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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi. When I come down in the morning, a couple of fish are at the surface gasping for air, and the loachs are hanging out in their hiding spot breathing hard.
So I need additional air at night.
Contiunious?
A couple times on at night for a short period?
Ph remains stable 6.9-7.0, kh 5-6.
Pressurized CO2.
90 gallon.
About 1.5 hours into the lights on time, everyone is happy again. It's been like this for a couple days. I think the stress is a bad thing, but they seem fine once the plants put in gear. 4 medium angels, 6 clown loachs 4-5 inchs, 2 yoyos, 2 giant dainos in a 90, heavily planted. Oh, about 10 glass shrimp that have somehow not gotton eaten. Is the bio load to high?
Fairly dense planting with little room for even one more plant.
It's a jungle out there!

Comments?
 

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If you add an airstone/air pump to your tank you can attach it to a timer and run it at night only after the lights are out. This should take care of your problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
No, I have the sms122.

I think it may be too many plants/fish at night to handle the loss of O2?

I was initially concerned about a overnight ph crash, (never happened so far - 1 weeK) but now I think it is too little O2 in the morning right before the dawn.

I just don't want to burn off CO2 willy nilly. The more I think about it, baybe a bubble of air for 45 minuets three hours before lights on....
 

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What is your PH reading in the morning when your fish are gasping for air?

It may be as simple as turning the bubble count down, turning the C02 off at night or using a airstone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, went out and bought an airstone, checkvalve, and tubing. (Thought I was done with that stuff years ago!) and set it up to run once for an hour at 4am and again at 7am.

I don't feel it was too much CO2, but a lack of O2 due to a fairly large biomass between all those plants (some of which are disintigrating) and fish.

Should take care of it. I have never seen the controller turn on at night for the CO2, maybe just never noticed it. The surface of the tank is as still as a graveyard, and there is a scum layer on it almost constantly. That must attenuate the gas exchange considerably.
 

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Hi. A couple of questions....
What is your C02 level during the day, what type of filtration do you use, and what is your KH? I'm assuming the KH is low if you're getting such a swing.

If you're having the problem at night, I would try raising the pH setting on your controller so it stays more consistent both night and day.
You're correct about it being hard on the fish if they're gasping for air.

I don't see your fish load as being excessive (or at least I've heard of much worse), but I would try to clean up the decomposing plant material as it happens, and perhaps increase your water changes. Even in heavily planted tanks with a fairly hefty fish load, that's not a normal problem unless one of the above is at fault.

Keep us posted on how the airstones go, as well. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't think there are any swings in the ph, just O2 levels.

PH is 6.9, and the kh is 6 or 7 depending on the mood of the test kit. It stays stable at 6.9 - 7.0 all the time.

The fish were not gasping this morning however, so it must have done the trick!

Filtration: One ebay 2228 clone, and a eheim 2229 wet/dry converted to reactor duty by removing the float control. Basically a 2228 now with an injection point for CO2.

Hopefully, it is not triggering the CO2 to turn on in the middle of the night. If it is, I guess I can hook up the solinoid controller to the light timer. :^)
 

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I'm glad the airstone helped.

One other thing that occured to me is that maybe your solenoid isn't shutting the C02 off all the way when it's supposed to (faulty regulator, or something)? I've heard a few people say that even when it's supposed to be off, it's still producing.
Just a thought. :)
 

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Note that - yes you may have a problem with PH movement due to excess CO2 at night but there is no competition between Oxygen and CO2. High C02 levels do not result in low oxygen levels.

I have noticed that it is normal for some fish to hang around near the surface when its dark, I guess because in nature they are immune from attack by birds etc and therefore do not need to go deeper.
 
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