I've never been one to shy away from Lanthanum chloride, a product used in our hobby to bind up and export phosphate from a reef tank. Not only did I feel like I'd found the magic elixir the first time I used some, I've been a huge advocate for more than a decade. Two months ago at MACNA, Two Little Fishies introduced their version to the attendees named Phosban-L. Phosban has been a powdered version of GFO for a long time, used in a Phosban Reactor or similar device. Phosban-L is not just a liquid additive, it's a bottle of concentrated Lanthanum chloride.
Tank alkalinity has been somewhat low but I couldn't figure out why. My calcium reactor was full of media, the CO2 tank was full of gas, everything looked right. That's when I realized I was missing the point, that the pH measurement inside the reactor was not where it belonged. Normally it's between 6.1 to 6.5 depending on my mood, so to speak. The pH controller showed that it was 7.5 and my brain didn't click, that it wasn't 6.5... dumb mental error.
As hobbyists, we appreciate the need for a variety of interesting chemicals at our disposal, and usually we use them without incident. Tonight however was different, way way different. About a year ago I received a package with a few bottles of 35% peroxide.
Every few weeks, I get a message asking me if I'm dosing Prodibio and what specifically am I dosing. My preference has always been the big four: Biodigest, Bioptim, Stronti+, and Iodi+ which are all dosed back to back during the same session twice a month, on the 5th and on the 20th.
The above picture was taken with the iPhone X in Portrait Mode. I'm very impressed with the camera in my phone. :)
This is a very interesting story, and thus I want to park it here on my site so I can find it in the future. Being able to detect cyanide to know if a fish is at risk or not is huge.
After making myself (literally) do all my water testing today on both systems, I'm quickly reminded why I prefer to only run one reef at a time. Those people that run multiple tanks or frag systems deserve heavy praise for being able to keep so many separate systems thriving. I noticed some bits of corals turning white in my reef, but I kept blaming it on shade rather than a water quality issue. Today, I ran through all the Elos test kits, twice since I have to measure the 400g reef as well as the 60g frag system.
I've been using Phosphate Rx for a decade, and it's my preferred product to keep PO4 levels under control. No GFO for me. I've mentioned it many times, but decided "I guess I need to do a video about this product after all." I do realize I could have explained the process in about sixty seconds because it's that simple, but I wanted this to be a fun video. Hope you liked the flashback.
Purchase Phosphate Rx here: http://melevsreef.com/product/phosphate-rx
This interview was done at MACNA last weekend. Jim Welsh's newly built invention is the Alkalinity Monitor. It will measure tank water as frequently as you desire, and that data can be acted upon by your controller. It could send you texts & emails if the reading is out of range, and you can see what the latest measurement is just by glancing at the display on the device, or by computer or smartphone. It could trigger or stop a doser if needed. He explains it quite well, and I gotta say I'm really impressed.
One of the topics I wanted to address as a full video is biopellets. Short answer: they work. Earlier this year, nitrates spiked in my reef and despite lots of effort it didn't get them down and keep them down, so I opted to get biopellets running again on my 400g reef. The results were spectacular, as expected.