HIGH RANCHU MON

HIGH RANCHU MON
Art by Alexander Vasiljev, Copyright © 2015

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

NOT EVERYONE HATES ALGAE

Almost a month later since I have posted "Sticking to the Rules" the bottom and walls of the pond are covered with green and brown (diatoms) algae and cyanobacteria. Provided enough light the "bio film" grows fast colonizing every surface under water. Understandably, due to negative impact on aquarium's ornamental look algae are considered a nuisance by aquarium hobbyists. At the same time, it is a great food supplement for aquarium inhabitants and definitely ranchu, as well as it takes part in nitrogen cycle.

Ranchu grazing on algae

There is a step further into cultivating algae. The method is called "green water". "Green water" contains a suspension of phytoplankton composed of photosynthesizing algae and bacteria and is achieved by providing enough bright light and nutrition for the algae to grow. The water turns green to brownish and becomes translucent. Ranchu that kept in "green water" feed constantly on suspended phytoplankton. Japanese breeders often say: "ranchu is made with green water". Best shape and health of ranchu can be achieved with this method.

However, raising ranchu in clear water with substantial algae growth, as I do currently, is as beneficial as "green water" method. The fish is free to graze on algae between the main meals. Algae and cyanobacteria are a great source of antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and pigments. In addition, it has positive pro-kinetic effect on digestive tract of ranchu.

With a very plain look of my pond and no substrate or plants, algae and cyanobacteria create an attractive natural looking background for the bright red ranchu!