Water for the Aquarium
- Natural vs Artificial Seawater
- Collecting Natural Seawater
- Mixing Artificial Seawater
- Water Changes
Water in the Aquarium
- Water flow is more important for corals than light: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5 by Jake Adams - Advanced Aquarist's Online Magazine
The recommended values for water parameters in a marine aquarium are as follows:
- Salinity/Specific Gravity - 35 ppt / 1.024-1.027
- Temperature - 24-29 ºC
- Alkalinity - 2.5-3.5 meq/L / 7-10 dKH / 125-175 mg/L
- pH - 8.1-8.4
- Calcium - 400-450 mg/L
- Magnesium - 1250-1350 mg/L
- Oxygen - saturated if possible
Testing Water Parameters
Additives and top-off
- Reef Aquarium Water Parameters by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping Magazine
- What is Seawater? by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping Magazine
- The “How To” Guide to Reef Aquarium Chemistry for Beginners, Part 1: The Salt Water Itself by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping Magazine
- The “How To” Guide to Reef Aquarium Chemistry for Beginners, Part 2: What Chemicals Must be Supplemented by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping Magazine
- Nitrification Cycle
- Reef Chemistry Calculator - This page is designed to calculate reef chemistry additions for calcium or alkalinity using commercial products or standard chemicals.
- Inorganic Substances as Additives in the Marine Aquarium
Can I use rain water to top off my system?
This depends on how its collected. Bird poop and other organics can find its way into rainwater tanks which can have an adverse effect.
Can I use tap water to top off my system?
Tap water is used by some people, but it depends greatly upon where you live. If using tap water, its best to use an ager like "Prime". Ultimately though it can be a source of dangerous heavy metals, copper (toxic to invertebrates) and nutrients. It's recommended that Reverse Osmosis (RO) or De Ionised (DI) systems be used. Some filtration systems utilise both.
How can I stop the build up of scum on the water surface?
A buildup of surface scum suggests one or more of the following:
- A lack of surface skimming
- Organic matter in the water from overfeeding
- Not enough organisms to process the organic matter
Organic matter is usually defined as compounds which include carbon. Introducing surface skimming by means of an overflow, breaking up the water surface by directing a powerhead at it, blotting the water surface with a paper towel all help to remove the build up of scum on the surface.