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Are Plant Bubbles Really O2?

I haven't used CO2 a whole lot, but about 6 months ago I tried it on a new 
55 with two new 40 watt 5000K tubes for lighting.  Despite the fact that 
my lighting was substandard, I got loads of bubbles all over my plants 
(anubius, hygro, amazon swords etc.)   The bubbles got to be way too 
much and really detracted from the appearance of the tank (some leaves 
were coated with bubbles).  The plants never did all that well, I had poor 
growth and tons of algae. I finally tore the whole thing down and started 
again from scratch.

I would think that a pile of plants producing that much O2 would be 
growing like crazy and doing well.  But they were not.  Two possible 
explanations came to mind:

1.  The bubbles really were O2 and were produced by algae covering my 

2.  The bubbles were really CO2 coming out of solution, much like those 
bubbles you see inside a tall, cold glass of Budweiser.

Since I was using yeast CO2, and I saw no huge drop in pH, I doubt 
explanation 2, but I haven't heard others describe bubbles coming out of 

Has anyone ever tested the gas released from plants to make sure it really 
is oxygen, and not just excess CO2 coming out of the water?

Paul Chapman
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.