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PostPosted: Feb 16th, '19, 03:11 
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Hey all!

It's my first post here :wave:

I build my first system. It's an eb and flow system with a 50 liter tank with 7 Harlequin Rasbora and a few water plants and it's heated up to 24c.
It's pumping water to a grow bed with extended clay for 15 min every hour and I used the gravity to create a cyclone bucket to break the water surface and aerate the water instead of an air pump.
So, I cycled the system fishless, put the fish and for the first experiment I saw bok choy directly in the grow bed.
The problem is that they are still extremely small after two weeks or a bit more and looks like they're not really growing so I'm not sure what might be the problem..

I'm in Berlin so water is quite hard, PH last I checked was 7.5 or so

I use 100W LED Grow Light positioned about a meter above and it's on for 8h or so a day.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/113207456933


What could be the problem ?
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PostPosted: Feb 16th, '19, 21:10 
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You don't mention how big your grow bed is?.That's relevant to how much light you need.They say 40w per square foot.
Also,those lights are from a china,you can't guarantee it's giving off 100w like they claim.And 8 hours is not enough light for veg stage growth,18 hours is more realistic but you can get away with 15 - 16 hours.

You don't mention what you're feeding the fish?.
You've just finished cycling,so you might need to build up a bit of nutrient before you'll start seeing extreme growth (maybe).

pjeterschornstein wrote:
I build my first system. It's an eb and flow system with a 50 liter tank with 7 Harlequin Rasbora and a few water plants and it's heated up to 24c.


The water plants might be robbing what nutrient you have in the system.

PH 7.5 is a little high,maybe some micro nutrients are getting locked out.

And I don't know if it's just me but I can't see your pics.

Hope this helps.

One more thing,what's your Nitrate reading?

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PostPosted: Feb 17th, '19, 10:15 
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Looks from the stretching and thin stems that it's at least partially from insufficient light.


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PostPosted: Feb 17th, '19, 19:48 
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Thanks for the quick replay!

The grow bed is 40x35 I calculated it needs 80w. I hanged I hanged it a bit lower ,about 50cm above grow bed- do you think that would make a difference? I would up the light to 15h too.
I also added some more water agitation because I thought lack of oxygen might be a problem.

I got confused, the PH actually reduced to 6.8. It was on 7.2 for a while before.
Nitrate is 100, is that low enough?
GH over 21, KH 6 (hard water in Berlin) NH3 0, NH4 0, NO2 0.

The flakes fish food reads: protein 43%, fat contact: 8,3%, raw fiber: 1.9%, raw ash 8.1%

I thought I'll give it a week and try again in case the reason is that the system is too young. what do you think?

I would say it it seems as it's either light or age of system. correct?


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PostPosted: Feb 17th, '19, 22:50 
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pjeterschornstein wrote:
The grow bed is 40x35

I assume that's cm? :) .Yes that's good,but maybe some reflection is needed.Lower the lights to 30cm,LED & fluorescent need to be quite close to the canopy.8 hours was just too little,even in a fruiting or budding flowering stage you'll need 12 hours of light.

You said it's run on a 15 min timer (flood cycle),which means not much is going on during the 45 min off period.I would get an air pump for more dissolved oxygen (but it's probably not needed).

Your Nitrate looks good but you wouldn't want it much higher (for the fish's sake).

Gh over 21 & kh 6 with a ph of 6.8 is very good,I wish I had that.With a kh of 6 your ph will hold at 6.8 for a while.

Fish flakes might be your problem,you need some decent high protein pellets.

pjeterschornstein wrote:
I would say it it seems as it's either light or age of system. correct?

Both plus a 3rd,the fish food.

And I still can't see those pics :think: Scotty obviously can

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PostPosted: Feb 18th, '19, 00:11 
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Yes, it's in cm. I have some tin foil and space blanket as reflectors but I'll lower the lights more.

whats the protein level I'm shooting for? is there some DIY additive I can give them? would hate to waste a full package of fish food..
Sorry 7341, imagebucket doesn't work for some reason so I had to upload them to my account on Shroomy website, maybe Scotty is a member there too :)
Just in general, Is there some indicator if low oxygen levels? fish seems to be happy they are mating and playing


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PostPosted: Feb 18th, '19, 04:09 
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I see the pics inline with the text now but I think Earthbound or one of the moderators probably saw the links and posted up the photos or requested that they be posted here. It's best if images are posted to the site so that they aren't lost when external sites decide to charge or run into other problems.


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PostPosted: Feb 19th, '19, 01:23 
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pjeterschornstein wrote:
whats the protein level I'm shooting for? is there some DIY additive I can give them? would hate to waste a full package of fish food..

The protein level largely depends on the fish (I've never heard of the fish you have) but some pellets suitable for your fish with a minimum crude protein of 25% should do good.The flakes you're using maybe 43% but without other goodies.
For example:here,there are these vegan lot that say "hemp seed has 92% protein,so there's no need to eat meat" but you would still need a whole lot of something a accompany that.

Don't throw it out,keep it for a mid day feed or when you've run out of a better food,until you can get some more.

pjeterschornstein wrote:
Just in general, Is there some indicator if low oxygen levels? fish seems to be happy they are mating and playing


Mating & playing sounds fun. :headbang:
If the fish are gasping for air,it's an obvious sign.But with plants,they'll look unhealthy & the roots will go bad.I don't think your oxygen level is the problem.But it's always nice to have more oxygen & if your water pump ever broke,you would not have that agitation like during the flood/cycle period.The warmer the water,the less oxygen it can hold.

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PostPosted: Feb 19th, '19, 03:05 
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First fix the light problem and see if that fixes things. You may need to plant some new seeds as the current lot might never snap out of it.

I'd lean toward a bit higher protein content of at least 32 % to 42% but in pellet form if the fish will take it. The nitrogen from the protein is what provides the nitrate nitrogen that your plants use. You can try lower but if you're not getting enough as waste then you'll get poor plant growth.


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PostPosted: Feb 19th, '19, 15:05 
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Thanks Scotty, I'll put some new seeds and see how it goes this time.
I was looking around and saw that daphnia would be easy to cultivate as live food. Do you think that would be a better feed?


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PostPosted: Feb 20th, '19, 04:23 
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I'm really not sure about that. I think using a commercial chow with some supplementation is probably better than not using any commercial feed.

I've raised D. magna and C. dubia years ago but these were in water toxicity tests and only had a short lifespan whether they made it through or not. I don't remember much about it but I don't remember it being difficult.


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