Confusing Parameters

Discussion in 'Indepth Topics of Disscussion' started by Basile, Apr 19, 2017.

  1. Basile

    Basile Well-Known Member

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    I'm a bit lost about my phosphate parameters. I have a huge macro-algae refugium, that helps with my stability of my reef. Now i've just found this table of parameters. For a Macro algae tank it says .5ppm and for my mixed reef it needs to be at 0 ppm. Right now its at .5 , so i'm ok for my refugium tank but not for the reef. How can i adjust this. Should i leave it at .5ppm to keep my macro's happy of the reef which is doing well i must admit.


    Ideal Reef Tank Macroalgae Tank Fish Only

    Ammonia 0 ppm 0 ppm 0 ppm 0 ppm

    Nitrite 0 ppm 0 ppm 0 ppm 0 ppm

    Nitrate 0 ppm 0-10ppm .5-10ppm 0-30ppm

    Calcium 425 400-450 400-450 350-450

    Alkalinity (meq/L) 3.5 2.5-4 meq/L 2.5-4 meq/L 2.5-4 meq/L

    Alkalinity dKH 10 8-11 dKH 8-11 dKH 8-11 dKH

    Specific Gravity 1.025 1.025-1.028 1.022-1.028 1.022-1.028

    Temperature (F) 79 73-83 73-83 73-83

    pH 8.2 8-8.5pH 7.8-8.5pH 7.8-8.5pH

    Magnesium 1250 1250-1400 1250-1350 1100-1400

    Phosphate 0 ppm 0 ppm <.5 ppm <.5 ppm

    Sorry for the columns doesn't seem to accept.
     
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  2. StevesLEDs

    StevesLEDs RS Sponsor

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    It's definitely a double edged sword there. Algae requires phosphates to grow, and fish/corals can only tolerate very small amounts of phosphates.

    Based on what you said, and what's in your personal description, the two tanks are connected. That said, it will be nearly impossible to have different values if there is constant water flow.

    Usually the way it works is whatever trace amount of phosphates the fish create, then that is usually more than adequate for really good macro growth.

    If what I said doesn't make sense, would you please provide a bit more clarification on how these two systems are or aren't connected? (Intermittent/constant water exchange, etc)

    -Jeff
     
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  3. DaveK

    DaveK Well-Known Member

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    If the fish and corals are doing good, leave things the [insert favorite bard word] alone. You are likely to do more harm than good by messing with parameters.

    Keep in mind that macro algaes can consume a lot of phosphate and nitrate, so as they grow, you may see the phosphate level decrease.

    As a note, because I don't know if this directly applies to a SW reef, in FW planted tanks you generally want to keep the nitrate to phosphate ratio about 10 to 1. If you have your reef with nitrated at 5 ppm and phosphates at .5, you'd be about the same ratio. As I said, I do not know if this is applicable, but I'd be willing to give it a try, and only adjust those levels if I had a problem with nuisance algae or the macro algae wasn't growing at all.
     
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  4. Basile

    Basile Well-Known Member

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    The reef and refugium are connected in 2 ways. They both share the same sump with each its return pump and the refugium feeds the main tank by gravity via a bulkhead and a pipe running down to the reef, yes the refugium is higher.

    [​IMG]
     
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  5. chipmunkofdoom2

    chipmunkofdoom2 Well-Known Member

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    +1 to Dave's advice.

    I would just leave things alone. This isn't something simple like dosing calcium or carbonate (alkalinity) to exact levels. Keeping nitrate and phosphate levels low is difficult enough.. keeping them at specific levels is going to be so impractical that it borders on impossible.
     
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