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New Setup

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by kitty, May 3, 2007.

  1. kitty

    kitty Junior Poster

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    Hi

    I have recently (yesterday) redesigned my aquarium using ADA aqua soil and EI dosing. I tested my water this afternoon (having dosed 5ppm KN03 and 1ppm KH2PO4) and found that my N02 levels were quite high- 0.3 (full details of results are below-) perhaps due to my lack of beneficial bacteria, as I believe I lost much of the bacteria that were in my filter.

    Are these result be considered normal on the first full day of being set up, would a water change at this stage be advisable? Or are the results of my test kit unimportant? Unfortunately I am unsure of the precise levels of C02 at the moment as I have not yet got a bubble counter or drop checker set up.

    All advice welcome:) .
    Regards.


    120l
    3.5w
    Pressurised C02
    PH- 6.5
    N02- 0.3
    N03- 20
    GH- 12
    KH- 8
    P04- 2.5
    FE- 0
     
  2. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

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    If you heavily planted the tank from the beginning, literally covering the substrate with plants or floating a lot of plants, they will be consuming ammonia as soon as it begins to appear and no nitrites will be formed. With the amount of light you have you really need to be sure you have plenty of CO2 from the beginning too, along with the other ferts. If there are no fish in the tank, why not just jack up the CO2 bubble rate a lot until the plants get growing very well? Instead of a bubble counter just stick the end of the CO2 tube in the water and you can see how much you are flowing. Then reconnect it and recheck it that way every day. I would also limit the lighting duration to less than 10 hours a day.
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

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    Recently I have been looking into ways to improve the initial set up stages using ADA soil.

    A few things have come out of that.
    Purigen is very good as is activared carbon and Zeolite.
    Purigen is better than carbon is many ways , however, carbon later becomes a better bio media as does Zeolite.

    So it's not removed.

    The other thing, and Amano does this also, although very few ADA converts ever talk much about the real applied aspects of ADA mainteance: for the first 1-2 months, do 2-3 X a week 50-70% water changes.

    Yes, Amano does them almost every other day for the first month, that's how he deals with the NH4(and NO2). This does not harm a tank because it's new and algae spores are not settled in yet which takes a few weeks.

    If you do both water changes and chemical removers that later just turn to biomedia, this works well, is fairly cheap and adds redunacy/back up.

    CO2 etc is brought in as well after each water change, waste etc is removed as a source of NH4, + NH4 present from the ADA AS as well.

    After about 1-2 months, all the bacteria has settled in, the ADA AS is now namely NO3 from bacteria(except inside the grains, the outer surface has been oxidized/colonized with bacteria).

    Plants can keep up with the leaching of NH4 at this point.
    When Feedbacks are exceeded for too long of a time frame, then you have issues.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. kitty

    kitty Junior Poster

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    Hi

    Thanks for your replies. I have a few questions-

    My tank is heavily planted (without fish), dosing schedule listed below. I believe I have a C02 bubble rate at about 1 bubble per s going though my external filter intake valve. I have found although my java fern, moss, hygro and various cryps all seem to pearl at a greater or lesser degree, my ricca and Eleocharis parvula seem to produce little or no pearling throughout the day, would you suggest more C02 is needed? Also what duration do you suggest reducing my lighting by?

    I have also found some of my cryps have melting leaves and some of my hygos have turned slightly clear at the leaf edges, is this common when they have been recently planted due to the stress of planting? Would you suggest pruning back these leaves?

    I have tested my water again today at roughly the same time, early afternoon, before dosing, the light having been on 3h aprox, with the results listed below. Due to the decrease in PH and KH and at Tom’s suggestion I will change 50% of the water this evening and add activated carbon. However what would you suggest I dose today as I am only 1 day into my dosing regime, trace, or more KN03 & KH2P04 removed by the water change? Does the use of activated carbon mean I need to add larger amounts of ferts; does the activated carbon absorb some of them out of the water?

    Thanks for your time.
    Regards.


    PH- 6.0
    N02- 0.8
    N03- 10
    NH3- 0
    GH- 12
    KH- 6
    P04- 1.0
    CA- 6
    FE- 0

    Dosing
    120l
    3.5w
    Pressurised C02- 1 b per s
    5ppm N03 through KN03 (diluted in 300ml water, 5ml every other day)
    1ppm P04 through KH2P04 (diluted in 300ml water, 1ml every other day)
    Epsom salts 1/3 tsp 1 week
    Trace TMG every other day
     
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