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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello.

I have a four-month old 22G/78L tank. Currently living in it are:

7 neon tetra
3 cherry barb
3 white-tail tetra
2 black-tail tetra
1 small spotted catfish
7 live plants

Recently I have had two new angelfish and also a spotted catfish die in the same week. My water chemistry is as follows:

25C/76F
PH 7.8
Nitrate 10 ppm
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Water Soft

Has anyone any idea what might be the problem, or is this just coincidence?

Thanks,
Graham.
 

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they might have been stressed from transport or had an internal infection. did u see any odd behavior?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
they might have been stressed from transport or had an internal infection. did u see any odd behavior?
both catfish happy until recently, zipping around the aquarium, devouring pellet food, looking quite healthy. both angelfish were very slow-moving, took food reluctantly, hid for two days then died one after the other.

are angelfish sensitive to water chemistry?

G.
 

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from what i have heard, angelfish are alot less delicate than they look. the angels were definately stressed out probably from transport. im not sure about the catsfish
 

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Something isnt right in the tank. You should have some nitrites seeing as you have live plants, and lower nitrates because of the plants. Personally i think that when you added the angels and catfish your tank was then overstocked (78 litres is not a great deal of water). Combine the above with stressed fish (being bagged and transported) and it can cause death.

Adding angels to a tank with small fish is not advisable anyway, they will eat them as they get older, they are cichlids aafter all. 7 plants will not give the small fish a chance to a chance to hide from the angels, heavily planted tanks give far more refuge.

Temp is ok, my tanks sit around 25C. My planted though do run higher due to the lights, around 30C at present (plus the warm weather). In winter the temp will get back to a more normal level. The 5ft planted has angels. They are also far hardier than people think.
 

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Something isnt right in the tank. You should have some nitrites seeing as you have live plants, and lower nitrates because of the plants. Personally i think that when you added the angels and catfish your tank was then overstocked (78 litres is not a great deal of water). Combine the above with stressed fish (being bagged and transported) and it can cause death.

Adding angels to a tank with small fish is not advisable anyway, they will eat them as they get older, they are cichlids aafter all. 7 plants will not give the small fish a chance to a chance to hide from the angels, heavily planted tanks give far more refuge.

Temp is ok, my tanks sit around 25C. My planted though do run higher due to the lights, around 30C at present (plus the warm weather). In winter the temp will get back to a more normal level. The 5ft planted has angels. They are also far hardier than people think.
Have you tried a refugium? That solves most of the problems you describe.
:purple-fish:
 

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Something isnt right in the tank. You should have some nitrites seeing as you have live plants, and lower nitrates because of the plants.
It's my understanding that the opposite is true, plants will absorb Nitrite from the water, and will absorb some Nitrate, but not that much really. This is my experience as well. I had a 10g fry tank that was in the middle of the cycle when the fry were born, I had declining ammonia and the nitrite started to rise as the hornwort got chewed up by snails and fry, so as I would siphon out the leaves and the bulk became less, the nitrite rose. I got another clump and within a day the nitrites dropped drastically.

Anaerobic bacteria is the only thing that will devour nitrate, and the only tank I've heard of that fully cycled itself was a big saltwater tank at an LFS near me, it had been set up for about 10 years and they hadn't done a water change in 4 years on it, then they moved their store next door and since then they get the nitrates and have to do WCs until it comes back. I guess it was a completely gorgeous tank.

Fish guy there told me that there's no way you can build up enough anaerobic bacteria in a fresh tank to complete the cycle.

Angels generally aren't picky about the water pH wise, KH wise. They must have been poor quality. Did you at least return the dead fish to the store to get credit back?
 

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Something isnt right in the tank. You should have some nitrites seeing as you have live plants, and lower nitrates because of the plants.
Oopsss you are correct budcarlson...got me 'a' and 'i' around the wrong way

Plants absorb nitrAtes, nitrItes are usually quickly converted to NitrAtes by bacteria
 

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angels are a lot more hardy then people give them credit for. ive seen them survive over 3 weeks w/o filtration or WC
 

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Plants use nitrates, the end products of the cycle from ammonia to nitrite to nitrate. If his bacteria are well established you will usually see 0 ammonia and nitrite but some nitrate. The amount of nitrate you see depends on the number of plants you have and how actively they are growing, how much you feed the fish, and how overstocked the tank is. A nitrate level around 5-20ppm is ok, any higher and you should probably do a partial water change.

Besides plants, the only way to lower nitrates is to do weekly water changes. Your tank would have been too small for the angels anyways, but perhaps they were already stressed when you got them and just not healthy, but keep an eye out on your other fish, just in case.

BTW...I have a planted tank and my nitrate stays at 0 all the time. I actually have to add nitrate to my tank to feed the plants, 2x a week.
 
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