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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Does that help? I also found this: but it's a bit confusing :) http://www.somersworth.com/vertical/...ity_Report.pdf
Originally Posted by aklick View Post
So, soft water means low KH/Alkalinity. And that is not a problem, but it does explain why the pH lowers in the aquarium. So due to the natural organic processes the pH will tend to lower as the water becomes more acidic. Regular partial water changes of half the tank every week will work to keep this stable.
You didn't mention the fish, but with soft water and an acidic pH, do not have livebearers or any fish that need hard water. Soft water fish will be fine, and there are many to choose with this sort of ideal water. We have fish profiles, second tab from the left in the blue bar, and water params are given for each species.
So going back to the initial post issues: nitrates occur from the organics decomposition in the substrate. Here again, regular weekly water changes work to keep these in check, and you can vacuum the substrate during the WC . With live plants, I tend to leave the substrate alone as this is a major source of nutrients, especially CO2 for the plants.
I would not use baking soda. It is short-term in effect, and increased organics will off-set it. Plus it is detrimental to fish long-term.
Let me know if anything further needs to be covered.
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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