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Old 01-09-2014, 04:18 AM   #321
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PubMed Central Image Viewer.
This one is relevant for the first 80 days (at day 80 they switched it to salt water to see if the same bacteria lived, for the record they are different bacteria)

It's from the Dr Tim paperNitrospira-Like Bacteria Associated with Nitrite Oxidation in Freshwater Aquaria
I've seen other charts that are similar in other places, but this one pops to mind fastest.
I do think you are supposed to SEE nitrItes by day 10. I get concerned if someone says they haven't seen them by 2 weeks.

Yeah, they eat alkalinity and produce acid.
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:19 AM   #322
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I also think 4ppm more than fish produce.
I agree it is way way more than they produce
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:03 AM   #323
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I agree it is way way more than they produce

Does this mean lower doses of ammonia would still cycle and reduce the possibility of a ph crash?
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:22 AM   #324
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I've just been looking at an article. It states that 80% of bacteria energy goes on co2 fixation as part of the Calvin cycle. Lower ph has more c02 so it could mean that co2 takes precedence over ammonia in this instance. Maybe why the cycle slows at 6? I'm at work so can't look in to this with more detail. Another question I have is does lower ph mean less oxygen? Oxygen is already reduced by turning the heat to 30 degrees and increase bacteria metabolism meaning more oxygen demand more reduction in alkalinity and more production of acid = ph crash?
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:24 AM   #325
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Does this mean lower doses of ammonia would still cycle and reduce the possibility of a ph crash?

That's what I would of thought. I've seen anywhere from 2 up to 5ppm suggested as a dosing rate. I thought 4 was just to bullet proof for a tank at stocking capacity. However most shop stock is (over here anyway) not fully grown.
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:31 PM   #326
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I was also under the impression that as well as consuming alkalinity, acidity was produced by the bacteria during the breakdown if ammonia. I need to find this also. That would be doubly important if this was the case. What surprises me though is that people with relatively normal ph struggle. Jen can you find the paper that gives average times for ammonia levels to decrease and nitrites to appear then decrease? I can't find it anywhere but I also think a lot of people are expecting nitrites to drop sooner.

The 7.1 mg CO3/mg NH4 number that Jen quoted is just the alkalinity consumed buffering the protons created by ammonia oxidation. Any direct carbonate consumption would be in addition to that.


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I've just been looking at an article. It states that 80% of bacteria energy goes on co2 fixation as part of the Calvin cycle. Lower ph has more c02 so it could mean that co2 takes precedence over ammonia in this instance. Maybe why the cycle slows at 6? I'm at work so can't look in to this with more detail.
CO2 levels are mostly related to air concentration of CO2 and water temperature; that is to say, CO2 impacts pH much more than pH impacts CO2. CO2 would essentially be constant at all pHs for an open system like what we have (where atmospheric CO2 can't be reduced/increased). At lower pHs, you will drive off your carbonate buffers in the form of CO2, but that's the buffering system working as intended.

Also important to note is that the calvin cycle is separate from ammonia/nitrite oxidation, so I don't think that they would interact in the way you think they would (although I might be misunderstanding you).

If I had to guess why the cycle starts to sputter at low pH, I would probably guess that it had something to do with the bacteria maintaining a proton gradient across their membrane (which is part of the nitrification process) or due to sequestration of ammonia in the ammonium form where it can't be as easily accessed by bacteria's machinery (similar to the detoxification of ammonia at low pH in fish).

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Another question I have is does lower ph mean less oxygen?
No. I don't know of anything off the top of my head that relates oxygen concentration to pH. Like CO2, the main factors in oxygen level is mainly temperature and atmospheric levels, with surface consumption and surface agitation being secondary (but still important) factors.
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:34 PM   #327
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An interesting idea would be to recommend dosing bicarbonate (baking soda) whenever you dose ammonia in accordance with the acid production/base consumption of the ammonia dosed. That would be about 1 dKH per 2.5 ppm ammonia, give or take a bit. That way you'll only be consuming the buffer you add and not be limited to whatever's in your tap.
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:47 PM   #328
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Just something that really ought to be said. I've seen several comments regarding 'the forums guide' and things of that nature. Just wanted to make sure that nobody is under the assumption that there is a guide written or endorsed by the site, nor will there be.


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Old 01-09-2014, 05:56 PM   #329
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An interesting idea would be to recommend dosing bicarbonate (baking soda) whenever you dose ammonia in accordance with the acid production/base consumption of the ammonia dosed. That would be about 1 dKH per 2.5 ppm ammonia, give or take a bit. That way you'll only be consuming the buffer you add and not be limited to whatever's in your tap.
Since posing those questions earlier today I have been doing lots of reading. We are not scientists or even close. Im just asking questions as they crop up. I read a lot today and understand now that co2 effects ph. I read a lot about yhe importance of ph stability and buffering capacity and was going to suggest the addition of baking soda as a mandatory as to eliminate the possibity of a ph crash.

If people were cycling in a tank that had plants, we would expect ph to drop further at night since the nitrification process would continue round the clock. At 4ppm ammonia bacteria would be using buffering capacity up. Co2 levels would increase at night which may cause a crash? I know oh would go back to normal levels during the day but what if it got to a level that stopped bacteria from working? If someone had a low ph and kh to begin with or normal ph but not a great buffering capacity.

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Old 01-09-2014, 05:57 PM   #330
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Just something that really ought to be said. I've seen several comments regarding 'the forums guide' and things of that nature. Just wanted to make sure that nobody is under the assumption that there is a guide written or endorsed by the site, nor will there be.


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