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Old 11-03-2002, 12:10 AM   #1
zoe
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Lowering the pH?

How does one go about lowering the pH on a FOWLR tank? I have a 72 gal. The parameters are:

Amm-0mg/l
Nitrite-<0.3mg/l
pH 8.? (I think...the color is between 8.6 and 9.0 on the color card-I am using the Laborette Tetratest kit)
KH is 9

I have 80 lbs LS, 5 lbs LR 2 small ocellaris clowns, and 1 yellowtail damsel added a week ago-they show no signs of distress yet-I think the distress is all mine

I am also having a bit of trouble w/a cyano outbreak-could this be the cause of an increase in pH? I am treating w/erythromycin, a suggestion from the LFS. My temp is up as well, as high as 85 (trying to get it down, with fans. I have 1 NO flour. bulb, as well as 1 actinic.

Until I get a handle on the cyano, I will not be adding anything else...but I would like to add more LR at a later time-how much LR could I add at one time w/o triggering a major cycle all over again?
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Old 11-03-2002, 10:42 PM   #2
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Re: Lowering the pH?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zoe
How does one go about lowering the pH on a FOWLR tank? I have a 72 gal. The parameters are:

Amm-0mg/l
Nitrite-<0.3mg/l
pH 8.? (I think...the color is between 8.6 and 9.0 on the color card-I am using the Laborette Tetratest kit)
KH is 9
I would suggest getting a new test kit. If the graduations are that far apart, it's not a good one.

Quote:
I have 80 lbs LS, 5 lbs LR 2 small ocellaris clowns, and 1 yellowtail damsel added a week ago-they show no signs of distress yet-I think the distress is all mine
Not all of it...

Quote:
I am also having a bit of trouble w/a cyano outbreak-could this be the cause of an increase in pH? I am treating w/erythromycin, a suggestion from the LFS. My temp is up as well, as high as 85 (trying to get it down, with fans. I have 1 NO flour. bulb, as well as 1 actinic.?
Never listen to your LFS! Their sole purpose for existence is to take your money.

Quote:
Until I get a handle on the cyano, I will not be adding anything else...but I would like to add more LR at a later time-how much LR could I add at one time w/o triggering a major cycle all over again?
Adding more than a small amount will cause a cycle.
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Old 11-03-2002, 10:48 PM   #3
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Quote:
My temp is up as well, as high as 85 (trying to get it down, with fans. I have 1 NO flour. bulb, as well as 1 actinic.
I am curious why your tank temp is up to 85F when you just have 2 NO florecents. Is a heater stuck on someplace? What do you keep your tanks at normally?
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Old 11-04-2002, 12:20 AM   #4
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Need more info

Well, I'm not sure I agree totally with "never trust your LFS" , but in this case, I think they may have given bad advice. I would suggest siphoning off as much of the cyano as you can to start with. The use of the antibiotic will impede the growth of the beneficial bacteria that you are trying to get started. Your kH, IMO, is a little higher than it could be. This may have something to do with the high pH as kH is basically the buffering capacity of the water. What kind of water are you using? If it's R/o or distilled, how are you preparing it? What additives and how much? Have you checked for nitrates or phosphates? What kind of filtration are you using? If I understood correctly, you have 5lbs of live rock? This isn't enough to handle the ammonia in this size tank. The 80lbs of live sand is a BIG plus though and will help a lot. Is the tank located where sunlight can get to it for extended periods? I don't mean to bury you with questions, but there are so many variables to consider that we need more info to get to the bottom of the problem. The cyano, like other forms of algae, thrives in a nutrient rich environment. Send us more info and, in the meantime, siphon off the cyano and try cutting the amount of time the lights are on down some. Another thought: Although it will take longer, you might want to consider adding dry base rock and waiting for the beneficial organisms to grow onto it. Definitely check that heater too. I try to keep my tank at 78 degrees.
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Old 11-11-2002, 11:58 PM   #5
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I have no heater in my tank-been an ongoing battle w/heat -it runs between 80-85 deg., can't figure it out to save my life fish are ok with it so far. I don't have delicate species, just 2 little ocellaris and a damsel. LR will come as money permits, as is the usual with these things. I don't have a fancy test kit, just a tetratest laborette, which I used w/ my fresh tank (can be used w/salt as well, supposedly). It did fine while I was cycling. I know that I am going to have to upgrade my equip as I go-bought my system used, the tank itself would have set me back as much as the entire system.

I did use the e mycin-dosed the tank once, and the cyano problem has reduced. Syphoned and did a 10gal water change. No new growth on the substrate, just on the sides and back of the glass

As far as the LFS goes-don't think I would have bought any livestock from them, but the guy was fairly knowlegable (sp?) I think-I was going to get a clean up crew (although not there-tanks were kinda nasty) but he didn't know that. He said wait till I dose the tank before adding anything live, which surprised me.

Also, I am using RO water and Instant Ocean. I'm gonna get more base rock in a few days, I've been hesitant because of the fish, but I guess they can handle it.
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Old 11-12-2002, 12:18 AM   #6
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heat/water

Your heat problem puzzles me still . You have no heater? What is the ambient temp in your house? Also, what kind of filtration are you using? A submersible pump can add heat to the water...so can powerheads. Does the tank have glass tops or is it open? What kind of water are you using? You may be adding nitrate/phosphate with the water. Nitrate and phosphate are power food for algae. Give us some more details and we'll all try to help get to the bottom of the problem. I'm familiar with the "tank on a budget" thing too...been there, done that .
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Old 11-12-2002, 02:32 PM   #7
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Lets see...I have 3 PHs in my tank, but the heat problem was apparent before they went in. I "calibrated" my thermometer in cold water, then warm water, and it was accurate. I have a heater, but saw no reason to put it in just yet. I have a w/d, with bioballs (maybe where nitrate is coming from ) I have glass canopies on my tank, which I am afraid to leave open-don't want the fishies carpet surfing 8O . I am using water that I get from the Culligan dealer in 5 gal containers. It is RO, deozonated. Instant Ocean salt for water changes, plain water for top offs, although, I really don't have a lot of evap. My ambient temp is usually around 76 deg in the house. With that, I get about 84 in my tank. If it is 74 deg in the house, it is 82 in the tank, and so on. My tank is located in the back of my living rm., against the wall. No windows in the area. I live in Fla, so maybe that has something to do with it. I STILL have my AC on !!!!!

I need to get a more advanced test kit I think. Didn't think I'd need one, but I just need to cough up the cash.
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Old 11-12-2002, 03:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoe
I did use the e mycin-dosed the tank once, and the cyano problem has reduced. Syphoned and did a 10gal water change. No new growth on the substrate, just on the sides and back of the glass
Using erythromycin is bad enough, even if done correctly. Doing it incorrectly is a disaster in the making. It should only be used as a last resort.

Anti-biotics must be dosed until the organism being erradicated is completely gone. Otherwise, resistive strains of the bacteria develop, and the anti-biotic is no longer effective.

Erythromycin must be dosed every day for 5 consecutive days to be completely effective. Once you start, you must not stop.
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Old 11-12-2002, 04:37 PM   #9
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Well, I guess it's all a matter of learning as we go...
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