Changing from High tech to low light
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Changing from High tech to low light

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Changing from High tech to low light
Old 04-24-2011, 06:15 PM   #1
 
Changing from High tech to low light

Hi all,

I have a high tech setup or at least something like that.
So, I have a Juwel Rio 400 which is 450 litre tank, I have 216 W of T5's that runs on for 8 hours a day with reflectors on them, CO2 with PH controller that gets the ph to 6.6 whilst I have a KH of 3. I dose PPS-PRO daily with recommended dosage.

Now I need to change it to low light plants and if I can reduce light it is better. The problems that I have is that 216 W for 8 hours a day it is a bit high in electricity expenses and I have loads of algae grrrr that I cannot cope with and I cannot find out why!!!!

So as regarding plants I have Amazon Sword, Red Lotus, Vallisneria Spirals, Crypts and ECHINODORUS TENELLUS. I beleive that these will be good with low light right?

Now as for CO2 I can leave it with no problem. Practically it is better to leave it on for me because I can adjust the PH to my liking since my tap PH is 8 and I love fish that likes acidic water. I know that some of you tell me that with a lot CO2 i should have a lot of light but with 2Kg of CO2 it serves me for 4-5 months so I do not think that a lot of CO2 is diffused in the system.

About lightning how should I do this? How much time should I leave them on? I have 2 power of 108 W each so I can switch on 1 and then 2nd one for less hours.

About ferts what should I use? I do not think that PPS-PRO is suitable for low light also I do not love how much algae I have and the plants that are getting bigger so much fast with this method.
Also at home I have Seachem Flourish Comprehensive that I could use weekly.

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thank you in advance
*hoping in much much less algae*
by the way the algae that I have is Green-Blue algae which I believe is Cyanobacteria a bacteria.
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Old 04-24-2011, 07:00 PM   #2
 
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Two main things I will mention.

First, the cyanobacteria (the blue-green slime that you can easily wipe off with your fingers) is caused by high organics in the presence of light. It can occur in any method of planted tank, high-tech or low-tech. I have had it but only in tanks with high organics. So that is something to consider; if you remove the cause (organics), this should disappear. We have had more than one thread on this issue within the past few months, so I won't go into it further here.

Second, algae. Algae in excess [= beyond the normal algae that one should expect in any aquarium] is solely due to "excess" light. In non-planted tanks any light will cause it because there is nothing to stop it. In planted tanks, the plants can and should keep algae under control. And to do this, we ensure the light is the "limiting factor" in plant growth. As I have so often written, plants need light and 17 nutrients in balance, and as soon as any one of these becomes unavailable, the plants will slow down or even stop photosynthesizing. And if this limiting factor is something other than light, the now excess light will cause algae to take advantage.

So, limiting algae is easy, in theiry: reduce the light so it is balanced. The more light you have--and this means intensity and duration, one does not make up for the other--the more nutrients you need to balance. I suspect something in the nutrients is missing and the light causes algae. And the cyanobacteria is probably due to this, as some excess nutrients will be organics (some other nutrient is likely missing or in short supply) and these will feed the cyano.

So, to your question on light. Limiting the duration will not solve the algae/cyano issue because the intensity is still beyond the balance with the nutrients. The intensity must be reduced, then the duration, until you are balanced with the available nutrients. The first issue to address is the light. As Tom Barr correctly suggests elsewhere, start with minimal light for what you want to achieve in the plants, then increase nutrients to the point where they balance. Otherwise algae will occur.

Byron.

Last edited by Byron; 04-24-2011 at 07:02 PM..
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Old 04-24-2011, 07:07 PM   #3
 
what about ferts should I stop using PPS-PRO and start with Seachem Flourish once weekly?

Also about the intensity should I switch on 108 W for 8 hours and another 108W for 4 hours?
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Old 04-24-2011, 07:22 PM   #4
 
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I didn't get into the ferts previously becuase I think the light is too intense. So once that is lesseened, the nutrient issue can be looked into.

Is that your only option on the light? As opposed to getting something different?

Checked back on the tank size, I assume it is 5 or 6 feet in length. Two 48-inch 54w T5 HO full spectrum tubes would be double the intensity I have over a 5-foot so that should be suitable. Duration might have to be experimented with, anywhere from 9 to 12 hours daily. The minimum duration is said to be 6 hours, but with CO2 and nutrient dosing 9 is probably more realistic to start with.

Last edited by Byron; 04-24-2011 at 07:41 PM.. Reason: addition
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:49 AM   #5
 
This is the aquarium that I have JUWEL Aquarium Homepage

You have all the details available.

So practically you are saying that it is better to go with more light instead of doing a low light setup?
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Old 04-25-2011, 12:57 PM   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by migdem View Post
This is the aquarium that I have JUWEL Aquarium Homepage

You have all the details available.

So practically you are saying that it is better to go with more light instead of doing a low light setup?
Reading the specs, that aquarium has two full-length fluorescent tubes. So I am assuming you are staying wiith these? If the tubes are T5, then only T5 tubes will fit. IF they are T8, you can replace them with other T8 tubes that are the same length. There's not sufficient data for me to say more.

Low light to me means minimal light to grow plants without CO2 difussion. If you dose CO2 you need more light to balance.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:27 PM   #7
 
as regarding light yes I will stay with those since I cannot alter that much since aquarium is situated in the living room.

so if I dose CO2 then more light then more ferts right?
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:34 PM   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by migdem View Post
as regarding light yes I will stay with those since I cannot alter that much since aquarium is situated in the living room.

so if I dose CO2 then more light then more ferts right?
Balance. First the light, then balance nutrients accordingly. As you have CO2 for good reason, the light and nutrients has to balance it for the plants to make use of it. But I don't think you'll need more light than the two T5 tubes.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:37 PM   #9
 
As for tubes I have 4 in total. So only 2 I use?
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Old 04-25-2011, 04:57 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by migdem View Post
As for tubes I have 4 in total. So only 2 I use?
That ;link you gave earlier mentioned two tubes running full length. That I believe is adequate. Since you have too mjuch now, cutting in half seems preferable. Unless i am missing something...
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