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This is a discussion on Lighting Questions within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> If you have live plants they will consume ammonia and nitrite. Not so much nitrate. 30 isn't too high but you should keep it ...

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Old 05-17-2014, 02:21 PM   #11
 
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If you have live plants they will consume ammonia and nitrite. Not so much nitrate. 30 isn't too high but you should keep it as low as possible to help keep algae away.
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Old 05-17-2014, 04:05 PM   #12
 
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I am sorry, you did not mention about fish.
If you have fish in your tank for three weeks and ammonia and nitrites are zero then you are cycled OR still cycling but plants are helping you which is even better. Something called: silent cycle.
I cycled a tank with plants and fish. I did not detect any ammonia or nitrite (no traces, no spikes). I did not know when I completed the cycle. After 2 months I found straight nitrates.
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Old 05-19-2014, 01:26 PM   #13
 
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Alright cool :D I'll order the lights and make sure the plants are happy with their light levels and get that taken care of.

Thanks!
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Old 05-19-2014, 02:51 PM   #14
 
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Apologies for the double post, but I had a follow up question and I don't see an 'edit' button...

I checked the nitrates again today and the nitrate levels are falling (still at 0 ammonia and nitrites). The chart is hard to read, but its down between 5 and 10 ppm from two days ago. Is this the key indicator of the stock level of the tank as far as the waste/bioload is concerned? The point that its falling is a good sign that the plants are getting established right?
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Old 05-19-2014, 03:29 PM   #15
 
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Typically nitrate doesn't drop without a WC. Between 5 and 10 is great but as nitrate is the end process of the cycle nitrate usually rises. The reason is there is no bacteria that typically grows in the aquarium to consume nitrate itself. The bacteria that consumes nitrate does not live in an oxygen rich environment. So unless you have a filter that is air tight specifically for removing nitrate (and typically expensive) I don't see nitrate falling.

Your plants are helping and eventually level off. I think my tank remains at about 20ppm nitrate.
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Old 05-19-2014, 04:09 PM   #16
 
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Yes, nitrates falling in a planted tank is a pretty good sign that you have a small bioload compared to growth of the plants. Having finished the ammonia, the plants will go after nitrates. Algae do that too.

Falling nitrates in a non planted tank is a good sign that you did not shake enough bottle nr 2 of the Nitrate test
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Old 05-19-2014, 09:14 PM   #17
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sprmankalel View Post
Typically nitrate doesn't drop without a WC. Between 5 and 10 is great but as nitrate is the end process of the cycle nitrate usually rises. The reason is there is no bacteria that typically grows in the aquarium to consume nitrate itself. The bacteria that consumes nitrate does not live in an oxygen rich environment. So unless you have a filter that is air tight specifically for removing nitrate (and typically expensive) I don't see nitrate falling.

Your plants are helping and eventually level off. I think my tank remains at about 20ppm nitrate.
Ah, well its at somewhere between 20 and 25. I mean it dropped that many as it was at 30 a few days ago and dropped without me doing anything. Anaerobic bacteria, my old nemesis... so being in compost = bad, but it being in an aquarium = good.

I found a similar glass and light set up with the proper amount of light for the plants at the lfs so there is definitely air in there as there's a gap for the filter. Happy plants I hope. Hoping the dwarf hair grass comes back to life as its rather brown at the moment.

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Originally Posted by corina savin View Post
Yes, nitrates falling in a planted tank is a pretty good sign that you have a small bioload compared to growth of the plants. Having finished the ammonia, the plants will go after nitrates. Algae do that too.

Falling nitrates in a non planted tank is a good sign that you did not shake enough bottle nr 2 of the Nitrate test
Lol! I was wondering what would happen if I didn't do that right. Bold directions always make me wonder.
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Old 05-19-2014, 11:21 PM   #18
 
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Dwarf hair grass is very demanding. Lots of light and maybe co2. Excel might help in absence of co2. I have used Excel but it melted some of my stem plants. I will start DIY co2 in a few weeks.
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Old 05-22-2014, 11:03 PM   #19
 
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What about the C02 that the fish give off or is that not nearly enough? I'm interested in your diy project, let me know how it goes and how you did it!

I've got the light running quite frequently, too much probably as I fiddle with the timer so they should be pretty good on that.Not seeing much progress other than a few green strands here and there. I don't really expect there to be much difference for a couple of weeks though. I know enough not to expect growth on a day to day basis from a plant unless its a still attached aloe pup or bamboo.

How does the bedroom lights affect them? I'm wondering if I shouldn't put a blanket or something over the aquarium while I'm up at night. I tend to be somewhat nocturnal and the timer can take care of the mornings fine, but night I'm afraid I'm not letting them rest enough.
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Old 05-25-2014, 06:10 AM   #20
 
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I just scaled my lights back from 12 to 8 hours. I will keep my "Maybe co2?" thread updated. I don't see a need to cover your tank unless you get algae that you're trying to blackout. That's why I'll be doing co2. I don't want to completely cover for 3 days. LoL!
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