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Hi all.

I have a 5.5 gal tank set up, eco complete substrate, sponge filter.

I've ordered this light since I want high-light plants:
http://www.petco.com/product/113490/Coralife-Mini-Aqualight-T5-Dual-Aquarium-Lamp-Fixture.aspx

11" L X 5.25" W X 2.25" D
1 - 6 watt T5 10,000K lamp
1 - 6 watt T5 actinic lamp

My question, given the set up I have.. and the future high-light, do I really need CO2, or can I continue to use Excel Flourish?

I should add: I have 5 Amano shrimps and a betta in the tank too.
 

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Remember the simple adage... "Light drives the need for nutrients." Co2 is the main nutrient that plants require for growth and I think a lot of the times people forget to properly classify it as such.

If you want your plants to flourish and not give you nutrient def problems in the future that high light needs to be accompanied by Co2 and proper fertilization for your plants to grow properly. However, you could purchase lower light species and have a happy, healthy low light tank with a beautiful anubias or another low light species and not have to worry so much about a lot of equipment that may take away from the aesthetics of a smaller tank.

And, I know we all hear it far too often and typically we all know the importance of WCs and routine maintenance but I would watch that tank with what you have stocked. Shrimp, and all inverts for that matter, are highly susceptible to ammonia levels and nitrates. You have alloted 1.1 gallons of water per animal so make sure you stay up on your maintenance. Once you get it planted you'll be doing a lot better and your water parameters will balance out a little bit.

Hope this helps,
Abe
 
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