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pH & nightly airstones

Date: Mon, 03 Apr 2000 12:09:44 -0700
From: "David Ozenne" <dozenne at 10fold_com>
Subject: Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #191

Michael Rubin wrote:

>At night when the lights are off the
>plants aren't drawing carbon from the CO2 so your pH returns from >7.0 to 
>6.6.  Adding an airstone at night will drive the CO2 off and >your pH will 
>rise, perhaps dangerously fast.

<snip of what David wrote>
>I'd just like to report that my own use of an airstone at
>night has been very successful, and doesn't seem to bother
>the fish.  I do have a pH rise, but I'm not convinced that fish
>are affected by pH to any appreciable degree.


My experience has been similar to yours.  I have two planted tanks, one 65 
gallon and one 55 gallon.  I have only added the nightly airstone to my 65 
gallon tank and not the 55 gallon.  What prompted me to add the airstone was 
the reaction my three medium sized discus were having after the first few 
days of C02 injection (gasping at the surface).  Since no fish appeared to 
be stressed in my 55 gallon tank, I added no airstone.  I will admit though, 
before implementing the nightly airstone regimen I noticed very little pH 
swing between the time the lights switched off, to when they switched back 
on in the morning.  If it wasn't for the stressed discus, I would have never 
added an airstone.

The 65 gallon is monitored with a pinpoint pH monitor.  Since adding the 
airstone, I have noticed the pH go from 6.6 (at the end of the day) to about 
6.8-6.9(just before the lights come on).  This small swing is completely 
acceptable to me considering the discus are no longer stressed in the 

Michael Laflamme
spicolte at hotmail_com

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