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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V3 #1312

>  I was just checking out my favorite planted fish tank and noticed all
>was not good.  The first thing I did was test pH and found it very low
>(below 5).  So I added a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate to raise it. 
>The pH crash must be attributed to the newly added DIY CO2, but my tap
>water is so hard that I'd figure it would never be a problem.
>  Water out of the tap:
>- - Calcium hardness 75 ppm
>- - Total hardness 119 ppm
>- - Alkalinity 66 ppm
>- - pH 8.1
>  I use Seachem's Acid Buffer to lower pH to 7 and usually drops to 6.6
>with CO2, but this morning it was dangerously low.  I literally lost a
>female flagfish (I can't find her anywhere) and the male died in the
>night.  Other fish are pretty stressed.  I hope I can save them.
>  Any suggestions as to what I can do to help/prevent the situation?
>Jason Miller
>Sherwood Park, AB
Don't use the Seachem buffer. Your water is fine if you use the CO2
properly. Your Kh is great.
Mine's(tap water) not far off from yours. Main thing is to get a consistent
flow of CO2 into your tank that gets the Ph down to 6.8 to 7.0 range from
the 8.1 tap.
I suspect you weren't getting enough CO2 at first and overcompensated with
adding lots of CO2 and also by adding the acid buffer. Could this be the
I've done it in the past myself. Yes, I killed fish in an acid bath too. A
RO water mistake.
Check the Ph at the beginning of the photoperiod and at the end. Try to get
your range between .2 and .4 between the readings. So as the lights come on
the ph is 6.6 and when they go off Ph is 7.0.
Keep checking and maintaining the CO2. Find a more stable way to inject CO2
into the tank.
Do small water changes to raise the Ph back up if it crashes down. Slowly
bring the Ph up, don't do it fast. You don't need buffers for your tank. How
are you injecting CO2 and how much CO2 are you adding? I assume your using
yeast for CO2? You'll need to get a handle on CO2 so if possible remove the
fish, till you get a system that works well for you. Check APD archives and
the Krib for more info on this and check the Kh/Ph/CO2 table. You can vary
the recipe with the yeast to get the flows you need of CO2 and you can also
inject CO2 in different ways to control how much goes into solution. These
will be the two (at least two) things you'll be able to play around with to
lower your Ph. You'll be very happy once you get the Ph in a good range and
so will your plants! Good luck and keep testing to see were your at.
Tom Barr