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[APD] Re: An observation

"Message: 1
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2003 08:55:15 -0700 (MST)
From: gbooth at frii_com
Subject: [APD] An observation
To: aquatic-plants at actwin_com

Current aquatic lore holds that biofiltration is not as necessary in a
planted tank as it is in a fish-only tank. Indeed, some authors go so far
as to say that biofiltration is a bad thing and outcompetes the plants for
critical ammonium. Everyone "knows" that plants prefer ammonium over
nitrate since it takes less energy to use it.

However, recent advances in nutrient management as promulgated by Tom Barr
have shown that some level of nitrate (and phosphate) is good for plants
and proper ratios of N and P are even bad for algae.

While listening to Tom's Forum at the AGA 2K3 convention, I believe he
also mentioned that algae can utilize ammonium very easily and that a
dearth of ammonium may hold algae at bay.

Hmmm, what better way is there to reduce ammonium and increase nitrate
than biofiltration?

Crank up dem wet/dry's, folks!


George Booth in Ft. Collins, CO (gbooth at frii dot com)
 The website for Aquatic Gardeners by Aquatic Gardeners
   http://aquaticconcepts.thekrib.com/  (mirror)

I have always said "Better to have bacteria than algae."

Try doing a nice rework and pruning on a tank with no filter vs one with a filter. 
You'll see a bloom in one tank and the other with the filter will have less or none at all.

Just playing with NH4 vs NO3 dosing can teach folks a lot about what causes some nasty blooms.

The other thing you can do: keep adding more and more fish/shrimp etc till you reach a capacity load that exceeds the filter or the plant's ability to process the NH4 quickly and then you get the same result. 

With a non CO2 approach, the fish waste can supply the N needs and primarily in the form of NH4 since growth is much slower. 

So now we can tie not only a CO2 enriched tank but also talk about non CO2 tank cycling as well as it relates to the umbrella of all planted tanks.

They will have to take us both on George for this one:) 

Tom Barr 

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