Too much this, too little this - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-09-2005, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
Ash
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Too much this, too little this

I 've realised that you guys often say you need so much concentration of CO2, phosphates, nitrates etc

But what actually happens if you have say too much nutrients and too little CO2 or visa versa? Or perhaps too much light and too little nutrients? There are hundreds of combinations of these imbalances. What are the signs of such problems?

Also can you recommend ways to monitor these macroscopic properties of the tank environment that are fairly cheap and easy to implement.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-09-2005, 05:07 PM
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You are exactly right. There is a huge number of possible combinations. Each tank is different. What works for me might not work for your situation. CO2 and nutrients are good examples, but there is are so many more variances.

That's why it is sometimes difficult to give helpful recommendations to questions like "My plants don't grow, what's wrong?" or "I have a lot of algae - how can I get rid of them?". Each time you go through the process of determining light and nutrient situation, but even then, we might not figure out what is going on.

Example: Green water. Some people don't know what it is. Some get it in a new tank, and it disappears to never come back. Then some seem to have it for months and years and only expensive equipment can get rid of it. Why?

Tom Barrs EI approach is trying to address that by supplying an excess of everything. But even that doesn't work for everyone.

There are many many symptoms for imbalances, so there is again no single answer to your question "What are the signs?" It all depends!

What do you mean by macroscopic properties? The only thing that's easy and cheap to monitor is the water temperature


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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-09-2005, 07:26 PM
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I mainly rely on experience on a particular tank, and when I observed something, I then sometimes resort to test kits.

Some signs are very obvious, such as change of growth rate of plants, duckweeds, spot algae... etc, or things like when plants start pearling, or colour of leaves... etc.

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Specs:
800L 100% Flourite
80L plant/shrimps nursery tank inconnected with the main tank
Total 600W HQI, 2 X 5200K 2 X 6500K
Eheim 2028 X 2 2080 X 1
Dupla Substrate Heater
Dupla S external reactor
Aquamedic 2hp & Teco R15 400W chillers
Sega pH Controller

Light period: 6 hours on each bulb across 12 hours
Water Parameters: pH 6.4, KH 2, GH 1, NO3 40, PO4 1 TDS 250
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