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Re: CO2 and water stability

You wrote: 
>Somewhere there is an unwritten book of things you should and
>shouldn't do to have a successful aquarium. I quite often enjoy not
>following these rules. Partly, I do it because I think somebody needs
>to, partly because it's usually cheaper or more practical, and partly
>because I enjoy swimming against the current.

Just because you like swimming against the current doesn't mean we should
follow in your footsteps.  We might drown. <G> You have your way and other
people have their ways.  There may not be a one size fits all if you know
what I mean.    

>I am the empiricist who uses the kitty litter as a substrate and
>Osmocote for fertilizer in the kitty litter/ covered by sand. 

Why do you use kitty litter as a substrate?  What is Osmocote and how do you
use it?  

>Recently, because of many non-standard methods I use and advocate on
>my web page, I have come up with a new problem. The problem is one of
>the subscribers in this newsletter by the name of John (he won't use his
>last name}. 

I am lost in this thread.  What problems were you having? You should stop and
think for a moment and ask yourself "Why are my methods considered
non-standard"?  Could it be that they or similar methods have been tried
before and were not as successful or as practical as other methods?  Maybe
they were tried but never caught on.  

If you don't want people emailing you to ask questions and share their
experiences then you should take off that notice on your web page.  It's the
one that says "To ask questions or share your experience, send me an e-mail".
 If you don't then you shouldn't complain.  I don't think the list is a place
for personal vendettas and especially one that doesn't seem to have
originated here.  

>Besides the kitty litter substrate, I don't inject CO2. Nothing wrong
>with adding it, but I would have to buy sugar in 50 lb. bags to get all
>my tanks hooked up to this. I also don't like the thought of keeping up
>with them, looking at there disgusting contents, or putting up with my
>wife whos limits I have already taken to the limit with my aquariums.
Thanks to this list I found out just what a big difference CO2 can make.  I
mix sugar water yeast and baking soda and it isn't disgusting at any stage.
 It's not hard to keep up with.  It lasts me a good 4 weeks.  I wouldn''t say
that's such a big chore.    

>I believe it was Andrew who did a great job of explaining that even in
>strong light extra CO2 is not needed.  

Once you have strong light I think CO2 becomes the limiting factor.  I say
this after  putting on my empiricist hat.  

>The other debates concern water stability. In this case I may also be 
>in disagreement with Andrew as well as John.
>I naturally get substantial pH swings in my low-tech methods. 6.2 in
>the morning to 6.8 in late aft., give or take a little on both ends. I like
to see these >swings because I consider it a quick sign thay I am
>getting good CO2 production.

That's a substantial pH shift in my eyes.  If you would add CO2 I don't think
you would get the swing in pH that you get now.  

>I also don't use heaters. Nothing against them, but just don't think
>water temperature stability is a big deal, unless you are into
>propagating specific fish or plants.  

You do have non-standard methods.  I think I can safely say that most of us
keep fish that need temperature stability.  

>I still get good growth on tropical plants like swords (but will admit it
might be faster >with more heat, but I'm in no hurry) and on my fish farm we
kept all kinds of fish
>with out heaters and it gets quite cold in Fl.  I have one tank with a very
hot halogen >bulb that gives me about a 6-8 deg. temp. flux  over 12 hrs. The
point is, both plants >and fish can take a great deal of
>change if done slow enough. 
>As always,  
>Dan Quackenbush

That doesn't sound like something a responsible tropical fish farmer would
do.  How cold did it get?  I don't think 12 hours is enough time for a 6-8
degree change.  

>I am not only a
>renegade but also a gambler. I am prompted to write this because at the time
>this writing I am losing most of my fish in my big tank to ick. Had the last
fish I
>added been in quarantine I could have easily removed the plants and treated
>fish. Or dispose of the $1.39 fish.

>Quarantine Tank- 10 gal. filter optional if planted, heater optional, light-
>window or clamp on lamp. Substrate sand over kitty litter. Stem plants
>plants) work best because they can be easily removed if treatment is
required. If
>you do need to remove them, do not put these plants in any other aquarium as
>they can carry the disease (especially ick).