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It seems that many people have multiple photoperiods throughout the day consisting of lights on for a couple of hours, and then off, then finishing with a large photoperiod of four to six hours if not longer. What is the proper photoperiod and what is the purpose of these "on-off" times (algae, photosynthesis, etc)?
 

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the on off times are just to simulate the natural cycle of daylight...sunlight outside isnt just instant light...then instant dark at a certain time

it gradually cycles up and cycles down...so unless 1) they use LED lights (expensive) or 2) have a dimmable ballast (also expensive)...timing bursts are the next best thing

personally...I dont care...so my fish get instant light every morning (they visibly panic) and instant darkness at night (they visibly panic)
 

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My fish don't seem to panic when the lights go on/off but they will get spooked if the lights in an adjoining room are turned on/off.

About the OP, I think he is asking why the photoperiod is broken up into multiple blocks.
A lot of it is making the tank fit the keeper's schedule so that the lights are on when they are home and off when they are out/sleeping. Theres another point saying that the off periods will replenish CO2 levels in non CO2 injected tanks but personal enjoyment is the stronger reason in my opinion.
 

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This is a great idea! I have decreased my photoperiod due to algae growth, but my tank lights go on after i leave for work, and go off by the time i get home. I will definitely be switching to this double light cycle idea.:thumbsup:
 
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