self-sustaining curiosities
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self-sustaining curiosities

This is a discussion on self-sustaining curiosities within the Advanced Freshwater Discussion forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> i know people have mentioned concerned with 'no water changes' to be increasing TDS. with a test strip (i know people say these are ...

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self-sustaining curiosities
Old 03-16-2014, 08:19 AM   #1
 
self-sustaining curiosities

i know people have mentioned concerned with 'no water changes' to be increasing TDS.

with a test strip (i know people say these are unreliable)

a ph of 7.0 (maintained with a 7.0 buffer)
a Kh of 180
a gH of 60

i don't have anything to test tds
i know i have really high calcium levels (please don't argue, i know, dissolved enough calcium source in the tank - and have not removed it)

these numbers don't seem so high compared with what i am seeing others post about their tanks

Last edited by Flear; 03-16-2014 at 08:25 AM..
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:45 AM   #2
 
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Need more background info to draw any useful conclusions from this.
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:46 AM   #3
 
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Need more background info to draw any useful conclusions from this. Also, in order to even comment.
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Old 03-16-2014, 09:33 AM   #4
 
trying to get a handle on here my tank sits.

no water changes, no vacuums, a disaster waiting for many people

after asking lots of questions, peoples concerns are about hormones (i guess allomones as well - one person mentioned) and total dissolved solids

over time (and answers) there are many fish that simply cannot make it in tanks without regular, or even significant daily water changes. aside from pure luck - not gambling with that as a solution

---

i know my initial post is less a question and more a 'this is what's going on'

it makes it difficult to ask questions when i've got a few numbers, and i don't know what to do with it, i don't know what those numbers mean, ... it's not even more questions then answers, as i don't know what questions to ask

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i guess i'm looking for questions instead of asking any myself

as many know i'm looking for a self-sustaining tank, one that requires no maintenance (aside from replacing equipment that died due to failure)

there is painfully little on the subject as "crash" is about as arbitrary as it comes when someone asks why it failed. and that's often the explanation.

no on says "ran out of food & starved" "pH shift causing unplanned ammonia spike" "fish overpopulation issues"
it's painful that so little is considered when someones tank fails and things die. so little is talked about, and explanations given are relating to "well if regular maintenance was done properly, X, Y, & Z should have been maintained, ... and that wouldn't have been an issue" or "... regular maintenance would leave reasons for things dying to be A, B, C ..."

both explanations point to situations that can't even begin to be compared to a tank that doesn't have regular maintenance, ... comparing apples and oranges and someone brings in a pineapple.

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so i don't know what to make of the very few numbers i have, i don't know.
and i'm curious about input, i'm curious about what questions others can come up with, things i haven't considered to look at to suggest "hey, what about ..."

i'm fine doing all kinds of research on things to look into, ... i'm just drawing blanks about the water.

like the arbitrary certain fish require pristine water, ... but try to ask what that means and suddenly you get some clear answers that no one knows what it means at the heart of it.

---

so i've got some numbers (not a lot)
i look at other tanks and think "those numbers are higher"
i wonder "i've been given suggestions that say my numbers should be through the roof"

things are not making sense to my limited experience, and i'm really not sure what to make of things or what to do with it at all actually.

so i'm curious about direction.
otherwise recently my default has been looking into substrate nutrient compositions in light of nutrient deficiencies i am experiencing and deficiencies i hear others commonly experience as well.

so far removed from the water in a sense (potassium nutrients seem to be very water soluble)
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:49 PM   #5
 
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The forums or my internet were having issues when I posted so I couldn't properly edit my post. What I mean is you didn't post anything about how your aquarium was maintained, the size, the inhabitants, plants, tap water parameters, etc. not sure if you addressed it in that last post, I will read it in a bit just wante to say this (:
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Old 03-16-2014, 10:23 PM   #6
 
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self sustaining tanks sound awesome. kind of like a utopia of fish tanks but you want something that naturally flushes out the toxins and all the bad stuff that gets in the tanks but its a closed system it is impossible for that to happen. water changes happen naturally in nature. there is nothing natural about a fish tank so when you replicate nature you must perform water changes
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Old 03-17-2014, 01:14 AM   #7
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flear View Post
i know i have really high calcium levels (please don't argue, i know, dissolved enough calcium source in the tank - and have not removed it)
You think you have anyway. I'm not sure how much calcium is in cuttle bone or its actual solubility. Your carbonates are high, either thats your tap or the cuttlebone. gH isn't high but thats not to say it isn't mostly calcium that it is picking up.

In short single point test on a tank are very unhelpful. Test your source water for these things, report the results then we will go from there. I typically am far more interested in my tap water readings then my tank. Its usually easy enough to predict the tank once you know the tap readings and the chemistry.
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Old 03-17-2014, 09:20 AM   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pennyls9332 View Post
self sustaining tanks sound awesome. kind of like a utopia of fish tanks but you want something that naturally flushes out the toxins and all the bad stuff that gets in the tanks but its a closed system it is impossible for that to happen. water changes happen naturally in nature. there is nothing natural about a fish tank so when you replicate nature you must perform water changes
And I present... Duckweed, frogbit, and water lettuce! Natural nitrate sinks and surely other dissolved solids.

But a self sustaining tank with no maintainence is not possible. If I recall there's no really good ways to feed fish except with food so that is a necessary maintainence. What about adding water? You'll also have to keep trimming plants. If there is a food input something (plants?) needs to also remove the food or you'll have buildup of nasty compounds.

The reason people give poor answers for why a tank failed is because simply they don't know why, and it's impossible to figure out. There is too many variables. Unless you wish to set up a big science project and spend years you will never get any conclusive evidence except anecdotal evidence. The scientific method is very tedious. You must manipulate one variable at a time only. But that's the only way to get reproducable, accurate results. That's why nobody liked bob - he came here with anecdotal evidence that is, in essense, garbage.

But good luck
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Old 03-17-2014, 09:25 AM   #9
 
Penny,

for most water systems this is true, nutrients get flushed out, ... first farther downstream, ... then flushed out into the ocean, ... then flushed out into ... ???

just as often, the reverse is true (one of the reverses)

nutrients are added to a water system, ... first by trapped dust and dissolved nutrients & chemicals in the air, also by dissolved & suspended nutrients & particles while flowing across ground & rock as it makes it's way into the rivers to begin with.

nothing ever receives clean pure water in nature

it gets the runoff from where the water came from previously.

self-sustaining idea is based on:
'nothing old removed' - everyone gets this and argues this
'nothing new added' - seems to be the most ignored point
for an 'everything needed is already present' situation

everything in nature is a zero net gain
nothing in nature is ever "remove toxins" without something additional being added to begin the process
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Old 03-17-2014, 09:38 AM   #10
 
Austin,

thanks for the input, i know often people are asked about what water is going into their tank, ... i tend to forget as i am still adding water to replace what evaporates out, but no water changes

reminds me again to get test kits :) thanks

---

gotta head to the less than desirable lfs and get them there :/
not a fan of shopping at a place where the staff are only there to get payed and the store either has what they have on the shelf or they turn you away :(

i was going to get them at my preferred LFS, they didn't have them, and forgot (i'm bad for forgetting at times)
(my fault for not asking)

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yes the duckweed is amazing at being a nutrient sink

it's got calcium/lime deposits on the leaves for the older duckweed i scoop out on occasion.
i never would have thought of that being something to happen

i dono if it's my imagination as i see this on the duckweed that is far away from any source of water splashing (air bubbler bubbles popping little droplets and away from the HOB filter) could be my imagination still, ... either way surprising - i have heard duckweed (while edible to people) can be a source of kidney stones due to it's ability to have high calcium levels, i never would have thought it would do what i am seeing though.

then again it might be my imagination, would be really big coincidence if this is the case.
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