What does Conductivity mean in Water? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 04-24-2012, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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What does Conductivity mean in Water?

Well, the thread name is basically the question.
I have never heard anyone talking about conductivity in the aquarium until I started doing hardcore research into rainbowfish.
For example, a species conductivity range is:
Conductivity: 12−646 µS/cm (sorry it's in cm, Americans).

I'm just wondering, what does this mean? Is it relevant to anything? Should it be measured? That seems like quite a wide range, so I'm guessing not.

taking a break from fish-keeping.
3 lovely male betta still keep me company.
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post #2 of 8 Old 04-24-2012, 09:25 PM
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Basically the waters ability to carry electrical current in relation to the amount of dissolved solids / ions.

Less ions = less ability to conduct electricity , more ions = more ability to carry electricity.

Here is a good article explaining it a bit more..

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

220g Still sitting empty (come on Lottery I need the numbers to come up!)
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post #3 of 8 Old 04-24-2012, 09:32 PM Thread Starter
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That's interesting.
It's like hardness, and toxins in one? It seems like it'd be useful, yet not needed...
I don't even want to know how much the tester costs.

taking a break from fish-keeping.
3 lovely male betta still keep me company.
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post #4 of 8 Old 04-24-2012, 09:36 PM
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Quick look at it seems $70-80 is about the price range.

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

220g Still sitting empty (come on Lottery I need the numbers to come up!)
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post #5 of 8 Old 04-25-2012, 10:37 AM
hehe unless you have crocodiles or sharks that or eels that hunt with electric signals you wont need a tester like this :)
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post #6 of 8 Old 04-25-2012, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
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Hmm, what about black ghost knives? They use electrical signals to navigate. :)
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post #7 of 8 Old 04-25-2012, 10:54 AM
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Measuring conductivity is not something to worry about or fuss over, fortunately [provided we are doing water changes as noted below]. We have enough of that already in an aquarium.

As that linked Fluval article mentioned, conductivity just measures the TDS (total dissolved solids) in aquarium or habitat water. You will frequently come across "conductivity" rather than "hardness" in articles about natural habitats. Most of us think of hardness as GH and KH, caused by various minerals. And these are extremely important for fish. But so is the actual water in terms of the TDS which are related but not necessarily minerals.

As I mention in the article I recently posted on hardness, and again on salt, TDS get into the tank from all sorts of places. Fish food, water conditioner, medications, treatments, plant fertilizers, any chemical substance... etc. These too affect all fish. But fortunately we can control them easily by regular partial water changes. [obviously, this topic will form a major aspect of my forthcoming article on water changes.] We can't help adding TDS via conditioner and fish foods, but with regular water changes we remove them so they do not continue to build up.

You mention knifefish, and obviously such fish would be sensitive to TDS. But the water changes still deal with these adequately.

Byron.

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]

Last edited by Byron; 04-25-2012 at 10:58 AM.
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post #8 of 8 Old 04-25-2012, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
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That was my thought too.. Another thing to measure?!
Good to know that is isn't that important to have numbers for.. Even the fluval article says that when conductivity increases it just means change the water.. which we do anyways.

Thanks everyone. :)

taking a break from fish-keeping.
3 lovely male betta still keep me company.
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