Can't seem to get correct phosphate levels.

Mr.Mulley54

New member
So I have a question for you all. Iv been trying to research how to keep a good phosphate level in my reef tank ideally .02 or so. All I can find is how to decrease phosphates when you have too much, like using gfo or phosgaurd pellets in a reactor. So I have a reactor hooked into tank but it's not running at the moment because I seem to not have any as it .00 according to Hanna checker. I don't have a huge bioload in my tank as of now I have 2 clowns a royal gramma , cleaner shrimp and a few snails and hermits. Along with multiple corals I can't name if needed prob 15 pieces or so . I almost try to over feed my tank to see if I can raise the phosphate level wich seems to work after a few days of not running reactor but as soon as I run reactor levels drop back to 0.00 and no matter how little gfo or pellets I run I can't seem to find that right middle ground. So I'm curious as how you guys seem to level your phosphates when your trying to gain them in a sense ! Any idea or thought would be awesome thanks !!
 

Kevin Guthrie

New member
Why is 02 your target instead of 00?

From what I've seen, if you have enough free phosphate to measure, you will soon have enough algae incorporating the phosphate in their cells to send the free phosphate level back to zero. But then you will be stuck trying to export the phosphate again by removing all that algae...
 

2smokes

In Memoriam
Try to feed more.Not necesarely feeding the fish,you can feed the corals with liquid food so that phosphate level rises a bit.OO phosphate level means that corals wont grow because the ,,algae ,,they host needs phosphates to grow just like cyano or the dinoflagelates.
 

Martin Kuhn

New member
What you describe is more a "luxury problem"

the situation you describe takes place if nutrient cycle is "as effective that it reduces PO4/NO3 to 0". typical for zeo reactors systems or other systems with strong bacteria population like you describe.

A simple (and maybe the best) solution to avoid RTN -> steadily feed your LPS/SPS with amino acids (liquid coral food).
So you avoid the ongoing problem of "How far you throttle down your equipment" (eg pellets, but also good water flow, effective bacteria etc) all the time.

best rgds
Martin
 

mcgyvr

New member
Just stop running the reactors.. You have no need for them if your levels stay fine without them.. plain and simple..
 

codydemmel4

New member
Just stop running the reactors.. You have no need for them if your levels stay fine without them.. plain and simple..

I second this. I also would add more bioload depending on your tank size and also feed more. if phosphates rise above 0.05 then I would look to slowly add the gfo online. if it stays below 0.05 without the gfo, I see no reason to run that
 

Timfish

Timfish
Premium Member
I would not worry too much about trying to keep PO4 really low. Everything in your tank needs it and the average on reefs is .13 mg/l. Only a small fraction of reefs have PO4 below .05.
 

Mr.Mulley54

New member
I would not worry too much about trying to keep PO4 really low. Everything in your tank needs it and the average on reefs is .13 mg/l. Only a small fraction of reefs have PO4 below .05.

Well unfortunately i cant even get it that high, thats part of my problem water seems like its too clean? since posting this thread, iv over fed the tank with both fish and croal food and i still cant get .02 still reading zeros on hanna checker. so iv been adding amino acids with coral food to help my lps survive, seems to be working, but cant belive my tank has that much good bacteria in it. 0 nitrate 0 phos, and cant increase no matter how hard i try haha. like the other member said it is a luxury problem, but a problem ....i guess, none the less. guess i have to add more fish and see
 

Timfish

Timfish
Premium Member
For starters give it more time. Tanks are always in a constant state of flux but quick short term results usually are not a good thing long term. Depending on what you are feeding them your corals may be getting enough phosphorus in their food. Part of the reason for the misperceptions about low nutrients on reefs is corals are getting a lot of their nitrogen and phosphorus from organic sources.
 

rushbattle

New member
I think having low ortho p is a great situation. Just get some high quality foods to feed your coral. If they can eat baby brine, hatching some every few days and feeding the tank would be a good feeding stimulant. What kind of coral do you have? And I second all of the above comments about going slow. Soon enough you'll have the opposite problem if you try to force things to change quickly!
 

Mr.Mulley54

New member
I agree its a good situation, and i also agree on taking it slow, im def not trying for a quick fix for anything was just more curious how people keep stable phosphates if they are in my situation, on the low end. i have been dosing amino and vitamins and corals are happy, and even catch brine shrimp when im feeding the fish, im keeping mostly LPS which is why id like a little "dirtier" water. thanks all for your responses.
 
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