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Re: Phosphate levels

Date: Sat, 24 Jan 1998 10:36:50 -0800
From: Olga Betts

>Hi all,

>What are the acceptable levels for phosphate in a heavily planted aquarium?
I have probably too many fish for ideal levels. Plus the terralit in the
gravel has, over time, become exposed on the top of the gravel though
uprooting plants and I fear it may be releasing phosphate into the water.
While I don't have a big algae problem I do have algae consistently growing
on the higher leaves of the plants. My nitrate and iron levels are fine. I
do regular water changes. I'm thinking of using a phosphate remover of some
sort in the filter. I have a Seachem phosphate test kit (don't know how
good that is). It gives ideal levels for salt water but only says that
freshwater tanks and those with plants can have higher levels. Please advise.

Probably as a result of adding lots of phosphate-based pH buffer, my
phosphate level is at least 10 ppm - it is well off the scale of the
Dry-Tab test kit.  The fish are OK.  My plants are not good, possibly
because I increased the light level only a couple of weeks ago from 1.2 W
per gal (US) to 2.4 w per gal (US).

I would also like to know the max. tolerable phosphate level for plants
(and fish).

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