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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-12-2013, 06:45 AM
Planted Tank Guru
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Contra Costa CA
Posts: 11,721
While you are waiting and thinking, get the fishless cycle started.

The GH and KH are a bit lopsided, but not too bad. I would not think soft water fish would like that high GH, though. Go for more adaptable fish, not the really picky ones.

If you want to alter the water to keep softer water fish:
Get a bottle of RO water from the store (unless you already have the RO unit)
Try different blends until you get the GH you want for the fish you want to keep. Do some research.

Then add enough baking soda to make the KH pretty close to the GH.
For many soft water fish add some peat moss to the filter. This will add the organic acids they like.

For hard water fish you can add Seachem Equilibrium to raise the GH to suit the fish, and add baking soda to bring the KH up to pretty close to the GH. You could add other sources of carbonates, if you do not want to add that much sodium to the water.
I use a substrate that is mostly coral sand and add coral sand or oyster shell grit to the filters for hard water tanks.

No matter which sort of fish you want to keep, stay on top of the water testing to be sure the GH and KH are holding stable. Top off with RO water unless the mineral levels are dropping, then add just what is needed to correct that.

Nitrifying bacteria use the carbon from carbonates, so the KH might drop.
Fish and plants use the calcium and magnesium that we measure as GH.
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