Randy's thoughts on trace elements

Lasse

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My system is around 80 gallon (300 l). I have done a lot of ICP test and also logg my additions, Below - there is some results for 2023. First from first half of the year
23-01-18 to 23-06-27  strontium .JPG


From the second half.

1706279774793.png


Interesting to see that the consumption of ST in my system per day is rather similar (around 46 mg/day) for both periods in spite of different dosing regimes. But I can+t for all money in the world say that the strontium consumption (biological or chemical) is of minor importance in my aquarium.

Today the daily dose is 4 ml/day - 40 mg/day. will se what it is looks like after next ICP (its around the corner)

My strontium measurements since 2020

1706284125953.png



Sincerely Lasse
 
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tigre44

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What is your opinion of Tropic Marin’s All for Reef? My understanding is that this is supposedly to take care of trace element addition. I have been using it for about 3 months all my critters look great and are growing, my only problem with it is maintaining stability of kh.
 

Lasse

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What is your opinion of Tropic Marin’s All for Reef? My understanding is that this is supposedly to take care of trace element addition. I have been using it for about 3 months all my critters look great and are growing, my only problem with it is maintaining stability of kh.
I forward this question the creator of the product - @Hans-Werner :) I have no experiences of it - I use full Triton Core7.

Sincerely Lasse
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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What is your opinion of Tropic Marin’s All for Reef? My understanding is that this is supposedly to take care of trace element addition. I have been using it for about 3 months all my critters look great and are growing, my only problem with it is maintaining stability of kh.

IMO, it falls exactly into this category of the article associated with this thread:

B. A second approach ties the amount of trace elements added to the calcification rate. Say, to alkalinity demand per day or calcium demand per day. For example: Add 1ml of supplement for every 20ppm of calcium added per 100 liters of aquarium water. The company makes some sort of determination of the amount of trace elements needed per unit of calcification for a typical reef tank. A number of products do this either explicitly (for a trace supplement) or implicitly, such as with a two part or one part alkalinity and calcium method that has extra added trace elements.

The calcification rate would be a reasonable approach if the tank has about the same consumption characteristics as the tank the product was designed for, but what if it doesn’t? An entirely soft coral tank with a macroalgae refugium and organic carbon dosing may consume more trace elements than a hard coral tank that uses none of these methods. Yet the hard coral tank has far higher calcification and hence is getting more trace elements. This method likely works out for many tanks, but if your tank deviates from a typical mixed tank that the product was likely designed for, it may be a suboptimal way to dose. Again, trust of the company also comes into play. If the method is a stand-alone trace element mix, one might experiment with doses as described in A.
 

Lasse

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t is maintaining stability of kh
Do you mean over the day or over time? The consumption of alkalinity is uneven between day and night in many tanks. Look at my uneven dose of the alkalinity part of Core 7

1706292060721.png


Sincerely Lasse
 
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Hans-Werner

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What is your opinion of Tropic Marin’s All for Reef? My understanding is that this is supposedly to take care of trace element addition. I have been using it for about 3 months all my critters look great and are growing, my only problem with it is maintaining stability of kh.
If the calcium concentration increases or stays high while the alkalinity is dropping please use Original Balling Part B or anothere alkalinity additive to bring up alkalinity to the desired level.

We recommend not to exceed 8 dKH alkalinity.
 

Hans-Werner

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An entirely soft coral tank with a macroalgae refugium and organic carbon dosing may consume more trace elements than a hard coral tank that uses none of these methods. Yet the hard coral tank has far higher calcification and hence is getting more trace elements. This method likely works out for many tanks, but if your tank deviates from a typical mixed tank that the product was likely designed for, it may be a suboptimal way to dose.
Nice theory that still needs to be verified. :beaming-face-with-smiling-eyes:
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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Nice theory that still needs to be verified. :beaming-face-with-smiling-eyes:

Uh, like gravity?

You might want to debate whether AFR is best suited for a tank with a lot of calcification, or one with little, but it is not reasonable to claim that what I wrote is wrong.

Some tanks have almost no detectable drops in alk or calcium. Obviously AFR is not supplying trace elements to those.
 

Hans-Werner

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Some tanks have almost no detectable drops in alk or calcium. Obviously AFR is not supplying trace elements to those.
If the need for trace elements is more closely related to calcification than assumed, it still needs to be shown that in real-world tanks with little calcification growth gets limited by trace elements.

I mean, if growth cannot get limited by iodine which is one of the trace elements with highest consumption when kept at natural seawater concentrations, it has to be shown that growth gets limited in a real-world tank with soft corals and macroalgae at all, and of course by which factor or element. Maybe soft corals and macroalgae can concentrate trace elements where they are really needed instead of burying them in dead, calcareous exoskeletons. This would explain why something may work nearly universally. Uh, yes, also an unverified theory ... ;)

I think gravity doesn't need to be verified any more, we could discuss its naming or explanation.
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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If the need for trace elements is more closely related to calcification than assumed, it still needs to be shown that in real-world tanks with little calcification growth gets limited by trace elements.

I mean, if growth cannot get limited by iodine which is one of the trace elements with highest consumption when kept at natural seawater concentrations, it has to be shown that growth gets limited in a real-world tank with soft corals and macroalgae at all, and of course by which factor or element. Maybe soft corals and macroalgae can concentrate trace elements where they are really needed instead of burying them in dead, calcareous exoskeletons. This would explain why something may work nearly universally. Uh, yes, also an unverified theory ... ;)

I think gravity doesn't need to be verified any more, we could discuss its naming or explanation.

I am not claiming that any particular tank gets trace element limited in growth, with or without AFR.

I do know that macroalgae growth can be limited in some tanks by lack of iron because that is fairly easily demonstrated in some tanks. But I’m not sure that growth is even the main reason most reefers dose trace elements.

My point was simply that no product with dosing tied to calcification can be assured of providing optimal levels, just as no product that is simply a fixed mL per gallon per day can do it.
 

Big E

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This is your product. Would you not want to verify this before you sell it?

There are a ton of theories from these product vendors and none of it is proven. There's a Euro vendor that has a plethora of these "facts" littered all over the web.

It would be nice to see some before after pics but all we get is blue man group photos from fan boys if we're lucky......................jus sayin:rolleyes:
 
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Hans-Werner

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This is your product. Would you not want to verify this before you sell it?
Why should I verify Randy's theory? :grinning-face-with-smiling-eyes:

Well, the basic composition of the trace elements is 29 years old and the publication started several other trace elements products to pop up and even companies that started with a trace elements product in Germany. I have heard little complaints from practical application (none that I remember, some of theoretical nature, as you know, for example on strontium) and much more positive feedbacks. I think the lasting succes of some products is not the worst proof. In my eyes there is nothing we promise but the rather dry facts. When I read it today the wording is rather careful, almost understatement.
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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. I have heard little complaints from practical application (none that I remember, some of theoretical nature, as you know, for example on strontium) and much more positive feedbacks. I think the lasting succes of some products is not the worst proof.

What sort of complaint would qualify? There are a great many folks saying that AFR is not maintaining X in their system. That doesn’t meet the much higher and very hard to prove hurdle of growth limitation that you suggest, but it is an indication of the point I am making.

“I had an ICP test while the tank was running on AFR only, and I was lacking in a large amount of elements. I did not perform WCs and would recommend you do if dosing it. Despite its claims, I would now only use it to maintain dKH and Cal.”

 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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As to lasting success, I think Aragamight has been in the market longer than AFR, despite the implausible claim that it adds alk and calcium by adding aragonite to seawater.

I expect AFR would be a success even with no trace elements.
 
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Hans-Werner

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What sort of complaint would qualify? There are a great many folks saying that AFR is not maintaining X in their system. That doesn’t meet the much higher and very hard to prove hurdle of growth limitation that you suggest, but it is an indication of the point I am making.

“I had an ICP test while the tank was running on AFR only, and I was lacking in a large amount of elements. I did not perform WCs and would recommend you do if dosing it. Despite its claims, I would now only use it to maintain dKH and Cal.”
The fact that an element wasn't found since it was below the detection limit of ICP-OES doesn't mean it was growth limiting.

If you take water from a reef and do an ICP-OES analysis you will find none or almost none of the transition metals, except molybdenum I think.

What does this mean? In my eyes it means nothing. It is not my or our fault that ICP-OES doesn't find them although they are in sufficient supply. This is a point of criticism I have with ICP-OES from the beginning.

We do not claim ICP-OES finds our elements. It is exactly the other way round, ICP labs say their ICP finds the concentrations of the elements, but for many trace elements ICP-OES today simply doesn't. That is also what I have told to one lab with higher lower detection limits.

That customers believe the promises of the ICP labs and say they are lacking element x and y is also not our fault. It is not lacking, it is just below a certain detection limit which varies from lab to lab and maybe even from day to day. That is at least what I have been told.

In my eyes treatment of this question by some labs may even be misleading, so thank you for asking and for the chance of clarification.

We are working on this problem.
 
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Pod_01

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I expect AFR would be a success even with no trace elements.
TM offers that as well….
1706710601863.jpeg


Just curious why do you think this would work?

I tried, but from my observation AFR or Carbo-calcium with A and K worked better.

It is just observation since I only have one tank, little patience and many confusing methods/ opinions to sort through on R2R. But once the trace elements were added things took off so something was missing.

Also from my experience I never got any of the methods like: all in one, kalk, equal part 2 part dosing to balance alk or calcium. I mostly ended up with elevated calcium. Based on my limited experience I assumed this is normal and that some adjustments are always required.
These days I dose alk and calcium based on their demand, always less calcium.

Interesting topic, I did learn a lot, got confused some more….
 

Lasse

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Some figures of my iodine consumption in my tank. I use an iodine supplement there 1 ml content 5000 µg. Between 2023-01-18 and 23-10-10 I dose in average 0,7 ml a day -> 3500 µg/day - 310 L - it means that i dose around 11 µg/L a day and in this case - it also means that my consumption is around 11 µg/L or 3410 µg iodine a day. Both endpoints ICP-MS



1706712360470.png



Till now I have show that at least in my aquarium is it a rather high demand for both strontium and iodine. I will come back with other trace elements later on.

Sincerely Lasse
 

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