement is 5 mL for every 10 mL after a water change, and then 5 mL for every 50g on a daily basis. (As a plant guru, I do not recommend the use of excel or glutaraldehyde as a permanent carbon substitute. I believe it should be used to supplement and in temporary situations....there's just no substitute for CO2). That course of treatment will rid algae slowly over a series of weeks. Many people in the hobby will triple the daily dose for treatment. I've done it without ill effects on the fish, and it does seem to be effective at ridding algae outbreaks. However, I highly recommend the spray treatment where possible.


As far as SAEs are concerned. They are crappy algae eaters, hands down. Read my post on "Methods for Algae Control" in the Planted Tank section. I'll try to find it and bump it up to the top.


I bought a gal. of Glut. from a club member several months ago. Now I have forgotten who it was. I use the 1to4 spray solution and it works well. The thing is to not let the solution linger on the plants. Spray wait a few minutes and fill. You can also remove hardscape spray wait as long as you like and then replace it.

SAE's are great but I have had no luck with them eating BBA

I'm really glad the glut worked out for you. I like it because it's so much cheaper than excel, but you're right, just like excel, you can't let it linger too long. I find 5 minutes to be about the max time most plants with handle it. Again, some plants won't tolerate it at all. Rotala macrandra is one that comes to mind. It handles water column dosing just find, but it doesn't like the 1:4 spray.

Amazon Lover
02-09-2011, 05:29 PM
Jeffrey I just got some Metricide 14. Am I supposed to mix the activator to the gallon of product for aquarium use? What are the side effects of long term use of glutaraldehyde?

jmhart
02-11-2011, 03:18 PM
I've never used Metricide, so please don't take what I say as gospel. However, as I understand it, you DO NOT use the activator. Doing so, I think, will nuke you're tank(fish and all). As to how to dose Metricide, since I've never used it, I can't say. I have no idea what the concentration of it is. Again, I've never used it, so I would look for more information elsewhere.

Regarding side effects of glut, are you referring to how it will effect plants/fish, or humans? For humans, consult an MSDS. For fish, at the recommended dosing levels, it has no side effects. However, many people use it above those levels, and sometimes they overdose and kill their fish....but it kills the algae too :). For plants, overdosing can also kill plants. I've tripled the dose with no ill effects to fish or plants and so have others...but do so at your own risk.

Demonfish
02-11-2011, 04:42 PM
I've heard it melts crypts.

jmhart
02-11-2011, 05:15 PM
I have tons of crypts and have no issues. Regular water column dosing has no ill effect, and I use my 1:4 dilution every now and again to rid them of GSA. Maybe on some more sensitive species of crypts there could be an issue, but on the ones that are most common in the hobby there is no issue.

Demonfish
02-11-2011, 07:04 PM
Does it work on the green fuzzy hair algae?

jmhart
02-11-2011, 08:29 PM
Is it something like this:

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_cwbt2D65i9k/SfnkbVZtleI/AAAAAAAAC1s/-reCzJFo00w/s400/Bolbitisalgea2.jpg

If so that's clado. I can't say for sure that glut will kill it....I've never really tried, but it should. It's really pretty great for all kinds of algae, but my primary experiences with it are with GSA and BBA.

Demonfish
02-11-2011, 08:51 PM
Yea, it looks like that. I was gonna bleach the tank, but there are some nice java ferns under it.

jmhart
02-11-2011, 08:58 PM
What I would do if it were me:

1)Manually remove as much of it as possible. An old toothbrush makes an excellent tool to brush it out and kind of twirl it around. It clumps pretty well, so you can also just pull it out.
2)Triple dose excel for 3 days.
3)Big 50% water change.
4)3-4 day blackout. No lights, cover the tank in black trashbags or blankets. Whatever works for you to cover it completely and let no light in. Don't look at the tank for three days, no light, no intrusion.
5)Open the tank up and do another 50% water change
6)Triple dose excel for 3 days
7)End with another big water change.

That's my idea of "nuking" a tank and it's always done a pretty good job at ridding the tank of all algae.

Demonfish
02-11-2011, 11:09 PM
Thanks, I'll either give that a shot, or empty the tank and dip the plants or both.

patw
02-12-2011, 12:01 AM
Jeffrey I just got some Metricide 14. Am I supposed to mix the activator to the gallon of product for aquarium use? What are the side effects of long term use of glutaraldehyde?

Hi from Mobile,

I was researching Glut in general and Metricide 14 in particular and I stumbled on this thread. From my search i've found the following that may help (some common info is sure to be included but I don't want to be incomplete):

1. Seachem Flourish Excel is a 1.5% solution of Glut.
2. The normal dose is 1ml to 10 gal daily and 5x that at a 50% water change.
3. The algaecide routine is twice that for two weeks. Some will say three time the dose but I've read reports of trouble with dosing that high.
4. Metracide 14 used WITHOUT the activator is a 2.6% solution of Glut and water and when cut 57/43 with distilled water should match Excel very closely.
5. Glut at higher concentrations is hazarous and requires extra hazmat charges when concentrations of over 25% are shipped but not at 25% and below.
6. At any concentration use gloves, avoid breathing it, and DO protect your eyes as it seems that is where the real hazard lies.

Sorry if it seems like I've crashed your party but I thought you might could use the info.

Pat

P.S.

Good thread here http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/south-western-ohio-aquatic-plant-enthusiasts/31615-glutaraldehyde-instead-excel.html

davinci27
02-12-2011, 06:18 PM
I use metricide-14 with my tank on a regular basis. My tank had become overrun with bba. Most of my plants and all of my driftwood we covered. I cleared it up in about 2 weeks by using a combination of Hydrogen Peroxide, metricide and Amano shrimp.

I started by stopping all my pumps and using a syringe to spot treat all of the really heavy spots. I dosed the tank 2ml of H2O2 per gallon of water. Let the tank sit for 30 minutes then fired up all the pumps. after that I added 10 Amano shrimp and started dosing metricide 14 at a rate of 1 ml per 4 gallons. Did that for the next 7 days the spread it out to dosing metricide every other day. After 2 weeks, I've eliminated probably 80% or my bba with no fish loss.

I will repeat this process again after 30 days, and at that point expect to have eliminated most if not all the visible bba in my tank. I can't make any guarantees, but this process has worked exceptionally well for me.

Holy Samosa
02-12-2011, 09:41 PM
I can vouch for Excel killing Clado.

Amazon Lover
02-13-2011, 12:13 AM
One bad side effect to the use of glut that I have noticed is that plants like sagitaria, sword plants and dwarf grasses do not respond well even when applied to the water column and not localized. These plants show stunted growth, die-back of leaves and even complete death of the plant. Has anybody experienced anything similar? Does anyone manage to keep any of these species under treatment with glut? Any other species to add to this?
On the other hand, slow growing species like java fern and anubias, which are very prone to host bba, show very positive response to localized application (spraying directly on the plant diluted rates of glut)

kwseiders
02-13-2011, 08:29 AM
When I was treating my tanks at triple the recommended dosage, it killed all the BBA. It also seriously wounded or killed sagittaria and vallisneria, echinodorus, plants that look grassy. More recently, I have been using it at double the dose, which seems to help rid the tank of BBA, though it takes longer, but it does NOT wound or kill my grassy looking plants. Double dose doesn't seem to affect them at all.