Algae in water troughs - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:08 AM Thread Starter
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Algae in water troughs

My trough seems to get so much algae, I have to clean it every other day. It just explodes with green slime. Am I doing something wrong? How can I fix this? A barn I used to ride at kept goldfish in all the water troughs to keep the algae down. What can I do to fix this?
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post #2 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:09 AM
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Other than putting in fish that will eat the algae, there's not much else you can do except keep the troughs scrubbed down. I do mine at least once a week, and sometimes twice a week during the hottest part of the summer.

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post #3 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:16 AM
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I bought an extra set of troughs. I pull the dirty ones out of horse reach completely, drain and then scrub them with a mild bleach solution. Rinse very, very thoroughly and let dry completely.

I am trading out and scrubbing half as often as when I would scrub the trough and immediately re-fill it for the horses.
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post #4 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:19 AM
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That's an excellent idea, Delfi.

I scrub out with a mild bleach solution, rinse well, then let dry completely before I refill. While that's going on, I have buckets of water out for the horses.

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post #5 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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Does the bleach help to slow the growth? Is there any sort of trough that is algae resistant? Does metal or plastic/rubber produce more algae than the other? I don't mind cleaning it if I have to, but if there is easier way to do it I would want to do it. So I can spend time doing the 26739 other things I need to clean and prep for the ponies. Lol.
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post #6 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:40 AM
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The bleach kills it, so instead of it continuing to grow, new algae has to form.

The black rubbery troughs are the easiest to clean IMO. I hate, hate, hate, scrubbing the ridged Rubbermaid plastic troughs as all the algae clings to the ridges. I can scrub out the smooth sided ones in 1/10th the time!
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post #7 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! Does anyone use fish? I can see my guy some how managing to choke on a dead goldfish. O.O
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post #8 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 12:00 PM
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Nope, goldfish are NASTY. No way do I want them pooping in my horses' water!
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post #9 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 12:01 PM
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Delfina -- Interesting you mention the second trough idea as I was thinking about doing the same thing in my battle with algae. I'm on watch for sales at the local farm store now.

When cleaning my trough (its got some ridges in it), I use a fairly wide plastic spatula that is designed for putting plaster on walls. I find it much easier and quicker scrapping off the gunk that way than working it off with a brush and since its plastic it doesn't scratch the tank.
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post #10 of 31 Old 08-13-2012, 12:04 PM
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Nope, no fish.... tried them and somebody thought Sushi was a fine snack and ate all of them. No idea which of the dummies it was, they were all gathered around the trough looking guilty when my friend came to look at the fish I dropped in 20mins earlier and there were zero left.

Look on Craigslist too! I found all my troughs there, used and dirt cheap!
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