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Old 02-21-2013, 07:54 PM   #1
javajive1981
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Enough co2?


Hello.

I have a 55g with four fancy goldfish and i was wondering if the fish alone can provide my plants with enough Co2 and ferts on their own? I have amazon swords, anubias, java ferns and lots of crypts.

I am using excel and root tabs for the swords. My lighting is 2wpg i was wondering if growth could be better with DIY Co2 i just have plain gravel.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:59 PM   #2
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2 WPG does not tell us a lot about your lighting situation; with the advent of newer and more efficient lights, the watt per gallon guideline has fallen out of disuse, as it is only applicable to T12 bulbs.

For example, 2 WPG of T5HO lighting would be very different from 2 WPG of T12 lighting, and hence, we do not really use watts per gallon as a good measure of lighting anymore.

In any case, to answer your original question, fish do not generally provide enough CO2 to meet the demands of plants.
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:02 PM   #3
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Default Enough co2?

Diy CO2 is still not enough for 55g tank...but consider you have 2wpg lighting and all the plants you have is require low to mid light...I think you can do diy CO2 along with flourish excel to increase the growth...have you had any issue with algea?
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:06 PM   #4
javajive1981
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Default Re: Enough co2?

I get ya I have two 39" t8 30w freshwater arcadia bulbs and one t5 34" 39w plant pro bulb. I also have reflectors

I just wondered because i keep reading that goldfish use up a lot of oxygen so i wondered if that meant they kicked out a lot of Co2 as well
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:12 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by junglefowl View Post
Diy CO2 is still not enough for 55g tank...but consider you have 2wpg lighting and all the plants you have is require low to mid light...I think you can do diy CO2 along with flourish excel to increase the growth...have you had any issue with algea?
hell yeah its only been set up a few months and i think i have just about every type of algae going. Its brown algae on my plants that i'm battling atm. But i have hair algae, green spotty algae, bba
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:15 PM   #6
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Default Re: Enough co2?

I cannot afford a proper Co2 setup as I've spent all my money on the tank, filter and plants. DIY would be the best i could do.
The plants do seem to be growing quite well so maybe i should just be patient and stick with the excel. Although it is very expensive
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javajive1981 View Post
I cannot afford a proper Co2 setup as I've spent all my money on the tank, filter and plants. DIY would be the best i could do.
The plants do seem to be growing quite well so maybe i should just be patient and stick with the excel. Although it is very expensive
DIY CO2 on a 55 gallon aquarium could work, but would require several 2 litre bottles in order for it to achieve the necessary CO2 levels.

Excel is an option, but as you have realized, can be very expensive for a 55 gallon aquarium. In the long run, using a pressurized CO2 system would be much more economical.
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:01 PM   #8
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Default Enough co2?

Quote:
Originally Posted by javajive1981 View Post
hell yeah its only been set up a few months and i think i have just about every type of algae going. Its brown algae on my plants that i'm battling atm. But i have hair algae, green spotty algae, bba
You need CO2 for sure to balance your tank and get rid of algea...
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkblade48 View Post
DIY CO2 on a 55 gallon aquarium could work, but would require several 2 litre bottles in order for it to achieve the necessary CO2 levels.

Excel is an option, but as you have realized, can be very expensive for a 55 gallon aquarium. In the long run, using a pressurized CO2 system would be much more economical.
+1
I used two or three 2L DIY/Excel on my own 55 for 4 years. The plants did ok and grew, but so did algae. I needed new plants about once a year as the "old" plants couldn't compete long-term with the algae and became stunted and/or algae covered. My tank maintenance of 50% weekly water changes (RO/DI), recommended Flourish fert line dosages, powerful water flow and filtration kept the fish superb and thriving, the plants not so much.

I switched at the end of last year to pressurized CO2 (GLA Reg/#10 tank, thank you Dark), DIY ferts in solution using the EI method, reduced lighting slightly (thank you Hoppy), and continued the routine maintenance. After two months the results convinced me that this is something I should have done 4 years ago.

When you can afford it get a decent quality regulator/needle valve/bubble counter/drop checker, you will not regret it.

Last edited by Paxx; 02-22-2013 at 01:47 PM.. Reason: clarity
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Old 02-22-2013, 03:55 PM   #10
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The algae is being caused by the fact goldfish are fun to feed and we tend to do it way too often!!!!!!

If you're happy with your plant growth as is, don't bother with CO2, as high CO2 and goldfish don't mix.

To lessen the amount of algae, cut back on feeding, shorten the photoperiod and do more water changes. Adding some excel will also definitely help as well.
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Old 02-22-2013, 05:33 PM   #11
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Most tank plants won't benefit from CO2 because of poor light or more likely poor nutrients in substrate.
I'm sure most here know that plants breath oxygen, they eat CO2.

Also adding CO2 can increase or decrease pH depending on carbonates.

Most importantly, increasing CO2 can kill fish in marginal O2 tanks because of partial pressure issues at the gills. Excel is also a reducing agent so it can also kill fish in marginal O2 tanks.
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Old 02-22-2013, 06:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by papwalker View Post
Also adding CO2 can increase or decrease pH depending on carbonates.
Can you please provide an explanation?
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:16 AM   #13
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Greg Morin has a brilliant explanation in the downloadable document at
http://www.seachem.com/Library/Artic...PlantChemistry

Warning, it can be tough going if you're new to chemistry although he does a creditable job of explaining Le Chatelier's Law.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Chatelier's_principle

CO2, buffer and water interactions paraphrased...

The carbonic acid concentration decreases so as to bring the system back into equilibrium with the new lower level of CO2. When
the carbonic acid level drops, the bicarbonate level drops as well which in turn yields a higher pH (dropping levels of bicarbonate necessarily produce a drop in hydroniumion). Likewise, an increase in CO
2 will result in an increase in carbonic acid, followed by an increase in bicarbonate and its concomitant hydronium ion, which results in a pH decrease.

This is why medecine and aquarium husbandry are never straight forward.

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Old 02-23-2013, 01:33 PM   #14
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@darkblade48
I posted some info regarding CO2 ph effects with buffering.
It is being withheld by the moderator???
I can possibly get it to you on the msg system here if you're keen.
The same chemistry explains why moderate increases co2 can kill fish as most of us animal earthlings use carbonate buffers to transport co2 for disposal.
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Old 02-23-2013, 01:42 PM   #15
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Default Re: Enough co2?

I
Quote:
Originally Posted by snausage View Post
The algae is being caused by the fact goldfish are fun to feed and we tend to do it way too often!!!!!!

If you're happy with your plant growth as is, don't bother with CO2, as high CO2 and goldfish don't mix.

To lessen the amount of algae, cut back on feeding, shorten the photoperiod and do more water changes. Adding some excel will also definitely help as well.
Thanks :thumbup:
I feed them once a day. I give them what they can eat in a few minutes. Maybe i should make.it every other day and bring the light period down to.

Last edited by javajive1981; 02-23-2013 at 06:13 PM..
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