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Re: Light level / nutrient uptake

On Fri, 4 Dec 1998, Morten Karlsen wrote:

> Yesterday I asked myself; why does some advocate high light levels, so
> that plants can "use up" nutrients in the water column. Like when
> running in a new tank.
> Are plants "better" than algae at burning nutrients at higher light
> levels?

I like brightly lit tanks for two reasons:  1) you can grow a wider
variety of plants and 2) I think a brightly-lit aquariums are more
attractive than dimly lit aquariums.

To the best of my knowledge, plants are no better than algae at using up

Maintaining my brightly lit tanks is a fairly delicate balancing act -
much more difficult than maintaining more dimly lit tanks.  Some algae
grow very well under brightly lit conditions and one slip can produce a
tank full of green water, hair algae, or both.  In my brightly lit tanks
there also seems to be a tendency for one plant species to burgeon at the
expense of all the rest.

But when you get it all working a clean planted tank sparkling in a beam
of direct sunlight is a fantastic sight to behold.

Roger Miller
Basking drowsily in clear sunlight on a crisp desert morning.