Re: Suggestion about restocking to fight algae

Re: clay pot laterite
> Erik Olson wrote:
> > From: gomberg at wcf_com (Dave Gomberg)
> > 
> > Well, thanks to the suggestion made recently on the list, I have found a source
> > for laterite that is pretty reasonable.  What I propose to do is this:  form
> > the laterite into coin-sized pieces and fire them.
> This is the stuff used to make clay pots and bricks, no?
> [snip]... I suggested this a few months back... 
> brought about a small "hmm... do we get better plant growth in clay pots?" 
> topic.

I remember the discussion. Two points from that if I recall:
1) firing the clay alters it's properties (chemical) and would greatly reduce
it's CEC (cation exchange capacity) which is one of the main benefits of using
laterite, clay, dirt or vermiculite (a special kind of clay)
2) the other important property of laterite which pottery clay does NOT possess
is an abundance of iron silicates and iron oxides. We surmise that this iron is
available to plants (esp. Cryptocorynes) and this is supported by experiments
performed by Horst and Kipper who founded the Dupla organization and wrote "The
Optimum Aquarium". They are the pioneers of the use of laterite.

I would urge anyone with a technical leaning to read the Jim Kelly articles on
laterite and other substrate additives. One of these days I intend to do a
substrate write up for all you to summarize what I understand of the research
done by some of the people on the net.

Shaji wrote:
> Subject: Re: Suggestion about restocking to fight algae 
> [snip] 
> Figuring out what's wrong with your CO2 setup and fixing it is
> probably the single biggest thing you can do to get your plants
> growing.  You may have had a bad reactor or a leaky CO2 system.

Yes, I strongly agree with this.

> You could also try some inexpensive floating plants like Ceratopteris
> (Watersprite) that grow quickly.  Some other plants that also grow
> fast are Hygro polysperma, Hygro difformis (Water wisteria), Rotala
> rotundifolia, Ceratophyllum (Hornwort) and Elodea.

My favourites because they reproduce so quickly are H. poly and Salvinia.
Salvinia reproduces like crazy in sufficient light. If your tank doesn't
have strong light, put some in a bucket in sunlight and keep harvesting
it to your tank. It also reduces the amount of light going to the bottom
of the tank. Later on you will probably want to remove it. Everything
Shaji has said is excellent advice so I can only corroborate. One advantage
at being the administrator is you get first chance to reply to queries.
I think it's good to get a few opinions even if they mainly agree. Even
better if there is a little disagreement because then we all learn
(hopefully ;-)

> From: nfrank at nando_net (Neil Frank)
> Subject: Re: AGA for Canadians
> Our bank account is in the U.S., so checks need to be in U.S. dollars.

Any chance of the AGA getting a Canadian account or accepting Visa to
make it a bit easier on us Canadian? I have my subscription and I find
it highly informative. I think I need to order some of the old issues 
because there is a wealth of information there. A recent issue had an
excellent article by Liisa on classifying SAE and the other look-alikes.
Liisa is our resident SAE expert! (wish I could get some; our local
Aquarium Services is still trying) By the way, Liisa, what do Flying
Foxes eat anyway? (precious little from my observations)

 - Steve