Phosphate Remover


Phosphate Remover

Reefphyto Phosphate Remover is a powerful ferric iron-based media, suitable for use in both freshwater and marine reef aquariums. This media helps to reduce nuisance algae associated with high phosphate levels.

Phosphate in marine reef aquariums affects the calcification of stony corals and should be kept less than 0.05ppm. In Freshwater aquariums, phosphate will fuel algae growth and should be kept at a maximum level of 0.1ppm.

Dosage Guidelines: Use 100grams of media per 330l of tank water. Test phosphate levels with a reliable test kit, and increase/decrease dosing as relevant.

Phosphates in the Aquarium

Why is Phosphate a problem? In aquatic systems, phosphate is often the limiting nutrient for algal growth.  Put simply if we limit the amount of phosphate in our aquariums we can limit the amount of algae.  To do this we need to aim for a phosphate level of below 0.2ppm (P) in a freshwater tank and below 0.03ppm (P) in salt water. At higher levels of phosphate, there is “plenty to go around” so reducing a level of 2ppm phosphate to 1ppm will have pretty much no effect.  In the freshwater aquarium excessive phosphates will do little more than create offensive algal growth, but in the marine aquarium, it’s far more serious.  Phosphate inhibits calcification which is vital for the production of skeletal material in hard corals, the growth of coralline algae and the formation of shells in clams etc. So keeping phosphate levels low is vital for a healthy reef aquarium.

Where does Phosphate come from? Without help, a higher than “natural” level of phosphate in our aquariums is pretty much inevitable.  The inescapable reason for this is food; we have to feed our fish and their food has to contain phosphate.  Phosphate is an essential dietary mineral without which fish simply cannot survive; consequently, typical flake contains ca. 1-2% phosphate. So avoiding over-feeding is vital as uneaten food is an excellent source of phosphates. There are special “low phosphate” foods available which could be of benefit.  Additives, pH buffers, and carbons can also be a major source of phosphate so it is wise to check their labels for phrases like “phosphate-free”.

How do we remove phosphate?  As fish keepers, our instinctive approach to pollution is to do a big water change.  Unfortunately, water companies often use phosphates to reduce the toxicity of lead piping, and it is also used in some anti-scale filters and water softeners.  Under these circumstances doing water changes could actually make matters worse.  The simplest solution is often to employ a phosphate removal filter media, such as UltiPhos.