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Calcium question
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Joined: 29 Mar 2007

PostPosted: 2009.01.05(Mon)12:13    Post subject: Calcium question Reply with quote


I have a 55 gal reef tank and have had it for close to 2 years now. I was supplementing it with purple up, iodine sometimes reef calcium. My calcium stayed around 440 when I tested it. I recently added more live rock and a handful of new coral. Now I am noticing a significant drop in calcium levels. Although I have added about a capful of purple up a day plus an extra dose of calcium, after each 24 hour interval my levels are at about 400. I am doing something wrong or looking at the wrong thing here?

My pH is 8.2, salinity 1.025, temp 78, nitrates 5, nitrites 0, ammonia 0, dkh 11

Do I just need to keep dosing? I am afraid to without knowing what is going on...if it is just the additional bio-load then cool.

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Michael L.

Joined: 20 Nov 2005
Location: Nanaimo, B.C, Canada

PostPosted: 2009.01.05(Mon)13:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem with dosing out of a bottle like that is that you will get rapid and generally unreliable spikes and drops in calcium levels throughout the day. If you want an affordable way of maintaining proper calcium levels, I suggest you get a kalkwasser drip going. This will allows you to set it up and then forget about it for a couple days at a time before you refill it. Kalk is quite a bit cheaper than bottled calcium supplements too.

What kind of corals did you add recently? Were they LPS or SPS or just softies? If they were softies, then I would probably look elsewhere for your problem.
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Joined: 29 Mar 2007

PostPosted: 2009.01.05(Mon)13:14    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply

I added some colt coral, candy coral, hammer coral and this one thing I am not sure what it is...I took it in on trade. It has many hard individual stems with brown polyps that are green tipped coming out and it sends out long tentacles which I know will harm any corals near by. I have it sitting up above and away from all the other coral, it is very pretty piece but aggressive.

I also added a rock covered in mushrooms that are redish brown color that put off a green florescent color under the actinics.

I will look into the Kalkwasser drip. I don't know much about that at the moment Razz
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Joined: 04 Jul 2004

PostPosted: 2009.01.07(Wed)17:44    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael is giving you good advice here.
KW is basically limewater, resulting from a dilution of calcium hydroxide. Reef systems love it, but be careful with this stuff, adding Kalkwasser too fast will cause pH shock, which can be stressful, even fatal to your livestock. Be advised, availability of carbonate mostly depends upon pH and alkalinity, so it helps if you do the research and understand how these are all related and what they mean to the health of your animals.
Here are some links that may help you:
Keepin' marines happy for 25 years
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