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[APD] Re: theory behind algae control
> Roger wrote:
> > "Pollute" and "excess" are such loaded terms.
> You can create a problem with algae if you put in too much fish food
> without exchanging sufficient water. Are you truly disputing this? You
> cannot mean that unlimited amounts of organic materials may be added to
> an aquarium without consequences.
I just reread everything I wrote in this thread and I didn't say anything even
remotely like what you are suggesting. I didn't reread Tom's letters but I
doubt that he said anything like that either.
Quicky reviewing, what I did say was that algae control had 4 parts:
1) realistic expectations
2) finding a window of conditions that discourage most algae
3) maintaining stability
4) tuning an herbivore population
I also said:
Some methods I consider to be nonsense work because the aquarist manages to
maintain them long enough to get stability.
The idea of killing algae with kindness is an odd one that actually seems to
work for some people.
Roeland is right that nutrient levels maintained in successful planted tanks
are generally too high for competition to be a factor in algae control.
> I'm trying to point out the confusion that you guys create by saying (or
> seeming to say) that nutrient control is not important to algae
> management. I totally agree that you cannot eradicate algae by limiting
> nutrients & I think this is the point that you guys really want to make.
I think any confusion here is of your creation. Just the same, I'm glad you
got that point.
> I also want to point out the problems with your terminology for
> "limiting" algae growth. There is a point where algae ceases to grow in
> isolation from competitors when a given nutrient is reduced. Long before
> the algae can no longer grow, its rate of growth has declined in direct
> proportion to the concentration of the growth limiting nutrient.
Most of us aren't growing algae in isolation. We are keeping fish and growing
plants. It may be possible impose a nutrient limitation on algae growth
rates, but that fact is of no value unless we can somehow maintain a wide
spectrum of healthy fish and plants in the same environment at the same time.
> I have also pointed out how nutrient & food management may allow
> competitors to successfully reduce populations of certain kinds of
> algae. Why not comment upon this?
I wasn't commenting on any technical details.
Nutrient control and competition as means of algae control are techniques that
have been discussed ad nauseum over the last 10+ years. They worked for some
people -- at least for a while. A lot of other factors go into algae control.
It's time to advance the discussion.
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