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Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosing?

plantbrain

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

I've yet to have seen this mythical pH crash, been in the planted CO2 enrichment for about 2 decades now.
Pixie dust, I say.

Regarding Vals, they are pretty cool plants, they actually can do something like CAM and bicarbonate uptake on the lower portion of the leaf, and on the SAME leaf, take up CO2 as well on a different part.



CO2 enrichment effects:
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1 ... 135.x/full

Sediment based CO2 uptake(supports DW's contentions):

http://aob.oxfordjournals.org/content/103/7/1015.full
http://www.bio-web.dk/ole_pedersen/pdf/ ... p24-35.pdf

This is a good interesting paper
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1 ... 599.x/full
http://resources.metapress.com/pdf-prev ... ze=largest
 

ceg4048

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

bigmel said:
Hi mate

Ph crashes are very real in areas of soft water with koi pond owners, although i have never come across this keeping tropicals due to regular water changes i have had a few near miss,s on my koi pond . Due to the heavy feeding the bacteria use up the kh very quickly and i buffer regulary with bicarb .

I hardly bothered checking my ph on indoor tanks for over 20 years with no problems ,but my ph can drop like a stone on a 500 gallon indoor pond and outside 2700 gallon with heavy feeding .

Theres some info here ...http://www.mankysanke.co.uk/html/questi ... wered.html

The link is koi pond related , and i feed 1/4 kilo a day in summer and this causes the kh to get used up very quickly and my kh is only 1 from the tap so i have to buffer to 4 in the pond but still it drops quickly even with water changes .

I doubt this would concern the average aquaruim keeper who does regular water changes and feeds tiny tetra, shrimp etc but a tank with a low kh ,over stocked with big trops and over fed with neglected water changes and it could happen ?

Just thinking out loud i,m here to learn :D
Hi bigmel,
Well, the thing is that I'm always suspicious of these reports because you really don't know what was going on, what the hobbyist had been doing to his tank, and the symptoms have been interpreted. As a result, it's almost impossible to untangle cause and effect because there are so many things going on simultaneously when we are talking about pollution and it's impact on fish.

Now, I don't really know anything about Koi or even ponds in general other than to know that pond keepers are even more paranoid about Nitrate than aquarium keepers. And then there are some basic physiological facts that should be valid for most or all kinds of fish. The question asked on that page was:
My pH is 4.7, ammonia 4 mg/L, nitrite 0.05 mg/L (the pond is 16oC) what has happened?
We really don't know the whole story. Is this a FAQ type question that is a compendium of all the similar questions that were asked, or was it a specific question by an individual? Because we don't know, we therefore don't know specific conditions making it difficult to analyze.

Here is a statement in that response that is really only half true:
...The bugs in the bio-filter use about seven times as much carbonate from the pond water as they do ammonia when they turn ammonia, first into nitrite, then into nitrate, and they cannot remove ammonia from pond water without carbonate....
Nitrosomonas/Nitrobacter are "Chemoautotrophs" which means that they make their own food using primarily CO2. They can also use carbohydrates and they can convert Carbonates to CO2. We do not know the CO2 level or the level of carbohydrates in the pond in question so it's not very clear what the status of the bacteria are. Of course the low pH does inhibit nitrification, but again, there are plenty of examples of soft low pH environments, particularly in the Amazon basin which routinely become acidic after rainfall dissolves tannins from the leaf litter, causing the streams to turn brown. This is where your tetras and chiclids come from, so it's difficult for me to buy into "acidity is problematic." As I've mentioned, I've kept tanks at very low KH/pH with very little problems. As you've mentioned, with all the water changing and CO2 injecting and so forth that we do there is a zero chance of reproducing the conditions in a Koi pond.

Here is another item I'm skeptical about:
...The pH is the first priority. At pH 4.7 the koi would be suffering from acidosis, (extreme acidity of the blood caused by the low pond pH), and the low pond pH would also be causing severe gill, and internal organ damage. If the pH was slightly lower, they would be beyond the survivable limit...
If you put a strong acid in the water such as HCl or H2SO4, the toxicity of these substances can be lethal due to the damaged caused to gill membranes. It's very unlikely though that the H+ ion concentration from the water will find it's way into the fish's bloodstream. Blood acidosis, is triggered by CO2 in the bloodstream, so this can only happen if CO2 is being dosed. It may be that for Koi, low pH causes some sort of electrolyte migration or deficiency, but as far as i know, low pH water is not a cause of blood acidosis.

You mentioned that you had a "close call". Can you clarify what the conditions were and what symptoms the fish were exhibiting?

plantbrain said:
Regarding Vals, they are pretty cool plants, they actually can do something like CAM and bicarbonate uptake on the lower portion of the leaf, and on the SAME leaf, take up CO2 as well on a different part.
Hi Tom,
I was under the impression that the bicarb conversion to CO2 only happens under low CO2 conditions. Is the bicarb stored as a C4 malate product and converted later?

Cheers,
 

bigmel

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

You have lost me with the above ..lol.. :D

My close call....it wasn,t in a tropical tank , i,ve never had to buffer water in my tropical tanks but i always do regular water changes which puts back in kh .

Ok ....My ph dropped to about 5 iirc , the Nitrite was up and basically as the kh was now zero ,the filter got knocked back ,and the fish were flashing due to the nitrite iiratateing them .

A did a water change and slowly upped the kh but it took months for my filter to get back up to speed .

I have to buffer every week with bicarb or the same thing happens .


Forgot to say its wasn,t a q&a type of report although it does read like one , i think it was a hyperthetical question as it gets asked so often with koi ponds .
The guy does have a good understanding of water and writes articles in koi magazines .


I guess its very different ,ponds and aquariums .

Cheers
 

dw1305

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
I don't buy in to the "pH crash" scenario either. We have this question frequently on another forum that I do staff for (Plecoplanet <http://www.plecoplanet.com/forum/showthread.php?t=8904>). I think the problem is the one that Clive mentions, some-one has fish death and then measures the pH, which is lower than they expect. This then becomes "low pH killed my fish", and the "pH was lower than last time I measured it, therefore the pH has crashed, causing my fish to die".

It is bit like saying "people have umbrellas up and it is raining, therefore raised umbrellas cause rain", events can be correlated with out being cause and effect. My opinion is that in these cases fish death and low pH are both symptoms of the underlying problem(s).

In my experience of fish keeping, the relationship between pH and buffering is probably both the most misunderstood concept and the most difficult for the ordinary person to fully understand.

cheers Darrel
 

Nat N

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
Clive, these are really impressive planted tanks! This is the best ever confirmation that EI works wonders.
I guess its very different ,ponds and aquariums
The main fundamental factor as I understand is the correlation of different plant biomass percentage to livestock biomass (if I can put it this way). I do not know much about fish ponds (I only have a small one in my garden without fish but only plants and various wildlife). However, I am used to believe that you cannot have as many plants per fish in a pond as you can in planted aquaria. Please, correct me if I am wrong.

I started this post with the misconception which originates from non-planted aquarium keeping, I now believe. So, really the effect of PH falling and bicarbonates depleted are very-very different in a non-planted and planted aquaria and the plant mass plays a very big role. A pond is probably an equivalent of a goldfish aquarium with only a couple of plants... This is of course a very primitive description of what I have been thinking for a while and what this post confirmed to me. The “correct ratio” of the two seems to determine stability of an ecosystem preventing from PH crushes (however hypothetical they are) and many other crushes of all sorts.

Walstad has very heavily planted tanks with soil based substrate, no CO2, plant fertilization coming from fish waste and fish food and one every 6 months water changes. That seems to work, too. However, the EI dosed tanks have an obvious advantage from the aesthetical point of view and Walstad’s range of plants is also rather limited exactly because not all of the plants can thrive or even grow in El Natural style aquariums.

Although tempting with its “easy aquarium keeping” routine, El Naturel style is somewhat limiting so I would not follow it. However, the book she wrote to promote this style is very interesting as it contains a lot of data and experiments.

Returning to my initial question about overdosing Potassium, I now think that the overdose can happen in Walstad style aquarium (it should be massive quantities of it though) but will never happen in any of EI aquariums.

I hope everyone agrees with this conclusion? That basically means that really overdosing of anything is more hypothetical that real.
However, I have an example when an overdose of Iron to toxic level did happen with an aquarium of one person on a beginners forum where I was able to help. Being a learner here I am the one there which gives advice! The girl set up her tanks with the intention to keep plants. So, she used massive quantities of Laterite type substrate and capped it with gravel. However, the lighting level supplied with the tank as standard was insufficient for most of the plants – and algae started and the plants did not really take off, only a few hardy twigs were surviving. Plus she was methodically following advice for non planted tanks – she was vacuuming the substrate “very well” (she thought) pushing the vac tube right down. It actually did not occur to her that she is mixing the layers up brining Laterite to the surface. When her fish started behaving oddly and a few deaths happened, she asked for help. I am proud that I could help to identify the problem. I was right as she checked this by using Polyfilter which changed colour to Orange (Iron) and it was so much of it that it started to form Iron precipitate on the surface of the gravel in a couple of spots she could not reach and stir with her gravel vac. She had to strip the whole tank down.
The bottom line – overdosing can happen but one has to be “specifically talented in creating problems” to reach that point in their aquaria...
 

dw1305

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
However, I am used to believe that you cannot have as many plants per fish in a pond as you can in planted aquaria....
No, not really, you can find fish in ponds with a huge plant biomass. Problems can occur with de-oxygenation at night during very calm periods (when de-oxygenated, stratified water may reach almost to the surface), but there will always be an oxygenated zone at the interface between water and air.

Problems with eutrophication usually occur when you have an artificially large plant biomass which then dies and de-oxygenates the entire water column. This isn't a plant problem, it is a biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) problem caused by an excess of nutrients. This doesn't have to be a man-made pollution, a good example is where you have huge starling roosts on the Somerset levels, their droppings de-oxygenate large areas below the roosts, and these areas are fish free.

However, I have an example when an overdose of Iron to toxic level did happen ........she used massive quantities of Laterite type substrate and capped it with gravel.....However, the lighting level supplied with the tank as standard was insufficient for most of the plants – and algae started and the plants did not really take off, only a few hardy twigs were surviving. ........It actually did not occur to her that she is mixing the layers up brining Laterite to the surface. When her fish started behaving oddly and a few deaths happened, she asked for help. I am proud that I could help to identify the problem. I was right as she checked this by using Polyfilter which changed colour to Orange (Iron) and it was so much of it that it started to form Iron precipitate on the surface of the gravel in a couple of spots she could not reach and stir with her gravel vac. She had to strip the whole tank down.
I'm pretty sure this is another "cause and effect" problem, you can half fill a tank with laterite, but you won't have any problems with iron toxicity., The reasons for this is that laterites are red because of the ferric oxide (Fe3+) in them and this present in these soils because it is insoluble. In fact laterites are defined as soils where all the soluble salts have been removed from them. This from Wikipedia:
Laterites are formed from the leaching of parent sedimentary rocks (sandstones, clays, limestones); metamorphic rocks (schists, gneisses, migmatites); igneous rocks (granites, basalts, gabbros, peridotites); and mineralized proto-ores; which leaves the more insoluble ions, predominantly iron and aluminium. The mechanism of leaching involves acid dissolving the host mineral lattice, followed by hydrolysis and precipitation of insoluble oxides and sulfates of iron, aluminium and silica under the high temperature conditions of a humid sub-tropical monsoon climate
Her problems may have occurred for all sorts of reasons, including the sediment becoming anoxic (having a large REDOX potential) and the reducing conditions within the substrate then liberating a variety of toxic sulphides and other reducing compounds. Iron sulphides may have been produced as well, but are insoluble.

cheers Darrel
 

Nat N

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi Darrel,
Hmm, perhaps I have not made myself perfectly clear...
No, not really, you can find fish in ponds with a huge plant biomass. Problems can occur with de-oxygenation at night during very calm periods (when de-oxygenated, stratified water may reach almost to the surface), but there will always be an oxygenated zone at the interface between water and air.
This is of course true for the natural ponds and lakes... However, to my experience of what I’ve seen, koi keepers in this country do not have many plants in their artificial ponds – if any. This is what I was referring to... I believe, the chemical/biological processes are very different... Hey, as I said I am a learner here so I am only happy to learn if I am wrong...
I'm pretty sure this is another "cause and effect" problem, you can half fill a tank with laterite, but you won't have any problems with iron toxicity., The reasons for this is that laterites are red because of the ferric oxide (Fe3+) in them and this present in these soils because it is insoluble. In fact laterites are defined as soils where all the soluble salts have been removed from them.
Again, what I was trying to say is that she had plenty of Iron enriched substrate in what was effectively a fish only, not planted, tank. I said “Laterite” – she actually had about 2 inches of JBL Aquabasis (enriched with Iron, minerals and traces as JBL states). She had this in the tank with fish but effectively no plants to speak of. She stirred it up on a regular basis... The water column contained huge volumes of soluble Iron (and other metals, I suspect – no means available to test/measure) which poisoned her fish. Nobody in their right mind would put Iron in concentration in a fish only tank... she did... She did treat her tap water with the dechlorinator/metal chelator prior to water changes but her own substrate was poisonous...

Natalia
 

bigmel

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Thanks for the inputt guys , i find it very interesting .

Just another point , its only the koi keepers with ultra soft water like up in scotland and Cheshire to name two areas that have to buffer there kh , in hard water areas its no problem .

With heavy feeding in a koi pond and not enough water changes it will happen as the kh gets used up if its not replaced .

Most koi keepers (not pond keepers)will have no plants in there pond as they wouldn,t last 5 minutes ..lol..

I,m sorry i,ve gone off topic on this post :oops: and it seems things are different in tropical planted tanks ,like i have also found after 20 years of tropical tanks and have had no problems , but the pond is a different matter .
 

bigmel

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi Nat

i started this post with the misconception which originates from non-planted aquarium keeping, I now believe. So, really the effect of PH falling and bicarbonates depleted are very-very different in a non-planted and planted aquaria and the plant mass plays a very big role. A pond is probably an equivalent of a goldfish aquarium with only a couple of plants... This is of course a very primitive description of what I have been thinking for a while and what this post confirmed to me. The “correct ratio” of the two seems to determine stability of an ecosystem preventing from PH crushes (however hypothetical they are) and many other crushes of all sorts.

I think the above must be right as my pond behaves in a totally different way than any planted aquarium i have ever had . If any havn,t been planted they had large predators in there and hence large weekly water changes which would replenish the kh (which is just about 1 from my tap water ) .
 

dw1305

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
Hi "Nat N", you wrote:
... However, I am used to believe that you cannot have as many plants per fish in a pond as you can in planted aquaria.....
&
This is of course true for the natural ponds and lakes... However, to my experience of what I’ve seen, koi keepers in this country do not have many plants in their artificial ponds – if any. This is what I was referring to.
Your first quote made me think you were asking about planted ponds, but if you aren't and are talking about "hi tech" Koi ponds you are into an entirely different situation. The Koi pond principle is much more similar to a "waste water works" situation with a very high BOD. Here you need a huge gas exchange surface for biological filtration, and you may have to add both (bi)carbonates and oxygen to the pond to cope with the BOD. If biological filtration can reduce the BOD, the problem then becomes the nitrate in the water, in this case we are back to "the solution for pollution is dilution", although many Koi keepers choose to treat the symptom of the nitrates (the planktonic green algae that cause "green water"), with UV, rather than the nitrates themselves.

The water column contained huge volumes of soluble Iron
I think you are wrong here, it is honestly really difficult to keep iron ions in solution.
She did treat her tap water with the dechlorinator/metal chelator prior to water changes but her own substrate was poisonous...
The ion that is most strongly bound to EDTA etc are the iron ions (Fe), so the chelator would have removed the iron first. This may have left other toxic metal ions (Zn, Cu, Pb) available, but I doubt they were the cause of her problems, although I do think the substrate was at least partially responsible.

Personally I'm convinced that the majority of problems people encounter in the aquarium are related to lack of oxygen, either cumulative long-term sub-lethal effects, a fatal de-oxygenation of the water column or the one that I think is the biggest problem, not enough oxygen reaching the biological filtration media. In my experience, both in the aquarium, and with our landfill leachate work, in any system (that has some carbonate buffering), as long as the amount of O2 exceeds the BOD at all times you don't have too many problems.

The other proviso is if you start adding CO2 this may lead to CO2 poisoning, due to the Bohr effect, even in fully oxygenated systems.

cheers Darrel
 

Nat N

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
Hi Darrell,
I think you are wrong here, it is honestly really difficult to keep iron ions in solution.
The ion that is most strongly bound to EDTA etc are the iron ions (Fe), so the chelator would have removed the iron first. This may have left other toxic metal ions (Zn, Cu, Pb) available, but I doubt they were the cause of her problems, although I do think the substrate was at least partially responsible.
Yes, Iron binds much stronger than other metals and often releases them by the process of binding itself. As all of us know, Chelated Iron is added as a fertilizer. This is because Iron is released under the light and becomes soluble and accessible to plants. That woman had a powerful “concoction” of metals in her effectively non-planted tank. The reason for me to think I was right is the fact that she used Polyfilter to remove contaminants. Polyfilter changes its colour depending on what it is removing. In her case, it was orange (Iron). Of course, of course, I suspect there were plenty of other metals – Polyfilter is not designed to show them. I also know that EI “adepts” dismiss test kits as highly inaccurate. I TOTALLY agree with this. However, a test kit (or Polyfilter) is capable to show presence of a chemical in the water no matter how inaccurate the actual reading is. Her Polyfilter turned bright burning colour at first and the intensity was gradually decreasing as she was following the course we agreed was best in her situation.
By the way, here’s a quote from DW (again, I am sorry I quote her so much not being myself an adept of El Natural method) – this is page 132 of her book:
Quote:
“I had a first-hand experience with iron toxicity when I mixed potting soil with laterite, which is sold as an iron-rich clay. (At the time, I mistakenly thought I needed to add iron to the substrate.) Although I added only a cup of laterite to the potting soil underlayer, within two weeks the roots of all floating plants died. Java fern turned brown and died. Plants rooted in the substrate didn’t die right away, but eventually they detached from the substrate and floated to the surface. I measured high iron levels in the water. (Genarally, my tanks show no measurable water iron.) Also, I had a persistent problem with algae in this tank. Eventually, I gave up and tore the tank down.”
Unquote.
Having quoted this, I still stand by my conclusion of metal poisoning in that woman’s tank(Iron or other or combined ).
Personally I'm convinced that the majority of problems people encounter in the aquarium are related to lack of oxygen, either cumulative long-term sub-lethal effects, a fatal de-oxygenation of the water column or the one that I think is the biggest problem, not enough oxygen reaching the biological filtration media.
Thanks for this – this is a very valid argument which is one of the things which definitely have to be taken into the consideration.
I think the above must be right as my pond behaves in a totally different way than any planted aquarium i have ever had . If any havn,t been planted they had large predators in there and hence large weekly water changes which would replenish the kh (which is just about 1 from my tap water ) .
Your first quote made me think you were asking about planted ponds, but if you aren't and are talking about "hi tech" Koi ponds you are into an entirely different situation. The Koi pond principle is much more similar to a "waste water works" situation with a very high BOD. Here you need a huge gas exchange surface for biological filtration, and you may have to add both (bi)carbonates and oxygen to the pond to cope with the BOD. If biological filtration can reduce the BOD, the problem then becomes the nitrate in the water, in this case we are back to "the solution for pollution is dilution", although many Koi keepers choose to treat the symptom of the nitrates (the planktonic green algae that cause "green water"), with UV, rather than the nitrates themselves.
Yeah, I know, I probably did not make myself quite clear when I was referring to the most common practices of keeping pond fish I know.
The bottom line is – I do not want to argue and “prove my point”. I did say I am here to learn! One important thing however, which I observed is the fact that very often a very-very good advice leads to the total disaster because fish-only and plant heavy tanks principles are mixed, misinterpreted and used where they should not be used. I constantly read advice given by “fish only” tank keepers (very experienced in their own way) to people trying to grow plants. Guess what? - The plants perish, fish die and people give up. Equally, EI method which I highly respect, will undoubtedly fail for people who only have a couple of plants in their aquariums.
I am trying to optimize my own maintenance & ferts regime suitable for the tanks/plants/fish and the spare time I have and I am very grateful to all opinion expressed in this post.
As the result of this, I topped up the CO2 in the tanks I was mainly referring to when I asked the question. I also stopped worrying about the PH crush (not relevant for my reasonably planted tanks) but I am watchful about dosing Potassium. I decreased the amount of Potassium Bicarbonate but increased Potassium Phosphate. All looks good at the moment – I hope that Val Americana will perk up and I had to pull out unwanted twigs of Pogostemon Stellata as it is truly going mad. The fish look happy, too. So, generally, I think, I have learned something here!
 

dw1305

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,
Her Polyfilter turned bright burning colour at first and the intensity was gradually decreasing as she was following the course we agreed was best in her situation.
By the way, here’s a quote from DW (again, I am sorry I quote her so much not being myself an adept of El Natural method) – this is page 132 of her book:
Quote:
“I had a first-hand experience with iron toxicity when I mixed potting soil with laterite, which is sold as an iron-rich clay. (At the time, I mistakenly thought I needed to add iron to the substrate.) Although I added only a cup of laterite to the potting soil underlayer, within two weeks the roots of all floating plants died. Java fern turned brown and died. Plants rooted in the substrate didn’t die right away, but eventually they detached from the substrate and floated to the surface. I measured high iron levels in the water. (Genarally, my tanks show no measurable water iron.) Also, I had a persistent problem with algae in this tank. Eventually, I gave up and tore the tank down.”
Unquote.
Having quoted this, I still stand by my conclusion of metal poisoning in that woman’s tank(Iron or other or combined ).

Iron toxicity it is then, it is certainly possible that reducing conditions in the substrate may have released Fe2+ (ferrous) ions at toxic levels, that have then oxidized to ferric oxide (Fe2O3) in the polyfilter. This COD (chemical oxygen demand), would have further reduced oxygen levels.

I don't use EI personally, this is because I don't use added CO2 and I would like all the changes in my tanks to be fairly slow ones. I use the "reduction of BOD" as my primary tank management method.

With apologies for the cross-post, but there are some details here in "Aeration and dissolved oxygen in the aquarium": <http://plecoplanet.com/?page_id=829>.

cheers Darrel
 

ceg4048

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

I use more Iron then anybody I know of and I never get this. And she appears to be implicating Iron for here algae woes? Sorry, I'm not buying this at all. Could it be that the tank was suffering poor CO2 and that the plants simply melted away causing massive rise in BOD? The symptoms are just not adding up. Detaching from the substrate sounds like exactly what happens under excessive light and low CO2.

Apologies if I seem obnoxious and argumentative but this is what my roots look like under unreasonably high Iron loading. I actually pulled these from the sediment to throw them away because the plants were overgrow. pH approx 5.5 by the way. No toxicity whatsoever. There must have been something else going on that we are not aware of.
2975966640038170470S600x600Q85.jpg
8394124793_f08ce2fd4c_b.jpg


Cheers,
 

bigmel

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Can i just ask what "Bod "is please :?:


Thanks
 

Nat N

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Hi all,

With apologies for the cross-post, but there are some details here in "Aeration and dissolved oxygen in the aquarium": <http://plecoplanet.com/?page_id=829>.
Thanks Darrel,
I have been just reading the article and bookmarked it.
Apologies if I seem obnoxious and argumentative but this is what my roots look like under unreasonably high Iron loading. I actually pulled these from the sediment to throw them away because the plants were overgrow. pH approx 5.5 by the way. No toxicity whatsoever. There must have been something else going on that we are not aware of.
Clive, I don’t think you are obnoxious/argumentative at all. I do like “argumentative” conversations – I tend to learn from them! :) This is just a very different method DW uses which seems to not require additional dosing. I have seen truly spectacular examples of aquariums created/maintained with different approach – equally, there were examples of failures of each of the system. There may be something else going on in that tank, I agree.
I use more Iron then anybody I know of and I never get this. And she appears to be implicating Iron for here algae woes? Sorry, I'm not buying this at all. Could it be that the tank was suffering poor CO2 and that the plants simply melted away causing massive rise in BOD? The symptoms are just not adding up. Detaching from the substrate sounds like exactly what happens under excessive light and low CO2.
As far as I know, DW uses moderate light and yes, no CO2 injections (CO2 is meant to be provided naturally, like in lakes and ponds – the essence of NPT method).
By the way, rather than being a “third party” for DW, I can say that she is actually relatively easily accessible. She is on one of the American planted tanks forums. I am not sure I can actually “promote” other forum here, so I am not sending a link. She also replies to emails as she did reply to me last year. The email is actually in her very book. I could try to contact her asking to have a look at this thread – would be interesting to know what she says first hand rather than me interpreting/quoting... Please, let me know guys – and I will try to email her.

Natalia
 

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

ceg4048 said:
Yes there are lots of exagerations, but mostly there are illogical or irrational conclusions drawn from circumstantial evidence. Most people don't even know what pH is. I mean, have you actually thought about what pH is actually a measure of? It's just a ratio of one ion to another. In fact pH can be an acronym for "percent of Hydrogen ion (H+)". Low pH means high concentration of H+, and this can only happen if acids are added to the water.

In a tank acids are produced just from the breakdown of waste products. If you clean you tank regularly then this waste is removed, but even if you don't the acidic level of the water can't just all of a sudden fall off a cliff unless you dump acid in the tank yourself.

Most of the fish we keep are from highlky acidic waters like The Amazon River Basin where the pH of some streams can fall to 2 or 3. So even if there was suddenly a crash these fish would not be affected in the way it's claimed.

Here is an example of a tank where the KH was kept at 2 and the pH kept at about 3 with a combination of RO water and CO2 injection (The Apistogramma in the middle was breeding in the tank.):
2508506070038170470S600x600Q85.jpg


There was no crashing or melting or any of that. Flora and fauna just carried on. This does not mean that plants never melt or that fish never suffocate, but when they do, it's not because of pH crashing. Plants melting occurs when they are starved of CO2. Fish suffocation happens when there is too much CO2. But we have not had a very accurate way of knowing the CO2 levels in our tanks - not unless we spend thousands of pounds buying scientific equipment to measure it, so people don't really know what the CO2 levels are and since they cannot measure it they attribute all the faults they observe to something that they can measure. This is like losing you purse while walking down a dark alley and then looking for the purse on the High Street because there's more light on that street than in the alley. Doing that, you'll never find your purse and you'll never solve the problems in your tank by blaming everything on pH.

In any case, there's nothing wrong with buffering your water some more with bicarbonate. It's not really a big deal and it does no harm. It's the misunderstanding that does the harm.

There are really not that many plants which really need to be in soft water - only a handful, really and the some of these do OK in hard water (I haven't tried all of them). On the other hand, soft water is not what does damage to the so called hard water plants. The reason that some plants don't do well in soft water has to do more with the nutrient levels which are typically kept low by those who want to maintain the low TDS. So again, cause and effect gets confused because the softness gets blamed when the real culprit is nutrient deficiency, which you have noted with your Phosphate situation. Vallis is grown at many different KH values, however, in non-CO2 tanks, when the CO2 drops below some threshold value this plant is able to use bicarbonate to produce CO2. In a CO2 injected tank Vallis does not care about the KH because there is plenty of CO2.

The most important items in a planted tank are CO2, nutrients and avoidance of dibilitating excess of lighting. These have the biggest impact and pH/KH/GH has relatively minor impact.

Cheers,


This guy really knows his stuff, are you some kind of aquatic super genius Ceg?
Oh and do you want an apprentice? lol
 

Nat N

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

This guy really knows his stuff, are you some kind of aquatic super genius Ceg?
Oh and do you want an apprentice? lol

Of course, he does! And I am being "sort of" an apprentice right now. :)
 

O'Neil

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Re: Potassium Bicarbonate and Potassium Phosphate = overdosi

Nat N said:
This guy really knows his stuff, are you some kind of aquatic super genius Ceg?
Oh and do you want an apprentice? lol

Of course, he does! And I am being "sort of" an apprentice right now. :)

lol nice one Nat
 

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