How (if at all) do you adjust your lighting / CO2 schedule for increased ambient light in the summer months?
I'm tinkering and trying to find the right balance with CO2, LED Lighting and ambient light from long summer days for my little high tech tank. I can't change the ambient light in the room and in summer, light from the North and West-Facing windows is 'substantial' from 6 am - 1 pm and 'bright' from 1 pm - 8:30 pm. Hopefully I'll get my hands on a PAR meter in a month or two, but in the mean-time I'm struggling to decide what to do with the 6 am - 1 pm period. For now, I am running CO2 during that period, with no tank lighting.
I tried running low light and CO2 from 6 am - noon (lighting schedule attached) but with my current circulation / gas exchange it DID NOT work.
Algae, signs of stunted growth on Rotala, and CO2 drop checker readings that gave me the worry that I need to either increase circulation or that I was 'burning out' my plants (CO2 checker takes 3 hours to turn nicely green, stays in the 'target range' of green for most of the day, but turns very much yellow at the end of the light cycle - although my fish seemed happy enough).
So, now that I have my lighting on a more reasonable schedule I am inconsistently finding a yellow drop checker at the end of the day. One hypothesis is ambient light, but I'm wondering if I should be paying closer attention to my canister filter flow / circulation... Thoughts? Do you do any things differently when you have a lot of ambient light?