Dosing Ammonia with Prime

unchaotic

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I don't want to start a debate on whether or not (and how) Prime detoxifies ammonia. There are plenty of raging debates on that already. I want to ask a purely hypothetical question.

Now, assuming Prime does what it says (remember, we're not here to debate this), would a person be able to:

1. Take out some tank water
2. Add a small amount of ammonia
3. Use Prime to detoxify the ammonia
4. Put the "treated" water back in the tank, effectively using the ammonia as a nutrient source for coral and algae

I'm not really here to debate the merit of ammonia as a nutrient source, studies have shown that some corals are able to use ammonia easier than nitrates. So I guess the real question here is, will this "bound" form of ammonia be useful to the corals? Seachem claims that the nitrifying bacteria will still use it, so it wouldn't seem like an impossibility for corals to as well.

So two questions I guess:

1. Do you think the "bound" ammonia could be used as a nutrient source for coral?
2. Would any potential side effects of regularly using Prime like this be more harmful to the tank then carefully dosing non toxic levels of ammonia?
 
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Eagle_Steve

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I don't want to start a debate on whether or not (and how) Prime detoxifies ammonia. There are plenty of raging debates on that already. I want to ask a purely hypothetical question.

Now, assuming Prime does what it says (remember, we're not here to debate this), would a person be able to:

1. Take out some tank water
2. Add a small amount of ammonia
3. Use Prime to detoxify the ammonia
4. Put the "treated" water back in the tank, effectively using the ammonia as a nutrient source for coral and algae

I'm not really here to debate the merit of ammonia as a nutrient source, studies have shown that some corals are able to use ammonia easier than nitrates. So I guess the real question here is, will this "bound" form of ammonia be useful to the corals? Seachem claims that the nitrifying bacteria will still use it, so it wouldn't seem like an impossibility for corals to as well.

So two questions I guess:

1. Do you think the "bound" ammonia could be used as a nutrient source for coral?
2. Would any potential side effects of regularly using Prime like this be more harmful to the tank then carefully dosing non toxic levels of ammonia?
Never thought of it this way.

I do dose ammonia to a macro tank with fish in it, but do not dose enough to be harmful to the fish.

With the prime (provided it does what it says), my question would be can the corals and macro actually "eat" it. Would it be palatable, so to speak. Would it be more palatable to bacteria with it being bound to something else?
 

Spare time

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I guess the difficult part is saying whether or not zooxanthellae can use ammonia when prime is binded to it for that 48 hour period, and knowing the right amount of prime per ammonia (I believe prime is for 2ppm and under and amguard for higher unless dosed in larger quantities). So I guess my bet would be probably, but there are far easier ways to get nitrogen to corals/zooxanthellae (i.e. amino acid dosing). In otherwords, I would guess it is ok? But, it seems like an unnecessary step when you could simply just dose an amino. Some people already dose ammonia in their tanks without prime. I also don't think it would be beneficial unless you run an ULNS tank since nitrogen is difficult to make a limiting factor in most setups.


It might be handy to ask seachem if they know.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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You can do this without Prime. We have a thread on ammonia dosing.

So obviously you can also do it with Prime, whether it does anything useful or not. But I do not know how Prime might impact the usage of the ammonia.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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I guess the difficult part is saying whether or not zooxanthellae can use ammonia when prime is binded to it for that 48 hour period, and knowing the right amount of prime per ammonia (I believe prime is for 2ppm and under and amguard for higher unless dosed in larger quantities). So I guess my bet would be probably, but there are far easier ways to get nitrogen to corals/zooxanthellae (i.e. amino acid dosing).

It's impossible to answer that without some understanding of what (if anything) is formed from the ammonia, and what actually happens (if anything) after 48 hours.

Personally, if I wanted to dose ammonia, I'd just dose it very slow and steady, never attaining a problematic concentration.
 
Maxout

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It's impossible to answer that without some understanding of what (if anything) is formed from the ammonia, and what actually happens (if anything) after 48 hours.

Personally, if I wanted to dose ammonia, I'd just dose it very slow and steady, never attaining a problematic concentration.


I swear there is a thread on here where seachem explained it but I am having a hard time remembering the name of the thread
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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I swear there is a thread on here where seachem explained it but I am having a hard time remembering the name of the thread

They are masters of "explaining" their products with nonstandard terms that have no clear single interpretation.
 

brandon429

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just add the ammonia directly, all reefs nearly instantly oxidize it safely and no animals are harmed. use the doses per gallon from the thread:

I did not know that was always possible, its new info to me and amazing that reefs consume it that fast. thanks to seneye we can finally see its minutes, not days as api would show us/threads available comparing seneye to api readings.
 
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unchaotic

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just add the ammonia directly, all reefs nearly instantly oxidize it safely and no animals are harmed. use the doses per gallon from the thread:

Thank you. I had seen that thread before but I apparently never bookmarked anything and couldn't find it again.
 
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unchaotic

unchaotic

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I would really just like to say thank you to everyone who took the time to comment on this thread. Especially Randy for everything he does for the group. Because of this site I rarely do anything on Facebook anymore and that just makes my life better.

So thank you everybody!
 

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1. Do you think the "bound" ammonia could be used as a nutrient source for coral?
2. Would any potential side effects of regularly using Prime like this be more harmful to the tank then carefully dosing non toxic levels of ammonia?
When I measured the rate of nitrification - that is the timing of NO2 production, peak NO2 level, NO2 clearance, and NO3 final production from ammonia - what I saw was that the timing was identical with or without prime.
So if it doesn't even slightly inconvenience the nitrifiers, I might make a reasoned guess that it won't change the photosynthetic uptake of ammonia either. (mechanisms are different, so there's wiggle room for the reasoned guess to be wrong)

As Randy and other suggested, I would dose a clearly non-toxic level so that it is never relevant what prime might or might not do to the ammonia.
 
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