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Re: [AGA-Member] Low-light tanks & CO2

A buffer will raise you KH, not lower it. The easiest way
to lower the pH is to add a mild acid. Adding CO2 will do
this since a portion of it in water forms carbonic acid. IF
your tapwater is 7.5, you shouldn't have any problem
getting the pH down to discus-target levels by adding more
CO2. If your KH was 3 degrees, 30ppm of CO2 would drop you
down to a pH of 6.5. So with tapwater of 7.5, and not
adding other acids, CO2 should do the trick without ever
getting to harmful levels.

I would probably raise the KH a couple of degrees by adding
some calcium carbonate or sodium bicarbonate with each
water change. A little buffering will keep the pH a bit
steadier. Even if you raise the KH up a couple of degrees,
you can still get a nice 6.5 pH without overdosing on CO2.

Adding CO2 doesn't require adding more light although the
inverse is not necessarily true.  YOu might find you need
to add a littel more ferts or fish food -- but with discus,
that is usually not a problem, given their ravenous
appetites. ;-)

hope that helps,

--- Adam Michels <amichels@trafficleader.com> wrote:

> Hi, everybody. I joined AGA only a few weeks ago; I was
> wondering why
> everyone liked mosses so much until I received the new
> quarterly!
> Anyway, I'm confused about achieving equilibrium in my
> low-light plant
> tank, and I could really use your advice.
> Tank specs:
> Tank: 75 gallon
> Lighting: 4 28W T5 full-spectrum(2) and 6700K(2), 1 20W
> fluorescent, 1
> 15W fluorescent
> Filter: Fluval 304
> Substrate: 2/3 Flourite, 1/3 Eco-Complete
> CO2: 2 Hagen Nutrafin DIY yeast reactors + 2 ladders
> Heating: 2 250W Stealth
> Set-up: 2 10lb. plus driftwood stumps
> Plants: 1 large Aponogeton boivinarius, 2 Aponogeton
> madagascarensis, 1
> Aponogeton crispus, several odd smaller Aponogetons, 12+
> Crypts, 1 large
> Kleiner Bar Sword, 1 Echinodorus major, 1 Echinodorus
> osiris, several
> large Anubias barteri tied to driftwood, mid-sized
> Anubias congensis,
> nana, azfeli, frazeri, Sagitarria subulata, many
> Sagittaria pusilla
> (Dwarf Sags), many Echinodorus tenellus and some java
> moss
> Fish: Five 4-5" Discus, five Roseline Barbs (denisoni), 3
> spotted
> headstanders, 1 gold nugget plec (small), 1 rubbernose
> plec (small), 1
> pair killifish (Nothobranchius kafuensis) and 4 emerald
> cories
> Tap water: 7.5 pH, 1 dH(17.8 ppm) carbonate hardness
> Tank temp: 81-82 degrees F
> Additives: Kent Freshwater Plant liquid fert. every water
> change,
> crushed coral in the filter bed to raised KH and GH 
> Water Parameters: NH4=0, NO2=0, NO3=less than 12 ppm, pH
> 7.5 before
> turning off lights (haven't checked morning reading)
> I wish I had a picture. Things are fine other than I do a
> lot of water
> changes. But I want my plants to flourish, and the fish
> to enjoy water
> parameters similar to their natural habitat. The problem
> lies in that I
> can't get my pH down. I do so many water changes for the
> discus that the
> driftwood doesn't have a chance to release enough tannic
> acid fast
> enough, and I don't add enough C02 to lower the pH.
> Should I buffer? I
> want my pH under 7.0, for sure.  
> Am I going about this correctly? I raised my discus in a
> species tank,
> bare-bottom, but they don't seem to mind the new
> additions. The killis
> look hilarious, but I don't have any where else to put
> them!
> Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
> _______________________________________________
> AGA-Member mailing list
> AGA-Member@thekrib.com
> http://lists.thekrib.com/mailman/listinfo/aga-member

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