phostphate and ash in carbon - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 12 Old 04-26-2013, 06:18 AM
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Guess that could be so. I think Ohio was one of the states that called for low phosphate detergents to help curb the algae growth in Lake Erie back in the 70s. Of course, a plantless tank is algae waiting for a happening unless you're careful. Since our little disco's light is closer to black light than daylight, we haven't seen any algae yet.

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post #12 of 12 Old 04-26-2013, 11:27 AM
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I'm only going to point out one issue which has not yet been mentioned in this thread, and that has to do with DOC, dissolved organic carbon.

"Carbon" as in activated carbon in filters removes many substances from the water, and depending upon the amount of whatever is being removed, the carbon does "give out," and at that point has been shown to release toxins back into the aquarium. Others have talked about this, so I will move on to DOC.

DOC is one thing carbon removes, and this is rather ironic, because DOC can do the job of the carbon better. To define DOC:
Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a general description of the organic material dissolved in water. Organic carbon occurs as the result of decomposition of plant or animal material.

This is why we leave the substrate alone in planted tanks; we want the organics to be broken down (by snails, then bacteria) so it forms DOC. Not only is DOC an essential source of CO2 for plants; it also offers the greatest protection against metal toxicity in natural waters, and in the aquarium. Metals readily bind to DOC. By removing DOC, the filter carbon is thus removing minerals that are essential to plants and also to fish to some extent.

As the fore-going should suggest, using carbon in non-planted tanks may not be so wise either. It all depends upon the state of the biology and water.

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Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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