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Re: Substrate bubbles-good or bad?

"Bob/Georgia" <luna at mail2_nai.net> wrote:
> After many months of trial and error the plants in my aquarium are
> flourishing. During the last two weeks I notice fairly large bubbles being
> emitted from the substrate around many of my plants. Is this a good sign or
> bad?

Don't panic Bob. 

Usually its a sign of nitrate or ammonia being converted by bacteria to
nitrogen gas. I think this is typical of a substrate where a fertilizer
has been added or when there is some organic material like peat or soil
in the substrate.

If there is a "swampy" smell to the gas, there may also be some methane
gas and a little bit of methyl or ethyl mercaptan that gives the
characteristic smell.

If your plants are flourishing and growing well, they will be providing
oxygen into the substrate.

Steve Pushak                              Vancouver, BC, CANADA 

Visit "Steve's Aquatic Page"      http://home.infinet.net/teban/
 for LOTS of pics, tips and links for aquatic gardening!!!