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high Alkalinty
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papap
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Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Location: Southwest Louisiana

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)9:52    Post subject: high Alkalinty Reply with quote

I just set my tank up a few days ago. Everything is good but the Alkalinty test shows is high 3.6. pH is 8.2 and salinty is 1.0215. Nitrite is 0. All I have in the tank right now is 3 Danselfish. I have a 39 gallon tank with external filter and a skimmer on it. Also have a power head and live sand. Is there anything I need to do about the high Alkalinty level???????
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Michael L.
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Joined: 20 Nov 2005
Location: Nanaimo, B.C, Canada

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)14:16    Post subject: Reply with quote

I strongly urge you to return your fish and do a little bit more research on marine aquariums before you continue. First off, "a few days" is definitely not enough time to cycle an aquarium. Without cycling your tank, you are just asking for problems in the next couple weeks. Next, your salinity is too low. You should target for approximately 1.025 specific gravity. What kind of salt did you use?
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papap
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Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Location: Southwest Louisiana

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)15:28    Post subject: salinty Reply with quote

I stated that wrong the salinty level in 1.0215 at 79 degrees. The book I have says to keep the level inbetween 1.021 and 1.024 at 60 degrees. It says for 77 degree water add .oo2 to it. That would make mine 1.0235. I used Red Sea. I was told to put just a couple of fish to help it cycle.
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Pete Harcoff
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Canada

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)17:36    Post subject: Reply with quote

I ditto returning the fish and doing a fishless cycle. You don't need fish to cycle a tank, just a source of ammonia. This can be chemical (I.e. a small dose of ammonium hydroxide) or organic (I.e. a piece of decaying shrimp).
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papap
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Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Location: Southwest Louisiana

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)20:28    Post subject: salt Reply with quote

So is this the right salinty level for the 79 degrees???????? I have read 2 books and the both rocommend that the level be in from 1.021 and 1.024. Also it tells you what to do to raise the akalinity but says nothing about it being to high. So I'm guessing it is OK to be high just not low.
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art_of_war
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Joined: 17 Nov 2006

PostPosted: 2008.07.13(Sun)23:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

papap,

There's a ton of things still to do. And, it takes a lot longer than a few days. If you want the truth, Alkalinity is the LEAST of your worries right now. At this particular time, you need to focus on pH, ammonia, nitrites, nitrates and temperature. Alk, KH, Calcium, Strontium and phosphates and any other trace elements are the very least of your worries right now.

But if it helps:

Your temp should be at 79 F plus or minus 3 degrees but this is subjective. Your NH3, NO2 should be zero and nitrates should be as low as you can maintain it. As for your pH, it should be at around 8.2 to 8.4 (again, subjective). Unless, you're using a geotechnical engineering laboratory grade hydrometer, get rid of that piece of junk swing arm hydrometer and go out and buy a refractometer. Your specific gravity IS again a subjective issue also. If you're just going to keep fish, you could actually get away with keeping your SG at around 1.018, but ideally, you should get it around 1.025 which is what true tropical seawater is normally.

One thing you can do right now: Take your fish back to the LFS and tell them what you did and let them give you further advice b/c cycling a tank with damselfish is an old methodology and it should be done away with. If you've got live rock and sand, that is all you should be using to initiate the nitrogen cycle.

Do some more research in this forum: www.reefcentral.com

There are tons and tons of reference material you can consult for further advice.
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