More phosphate questions... - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-10-2003, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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So as some already know, I had outrageous phosphates that I have now been able to eliminate. But now I have two more questions about this problem:

1) I have phoszorb in my tank filter, and they have managed to remove all (traceable) phosphates. Is this good, do fish and plants need some phosphates?

2) I still have that thick green algae covering my plants. It's definitely not as bad as when my phosphates were off the chart. But what is the source for this?

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-11-2003, 03:50 AM
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Originally Posted by mattrmiller
1) I have phoszorb in my tank filter, and they have managed to remove all (traceable) phosphates. Is this good, do fish and plants need some phosphates?
No it's not really good. Zero phosphates starve your plants of a macro nutrient they need. Zero phosphates also stop the beneficial bacteria colonies from reproducing - phosphate is also a constituient of DNA.

In an un-planted tank, zero phosphates can cause a fish killing ammonia spike because of the adverse impact on the "good" bacteria that process ammonia into nitrite and then nitrate. This can also happen in a planted tank if the plants are so phosphate starved that they also stop consuming nitrate/ammonia.

A little phosphate is good (.5 to 1 ppm). Zero phosphate or too much phosphate is bad. Zero can actually be worse over time than too much.

If you've got your phosphates down to zero, it's time to pull the phos-guard out of there!

Chief 51, Engine 511, Engine 513, Rescue 511, respond to an algae outbreak at...
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