Randy's thoughts on trace elements

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Randy Holmes-Farley

Randy Holmes-Farley

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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….

My point is just that if AFR contained no trace elements, the convenience of once a day all in one alk and calcium and magnesium dosing would make it successful. Like a two part, but in one part.

Hence I do not think its success is validation that the level of trace elements added is demonstrated to be optimal by that success.
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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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
Strontium demand will always be directly tied to calcium demand, whether it is used by corals or abiotic precipitation.
 

Hans-Werner

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Just to make transparent and more understandable what I am saying:

Here you find the Periodic Table Of Elements In The Ocean. By clicking onto one element a window opens showing atomic weight and average concentration in ocean. By multplying the average concentration in ocean in mol/kg with the atomic weight you get the average concentration in ocean by weight. I know, most likely only those familiar with chemical calculations anyway will follow up to here.

Now you can compare the average concentrations in the ocean with the lower detection limits of your ICP lab if it gives these numbers, maybe by a "<" sign, for example "< 0.5 µg/kg".
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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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.

I don’t disagree. But you said you had not seen complaints. I posted one.

If the requirement to be a valid complaint is a careful study showing growth limitation from lack of trace elements, then every kown reef product has already passed that test.

If the requirement is to seen by icp-ms, then I will look and see if they exist, though I’m not sure many folks choosing AFR are the same people opting for services like Oceamo provides.

Do you have icp-ms data when using AFR?
 

Hans-Werner

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I don’t disagree. But you said you had not seen complaints. I posted one.

If the requirement to be a valid complaint is a careful study showing growth limitation from lack of trace elements, then every kown reef product has already passed that test.

If the requirement is to seen by icp-ms, then I will look and see if they exist, though I’m not sure many folks choosing AFR are the same people opting for services like Oceamo provides.

Do you have icp-ms data when using AFR?
It falls under the "theory category". It is not on the practical application.

Apart from this the thread was new to me. If I would have seen it I would have told earlier.
 

Lasse

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Strontium demand will always be directly tied to calcium demand, whether it is used by corals or abiotic precipitation.
Yes - and that means that it can be totally depleted in an aquarium. For me, knowing this is enough to understand it and to realize that it might be wise to make sure it doesn't happen. In post 217 I ask a question that I have not get any answers about. In a quote you state

Depending on the conditions, calcification can increase on adding extra strontium, as it does with added calcium.

My question was - can lower strontium concentrations (lower than natural) in the same way cause decreased calcification as it does with decreased calcium concentrations?

Sincerely Lasse
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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Yes - and that means that it can be totally depleted in an aquarium. For me, knowing this is enough to understand it and to realize that it might be wise to make sure it doesn't happen.

It is certainly true that it can be depleted ("totally" cannot happen, just like it cannot for calcium, since incorporation rate depends on the strontium concentration) but it can definitely be reduced.

It is also impossible to argue that appropriate dosing can hurt anything.

So if the goal is to cover all possible concerns, yes, dose it.

But that not evidence of need, which is the point I argue, not that dosing is a problem. :)
 
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My question was - can lower strontium concentrations (lower than natural) in the same way cause decreased calcification as it does with decreased calcium concentrations?

Sincerely Lasse

From a similar reference by the same author to the second reference, it seems as if the extra strontium was acting identically to extra calcium, not that it was a different sort of effect:

"
Different growth rates were produced in each of the experiments, the
results of which have been reported previously (Swart, 1980a). In most
instances, the addition of calcium in moderate concentrations, up to
100 p.p.m., increased growth rate (Fig.6A).

...
Changes in the strontium concentration produced similar results to the
calcium experiments (Fig.6B), confirming the interchangeability of strontium
and calcium in many biological systems
(Lehninger, 1970)."

 
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The first ICP-MS below is on AFR only, followed by transition to moonshiners + AFR, and then full moonshiners.
2024-01-11 ICP-MS.JPG

2023-12 ICP-MS.JPG


2024-01-11 ICP-MS.JPG

Thanks for posting that. I cannot quite see the text well enough to read it. Can you highlight the differences on AFR vs on Moonshiners?
 

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Do you have icp-ms data when using AFR?

Regarding this question what is it you are looking for? I have ICP results using AFR. I do not know what format (is that the correct term to use) ATI uses though (MS or other?).

If it helps any I can post my Google Sheet data here. I'm a bit behind in the conversation so it may not be applicable.
 
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It falls under the "theory category". It is not on the practical application.

I'm not going to keep arguing the point, but it seems obvious to me that if a trace element supplement is tied to calcification, and a reef tank has little to no calcification but lots of other tissue growth from macroalgae, anemones, microalgae, bacteria, and soft corals, that such a product cannot possibly hope to provide all of the trace elements that such organisms need since little or none of it is actually used.
 

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Regarding this question what is it you are looking for? I have ICP results using AFR. I do not know what format (is that the correct term to use) ATI uses though (MS or other?).

If it helps any I can post my Google Sheet data here. I'm a bit behind in the conversation so it may not be applicable.
I believe ATI uses ICP-OES (-optical emission spectroscopy). My understanding is that following post #263 the OP is looking for ICP-MS (-mass spectrometry) data as it has a significantly lower detection limit (by that I am trying to say that it can detect and quantify a much smaller mass per unit volume of various elements/ions). I personally don't think the results will affect the content of the thread much, as on the one hand RHF may quantitatively demonstrate what he has been describing re: trace element dosing scaled to calcium consumption, while HW may still feel perfectly comfortable suggesting that regardless of the ICP-MS results, AFR simply works.
 

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Thanks for posting that. I cannot quite see the text well enough to read it. Can you highlight the differences on AFR vs on Moonshiners?
I'll upload the full image to imgur when I get home in a bit, I think R2R compresses the image files, which made it difficult to read.
 

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I believe ATI uses ICP-OES (-optical emission spectroscopy). My understanding is that following post #263 the OP is looking for ICP-MS (-mass spectrometry) data as it has a significantly lower detection limit (by that I am trying to say that it can detect and quantify a much smaller mass per unit volume of various elements/ions). I personally don't think the results will affect the content of the thread much, as on the one hand RHF may quantitatively demonstrate what he has been describing re: trace element dosing scaled to calcium consumption, while HW may still feel perfectly comfortable suggesting that regardless of the ICP-MS results, AFR simply works.

Got it, and thanks for the information on MS and OES.
 

Hans-Werner

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I'm not going to keep arguing the point, but it seems obvious to me that if a trace element supplement is tied to calcification, and a reef tank has little to no calcification but lots of other tissue growth from macroalgae, anemones, microalgae, bacteria, and soft corals, that such a product cannot possibly hope to provide all of the trace elements that such organisms need since little or none of it is actually used.
I don't know whether you are aware which huge change, maybe progress, such a statement made by someone like you is. :D

In the 2000s and 2010s our sells of K+ Elements did stay well behind the sells of A- Elements in the USA. The only reason for this was the scepticism stirred up by Ron Shimek. This scepticism against "heavy metals" (transition metals is better) is still quite present among many reefers.

What All-For-Reef and maybe a few other calcium and alkalinity products did, was introducing these essential trace elements "through the backdoor". I think this approach was very successfull, at least in my eyes.

ICP-OES helped to enshure and show that no excessively high concentrations were achieved. This is the real advantage and meaning of ICP-OES analysis and control, not to show that some minimum or optimum concentration was achieved. In my eyes, to tell something else is not really serious.

I have no complaint as yet, that corals or other animals were seriously affected or harmed by high trace element concentrations dosed with All-For-Reef or any other of our products. But I don't have these information about any other product or method as yet. Do you, @Randy Holmes-Farley ?

So, does this mean all the warnings have been completely unfounded?

If someone wants to know about the background, I recommend to think a bit about dynamic equilibria and steady state concentrations.
It is certainly true that it can be depleted ("totally" cannot happen, just like it cannot for calcium, since incorporation rate depends on the strontium concentration) but it can definitely be reduced.
Just as strontium cannot be totally depleted since incorporation rate depends on the strontium concentration, it is hard to achieve and keep high elevated concentrations of many other trace elements, well, just because incorporation rates depend on concentrations. This means after quite a short time, weeks or a few months, most dosed trace elements will reach dynamic equilibria/steady state concentrations and will not increase further in concentrations despite continued and consistent dosing.

I think, to understand this conception is really central in understanding trace elements. This is what balanced trace elements supply means to me, to keep these steady state concentrations at reasonable levels. This is why a product may work without further control and you wonder why and how.
 
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Hans-Werner

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My question was - can lower strontium concentrations (lower than natural) in the same way cause decreased calcification as it does with decreased calcium concentrations?
I have linked an article above which shows that strontium concentrations are elevated in the centers of calcification. I suspect this means that it may play a role in initiating crystallization and calcification. This would also explain why you, Julian Sprung and others observed increased growth when dosing strontium. This means strontium does not only replace calcium but plays a special role. This would explain the observation, when only strontium was dosed additionally, the increase in growth was higher than the sum of calcium + strontium would have suggested.

By the way: Why would someone expect increased growth when dosing strontium, when calcium concentration is already at its optimum level or beyond? I mean, the claim unchallenged as yet is, that increasing calcium concentration beyond 410 ppm has no or little (or even a negative) effect while increasing alkalinity beyond 6.5 dKH has. Isn't that contradictory?
 

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I’m just going to give you a thumbs up I’m not reading all that Randy.
 

Lasse

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I must say that I´m not particularly fond of all and one products, also not a direct admirer of compound mixtures of "trace elements" either. This is due to the fact that I do not use regular water changes as a method. If you use trace element mixtures or All in one products - then regular water changes with a salt that lack "extra ingredients" are necessary IMO. I´m not sure that all "trace elements" will find an equilibrium by itself as Hans-Werner state

However - as many of you may known - I´m deadly afraid of high potassium concentrations - Concentrations above 475 mg/L send chills down my spine :) Potassium is not a trace element but after the zeolite pandemic :)) - it is often incorporated into different compound mixtures. IME - in normal aquarium - there is a very small consumption of potassium - probably not even need monitoring. In system with refugium and maybe algae scrubbers - its good to monitor it - in zeolite system - it will be depleted. Zeolite "absorb" potassium by itself

Sincerely Lasse
 
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