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I have a ten gallon tank with a sponge filter, glass lid, and a Finnex Stingray 2. Inhabitants are a bunch of cherry shrimp and 7 chili rasboras. It's pretty well planted with a variety of different plants, including several types of floating plants. I currently do not dose any fertilizers or any co2, aside from root tabs. When I set it up initially I did add just a bit of fertilizer weekly, but then I got hair algae (I think) that went out of control. I did a blackout for about a week and that killed it, so I stopped dosing ferts and reduced the photoperiod to about 4 hours.

Now my photo period is 5 on, 2 off, 5 on so that there's a little siesta during the day. I'm noticing that especially at the bottom, the algae is beginning to return. My thought is that my light is just too bright, and after seeing Girl Talks Fish video comparing Stingray 1 and 2, part of me is considering getting the Stingray 1 so that the light will essentially be cut in half. The reason I have so many floating plants was to reduce the light, which I suppose helps, but didn't solve the problem.

Just curious if it is the light, or if there could be another cause. Also while I don't want to purchase a new light for the tank if it means a possible solution I would be happy to, as I am not sure how to appropriately reduce the light otherwise (dimmer switch? electrical tape over some of the diodes?).



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I can't comment specifically on the Stingray 2 but I assume it has a transformer on the plug to go from 120V AC to 12 or 24V DC?  If so you should be able to buy a Pulse Wave Modulation (PWM) dimmer for it.  I run Nicrew lights that are 12V with 2.1 mm barrel plugs to connect the plug to the light.  I can slip a PWM module in there if needed to dim the lights.  No idea if it works for the Stingray.  No idea if it will reduce the life expectancy of your light.  But it will reduce the brightness of them if they are set up the same as the Nicrew (however the Nicrew has a built in controller I can use to dim them).

Edited by egruttum
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I have two lights. I ran into a similar issue as you, but with black beard algae, and my solution has been the following.

I have a light that is not very intense, but lights the tank up enough to view it well. This the light I primarily use and have it set to run from 8am to 4pm. I have another intense light that I turn on at 11:30 (simulating the intense mid-day sun) and then turn it off at 2pm. 

That way the plants that need the bright light get a burst of the intense lighting, but it's not full-blast all the time.

Another thing to consider is how much nutrients are you supplying your plants? If they are receiving too little nutrients and too much light, that's when algae grows. Also on the contrary, if they receive too little light and too much nutrients, algae will form again. 

It's important to find that balance. Are you using any supplemental nutrients?

Also try to turn on the light on a schedule according to what times you would likely be viewing it. If you're at work all-day and don't get to view it, maybe have the lighting schedule according to when you will be viewing it(when you get home or whatever), as you don't want to give plants too much light they cannot use. 

Edit: I also have a tiny blue and white light that barely emits anything, but in total darkness it gives enough light to view some fish nearby. It's like a fish night-light. That helps with viewing it before I go to bed (i sleep in the same room with the tank).

Edited by BigRedd
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I did a weak rgb (day and) night light thing set to blue, but I suspect it may have triggered cyanobacteria! I switched to green... 

I think a dimmer won't work for you, but I don't know. Myself I have three led tubes and three timers, but I haven't set it up yet. Still manually turning them on and off, all together. 

Edited by darkG
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I LOVE my NICREW inline dimmer I got from Amazon. My lights are programmable but the whole time, intensity, color, percentage blah blah blah thing was too much for me to bother with. Especially since programming the times alone was not a huge hassle but not enjoyable- at all, one flicker of the power in my old, old neighborhood would wipe the custom programming clean. No thanks. Once I got the times programmed all I had to do was pick the intensity on the dial switch. Good. To. Go. And yes, it worked to control my algae issues. 



Edited by xXInkedPhoenixX
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Thanks for all the responses! I'll look into the dimmer and see if it's compatible, but I feel like at this point ramping the photo period way down would be a good idea. I use a Kasa timer so it'll be easy to edit the times. At that point I could get a weak light like BigRedd suggested for view the tank.

Edit: I did use an all in one liquid fertilizer for a while and the algae exploded, so I stopped using that and now just rely on what I feed and the root tabs to provide nutrients. I could up the fertilizers but I would need some co2 at that point, if I had to guess.

Edited by Qsilver7850
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  • 3 weeks later...

I too have a stingray 2 and ran into the same problem .  I seen that irene of girl talks fish said in here comments in a video about the stingray 2 that she had to swap back to the stingray 1 to reduce algae.  So I added electric tape to cover enough of my LEDs to make it equivalent to a stingray 1 and that has helped me so far.

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