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I'm working on getting my CO2 as high as possible without hurting the fish. I've had algae that I've been trying to get rid of and after months of trying different things, the last option is to raise CO2 higher. I originally was using the KH/PH chart and had it at the last possible "green" area where it was safe, but the algae has been telling me it's not enough. Since raising it, I've noticed my fish breathing a little faster, but they haven't been gasping for air at the surface. Other than the occasional rapid breathing they swim around and act normal. Should I back off the CO2?

Other things I've tried for the algae:
Lower photo period, down to 8 hours now.
I stopped fertilizing. Since I've stopped the algae has gone down quite a bit and there are no signs of nutrient deficiency in the plants. I also got new bulbs to see if that was the cause.
 

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To answer your topic question. Some will breathe at the surface others will be more lethargic.

Its not just co2 that will keep algae at bay, you need to check into your lighting.
 

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This is a bit of a toughie. Some fish will act totally different so what it really takes is watching and knowing what YOUR fish do under normal conditions. That will give you a far better shot at spotting when they are not acting right. Going to the surface and gasping is sometimes a good indicator but then there some fish that just spend lots of time there anyway. Gasping seems to be a pretty simple term but then there are times when that doesn't fit either. Watching my African cichlids can leave me thinking a fish may be gasping when it is just a simple way for a holding female to pass more water over the fry in her mouth. A good chase around the tank may leave them gasping as well. What is normal and what is stress can vary a lot so it takes knowing your fish.

I found the charts were totally unusable in my water. With hard alkaline water having lots of limestone in the area, the chart would have me pegged at around 80 PPM of CO2 so I have to believe that answer is wrong.
 
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