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Re: Dosing pumps & metal ratios

Tom Barr makes several good points about using dosing pumps for
(http://www.actwin.com/fish/aquatic-plants/month.200006/msg00552.html). I
do also substrate-fertilize our root-feeders heavily, BTW. One nice thing
about the pump is that, while plants will make use of iron when it's
available (every week or whatver). I think it make sense to avoid large or
very large dosages of micronutrients at longer inttervals. While I tried to
dose manually regularly and frequently, it's not always possible or
convenient. Now, with good test kits (LaMotte and Hach) I can hopefully
keep fairly constant concentrations. It's still work -- I'm monitoring the
parameters frequently to arrive at the best weekly-batch concentrations to
make up. Granted, a dosing pump is way down on the priorities list.  We
have no pH controller BTW :) I suspect that even if dosing pumps did catch
on, the debate on their benefit might be a long one, like heating cables. I
haven't had the pump long enough to offer an opinion. Nor am I certainly
how much of the recent benefit I'v had was due to dosing (manually) more
frequently and how much to the increased amounts of liquid fertilizers I've
been using.

One question I do have is should I get the iron to where I want it using
only Flourish and/or Natural Gold (as suggested on the Natural Gold label),
thereby raising the level of the other micronutrients, or should I also
supplement as I am doing with Flourish Iron. My concern is that I am
already several times the suggested dosage for Flourish/Natural Gold yet
need Flourish Iron to get the iron to 0.2 ppm. There was a thread on the
list that the rather high copper levels we might reach don't seem to be
toxic to the fish as one might think at first. In other words I'm testing
only K, Fe, N, Ca and Mg. I see we rely on one relative set of
concentrations for our trace metals (that of our trace mix or commercial

Jared Weinberger                    jweinberger at knology_net  
______    http://www.knology.net/~jweinberger/     ________