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Dosing a shell dweller tank

alip01

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16 Apr 2008
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130
I've recently set up a Rekord 60 shell dweller tank, which holds about 40L by the time the substrate and rocks are in there. I've added some java fern, some weeping moss and vallis, though we're not really talking about heavy planting, just a little bit. I've thought that it could do with some fertilising, and as I've got dry ferts for my planted tank, so I've been hoping to do something with them. :)

The part I've been having difficulty with is the water change schemes that EI etc. require. The shell dwellers don't appreciate large or frequent water changes, so I've been doing 25% every 3 weeks, which they seem to be fine with, there are only 4 of them. I've thought about making some of James' all in one solution, but making the macros in one bottle, and the trace in another, so I wouldn't need the Ascorbic Acid and Potassium Sorbate. However I can't decide if this would be suitable, and whether I would need to do more water changes, which would mean that I couldn't dose them.
 

ceg4048

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Hi,
I can't see any reason you can't just do a very light dosing. Those plants you list are very hardy. If you limit the level of growth rate then by default you limit the necessity for manic water changes. The large and frequent water changes required by high tech EI (and similar) schemes are needed due to organic waste production as a result of high growth rates due to high lighting, CO2 injection and heavy nutrient uptake. If these factors are moderated then you automatically moderate water change requirements.

Cheers,
 

alip01

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16 Apr 2008
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Right, I had thought along those lines, but Paulo said I'd need to do big water changes if I was dosing the DIY TPN+, but he wasn't too sure about it. :?

What sort of amount should I use of DIY TPN+ and how often do you think I should dose it? I see Tropica say 5 mL per 50 L once a week, would that be alright?
 

ceg4048

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Well he's right if you were to be dosing the levels required by his tank. His is a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle environment so his dosing levels are adjusted for that environment. It's really hard to say for your tank, because it's not sitting here in front of me and I don't know what's in your tap water and so on and so forth, but if you have low light and if it's low or non CO2 enriched, then generally you could just start with the bottle instructions, as you've mentioned, and see how it goes.

if you have a sufficient level of plant biomass and if you are not using either gas or liquid carbon, you wouldn't have to do any water changes at all and your shell dwellers would be healthy and ecstatic... :idea:

Cheers,
 

alip01

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16 Apr 2008
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130
OK, I'll try 3ml a week and see if I see any improvements, and then I'll step it up a bit if I don't, but not by much. :)

I had considered not doing any waterchanges, but I don't think the plant mass is there yet, perhaps when the plants have got a bit more mature I shall reduce the frequency of the water changes even more.
 

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