Custom Aquatic carries the widest selection of aquarium additives manufactured by some of the most respected companies in the aquarium industry, such as Acquamarine, Aqua Medic, Aqua Science, Argent, Bio Pure, Boyd Enterprises, CaribSea, Coral Frenzy, ESV, EcoSystem, Ecological Labs, HBH, Kent Marine, Marc Weiss, Red Sea, Salifert, Seachem, and Two Little Fishies. Follow one of the links below to the type of additives you need for your particular system or call and one of our professional associates will be happy to help you find the right aquarium supplies for all of your tropical fish, marine fish, saltwater fish, reef aquarium, and saltwater aquarium.
Glossary of Aquarium Additives
Alkalinity Buffers: Alkalinity is a measurement of carbonate ions in a reef tank. It is important to maintain a stable alkalinity level, 2.5 - 4 meq/L or 7 - 11 dKH is a desirable level. If your alkalinity level is to high, it is an indication that your calcium and or magnesium levels are too low.
Ammonia: This is the first step in the nitrogen cycle. Ammonia is a by-product of fish waste and the decay of dead fish and plant material. It is perhaps the deadliest agent to tropical fish. Care must be made to ensure that the ammonia levels stay at zero.
Boron: Boron is present in NSW (Natural Sea Water) in a moderately low concentration (4.4 - 4.8 mg/L or ppm). It is present predominantly as boric acid and to a lesser extent as borate. It has several important biological functions and our results show that a too low boron concentration might slow down growth of corals and coralline algae. Boron also has some positive effect in buffering NSW especially in the range of pH 8.1 - 8.3.
Bromide-Fluoride: Bromide-Fluoride Supplements conservatively add these important major ions which can be depleted via calcification and biological organic synthesis. Fluoride is concentrated in coral skeleton and may play an important role in calcification. Some marine organisms use bromide to synthesize organic anti-microbial compounds which may enhance their ability to resist disease. Bromide like iodide is also highly concentrated in many marine algae. Any export of these algae from the system such as harvesting algae filters and photosynthetic particulate removal via protein skimming could result in depletion of bromide.
Calcium: A mineral that is the major building block of corals and other calcareous organisms. Calcium levels can be maintained through regular water changes, by using calcium additives, or through the use of kalkwasser. In a reef tank, calcium levels should be maintained at 380-480 mg/l.
Chlorine: A chemical substance used by municipal water treatment facilities to eliminate bacteria from the water supply. This is toxic to fish and should be removed using either a dechlorinator or through aeration, or by letting the water stand in an open container for 24 hours. It is toxic to aquatic animals.
Doser Pumps: Dosers can automate many tasks in your aquarium system by regular dispensing of trace elements and fertilizers into salt and freshwater systems, controlled addition of two part calcium additives in separate intervals, accurate dosing of Kalkwasser into reef tanks, regular feedings of live phytoplankton and zooplankton
Iodine: A trace element found in seawater necessary in small quantities for some reef invertebrates, particularly clams and corals. It is especially needed by crustaceans to successfully moult and soft corals for growth. Protein skimming may deplete the supply, so additions are quite necessary.
Kalkwasser: Kalkwasser is a German word that literally means “lime water.” It is calcium hydroxide Ca(OH)2 that is dissolved in purified tap water. Kalkwasser is used in reef tanks as a way of replenishing calcium that is lost through evaporation and precipitation. It can be drip dosed or mixed into top off water to maintain stable calcium and ph levels.
Nitrate: Chemically speaking, it is the molecule NO3, which contains a nitrogen atom, three oxygen atoms and a lone pair of electrons. It is the last stage of the aquarium nitrogen cycle and is converted from nitrites. It is harmful to aquatic animals in high concentrations.
pH: A measure of the concentration of hydrogen and hydroxide ions. The pH of a solution measures how acidic or alkaline it is. pH values range from 0 to 14. A neutral solution has a pH of 7. A pH less than 7 indicates an acidic solution while a pH greater than 7 indicates an alkaline solution.
Some fish are particular and require a specific pH, while others will live at any of a range of values. Most are sensitive to changes, which should only be made gradually. pH can be regulated in the aquarium by using buffering materials. pH and alkalinity can also be maintained by the use of kalkwasser.
Phytoplankton: Microscopic free-floating aquatic plants, mainly algae. It lives suspended in bodies of water and drifts about.
Strontium: A trace element found in seawater that is required for corals and creatures with calcareous skeletons to grow. Strontium levels can be maintained by the use of strontium additives (such as strontium chloride SrCl2) and through regular water changes.
Trace Elements: A term used to describe the many necessary elements in a marine aquarium, although usually in very small amounts. Among them are calcium, strontium, iodine and ozone (for purification).
Zooplankton: Small, usually microscopic animals; includes tiny waterborne crustaceans and fish larvae, also includes corals, rotifers, sea anemones, and jellyfish