Join Date: Jan 2011
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Re: whats a good nitrate reading?
Great post guys and I learned a lot.
On Jan 2nd, I cleaned an old 10g (in the garage for ten years), filled up with good Memphis tap water, put a: bio-wheel hanger filter (20g+) bubble bar in back, heater (temp. 78) all plastic plants, some kind of crushed shell substrata, added some prime and plopped in: 6 neons, two patties, two mollies, one dwarf Gourammi, two small cory cats and a tiny zebra.
Can you guess that I am having huge troubles? Both nitrates and nitrites, off the scale but nothing else too bad. Nitrates - 60, Nitrites 15 ? (off the scale) PH 7.8 Hardness - 150, Akl - 120, PH -7.8 no ammonia. This was just a few minutes ago, 4 hours after initial treatment. The N's just kept/keep going up, week to week.
Some fish died, (three neons) and the rest look labored to some extent or the other but the dwarf flame gourammi seems in great character. A really full of himself fish. Not mean but takes no crap either.
I did a 20% change last week end and about 40% today. My local fish store tested the water to verify my findings. I have been dosing Niteout for the last week. and have been using Prime to treat the water as I replace and had dumped a few capfulls over the last week.
I went to this aquarium and pond store today and talked to them about the problem. Of course we discussed my complete failure to understand or apply anything about cycling a tank. Dang. I guess I had been lucky before, back in the day. But, what to do NOW for their health/survival? Here's what we came up with:
Keep up the water changes, especially if numbers don't come down. Use one cupful of Prime and Stability today and tomorrow, test tomorrow afternoon, then go to one cupful Stability every other day one cupful Prime every day. I also added one teaspoon of "Neutral Regulator" to bring down the PH to around 7.0. but was still at 7.8 fours hours later. (Been thinking that some distilled water might bring it down also.)
I should perform water changes as much and as often as necessary to keep the N,s in something less than poison, long enough for the tank to cycle. Back off when N's come down for a couple of days and monitor, 20% weekly forever. Yikes.
Well, I am determined to make this tank work. I don't want these remaining fish to die and I want to have a healthy and pretty tank. I am sure that I'll want 30 - 50g at some point but I have some work to do before that!
Let me know if you think this solution is best. Would some plants help? (I don't have good lighting) Bring the temp down to 76?
60g tall, all artificial plants, Rainbow tank; 55g for African Cichlids. 20g long for fry; 20g hex, 2 black Angels at my desk; 10g planted, with 50 Molly fry; 10 gal, 2x 13w cfl lightning, planted; 2g hex for "Buddy the Betta"; Wanting a 200g +, MTS getting bad.
Last edited by ReStart; 01-22-2011 at 10:26 PM.