seawater for water changes????


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battery park
has any body ever use this product before seems like a good idea saves time and effort and is real sea water and not synthetic. any advice would be appreciated thx in advance.


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Howell, NJ
i personally would not use it and dont see any positives in real sea salt... read down below... I use Instant Ocean and couldnt be happier...

and welcome to the site... Enjoy it..

Every few years a few standard "urban myths" (e.g. to float new arrivals or not), seem to re pop-up in our hobby. One of my favorite, and most disturbing is the issue of "real" seawater versus synthetic mixes. Here I'm referring to legitimate formula-tions as opposed to "Wonder Water", "Magic Ocean", and other sugar-based let's-raise-the-specific-gravity-gravity-without-increasing-the-ionic-content mixes (supposedly allowing the succesful co-existence of marine and freshwater organisms). Nor do I mean to include "lobster" system water softener grade formulations in this discussion. I mean here to disparage the claims of the purveyors of so-called "natural" seawater. These assertions also apply for areas in the world with easy access to the oceans where there arises the choice for the marine aquarist to use a saltwater mix or natural water. There are, admittedly, many valid arguments pro and con for either alternative.
The better mixes can retail for 30-40 cents per gallon, or more depending on how much you buy. "Live" ocean water costs the price of time, travel and proper filtration for you to collect and process it, or typically somewhere @$1.00-$1.50 retail per gallon to purchase.
In San Diego, free, sand-filtered seawater is available usually 24 hours a day at the base of the pier at Scripps Institute of Oceanography, U.C.S.D., La Jolla. This service is available at many other coastal towns. If you are dealing with large volumes of water the dollar savings can be considerable in treating and using this water, but it does have it's drawbacks:
More vital than it's expense is the water's relative ability to support marine life. Most of the more complete mixes are capable of sustaining marines for extended periods of time. The history of their use is impressive; they have been used all over the world by science, public aquaria and hobbyists alike for decades. The best available salt mixes have been demonstrated to support many invertebrates and fishes that live in close conjunction with them without further additives or modification.
Natural water that is pH/alkaline reserve checked and, if necessary, adjusted will support all forms of marine life.
The strongest point against real seawater is that it "dies", both biologically and chemically more quickly than synthetics. It's a fact; you must change part of the water more frequently with natural water; depending on the size, type of set-up, filtration, et al. 5-10-20% or more a month is often recommended. Many mixes should be changed just as frequently, but often, especially in terms of appearance (yellowing) you can "cheat" more than with natural water.
Another issue good and bad concerning natural water is that it comes ready equipped with a multitude of micro- and macro-organisms. Even if the water is sediment filtered, diatomed, U-Ved, ozonized, many "things" will survive. What to do then? One or two things: 1) Place the water in a dark place for a couple of weeks before using. 2) Treat the water with copper salts, permanganate, formaldehyde, chlorine, etc. and remove the poisonous effects of the treatment before using. 3) Don't worry; consider the source. Many dealers and hobbyists pour natural water, cold turkey into their systems with impunity. I personally do not endorse item 3). I would treat all natural water as suspect and quarantine and treat accordingly.
There are pro arguments to using real water with little critters or their remains in it to start up a system. One point is that the time needed to establish bio-geo-chemical nutrient cycling (whew!) is decreased greatly. Still another beneficial factor is the ready seeding of the habitat for other microbial needs of the fishes, algaes, invertebrates. Some of the naturally occurring tiny creatures that come in live water are harmful, but most are either beneficial or benign in captive applications.
Natural water should be monitored for pH/alkaline buffering capacity at the very least, and a supply of change water or chemcial preparation be kept close at hand for adjustment. Natural seawater, particularly supplies collected far from shore can exhaust it's buffering capacity quickly (within a day).
The synthetic is in a word, convenient; it serves the purpose as a viable medium for marine life and may be kept on a shelf and almost instantly made ready when need. Despite claims to the contrary, there are little deleterious effects of not pre-mixing, aerating... modern synthetic salt mixes prior to their use. Our corporation's service and retail divisions have used thousands of cases of several brands over the years without trouble for new set-ups as well as routine water changes. If the sea life involved is not otherwise challenged or compromised, you should also have no difficulty.
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has any body ever use this product before seems like a good idea saves time and effort and is real sea water and not synthetic. any advice would be appreciated thx in advance.
for a small tank it's fine to use. depending on the size and frequency of the water change, as the tank gets larger the NSW will get more expensive and heavy to carry.

the article that Tony quoted is a bit out of date.
I wish WWM would go through the archives and put a disclaimer on the articles which contain information that has been proven incorrect.

Aqua Pro Builder

Vendor: WingoLED
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oops i forgot to paste the link on my original thread sorry lol
this is the product i was talking about
Not sure how "catalinawater" is doing(like would it get stale) in the petco and other retail operations but in commercial operation such as a lot of the fish wholesalers and breeder networks, it is one of the greatest water you can find. A lot of the public and scientific aquariums use their water in US. My fish usually comes in their water and I am one happy customer.
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