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RE: natural light intensity

> From: Stephen Pushak <teban at powersonic_bc.ca>
> Subject: natural light intensity

> I'll try my question again. Didn't get much response last time.

> How feasible is it to use natural light (no sunlight) to light an
> aquatic plant tank? I have a hunch that its important to get about a
> half an hour to an hour of sunlight.
> [snip, in Phillipines]

I have five tanks in my office.  The window faces west (Colorado mountain
foothils), so actual "exposure" to light is from about 2:00PM to ~6-7PM
each day.  We have some trees in the way, so this is not full exposure.

The 55g and 29g are in the window and get the most light.  Great
growth from anacharis, bacopa, vallisneria, anubias, and rhizome
plants.  However, I also get the greatest hair-algae growth in those
two also (the 55g with lots water movement never gets bad, the 29g
with no water movement I have to remove algae every two weeks
until I find a fish that reliably eats the stuff).

The other tanks, 10gs and 5g, had hair algae problems until I moved
them from the window to my desk.  Same plants, grow great with
only indirect light and the hair algae just dies off like magic.  None 
of the tanks have electric light, except for the office flourescent
room lights in my ceiling.

With the low west-facing light at only 4 or so hours a day, I would
say plant growth is "good".  However, I would prefer a southern
exposure with a full 12 hours of direct light a day, if I could.

charleyb at cytomation_com