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Discussion Starter #1
hi, i was having some slight nitrate problems in my display tank (only small ones) so i added a nitrate reactor, i brought this from ebay (cleartides.com) and i done what it said on the instructions and about a week later my xania pulse coral dies (2 blooms at the same time) and i have another coral which doesnt open anymore also i keep getting brown algae on my sand. should i do away with the reactor? is this normal?
hope you can help.. thanks
 

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Personally...for a "slight nitrate" problem I would not have purchased the reactor in the first place. A slight problem is easy enough to fix by doing a water change, feeding a little less, and just making sure you don't have too many fish in the tank.

Some nitrate and phosphate are required to provide nutrients to livestock. It's possible that the reactor is taking out too much since you only had a slight problem to begin with.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
my nitrates were at around 20ppm, sulphur and something else which bring the ph bach up(sorry i have forgotton the name, loades of small white rocks) hope thats enough. is there any reason why npeople shouldnt use these?
all my fish seem healthy also my softy r doing fine. apart fron 1
 

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Personally...for a "slight nitrate" problem I would not have purchased the reactor in the first place. A slight problem is easy enough to fix by doing a water change, feeding a little less, and just making sure you don't have too many fish in the tank.

Some nitrate and phosphate are required to provide nutrients to livestock. It's possible that the reactor is taking out too much since you only had a slight problem to begin with.
+1 soft corals tend to like the "dirty" water, more then the SPS. :fish:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
ok. that would explain it... i am cycling a 230g tank at the moment and have been doing so for a month and wanted some hard corals in there should i put the reactor on the 230g tank? to keep the nitrates down
 

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why are you worried about nitrates? is this something that somebody warned you about? unless your nitrates are in the hundreds there is nothing to worry about.
That depends on the fish. For some species levels as low as 50 can be lethal. It also depends on how quickly the nitrates rise. A slow rise will be more tolerated as fish slowly become accustomed to it. Perhaps the only sign being heavy breathing. A quick rise is not well tolerated.

Nitrates have also been shown to slow the growth of fish, even in lower amounts.

And of course there are other issues that come from high nitrates. They can reduce the growth rates in corals. For example, nitrates are shown to increase algae growth. In the case of Zooxanthellae this increase can result in slower growth rate in the coral.

I would say that nitrates are nothing to panic about but I would not agree that they are nothing to worry about. That seems to give the impression an aquarist does not have to control them and that they have no affect on the livestock.
 

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That depends on the fish. For some species levels as low as 50 can be lethal. It also depends on how quickly the nitrates rise. A slow rise will be more tolerated as fish slowly become accustomed to it. Perhaps the only sign being heavy breathing. A quick rise is not well tolerated.

Nitrates have also been shown to slow the growth of fish, even in lower amounts.

And of course there are other issues that come from high nitrates. They can reduce the growth rates in corals. For example, nitrates are shown to increase algae growth. In the case of Zooxanthellae this increase can result in slower growth rate in the coral.

I would say that nitrates are nothing to panic about but I would not agree that they are nothing to worry about. That seems to give the impression an aquarist does not have to control them and that they have no affect on the livestock.
While I agree, I do have say for me, keeping my PO4 in check, also keeps my NO3 down as well. :fish:
 

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Po4 is bad :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
ok, thanks that clears up alot of things. The reason for trying to keep nitrates down is that ever since starting up reefing i have been using this site for advise and it has worked for me greatly, but everytime i look for any advice on nitrates the answer is that they must be 5 or below. also im not puting anything in the 230g tank for another month or two.
thanks
 

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That depends on the fish. For some species levels as low as 50 can be lethal. It also depends on how quickly the nitrates rise. A slow rise will be more tolerated as fish slowly become accustomed to it. Perhaps the only sign being heavy breathing. A quick rise is not well tolerated.

Nitrates have also been shown to slow the growth of fish, even in lower amounts.

And of course there are other issues that come from high nitrates. They can reduce the growth rates in corals. For example, nitrates are shown to increase algae growth. In the case of Zooxanthellae this increase can result in slower growth rate in the coral.

I would say that nitrates are nothing to panic about but I would not agree that they are nothing to worry about. That seems to give the impression an aquarist does not have to control them and that they have no affect on the livestock.
i would like to see a references. :D

here is mine on nitrate toxicity.

here is a reference for nitrates not slowing growth of hermatypic corals. the conclusion: Calcification was not significantly affected by increases in nitrate.

there is not really a mechanism where N is the problem. there is a mechanism where P is the problem. it blocks the ability of the hermatypic corals from grabbing Ca for photosynthesis which it needs to do grabbing carbon. nitrate has been given the bad rap for many years because phosphates were so hard to test for. they also tend to go hand in hand.

G~
 

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The references are at your local library I didn't get this from a web site.

It's not calcification it's the extra growth of Zooxanthellae that slows the corals.

Like phosphate, nitrate is a natural fertilizer. For those of us who have kept planted freshwater tanks most of the fertilizer we added to make our plants grow contained nitrates. It too promotes the growth of algae. For that reason alone it's something to worry about.

If a coral has an abundance of Zooxanthellae it need not grow to provide greater surface area for algal colonization. It will grow some of course, but the growth is slowed.

Nitrate is something to be concerned about as it relates to coral, and algae growth. Long term exposure does harm fish. Does it kill them? Perhaps not, but I once heard it said that lethality is a poor measure of toxicity.
 

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no offense, but i am not seeing what you are saying. i have provided references to the contrary. if what you say is true then spend the time to do a search that refutes it. before i posted the second link, i actually did a search for nitrates coral growth. that article showed up. i was doing research to see if coral growth actually was hindered by nitrates. i knew that nitrates were not toxic in the levels normally seen in our systems by previous research, the link provided. i was not sure about coral growth. i did not see how it could be affected, but i wanted to make sure before i posted the contrary. i am willing to search to verify what i have said or to double check what others have said. i do not take any info lightly. i easily spend as much time on google searching for references and learning as i do on TRT itself. as you can tell from my blabbering, that is pretty high. :D

as for the toxicity of nitrates. yes i posted what the toxic levels are. of course any is probably worse than none, but depending on the environment someone is trying to reproduce nitrates may be a good thing. if you are running a lagoon system (the following links were found in google using nitrate lagoon marine to verify my results. if you are running a softy tank then you are going to need nitrates/phosphates. any other critters in the system will/should be able to handle these levels without problem. we know that there are plenty of critters in lagoons. if it were truly that toxic then the critters would know to not be there.

this could be pretty interesting for some. sorry, i do not have more time to pursue this, but it might be very informative.

here is a study of nitrates in lagoons and their levels.

a rather long reading on Eutrophic lagoon areas. bookmarked for further reading. posted for those that are interested.

there is enough bad information about our hobby out there. i have fallen into this also. i try very hard to not propagate information that is not able to be verified with some simple searching. the web is a fantastic place for information, both good and bad. it takes some work to verify which is which though.

i would find it hard to believe that the info you would find at the library is not able to be found out on the web. people now are less likely then ever to spend time looking things up, let alone going to a library. :( i just like references. if i am not able to find references to support your claim, then i would like them given to me. like i said, i do spend a fair amount of time researching.

i am a bit confused by your nitrate comments and the zoax. if the hobbyist is keeping SPS then a low nutrient system should be provided. nitrates/phosphates should not be a problem. i know we do not need to go into what this means, but needless to say it requires the removal of wastes. if we are running a lagoon system, then the critters in the system are wanting these nutrients. they would not reach toxic levels. i am not sure they could reach toxic levels unless the system is completely neglected.

G~
 

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here is a reference for nitrates not slowing growth of hermatypic corals. the conclusion: Calcification was not significantly affected by increases in nitrate.

G~
"To determine the combined effect of pH and nitrate
on calc~f~cat ioan 2-factor experiment was designed
The factor 'pH' had 2 levels amb~enta nd reduced by
the addition of HC'1 The factoi 'nitrate had 4 levels
ambient (0 4 FM NO3-) and increased by additions of
0 5, 1 and 5 FM KNO,"

The above quote was taken from the link you posted. I'm no chemist, but the amount of NO3 used in the experiments seems very low when compared to levels commonly found in home aquariums. I'm not surprised that they couldn't detect any substantial changes in growth with the levels they were using. Double, triple, quadruple, those levels, and the results may have been very different.
 

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here is mine on nitrate toxicity.

G~
"Nitrate toxicity to aquatic invertebrates increases
with increasing nitrate concentrations and exposure
times"

The quote above came from the link you provided.
 
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