Re: NANFA-- water quality lessons

Bob Culler (
Thu, 26 Jun 2003 22:27:01 -0400

At 08:06 AM 6/25/03 -0400, Nick Z. wrote:

>2. the relationship of nitrate, nitrite, and ammonia nitrogen compared to
>"nitrate", "nitrite", and "ammonia" and how it relates to aquariums
>3. the relationship of total coliform, fecal coliform, and e-coli levels as
>it related to mammal (and human) systems.

I'll take a stab at these two and see if I can dredge up those
environmental chem and microbiology classes from the dark recesses.

2. Most test kits I have used measure nitrate-nitrogen, ammonia-N, etc.
This tells you the amount of <N> present without all the oxygen or hydrogen
that is present in nitrates, nitrites, and ammonia.

3. Going on memory, total coliform includes bacteria that can live and
reproduce in animal guts and free-living in the environment. Fecal coliform
includes those bacteria that are only able to reproduce in guts. E.coli is
a single species of bacteria that is only able to reproduce in an animal
gut, but can survive in the environment for long periods.

Ranger Bob
Kingsport, TN
"The power of humans to degrade the natural world is awesome; the
capability to reconstitute it later is mythical."
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