At a loss with water quality - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-08-2011, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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At a loss with water quality

So I've failed twice now at keeping amano shrimp.

The first batch died over night. I was running diy co2 at the time. I tested my water parameters and this is what I was at.

pH - 7.2
NO3 - 5-10 ppm (had dosed nitrogen that morning)
gH - 12.5 dH
kH - 9.5 dH

I cut my co2 off thinking that is what was causing the deaths, and added a second batch of shrimp once the drop checker was reading deep blue. 1 died over night, one died 2 days later and I lost the rest yesterday.

After cutting my co2 off my pH is off the Api chart. It is a deep blue, looked to me to be the same color blue your drop checker would be without co2.

So I was told my kh and gh are too high. I'd like to lower these, but I cannot figure out what I have in my tank that could be causing it to be so high.

The tap runs 7 dgh and 4.5 dkh.

I started thinking about what could be in my tank to cause the jump and I remember that there is a flat quartz type stone attached to my drift wood. Before using it I did the vinegar test and there was no reaction. I'm wondering though, if the prolonged water exposure could result in leaching anyhow?

I also have a couple of small ceramic tiles that I attached some subwassertang to?

I do not think I will be trying shrimp again any time in the distant future, but I would still like to get my water as healthy as it can be for the current inhabitants.

Thanks for any help you can offer!

Sam
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-08-2011, 01:28 PM
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Yeah ph, gh, and kh are all off for shrimp :/

I go to my grocery store and get the RO water from one of those glacial water dispensers and it works perfectly for all my shrimp. I just got two of their 5gal bottles and refill them whenever I need, it's like $2/5gal to refill. I also don't use anything to reconstitute the water like old sea mud or anything and my shrimp have been fine. That's what has worked for me..

Edit: I have CRS, CBS, and RCS, no amanos, but yeah, that's what works for me

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-08-2011, 03:00 PM Thread Starter
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If my kH and gH are high though won't they just buffer the new water that is being put in the tank or do I need to replace 50% or more of the water to get things to drop?

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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-09-2011, 03:07 AM
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I'd do 10-20% water changes with the RO water daily until you've swapped out 100% of the water in the tank. This way they adjust slowly. You don't want to quickly change the kh/gh as it can stress everything in the tank.

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-09-2011, 11:58 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, sometimes I can be completely lost.

It just occurred to me that my most recent fert mix contains epsom salt. It didn't even dawn on me what it was used for when I made the "recipe". I was using the PPS-Pro spreadsheet.

So I have made a new batch of PPS-Pro mix without the added magnesium to see if my levels start to drop with water changes with RO water.

Sorry for wasting everyone's time.

Sam
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 04:01 AM
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I tried the PPS pro system for a while but the amount of K2S04 is way too high, I soon switched to EI and my water is much better with very little algae problems.


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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 04:43 AM
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Epsom salt will raise the GH.

Test each item that is in the tank separately to see if anything might be raising the KH, or contributing to the high GH. Quartz rock should not, and ceramic should not, but test these anyway.

Put each item in a separate glass, jar or bucket with tap or RO water. Test GH and KH at the start. Stir the water a few times per day, and test daily until you see a change in GH or KH. Run the test for several days to a week.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 150EH View Post
...but the amount of K2S04 is way too high....
From what I figured the amount of solution I mixed up should only add .29 ppm per mL dosed?

I mixed 35 grams into 590 mL (pop bottle) of water, using chuck's aquarium it gave me that amount?

Is this incorrect?

Sam
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 07:17 PM
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IMO these methods are too old and are from a time when dosing high amounts of nutrients was not understood as well as it is today, I remember just 8 years ago (right around the time the PPS system was published) compact flourecent lighting was the best system everything else (except MH) was not recommended, good flow was 3 times the tanks water volume and now it's 10 times, these are all old systems. This is the latest quote from Tom Barr on EI dosing:

I'd just add:

2-3x a week:
1/2 teaspoon KNO3
1/8th teaspoon of the KH2P4

Add K2SO4 after water change, say 1 teaspoon

CMS+B, I'd add 1 TABLE spoon into 500mls of water, 1 teaspoon of MgSO4(Epsom salt), dose 15mls 3x a week

That's it.
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Check these amounts and/or ratio's with the PPS system and you'll see they are way, way, different and I think this was the root of my problems when using PPS Pro. It really wasn't very long ago that I was singing the praises of PPS-Pro and how much I liked it, until my water got all out of wack and problems were starting with algae and very little growth. I still like some of the suggestions on the site, like the 24 hour lighting calculations, I think this is a good way to start with lighting and then make adjustments to suit your tank.

I'm not sure that this or your kH/gH is your problem but something is, so try changing one thing at a time so you can figure it out.


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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 11:56 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 150EH View Post
I'd just add:

2-3x a week:
1/2 teaspoon KNO3
1/8th teaspoon of the KH2P4

Add K2SO4 after water change, say 1 teaspoon

CMS+B, I'd add 1 TABLE spoon into 500mls of water, 1 teaspoon of MgSO4(Epsom salt), dose 15mls 3x a week

That's it.
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What size tank are those measurements for or does it not matter?

Also, what would the fleet measurement be instead of the KH2P4?

Sam
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 01:09 AM
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Sorry there for a 50 gallon tank, heavily planted with CO2, with med to high light. I think they are the same thing so KH2P04 and Fleet (I think KH2P4 was a miss spell) would be 1/8 tsp 2 or 3 times per week. So if your tank is a 29 gallon you might want to cut these amounts in half.


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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:13 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 150EH View Post
Sorry there for a 50 gallon tank, heavily planted with CO2, with med to high light. I think they are the same thing so KH2P04 and Fleet (I think KH2P4 was a miss spell) would be 1/8 tsp 2 or 3 times per week. So if your tank is a 29 gallon you might want to cut these amounts in half.
Thank you for the help, I'll give it a go and see what happens. I've several plants in there, but I've quit using the co2, but now that all the shrimp are dead I guess I can give it a go again.

Sam
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:47 PM
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Well if your not using C02 and the tank is now lightly planted you may only need to dose weekly or maybe every other week. There no need to dose a low tech tank that often, but if you deceide to go back to C02 and a dense plant mass then dose away, in any event I think these ratios will work in you favor and good luck.


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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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One last question, if anyone can help with it. I do not dose the CSM+B and instead use the flourish comprehensive. I've been adding about 2.5 mL 3xweekly. Is this an ok amount, too much, too little?

Sam
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2011, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HouseofZoo View Post
One last question, if anyone can help with it. I do not dose the CSM+B and instead use the flourish comprehensive. I've been adding about 2.5 mL 3xweekly. Is this an ok amount, too much, too little?
adding too much copper will also kill the shrimps. i have hard water, even harder than yours and i had amano shrimp in there for over year.

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