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Old 04/17/2019, 10:08 AM   #1
cjpitt80
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Lowering Phosphates, Raising Nitrates

This is my first post outside "New to Hobby Area" Yaaay!
I know I'm still a novice.....

Anyway, do Phosphates and Nitrates have an inverse relationship? I've read stuff about the Redfield ratio, etc. but never really seen a definitive answer one way or the other. Currently, my phosphates are at (0.1ppm via Hanna ULR checker) Nitrates at 1ppm (Red Sea test). Without "chasing numbers" I know I'm "supposed" to be around 2-5ppm NO and .03-.05ppm PO for my "ideal" LPS dominated mixed reef. I'm considering dosing nitrates as I've read it will help reduce PO, but I'm not sure if there's an exact inverse relationship between the 2, or if I should.

About my system:
I'm 2 months over the nasties...I had some disgusting GHA, cyano, bryopsis hybrid gross stuff. During this phase my nitrates got up to 5ppm, and phosphates .18.
I was able to reduce the phosphates with a simple mesh bag of RowaPHOS in the sump.

Right now I have occasional dinos on the sand, but no appreciable ugly algae in the display (knock on wood). I run a modified Triton system with chaeto reverse lit in the sump. I skim 24/7. I have a pair of clowns, 3 flasher wrasse, green chromis pair, LongNose Hawk, algae blenny, and diamond watchman goby. I feed 2x day; veggie pellets in AM, frozen in PM.
I have a 8 month old monti cap that's definitely grown since I got it. I have a few digi monti frags and stylos about 3 weeks old that I've noticed no growth with yet. For LPS; frogspawn, Octospawn, torch, duncans. All seem healthy with nice color, but haven't split heads or grown noticeably in the 6 months I've had them.

Because of physical space constraints in the sump, I can't really see how I can fit in a reactor to run GFO. I can't seem to get the phosphates lower than .1ppm with just the mesh bag method though. Should I consider dosing nitrates and would this help reduce phosphate? Should I just get a reactor and find some way to fit it in and run GFO/RowaPHOS? Should I just do nothing and not "chase numbers"?

Thanks


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75 gal display running since 5/14/18--29 gal sump Ocellaris Clown Pair, Flasher Wrasse, Bangaii Cardinal, Fire Shrimp pair, Skunk Cleaner, Blue Coral Banded Shrimp, Euphyllia, Monti Cap, Monti Digi. C
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Old 04/17/2019, 10:21 AM   #2
mcgyvr
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No.. Its not inverse..
Being limited by one though can prevent the entire process from working properly..

It takes wood and nails to build a house.. Without either wood or nails the process basically can't happen..

Your levels are totally fine though and I would not worry one bit about them.
You are not deficient in one to where its a limiting factor..
Your phosphate would likely drop if you limited feeding just a bit.

Don't expect noticeable growth in weeks after introduction or even just a few months..

Your tank is still "newish"... Keep up what you are doing and all should be just fine..


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Old 04/17/2019, 11:09 AM   #3
cjpitt80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcgyvr View Post
No.. Its not inverse..
Being limited by one though can prevent the entire process from working properly..

It takes wood and nails to build a house.. Without either wood or nails the process basically can't happen..

Your levels are totally fine though and I would not worry one bit about them.
You are not deficient in one to where its a limiting factor..
Your phosphate would likely drop if you limited feeding just a bit.

Don't expect noticeable growth in weeks after introduction or even just a few months..

Your tank is still "newish"... Keep up what you are doing and all should be just fine..
Ahh. Good analogy. And a hammer! you need a hammer to build a house LOL
Yeah, I definitely wasn't expecting to see growth in the weeks old frags, maybe the euphyllia by now though since they're 8 months old. The monti cap has DEF grown, so I guess that means my lights are strong enough for some SPS.

So you wouldn't try to lower phosphates at all now, never-mind dosing nitrates? Should I remove the RowaPHOS from the sump?
My full levels are here:
https://www.triton-lab.de/en/showroo...icp-oes/71285/


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75 gal display running since 5/14/18--29 gal sump Ocellaris Clown Pair, Flasher Wrasse, Bangaii Cardinal, Fire Shrimp pair, Skunk Cleaner, Blue Coral Banded Shrimp, Euphyllia, Monti Cap, Monti Digi. C
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Old 04/17/2019, 04:08 PM   #4
mcgyvr
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I think that if you really arent having nuisance algea issues that the phosphate level really isnt a problem that you need to act on..You may be feeding more than I would and reducing it some will help lower phosphates if you want..


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Old 04/17/2019, 07:09 PM   #5
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.03-.05 ppm is a reasonable range for phosphate, so I agree with leaving well enough alone until if and when some pest shows up.


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Old 04/18/2019, 09:22 AM   #6
cjpitt80
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Leave for Now

Ok went thru my log more and the nasties were around when NO3 was up at 5ppm. I'm not exactly sure what PO4 was at that time since I didn't get the Hanna checker until later in the ugly algae phase. Highest phosphate I got was .18ppm and it's down to .10ppm now with the RowaPHOS. Since there's definitely correlation with the nitrates and the ugly nasties (although maybe not direct causation) I certainly WILL NOT dose any nitrates for now. Tank is basically algae free now, with some slime down in the sump with the chaeto. I'll keep changing the RowaPHOS bag and see if I can get phosphates down to .02-.05ish range. Sounds like a plan?


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75 gal display running since 5/14/18--29 gal sump Ocellaris Clown Pair, Flasher Wrasse, Bangaii Cardinal, Fire Shrimp pair, Skunk Cleaner, Blue Coral Banded Shrimp, Euphyllia, Monti Cap, Monti Digi. C
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Old 04/18/2019, 05:49 PM   #7
bertoni
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That sounds like a reasonable approach to try. Sometimes, GFO products like RowaPhos seem to make some slime problems worse from time to time, so I'd keep a watch on the tank.


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