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Eye of the Shrimptigers

Discussion in 'Journals' started by Kyalgae, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. gsjmia

    gsjmia Lifetime Members
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    Not sure if what I did was worth the trouble or not, and was waiting to see more about the results before starting a new thread, but so far so good. I have had trouble for years with getting PH (Co2) to lay flat during photoperiod.


    I have 4x20 cerges reactor with plenty of flow and with a crank of the needle valve I can drop the PH 1.5 in 30 min, but then it would continue to go on and kill all the animals if left unattended, so the reactor was not the problem.


    I even started the co2 two or three hours before lights on, but the PH would continue to drop over the photoperiod, it looked like this (pictures messed up, all were set to "large" when posting, the bigger ones wouldn't adjust to medium, then they all disapeared and I had to repost):


    (The red line are the lights going on and off.)


    So, several years ago I thought of having two solenoids, two needle valves, etc., but kind of lost interests in the hobby due to frustration, ebb and flow, etc.


    Then last December I saw this thread by Zeus: http://www.barrreport.com/forum/barr...ls-efficiently and read Pikez post where he said “pretend Co2 is free”, which I had never done—I had always tried to preserve and not waste Co2.


    So, I got inspired and remembered I had purchased all the stuff to add a second solenoid and I one week end in December put it all together.


    Here is what I am getting now, even as I continue to tinker with the valves vs agitation (the blips close to the top of the curves is when the water is auto changed):





    Here is a zoom in on one of the better days:





    Here is another good day:





    Here is a zoom of the same day:





    Note there is only a .01 drop near the end at 8:30 pm.


    I had one day (didn't save the logging data) that was absolutely flat the entire photo period, so I know its possible.


    Weird thing is that even though each days' photoperiod Co2 is relatively flat, the floor seems to change from day to day. One day it will drop to 5.9 and the next it will drop to 6.0. I have some theories as to why and am working that out.


    But, as significant an accomplishment as this was for me (had bugged me for years), I think the auto water change was more significant.


    As I said above, the auto WC cleared up all my algae problems (but all my RCS died and Amanos were ok), except for a little bba. Then the flat line Co2 cleared the remaining but small bba problem and made most plants grow great. Glass is spotless during big water change 1x or 2x a month.


    My problem now is stunting with some plants. I think there is some bad mojo in my tap water and the auto WC has exacerbated it, so I plan to add 50% RO to my auto WC. Oddly enough, you would think the auto WC would eliminate GH issues with fresh tap being added 6x a week (tap gh is 5 and kh is 4), but it is sucking it up and GH is down to 0 if I don't add booster and calcium for a couple of days. But, the auto WC is another thread.


    But as far as algae goes, its all gone. No hardscape, water outlets or even the stunted plants have any hint of algae, even at peak 130 par for several hours (100 par for 1.5, 130 or 3 and 100 for last 1.5 hours). I plan to add another light just to see what will happen, but am running out of lights.


    In a while I will start a thread with pictures, etc., but am busy with work right now. Let me know if you have any questions in the meantime.

    Apex 4.jpg

    Apex 1.jpg

    Apex 2.jpg

    Apex 3.jpg

    Apex 5.jpg
     
    #41 gsjmia, Jan 22, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2017
  2. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    gsjmia That thread should be very interesting, I'd love to see your setup. I haven't seen any type of auto water change. The first picture makes it look like you have a co2 tank completely submerged, I'm not sure what to make of that. Those are some stable co2 rates, dang! Thanks for the information.
     
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  3. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    I noticed something odd when I improved the flow out of my canister filter. The plants started growing better, and they seemed to be responding to the CO2 more vigorously. What I find odd is that even though flow was low out of the canister, I have a powerhead and a skimmer all moving the water around in the tank, so even though the canister had low flow, I wouldn't say my flow overall was low. The thing that was weird is that even though my pH was showing 5.9 down from 7, the plants weren't really responding, meaning I couldn't see them pushing out many streams of O2 until the last few hours in the photoperiod. With improved canister flow I am still reading 5.9 pH but the plants are really pearling now. Odd.


    This changed when I increased the flow out of my canister from a trickle to a stream, after clearing that flow restricted return pipe. I would say it has increased canister flow 4 fold. Now I see the plants giving off O2 streams within the first hour, and they seem to be respiring much faster. My Alternanthera reineckii 'mini' Is now giving off many more bubbles than it used to, and to me looks taller. I have my Eheim outflow pipe positioned just below the water surface, and this is creating double the surface ripple, when compared to earlier lower flow seen here (

    ).

    What does this mean? I guess technically more CO2 is making it into my tank now, even though my pH reading is no different than from before, granted some of it is microbubbles, unlike before I had 0 microbubbles. pH readings are the same, but the plants are pearling way more now.


    The only other change I made to my tank was I removed my +PRO LED (2000 lumen 100+ par). I am running my single LED+ (100 lumen 35+ Par) for 7 hours only. I don't have a 3.5 hour period with 135+ par anymore, but things seem to be growing just fine.


    I'll put some pictures below, I'm just curious what people think of the health of these plants, I know my Anubias is looking worse for wear, but in two days I noticed my Blyxa putting out a totally different looking leaf, its definitely positive.


    dVCHope.jpg


    I call this shot style the "Tom Barr" :p


    [​IMG]
     
    #43 Kyalgae, Jan 23, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 23, 2017
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  4. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    Here is my Rotala, not sure what species really, I still find the lower older leaves still get some algae on them, so I cut off the tops, and replant those, then I cut the mother stem all the way to the substrate and leave the old roots. My hope is that the old roots will put up an entirely new stem in a 2 weeks or so, then I can cut the other ones right down to substrate level, and let the new ones grow through. This way I can have 6 stem cut, and 6 stems growing, then I cut the fully grown ones right down, and let the other 6 grow fully, alternating.


    In the past this is the only way I could keep them looking good, because the lower 50% would always get algae growing on it in about 2 weeks time. Is this the correct way of pruning this species?


    [​IMG]
     
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  5. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    Here is my Alternanthera reineckii 'mini' I got rid of half of the bush from last time, I think its looking better than last time. What's the prognosis on this one doctor?


    Yzx5FDc.jpg
     
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  6. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    Here is my Blyxa japonica, The new leaves are coming in fast, and I would describe them as "stripy" they remind me of a zebra. they have grown a ton in two days. They old leaves are just green mostly, I would say these new stripy leave are the healthier ones? I notice this plant respiring faster now.


    Uescxy4.jpg
     
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  7. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    Here is my struggling Anubias. I trim some leaves that get too covered, by algae, I have increased my phosphates I dose ~3ppm three times a week, but maybe these need more time to show better signs of growth from better CO2.


    xNwObv8.jpg
     
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  8. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    This is the Rotala bonsai, it has struggled a lot, but it looks to be responding better now. The tips are looking healthier I think.


    [​IMG]
     
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  9. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    This is my Java fern, it stuggled in the past, but I don't see any new algae on its leaves, a little bit leftover from a while back, but I don't want to cut off such a big leaf...or should I?


    ZD0h6CD.jpg
     
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  10. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    Last picture. Staurogyne seems to be OK, it is sending up a taller shoot in the background, but I notice it is respiring quickly throughout the day, so well see. Thoughts?


    at08W6f.jpg
     
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  11. edelry.junior

    edelry.junior Graphic Designer
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    Thanks for the update Kyalgae. I have similiar issues with my anubias... from time to time some leaves melt and thats it :/


    Are you still keeping the same dosing routine (NO3 10ppm, PO4 3ppm 3x per week, plus Fe 0.2ppm from Seachem Flourish)?


    At some point did you dose FeEDTA/DTPA?
     
  12. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    edelry.junior l dose 5.5 ppm KNO3, and 3 ppm KH2PO4 so there's a bit extra phosphate 3 times a week. Instead of all Seachem flourish I dose 0.3mL of aquavitro propel (just because I have it around), which is purely iron giving me 0.04 ppm Fe, and 1.5 mL of the Seachem flourish, which is only 0.06 ppm iron. So total iron is 0.1ppm dosed 3x per week.


    My leaves aren't melting, but some of them get covered in algae, and I get tired of looking at that, so I cut them off, I don't know if that means something different.....stupid anubias, I feel your frustration.


    gsjmia I did manage to make my co2 more stable. I played around with my skimmer timings, so now co2 gets down to the desired level faster and doesn't bounce around as much. I haven't touched my needle valve or solenoid, it stays on, I just changed the frequency of extra surface agitation.


    5DR1nyU.jpg
     
  13. gsjmia

    gsjmia Lifetime Members
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    Nice improvement in the graph--I don't really know but what you have now looks good enough, seems you only have a .03 or so variance. See if it makes any difference in plant growth or algae.


    I have no scientific training but it seems to me that one method is to dump extra co2 and then beat a little back out with agitation/surface turbulence and that is how to get co2 stability.
     
  14. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    I am calling it on this tank, full tactical retreat.


    1. After killing off hundreds of planaria and snails in my tank the algae is just overwhelming things. Are there probably hundreds of them buried below my dwarf haigrass? Probably. But if I rip up all that stuff I just as well had rip up the whole tank.


    2. I hate the stupid substrate, that Seachem fluorite black, can go straight to H E double hockey stick. Algae love growing on the exposed parts of it, and I'm just not going to spend my day pulling up little bits of whatever you call it. AAAAnd it gets stuck in my clippers, so when you try to trim the grass short, instead of breaking apart like aquasoil, it is like trying to cut a stone, so irritating.


    3. I think trying to go EI on a tank that essentially sat for 2 years was a mistake, I should have done a fresh one. I have two tanks that ive looked after, the one with Aquasoil actually does better than this thing once you take into account the amount of work vs. enjoyment.


    4. Water - I have well water and its basically KH 8 with GH 0 and enough copper to kill off Cherry shrimp out of my tap. I use RO instead, but personally its a huge chore, I would rather start a new tank and use tap and whatever happens happens.


    I'll leave this tank running but with low light and filtration only, and let that be my shrimp tank. I can't take cutting off a hundred algae ridden leaves per week, it's not enjoyable. I want to experiment with my regular water, but I don't want to murder my shrimp, so the only way to do that is start a new tank. I've learned a lot, and I really appreciate all of the tips and suggestions from everyone, I wouldn't have grown in this hobby had I not spent a solid amount of time here. Don't worry I have some autopsy photos. On the plus side the shrimp love all the algae, they are breeding a lot.


    HGn8FvW.jpg


    D8S0wW2.jpg


    JK6GSRX.jpg


    iuqblrm.jpg


    [​IMG]
     
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  15. onlycrimson

    onlycrimson Junior Poster

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    How long has this tank been up, just a few months? Seems to me it just needs more time to settle down. You may just need to back off it a bit, cut the light back a little and see what happens.
     
  16. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    I thought it would be funny to give a small update. The algae is growing quite well these past two months.


    W1w0lCS.jpg


    JkbiMxk.jpg


    xG2OUPv.jpg


    The shrimp love it.


    I Want to try this again, I have a bag of Aquasoil Amazonia sitting here, I got a couple of things that will make water changes even simpler (I was doing it with jugs), and a fresh CO2 tank, but I am not sure how to proceed.


    Plan 1 - Leave the shrimp and fish in the tank. Make some plexiglass dividers, and essentially section off 10% of the substrate, vacuum it out, and clean out all the junk and put Aquasoil in that small section of the tank, and replant whatever was on top. I would do this every week until the whole tank was switched over.


    Plan 2 - Get a small 10 gallon and get the fish and as many shrimp as possible into this temporary tank and redo my main tank in one go. I could potentially be more creative this way.


    I'm interested to hear peoples opinion on which way I should go. What's your advice?
     
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  17. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    Plan 2.


    net out fish. Starve the tank and use a diy shrimp trap with food. Uproot. Let the dust settle and net out any shrimps you can see. Siphon out the substrate using pipe. If water gets over add more and repeat until all substrate is siphoned out.


    Cycle the new tank, wait for ammonia to leach out completely before adding fish.


    thats how I did it.
     
    #57 rajkm, Mar 23, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 23, 2017
  18. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    More than stasrving the tank, I'd clean it very well, check the light (you might have too much light) and check your dosing regime. I get the same algae (I think that's Clado) if I don't dose enough NO3 in my fish pond outdoor. But first, check your light and eventually reduce it.


    Questions: What light do you have? How many? How many hours a day? What power?
     
  19. Kyalgae

    Kyalgae Lifetime Members
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    rajkm The shrimp trap idea sounds like a good plan, I totally forgot about making one of those. Thanks.


    fablau It's changed over the life of the tank. I used to run a Satellite LED+ and a Satellite LED +PRO. I moved the +PRO (2000 lumen 100 par @ 12 inches light) to some seedlings I was growing. Last two months have been the LED+ (1000 lumens 35 par @12 inches - substrate is 10 inches away) for 7 hours a day. But don't forget, I haven't been looking after this tank for two months. I have been topping up the water, and feeding the fish, that's it. I expected algae to grow. I didn't add a single nutrient, and no nutrients and no CO2 is going to mean algae, right? Algae definitely does well with those two things omitted.
     
  20. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Missing nutrients then :)
     
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