My Journey Dosing Nitrates/Phosphates

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blasterman

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I have a 20l crammed full of fast growing SPS and softies. Phosphate is a royal pain to keep balanced and if it bottoms out everything suffers.

Attempt to increase bioload just sent nitrate through the roof and caused other problems. I ended up using Seachem Phosphate which is basically FW plant fertilizer. It took two capfulls every day to eventually get a definite ping on a phosphate test, but once it showed up its holding. Explosion of growth on SPS and way better PE, including acans. Nitrate between 5-10 and phosphate between ..05 and .1 seems the sweet spot.
 
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beesnreefs

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I have a 20l crammed full of fast growing SPS and softies. Phosphate is a royal pain to keep balanced and if it bottoms out everything suffers.

Attempt to increase bioload just sent nitrate through the roof and caused other problems. I ended up using Seachem Phosphate which is basically FW plant fertilizer. It took two capfulls every day to eventually get a definite ping on a phosphate test, but once it showed up its holding. Explosion of growth on SPS and way better PE, including acans. Nitrate between 5-10 and phosphate between ..05 and .1 seems the sweet spot.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience. The numbers you've shared are exactly what I'm shooting for. I think after today's dose I'll be in that range for both nitrates and phosphates. Now to see how long it holds and how the corals respond.

I'm curious, did your corals (especially the acans) respond immediately when you started getting the ping of phosphates? Or did it take some time for them to bounce back?
 

reef_ninja

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Thanks for sharing that link - a great conversation. I'll follow it!

A bit off-topic but I love that you mentioned how, in your work, you tend to think "up river". Maybe you're familiar with Dan Heath's book, "Upstream"? May I ask what you do for work?
I’m a nurse, and I teach :)
 

ImaFlippinDolphin

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Thank you for this thread, I over water changed with a light bioload and bottoming out nitrates caused...dinos. Nobody local to me sell neonitro so awaiting brs shipping, I turned my radions to 7% but still see a rise in the dinos so I'm going to drop it to 3% and hope that brs ships with some urgency...my birds nests tips are already dying and I hope it makes it, my acans are staying closed and hate turkey baste treatment to get the garbage off it. I used reef roids to up my phosphate but the the low Nitrate just kills.

My question is, as I have never chemically raised the Nitrate, how are you dosing?
 
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Aqua Man

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Go slow. Dose half the recommended dosage on the instructions for Nenitro. Test again 24 hrs later. IMO its important to test at the same time of day. Quality test kit is also important.
 
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beesnreefs

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Go slow. Dose half the recommended dosage on the instructions for Nenitro. Test again 24 hrs later. IMO its important to test at the same time of day. Quality test kit is also important.
I agree - better to underdose and take your time than to dose too much

To update, I have stopped dosing. Despite diligently dosing and testing daily for several weeks I still saw decline (and eventual demise) of a few of my corals. With a couple treasured pieces declining I stopped dosing and switched to daily spot feeding.

Once a day I mixed up some Benepets with Brightwell Aminos and started spot feeding the corals that were struggling. For all but 1 this made a HUGE difference. I've continued doing this and have seen some really nice results so far. It's tedious and takes some time but I think it's worth it, at least for now.

I've also added fish to boost the bioload. With 2 more fish coming (1 this week, 1 in 4 weeks) I'm hoping that will reduce my need to spot feed corals every day.
 
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