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Calcium
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Barby Girl
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Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: 2006.07.24(Mon)17:29    Post subject: Calcium Reply with quote

Just a quicky question: Is maintaining proper calcium levels only important for corals or does LR requir it as well?
Thanks!
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Barby Girl
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FloridaBoy
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Joined: 04 Jul 2004

PostPosted: 2006.07.24(Mon)19:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

A quickie but also an excellent question... a question many never think about, and one reason many pounds of expensive live rock ends up declining to become... dead rock. What you are asking involves the calcareous based encrusting purple/red material coating the LR, called Coralline Algae. The answer is yes, LR does require calcium for proper growth of Coralline Algaes, also proper alkalinity, strontium, (look to Seachem products for help) also proper lighting... be advised, urchins will eat this stuff and phosphates, nitrates, DOCs will all hinder your progress. Of course, once you get the CA growing, then you get to have fun scraping it off the glass!
Here are some links with more opinions on Corallines:

http://saltaquarium.about.com/library/blank/bl_coralline.htm
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/corallinealg.htm
http://www.garf.org/coralline.html
http://www.garf.org/NORM/coralline/corallinenorm.html
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Pete Harcoff
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Canada

PostPosted: 2006.07.24(Mon)21:52    Post subject: Reply with quote

In addition to coralline, there are other types of algae like Halimeda and Padina that also use calcium.

And if you have hitchhikers like snails, feather dusters, etc in your LR, they will make use of the calcium, too.
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Barby Girl
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Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: 2006.07.25(Tue)9:39    Post subject: Reply with quote

FloridaBoy wrote:
The answer is yes, LR does require calcium for proper growth of Coralline Algaes, also proper alkalinity, strontium, (look to Seachem products for help) also proper lighting... be advised, urchins will eat this stuff and phosphates, nitrates, DOCs will all hinder your progress.


Thanks Pete and Floriday Boy... Two follow up questions. Is there a water test for strontium and what is the optimum level, I don't remember reading about that one, the others I'm familiar with. And, what is DOCs?
Thanks!
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Pete Harcoff
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: 2006.07.25(Tue)11:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe Seachem makes a strontium test kit. As for optimal levels, I think it's around 8 to 10 ppm (but don't quote me). A typical ocean salt mix should have appropriate Strontium levels in it, although some mixes do seem to vary in their mineral content. Some calcium additives (I.e. Seachem's Reef Advantage Calcium) also contain strontium.

DOC = Dissolved Organic Carbon. Your skimmer will take care of that.
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FloridaBoy
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Joined: 04 Jul 2004

PostPosted: 2006.07.25(Tue)22:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

DOCs = Dissolved Organic Compounds
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