Please visit our Sponsors

FAQs on Strontium in Seawater

Related Articles: Strontium in Seawater, Calcium, Biominerals, Using Kalkwasser, Calcium Reactors, Marine Maintenance, Marine Water Quality, Magnesium in Seawater, Strontium in Seawater, pH, Alkalinity, Marine Alkalinity

Related FAQs: Calcium, FAQs2, Calcium FAQs 3, Calcium FAQs 4, Calcium Reactors, FAQs2 pH, Alkalinity, Marine Alkalinity, Marine Alkalinity 2, Marine Alkalinity 3 Calcium and Alkalinity

The best source of alkaline earth biominerals... "melted down" coral rubble.

Strontium Overdose 5/24/09
Hello again Crew,
< Hello >
I was at my LFS the other day and asking the importance of dosing Strontium to my year & a half established 125g reef. The owner replied, I don't measure, I just dump strontium once a month.
< People like him are why the local fish stores get a bad name. Never ask for his advice again. >
I got a small bottle of strontium and added 4 capfuls @ 20g a capful to my tank.
< Why? >
Within two to three days, all my coralline was bleached out white on my rocks, powerheads and back wall. My expensive Acan Lordhow's bleached out and shrunk as did my Rose Bubble Anemone (just the shrinking/withering part). I have been doing massive water changes for the past week and crossing my fingers that things will bounce back. Luckily not too many SPS seem to be hit. I read that some view strontium as a poison and never add it because they say there is enough in regular water changes. Lately, I've been so proud of my tank and how perfect everything was, a year and a half worth of beautiful purple, pinks and reds, gone.
It looks like winter in my tank. Yet another lesson learned the hard way I guess. DO NOT add strontium in mass amounts!!!
< The lesson is NEVER add anything to you aquarium if you do not test for it. Even if it is a common additive. If you do not own that particular test kit do not dose. I personally use additives for alkalinity, calcium, magnesium but only after testing. Regular water changes will take care of
the rest. If you think you are lacking trace elements, do more regular water changes. GA Jenkins >
Thanks, Alan

Strontium and anemones   3/11/07 Bob, <Sorry to disappoint, but tis' Brandon tonight.> A few months ago I purchased a blue carpet anemone.   <Big buggers.> I introduced it into the tank and it immediately buried its foot into the sand and took up residence.   <Definitely a good sign.> It would fully expand and I would feed it dime sized pieces of raw shrimp from the grocery store a couple of times a week.   <My buddy and me.  I love Anemones and would not trade mine for the world.> It was doing so good that I bit the bullet and dropped a hundred bucks on a very large green carpet.   <Bit the bullet indeed.  Two huge Anemones in one tank?  Sounds like a clash of the titans to me.  Seriously, there should never be more than one Anemone in any given system.  And there should never be an Anemone in a system that is new and/or does not have an experienced caretaker.> I introduced it and had the same results.   <This is sheer luck my friend.  The outcome could have been far worse.> I was also adding Reef Solution by Ecosystem (highly recommended by my online retailer) at the rate of ? tsp every other day to an approx. 70 gallon system. <I "like" all the products that I sell, as well as highly recommend them. (;^D)> At about the same time, I started looking at my strontium concentration. <Here it comes.>   I had always monitored my Calcium level (kept around 420-440ppm) and alkalinity levels (maintained at 3 meq/L), but after reading that strontium is the second most important component next to calcium, <<No... RMF>>  I decided that I needed to start looking at it for the health of my clams and SPS corals.  I obtained a Salifert Sr test kit and tested my water.  The test indicated that no Sr was present.  So, I discontinued the use of the Reef Solution (a blend of many components) and started slowly increasing the Sr concentration by using Kent Turbo Strontium.  Over the course of a few weeks, I was able to get the Sr concentration up to 10-16 ppm as recommended in the literature I've read. <I don't personally advocate the use of supplements.  I believe that if you use the right salt mix, there is no need for this, as you can easily replenish missing or depleted elements with regular water changes.> But during this time, both carpet anemones started behaving strangely.  They weren't expanding like they normally had, they started moving around very frequently, and the green carpet quit accepting the shrimp altogether.  Both eventually died. <Sounds like poisoning.  Or likely too rapid an environment change.> Now, after reading some of your literature, I think I realized what happened.  I overdosed the system with strontium and killed them.  Do you agree?  <Tis' possible.>  I've since read that Sr (considered a heavy metal I guess) has no place in a system hosting anemones.  If this is true, knowing that Sr is critical for corals, how can a balance be struck?   <Sr is present, in all seawater.  I don't dose Sr, and I am successfully keeping Euphyllia, Acropora, Montipora, Trachyphyllia, Tubastrea, Galaxea, and many others.> Or do you think I just over did the strontium trying to get my levels up?  What do you recommend using for additives in a clam/coral/anemone system? <Tinker with your water at your own risk.  Please see above Re: water changes.> I have since discontinued use of the Turbo Sr and switched back to Reef Solution every other day at a1/2 tsp. dose.  My remaining anemones (a Sebae and four pink tube anemones) seem to have weathered the storm and are doing ok. <Please see above Re: one Anemone per system.  This is a ticking time bomb.> Thanks, <You are welcome.  Do try to get the other Anemones into other systems.  Brandon F.> Bryan S.

Best time to add calcium   10/2/06 Crew, <Mark> I have a 60 gallon DAS tank with 65 pounds live rock and 110 pounds live sand. We also have a hammer coral and a xenia. When is the best time to add my calcium, iodine and strontium? Right now we add these in the morning but my wife would like to not have the cloudiness from the calcium so I am curious if there are any ill effects if I added these at night after the lights go out? Also we currently use Purple up liquid calcium. I add 7 ml a day. <Calcium is best added when the tanks pH is at its lowest. This is usually hours after the lights have been off and can be determined with a quick ph test or monitor. I suggest using a two part liquid calcium system as these will give you easy control over your calcium and alkalinity.> What are your suggestions? <Concerning dosing iodine and strontium you need only add these when testing dictates. You may be holding at acceptable levels with regular water changes, and might actually do harm/waste money by dosing without testing. Please test for anything you add to your tank. Testing may not be the most fun aspect of our hobby (for most people), but it can save your tank as well as you wallet.> Thanks, <You're welcome, wish you the best! Emerson> Mark

Strontium test kit expiration date Bob, I like to get a Strontium tester, but I don't see an expiration date, as mention by the manufacture of Salifert tester. Pls let me no how to go about it, or just avoided. << Wow good question.  For me, if I see it in a store I'd buy it and use it.  I would think they would have a long shelf life, and I've never heard anyone say they had one that went bad.  But then again I only know a couple people who even own a Strontium test kit. >> Thank you.   Eddy. <<  Blundell  >> Strontium Supplement for FOT (fish only tank) - 2/16/03 Hi, I just wonder do the FOT need strontium supplement? <not likely... conduct weekly water changes (20% or so) to reduce the need for supplements and support good water quality> What does the impact (both positive and negative) for dosing strontium in the FOT? <little is known about it... it can be used instead of calcium to make aragontic structures at temperatures below 76F. It supports/enhances coralline algae growth too> I know strontium is good for reef tank but does it have any benefit for FOT? <little> Best regards, King <best regards, Anthony>

Strontium- To Dose or Not To Dose? Hi all great site and thanks for all of your hard work <Thanks for the "props"! We have a lot of fun doing this- glad you enjoy it!> I was wondering what your opinion is on dosing Strontium, I read FAQ on this topic and there is not very much information. What is the benefits of adding this supplement. Thank You. Scott <Well, Scott, the use of strontium in reef systems is a hotly debated topic, really. A lot of reefers feel that strontium is required by corals to help grow and reinforce their skeletons. Strontium does tend to get depleted from the water in aquariums, and finding the correct dosage is somewhat of a guessing game, quite frankly. It can be toxic to animals if overdoses I really don't see the need to dose Strontium, or many other "essential elements" in reef systems unless there is a specific need. Regular water changes (which everyone should be doing anyways!) will replenish many of the trace elements that are used up by the growing animals or removed by protein skimming. Keep it simple, in my opinion, and just do those water changes! Thanks for stopping by! Regards, Scott F>

Turbo strontium Hey there can Kent marine turbo strontium be dosed with kalkwasser??? I doesn't say in the instructions any suggestions <yes it can...just a normal dose please (no excess). Free strontium and free calcium can both combine with carbonate for skeletogenesis (from calcification) and form aragonite. Calcium is drawn in preference by most coral above 74F> Walter <kind regards, Anthony Calfo>

Strontium Tests Bob--I'm ordering some new Salifert test kits today--thought they might be more accurate than the Fas-Test kits I've been using--of greater importance now that I'm using a Ca reactor.  <Much more accurate and precise (really measuring what's there... consistently), but no more important> At any rate, I was wondering how critical it is to test the Strontium levels when using a calc reactor.  <In all actuality... "not much"... most folks get "enough", "all" the Sr they need through water changes...> Previously, I supplemented strontium twice weekly with the Kent's liquid Strontium/Molybdenum according to the label directions, which shouldn't be necessary now with the calc reactor. I have never actually tested for Strontium levels, however. Should I be testing for it? If I do test for it, what is the desired level? <All folks SHOULD measure for ALL materials they ADD...> Also, same question on iodine. I supplement weekly with Kent's liquid iodine according to the label directions. Is it necessary to test iodine levels?  <See above... generally yes... but this material applied as you do... weekly... not as important...> Or should it be ok as long as the supplement is used according to the directions? <The latter> Thanks again. <You should be compiling all you're learning and make this into a current reference work on reefing... Bob Fenner>


Become a Sponsor Features:
Daily FAQs FW Daily FAQs SW Pix of the Day FW Pix of the Day New On WWM
Helpful Links Hobbyist Forum Calendars Admin Index Cover Images
Featured Sponsors: