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Re: More musing on water change.

In a message dated 7/25/02 12:02:19 PM, Edd.Kray at rf_doe.gov writes:

<<  I can "start" a fresh 2 gallon with water from
my established tanks and have it healthy  and ready for fish immediately.
Is it unfair to attribute this to a positive characteristic of this used
water that Charlie wants to flush?  >>

There is some sort of happy medium that can be reached here. In the ideal 
state, I have seen this demonstrated with brook trout, a complete flow 
through system is utilized. This is sort of the way it works in nature in a 
flowing stream or a spring or brook fed pond. Of course, whatever is upstream 
affects the quality of that water. The water going in must be acceptable for 
the fish - no chlorine, right TDS, etc. However in the real state of 
aquariums, this is difficult to achieve. What we do is try to stay at a 
reasonable/acceptable level of waste products by a combination of water 
changes and filtration - physical. chemical and biological. There is no 
question in my mind that 100% water changes are beneficial to the fish, IF, 
the change is not a shock to them because of osmotic pressure changes or 
because of introduction of chlorine, ammonia, chloramines, etc.
    As Charles points out, there is no way to get back to the initial state 
by partial water changes. I have seen several accomplished old time breeders 
change the water by dumping the container through a net and putting them back 
in new water. It works, if you do that regularly. What does not work is to 
let it get beyond the stage where the fish won't be shocked by the water 
change back to the initial state. I have also, inadvertently, siphoned all 
the water out of a 55 gallon tank and replaced it with tap water that had 
only been dechlorinated. The fish thrived on that situation. Now the question 
becomes -- How do you do this with 100+ containers of miscellaneous sizes, 
shapes and position? I don't know yet, but I am still searching.

Lee Harper
Media, PA
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