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RE: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #153

> Date: Tue, 14 Mar 2000 01:28:24 -0700
> From: Chuck Gadd <cgadd at cfxc_com>
> Subject: What's missing?
> While doing this weekends water change, I once again observed MASSIVE
> pearling after the water change.  I get some bubbling normally, but not
> steady streams of bubbles.  Following the water change, the bubbles were
> being produced so fast they formed solid threads to the surface.  I really
> want to know what is missing in the tank normally that is present in the
> tap water?   BTW, I inject my CO2 in my sump, and when I do water changes,
> I remove the water from the sump.  So I know that the sump water isn't
> getting very high levels of CO2.  In fact, following a water change, the
> CO2 levels are measurably lower in the main tank for quite a few hours.

> Also, this water change didn't involve any pruning of plants.  Just
thewater change.  Is there anything else that is
>commonly present in tap water that might be the missing ingredient?



You could have a deficiency that is preventing photosynthesis, and when you
added fresh water to the tank, the deficiency is overcome and the plants
begin to photosynthesize/pearl.  You could also be missing some minor trace
element that is not in TMG (but I know TMG is pretty complete). Let's
see...what's in TMG:

(K 0.79%, Mg 0.39%, S 1.01%, B 0.004%, Cu 0.006%, Fe 0.07%, Mn 0.04%, Mo
0.002% Zn 0.002%. HEEDTA and DTPA as celators)

You are probably adding MORE TMG after a water change also and this may
allow plants to acquire all they need to pearl like crazy but they quickly
deplete/use these nutrients and stop pearling. Depending on lighting and Co2
availability you might try adding more TMG.

You did not mention your kH/gH maybe you are missing consistent minimum
levels of Ca (not in TMG) or sufficient levels of Mg or other
macro-nutrients that are present after a water change and which are then
quickly depleted and pearling stops. Another possibility is that your fresh
water could have large amounts of undissolved gases and when the new/fresh
water enters the aquarium, the gases are released.  I know this happens in
my tank, more so in the winter (not really thought about why?).  You are
also right...it could be too little Phosphates, careful adding P as you
know.   If you use a trickle filter you may be also adding lots of O2 and in
combination with a water change this may trigger very high O2 saturation
levels and the pearling.  I also think tanks with lots of light 3+ watts per
gallon (and Co2 injection) tend to become O2 saturated from high
photosynthesis rates and pearl more readily.  What are your lighting levels
for this tank?  I also think a tank that is constantly pearling (a good
thing) is running at a higher metabolic rate and may need more maintenance
and attention.  But this is a personal choice whether you want to be
trimming plants every 5 days!

My best to you all,

Tom Brennan
brennas at ix_netcom.com