Home > Uncategorized > Rock and a hard place

Rock and a hard place

It’s a horribly weak link between the topic and the intent of this blog post – discussing the calcium and alkilinity levels in my aquarium. Shamefully weak, I know. Let’s move past that and into the subject.

My mushrooms (aka disc anemones) are not doing as good as I’d hoped. I’ve only had them a weak, but even so I’d hoped for more. Fearful of stress of pending death, I dropped another $60 on chemicals and test kits (most of it was the test kits). Admittedly, I should have had this stuff on hand initially if I planned on bringing corals into the mix.

So, upon testing the calcium levels in my aquarium they showed up at 400. I forget the units (shame one me). 400 – 500 is a good range to aim for, if coral growth is planned. So I’m good, but at the bottom of the range. I boosted it a little with a calcium supplement (made for aquariums, I didn’t just toss a couple of Tums into the tank). Hoping to gradually boost it up to around 450, and it’ll require frequent monitoring to replace it when the corals use it up.

Next up was the general hardness of the water. I hit again near the bottom of the acceptable range. So a similar treatment is ensuing to try and bring it up to a nice optimal middle range. I also picked up some Iodide. It’s allegedly good for corals and, I think, invertibrates (snails and such). The last Turbo snails I picked up seem to be having a hard time adjusting, so I’m hoping this might help them.

Other modifications included some minor rock rearrangement and moving a powerhead that was pushing some water over my mushrooms. ‘Shrooms prefer a low flow / current, so I’m doing everything I can to make that happen. My nitrates aren’t high, but they’re higher than I want them to be. Ammonia, Phosphates, and nitrates are great so it’s just a matter of finishing up the cycle and getting some good micro-algae (or is it macro, whatever) on my live rock. Things that take time and nothing else can really make that happen. Besides, that’s part of the fun of the hobby, working through it one step at a time.

Next week I’m planning on picking up four T5 high output lights, two normal and two actinic. With that lighting and the water changes I’ve been working on I can have virtually any coral I want. Exciting stuff around the corner.

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