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[APD] Re: pH shock

I'm no ichthyologist or chemist, but I have to agree with Wright on 
this matter.  pH is simply a reflection of the chemistry of the 
water, it is not a "thing" unto itself; it is an indicator and 
nothing more.

If you dump a KH builder into your tank and it kills your fish, it 
isn't the increase in pH that kills your fish, it's the increase in 
dissolved solids which led to osmotic shock or perhaps the 
ammonium<=>ammonia thing.  If you drop the pH with CO2 and kill your 
fish, it's not the drop in pH that kills the fish, it's excessive 
carbon dioxide causing blood acidosis.....etc. etc.

One thing that can cause problems for tap water users is if you don't 
keep an eye on it regularly.  My water comes from a surface 
reservoir, and normally the hardness is about 7-8 dGH and alkalinity 
about 5 dKH.  But during the course of the year, both of these can 
climb up to 3 degrees higher than normal almost overnight.  A swing 
that wide, if introduced too quickly, can cause problems.

Anyway, pH should be monitored because it yields useful info, but it 
doesn't "do" anything, so don't blame it for stuff.  There are some 
things that can cause real problems with water changes, but pH isn't 
one of them.
Chuck Huffine
Knoxville, Tennessee

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