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Re: pH fluctuation and fish load etc.

Karen Randall wrote:

>If Alex's pH really _is_ going no higher than 7.5, then your explanation is
>certainly a strong possibility, although my preference would always be to
>lower fish and feeding loads and supplement CO2 rather than go to strong
>aeration.  Particularly if you are serious about plants.  High fish loads
>and feeding will inevitably lead to other problems down the line.

Can I please have some input here regarding the fishload in this tank?
There are 5 clown loaches (4-6" TL)
                  3 Pearl Gouramis
                  4 SAEs
                  2 Dwarf Gouramis
                  5 Harlequin Rasboras
                  4 Coydora Aeneus
                  2 Apisto. borellii + 15 juveniles (50% adult size)

Is this a heavy fishload for a 120 gallon aquarium?  (The Apistogramma were
'supposed' to be in retirement, except they decided to surprise me!)  The
only 'pig' fish are the loaches, and the only way I can catch them is to
drain the water out of the tank until there is only 3" left, then scoop them
by hand.  Not to mention, I would need another large home for them, which is
not in the works at this time.  Eventually the borellii load will decrease.
These fish don't live long - both parents are now >18 months and are showing
their age.  There are only 2 females among the young ones, so I'm not
concerned about having a population explosion.

In spite of the pH fluctuations the fish do not appear distressed since I've
increased the surface turbulence.  I have a pinpoint pH meter which was very
recently callibrated, so I think I am getting the correct readings.  I have
decreased both duration and intensity of lighting for now until I set up the
CO2 system.  (tomorrow).

Do I have to keep the surface water movement as is even with the CO2, or
will I be able to decrease it?  Or decrease it during the day so that I
don't lose CO2 and increase it at night for a while until the plants start
to "do their thing" i.e. produce more O2?

G. Kadar