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Can you go low maintance with co2?

Furgan

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10 Jul 2017
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Scotland
Is it possible to have a low maintance tank with co2 (low bubble count). Where doing water changes every 3-4 weeks and plant maintance?
 

Tim Harrison

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Yes you can; it'll work best if you aim to establish a high plant biomass.

You can aim for a dark green drop checker, your plants will still benefit enormously from the additional carbon.
Plants that require relatively low to medium CO2 concentration and light (see Tropica's Easy and Medium plant range http://tropica.com/en/plants/), will work best.
They will still need fertz, but a fraction of full EI.

You will need to do more water changes than once every 3-4 weeks at first though.
But once you've established a high plant biomass and the tank becomes biologically stable, it should be possible to get away with a 50% water change every 2-4 weeks depending on plant growth etc.

To make it work well you'll have to adjust the various factors, light, fertz, CO2 etc to find the right balance.
But going lower-energy and therefore lower maintenance will give you more wriggle room when it comes to doing that and making mistakes.

Take a look at George's Slow Burner https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/na-65cm-slow-burner.37285/
 

Chubbs

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25 Oct 2017
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Just dose very little if at all and stock smaller fish like Tetra. A higher capacity filter will also help.

Plants are natural filters anyway. So heavily plant. Thing like anubias, amazon swords, crypts etc.
 

Parablennius

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This is what I ended up doing. Started out low tech but very heavily planted. Came across a chart showing a particular plant growth rate relative to CO2, showed a big increase up to around 15ppm CO2 after which growth levelled out somewhat.
So, now I inject CO2 to an estimated 15ppm, made up 2DKH solution for drop checker, so still lime green/yellowish at lights on. I use Darrel's DWI and dose LushMax heavily. If I don't, the floating Ceratopteris nicks all the ferts and my Limnobium tells me so. Change 30% per week. DIY HFM over a weir. Lighting PAR is unknown as it's a DIY programmable LED system. I only keep easy plants but the Jungle val leaves reach over 4 feet!
 

Furgan

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Thanks lads, that’s perfect information and what I was aiming for. Heavy plant from start, small co2 bubble count, with weekly ferts, low light and low stocking
 
Joined
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All the advice above is solid, I actually run 3 low tech tanks with 24/7 co2 just a really low bubble count and the tank thrives, i dose a small amount of all in one fert 2 times a week. Low light is the key.

27292665189_f313b835a0_z.jpg
IMG_1008 by Colm Doyle, on Flickr

24956403378_42f06c0713_z.jpg
IMG_0881 by Colm Doyle, on Flickr

23964569037_b10a7aeb8b_z.jpg
IMG_0847 by Colm Doyle, on Flickr
 

Furgan

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10 Jul 2017
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Scotland
They are fab Colm. The 24 hour dosing of co2 how does this effect the water perimeters. As the normal rule of co2 is turn on 30 mins before lights on and then off 30 mins before lights off. Interesting to know the mechanics on what’s happpening.

I think I’ll play with the standard co2 period (with low bubble count), with my low light output. I’ve got tnc complete liquid ferts so I’ll use that and just see how it does. Weekly water changes is no biggie at the start as it’s settling in and I can play around with the settings and get the right balance until I’m happy before adding live stock.

I would rather get shrimp delivered when the temp is warmer anyway. As all I’m looking to stock with is some shrimp any ways and a few Asolene Spixi snails.
 
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