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CO2 tank transition to non CO2

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by behhl, Apr 24, 2008.

  1. behhl

    behhl Junior Poster

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    Hi, I'm new to the forum and planted tanks in general. I believe I have a grasp of the concepts of CO2 and non-CO2 type - what I'd like to ask is; in starting up a tank we typically like to see the plants get established - if a tank starts off as a CO2 tank, then to reduce maintenance we transition it to a non CO2 tank will the plants start be able to cope with the change in environment?

    What I am wondering for instance that they will not start to melt and distort prior adapting to the new environment will they?

    Thanks for your thoughts

    Regards
     
  2. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    A non-CO2 tank needs less light than a CO2 tank. Actually, CO2 is effective in low light tanks too, but usually people who use pressurized CO2 also have high light intensity. Using high light intensity and no CO2 is an open door policy towards algae. So, if you stop dosing CO2, and have high light intensity, you should also reduce the light intensity at the same time.
     
  3. behhl

    behhl Junior Poster

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    Thanks for the reply - yes, ok I believe I understand that principle. But do you think that the plants will have problems such as melting, distorting and suffering nutrient deficiency whilst transiting to non CO2 environment.

    What I mean is, as a scenario, I want to get a tank up to display quality quick I use the full armoury of hi light, fert dosing and CO2 etc to suit. Once the tank is established I do not wish to carry out such heavy maintenance nor spend so much on ferts weekly so I swap the lighting and remove the CO2 and go to non CO2. OK, perhaps it might be good to have a couple of weeks between with less light hours and less CO2 and not cold turkey the tank ... what do you think?

    I can picture this would be useful for me to get a show or competition tank up to full growth quick if I wanted to try several types of scapes and I don't want to wait the 4x slower growth rate to see how it looks when grown out. Nevertheless once established I want to keep the scape but I don't really want the heavy maintenance ... you see what I mean?

    Thanks!
     
  4. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    I have a low light tank that I was doing diy co2 on. It was growing great but I had so many issues with the diy that I decided to go with non-co2. My hygrophila started losing leaves within a couple of days. I went for a whole 4 weeks and still I was scooping out a net of hygro leaves daily. Finally I went back to diy co2 because scooping out dead leaves was becoming more maintenance than the diy, and the plants are once again growing great. Perhaps eventually once new growth had come in the leaf shedding would have stopped, or maybe if I had reduced lighting it would have helped, but I was already at low light to start with so that wasn't really an option. I also had anubias and java ferns in the tank which didn't show many issues other than no growth. Algae was also a bit of a problem especially at first, I went from 0 algae to scraping the glass weekly.
     
  5. behhl

    behhl Junior Poster

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    Thanks for the account Carissa; this is the kind of issue that I am concerned will happen - that the plants having adapted to having CO2 will not take well to being given the cold-turkey.
     
  6. Carissa

    Carissa Guru Class Expert

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    On the other hand, I recently took some clippings of hygro from my co2 tank and put them into another non-co2 tank. So far they have not died or developed deficiencies, it's been a few days. On the other hand they are not really growing either. So I guess it's a bit hard to say exactly what will happen in any particular setup. Perhaps cutting back gradually would work better than cold turkey.
     
  7. SpongeEva

    SpongeEva Junior Poster

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    To answer your question about the transition period- from my quite limited experience, they do suffer a little. More so the higher-light loving plants like ambulia (at least it always melted for me).
    I stopped adding DIY C02 to a tank that has cardamine lyrata, hornwort, java moss, ferns and water sprite.
    • Initially the sprite died back a little, but then adjusted and started to put out differently shaped leaves. Older leaves with this new growth die back sooner but it always puts out shoots. Still looks good!
    • Hornwort, after about a month, really looks LUSH and bright green, very thick stemmed. Looks much better than fine delicate growth from before.
    • Ferns arent growing from what I can see.
    • Moss grows very bright green and lushly but is infested with hair algae atm.
    • Cardamine's still growing good but slower, with disintegrating bottom leaves.
    Hope that helps :)
     
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