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Re: PO4

> Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 08:40:00 -0700
> From: "David Berryman" <dberryman7479 at mediaone_net>
> Subject: PO4 question
> I am looking for a test kit for PO4 but our LFS are lame here in the Twin
> Cities.  Anyone know where I can order one on line?  I also need to find a
> place to order erythromycin for my BGA.  Does anyone have a place to order
> it online?

Lamott and Hach both have sites. Petwarehouse.com

> If I find out that my phosphate is high, (BTW what are acceptable ranges),

Depends. Some folks have over 2ppm ranges and no algae. They add 1/8 gram a
day to a 50 gallon tank. I'd guess a good range would be about .4-1.0ppm.
I see little point in adding over 1.0ppm as there's little gains to be had
for the plants.

> how do I fix it?

Are you sure that's your problem? Is it something you need to "fix"? It was
quite a blessing for my tanks to have high PO4 in my Tap water. I add it to
muy present tap since it's too low(less than 0.1ppm). Adding more CO2 will
help use up PO4. But then your NO3 will be used up. Make sure you have
enough NO3 when you raise your CO2 up. Add some K+ is some form like KCL or
K2SO4 etc at a 1/4 teaspoon per 20 gallons or so. Plants are by far the best
method to use up PO4's. There are no PO4 monsters that eat up plants and
make algae. Algae are looking for poor plant growth to bloom.

Algae BTW can live on sub parts per billion of P and N (2 nano molar in some
species). Your not going to stop algae that way. Plants will get hurt far
more than the algae. Keeping them reasonably low helps but our tanks are
extremely high relative to the algae's needs on both of these nutrients.
This is not new news by any means. There's literature and other folks in
this hobby that support this. Here's an old link to an article on it.


In nature, NO3 is *often* the limiter in FW systems and PO4 is *often* the
one for the marine systems. The reverse can/do occur in both systems etc as
well. Good plant health will help the most to control algae. Iron is a good
nutrient to limit if you are so inclined to use the notion of limiting
nutrients to control algae. It's certainly a good method for non CO2 tanks.
I'm trying some things with iron on a CO2 enriched tank with it. So far I'm
not happy with the results but it's not been long either. CO2 tanks use up
too many nutrients for the plants to use this method 100% I think. We'll see
though. It's all about balance after all:)
Tom Barr
> Dave Berryman