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A caution (or a question) on water conditioners
Over the last few weeks, I've been adding small amounts of Waters of the
World, Southeast Asia & India version, to a tank that was heavily planted,
for purposes of the fish in residence. This formula decreases GH, yet
increases KH, though I don't know how it works. I add co2, (29 gal and 80
watts) and have had really good growth in that tank. I was reducing the GH to
acceptable levels, similar to that in another tank which has very good growth
(~5-6) so I would not say soft water was the reason for this problem.
Over the last few weeks, I've noticed increased algae growth. I thought this
may have been due to removing a large sword plant that could have been using
a lot of nutrients. Especially over the last week, I've noticed plants
deteriorating, and seriously stunted growth. There seemed to be dirty algae,
like sediment collecting on some thread algae, hanging from some leaves. When
I attempt to pull it off, it comes apart (not thread algae at all, but stuff
attached by slime). The water even began to look dirty. I started noticing
not only leaves (those plants with needle-type leafs or fine leafs) floating
around, but stems starting to look as if they were beginning to rot. Only
broad leaf plants were left intact, and even eusteralis began to look very
mangy. To top things off, I didn't notice that the fish looked especially
vital or happy, so I decided major steps were in order. I replaced probably
about 90% of the water. I pulled out all the stem plants. As I was rinsing
them off (tap water only) many of the leafs just fell off. Rotala wallichii
was hit the hardest, with not a leaf left on any stem.
I don't know how this product works, and I don't know what other ingredients
are in there, other than that it has a syrupy consistency. There were no
other changes made in tank maintenance during this time. I did not add an
excessive amount and the GH was only reduced about 1-2 deg overall.
I guess it's probably safe to say that it's better to tamper with water
parameters by mixing in RO/distilled etc. than to add products such as this.
Just another blunder that brings up a point made over and over here--skip the