There are two general types of water for your saltwater or reef aquarium: real seawater that you buy at the fish store or get from the ocean yourself and artificial saltwater that you buy pre-mixed from your local store or in powder form (artificial sea salts) and you mix into saltwater yourself. We’re going to talk about how to mix up your own saltwater. It is easy to do but you need a few items and to plan ahead a little. To begin you’ll need to get the following – a high quality sea salt mix, a clean bucket or trash can (one that has never been cleaned with soap or used for anything else), a hydrometer or refractometer and a source of fresh water. A small submersible pump also comes in handy to help speed the mixing. If you are going to be using tapwater you’ll also need a [...]
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When it comes to the variety of DrTim’s Aquatics products, some can be used together but sometimes they should not be mixed. I am going to sort this out in a quick fashion for you. One & Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria — before adding One & Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria, the water must be free of chlorine and chloramines so use AquaCleanse or First Defense to accomplish this. Make sure to turn off devices such as the protein skimmer and UV-sterilizer, and remove any filter socks for 48 hours after adding One & Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria. Do not add Waste-Away, Re-Fresh or Eco-Balance during the first 2 weeks of adding One & Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria. AquaCleanse — can be used when first filling your aquarium and when doing large water changes (over 50%). While AquaCleanse can be used to temporarily control ammonia in emergencies, it is much better [...]
You read or hear from “experts,” that nitrifying bacteria mixtures don’t work so don’t waste your money. That statement may have been true 10 years ago but is not today. I will explain why. But first let me acknowledge that I do manufacture and sell a mixture of nitrifying bacteria. However, unlike every other company selling these products, I have been conducting research on nitrifying bacteria for nearly 20 years, did my Ph.D. on nitrifying bacteria in aquaria and have published my work in peer-reviewed, scientific literature. No other company can make those same claims. So I ask you: whose bacteria would you rather buy? A brand developed by a scientist (who is also a life-long fish hobbyist) who is published, and has been studying and developing nitrifying bacteria for aquaria for nearly two decades, or one of the brands that has a big marketing department behind them? Let me [...]
Fish and corals react to stress in many of the same ways that humans do. Stress can reduce their ability to fight off disease, resulting in poor body condition and loss of color. If the stress agents in the aquarium are not removed, the animal will eventually be invaded by opportunistic bacteria or develop a viral infection and then die. So what are the common stress agents in an aquarium? The most common is poor water quality. But poor water quality is a rather general term, as what may be poor for one animal could be fine for another. So one needs to know some basics about the animals they are keeping. Also, the stress may be a series of problems that finally affect the fish or corals. For example, nitrifying bacteria prefer a higher pH value (between 7.5 and 8.5), and as the pH drops below this range, the [...]
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