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Old 10-21-2003, 04:16 PM   #1
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Riddle me this...(Q about Nitrate Levels)

My regular LFS had not mixed any salt water yet, so I strolled into one of Austin's other LFS's to buy some salt water. I have dealt with this LFS a billion times, and they are purdy reputable, but anyhooo...I told them I needed salt water cause I was gonna do a water change to bring my Nitrates down 'cause they were way too high. He got this funny look on his face and asked how high they were. I responded with 50 ppm, and expected him to be shocked, however he only laughed and told me my other LFS was #*$%*%)@&^#$...He walked me over to his show tank (which is beautiful and has been filled with great coral for years) and quickly did a Nitrate test...TWO-HUNDRED PPM!!! He then tested his smaller show tank, and abra cadabra...200 ppm again.

I've read multiple times here, that Nitrates greater than X are deadly to invertabrates...If this is true, shouldn't all the corals in these 200ppm tanks be mush by now? I know for a fact that they have been in the tanks for over 2 years.
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Old 10-21-2003, 05:26 PM   #2
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I've read multiple times here, that Nitrates greater than X are deadly to invertabrates...
I don't know that I've ever read this here, harmful...for sure, but not necessarily from the nitrates them selves, but from what the production of those nitrates does to the water chemistry. I will say I am quite surprised that the nitrates are that high and you can even see the corals for the algae, but there are exceptions to every rule. If I had a tank that measured that high in nitrate, I would have an algae problem without running any lights, LOL.

What was the brand of the test kit? Ask him what it measures? if it measures nitrogen nitrate it needs to be divided by 4 to remove the weight of the nitrogen, which would put him at 50ppm, if it measures nitrate, then he is one lucky sucker
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Old 10-21-2003, 05:34 PM   #3
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I'm not sure the brand, but it was a little test strip he dipped into the water. He handed me the color chart and had me read it, so i'd believe it. I don't think the test strips are as accurate as other methods, but the diff'rence would me minimal. It was a test for Nitrate, and zero bad algae in the tank.

I won't say who or where, but I've read quite a few times, and heard from my LFS that Nitrates are toxic at like >50

I have found humor in the fact that I can test my water levels down to the 1,000th of a decimal point in some cases, and I'm supposed to be as exact as possible...and yet I can go to 8 different people and get 8 different reasons as to why i'm having x problem...hehehe...good think i'm exact
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Old 10-21-2003, 05:41 PM   #4
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an lfs telling you another lfs is full of $hit. thats funny considering all of them ive gone to were lfs's full of college kids tellin me that 65watts would burn and bleach out the corals in my nano tank. OOOkkk kid, whatever you say. This forum is the best source for info and lsf's are best left to people who trust kids too much.
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Old 10-21-2003, 05:41 PM   #5
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I won't say who or where, but I've read quite a few times, and heard from my LFS that Nitrates are toxic at like >50
My opinion on that is stated above.

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I don't think the test strips are as accurate as other methods, but the diff'rence would me minimal.
I'm not sure what they measure, that would be key to me, I would think they would be accurate (in what they measure) to about 50 ppm give or take.
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Old 10-21-2003, 06:04 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by biotoxin
an lfs telling you another lfs is full of $hit. thats funny considering all of them ive gone to were lfs's full of college kids tellin me that 65watts would burn and bleach out the corals in my nano tank. OOOkkk kid, whatever you say. This forum is the best source for info and lsf's are best left to people who trust kids too much.
I hear ya.. don't forget though that there are jewels out there, for example Terry (advisor here) runs a shop.. unfortunately he is not here in the USA or that would be the first place I would go. I know it though and Terry will probably sadly tell you.. that there's always gonna be vendors/salespeople/stores that place money above all else and don't do it because they love it and are very knowledgeable.
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Old 10-21-2003, 06:04 PM   #7
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all of your LFS hatred aside, bio , but regardless of their age I respect their opinion, just as I respect the opinion of all here. I hunt down as many different opinions as I can find, and somewhere in between lies a suitable answer. I am no marine biologist, so I don't know if 0 or 200 is better, but if my LFS is running a sucessful tank with 200+ Nitrates, so they can't be all that harmful...or can they?

My first reaction is "jeebus tap dancing cristo! That's a lotta nitrates!" But i'm not gonna let my nitrates go nuts because they do it...I figured i'd throw it at ya'll
I am currently keeping mine below 20 with weekly 5 gal aqua changes.
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Old 10-21-2003, 06:20 PM   #8
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I dont have any "hatred" toward my local lfs, other than the fact they wana charge me $200 for a cpr bak pak 2 *laugh*. To me thats expected at a privately owned shop, raised prices and all. Its places that give bad advice about taking care of saltwater tanks. I can call and get 3 different answers from people that work at the same place. I just feel more comfortable with people that have done this as a hobby as opposed to those that do it for extra cash on the side. I appreciate their help and ive gotten great deals from local lfs's on lr and other stuff. So please dont mistake my ranting for hatred i just like to see more people enjoy sw tanks as opposed to people ripping their hair out from them
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Old 10-21-2003, 06:30 PM   #9
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i just like to see more people enjoy sw tanks as opposed to people ripping their hair out from them
Well said, and the main reason we are here, well not just SW but FW and Ponds to!!
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Old 10-21-2003, 08:34 PM   #10
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just givin' you a hard time biotox I knew you were joking.

is having Nitrate 0 a bad thing? Does a reef need it?
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