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Discussion Starter #1
My tank still have these high levels, fish seem fine, and I've been doing water changes with tap water, but is there a better way to do water changes? like an alternative in water, like purified?

The tank is a 55 gallon, so5-6 gallon dialy water change would be enough?

Anything else I should do? plants could help? if so, what kind?

Thanks.
 

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What type of test equipment are you using? If by chance you are using the strips, they have a tendency to give false readings sometimes and we found out by accident that the liquid reagent tests can be wrong too if you do not shake the bottles of drops hard for a good 30 to 45 seconds first. Funny that they do not tell you this until you have trouble with them but after having heart failure over my tank for a while and not having good tests that was all it took..shaking the bottles of reagents before using them.

Now I am not saying that this is your problem, just throwing out possibilities that I have run across in the last few years.

No as far as I know there is no magic water to use but there is one small trick to make sure of a possible problem solved...have you tried testing your tap water for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates straight out of the tap with no conditioners or anything added to it? I did this one time and nearly died with the results (over 80 on the nitrates) and almost 0.25 on ammonia. I live in an agricultural area and when fertilizers and additives that they put on the fields run off we get horrible water in the summer time. If this is the case with your tap water then my suggestion would be the same as what I did, either boil all the water and let it sit overnight to cool to room temperature before using in the tanks or buy SPRING water in gallon jugs at the store, NOT Distilled or Drinking water but Spring water. It will not need to be conditioned with a dechlorinator and it contains the things in it that distilled water are lacking for the fish's health. It is an expensive proposition to plan on that course though so the boiling is still the best way if it works. Just test the water before and after boiling to see if it helped the tests. (when cooled)

I hope this helps. We really need more information to give a good answer like how long has your tank been up and running. What are the number and type of fish involved?

Thank you.

Rose
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I bought the 55 gal already set up, one large bala, to large lepos, a medium pink gourami and a medium pleco and a dragon fish, about 6 inches.

what else can I do to lower ammonia and nitrites short of using chemicals? I'll start using spring water tomorrow. I'm also feeding them much less than before, I cna tell they're hungru because everytime they see me walk by their aquarium they follow me, lol.

Another question, when usin erythromicin or amoxicillin., will that kill the bacterial filter?
 

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Erythromycin is basically a key ingredient in the medication Maracyn and has been shown not to harm the biological filter. As far as Amoxycillin goes, I have not used it and can find no specific information one way or another. Perhaps someone else here has had experience with it, but I cannot find any information in any of my books either. One way you can find out about any medications affect on the filter though is to call the number on the label and ask the manufacturer or call the customer service number at Pet Supplies | Dog & Cat Supplies, Pet Meds | DrsFosterSmith.com Pet Products about any product that you have a question about and they have specialists in the drug fields that will answer your questions before you put them in your tank. Generally if the drug will affect your filter most manufacturers will put a warning on the box or bottle but some have not come to that yet.

The fish will come to the front for feed whether they are hungry or not as they are not the best judges of what they should be given to eat. Most fish will eat until they are overfed if you allow them to do so. This is why it is important to only put a controlled amount of food in the tank. Commercial fish food is not like them eating in the wild where they graze on natural foods. It contains some things that are not natural for their systems and can cause them digestive distress if they are overfed on it. If you read the ingredients on most fish food, there is going to be things like flour and other things that you would not find fish eating in a natural setting so the fillers in the food are what can kill your fish if they are overfed on the stuff. The stomach on the fish is the size of its eye to give you an idea of what it takes to fill it up. So judge the amount of food you put in the tank and realize that most fish are actually overweight.

It actually is good for a fish to go on a fast for one meal a week to help keep it healthy.

You are very close to being overstocked in that tank too so that is going to be another problem for you. Can you tell me what the size and type of your filter is? It may be beneficial for you to put in a sponge filter or two to supplement the bacterial bed of your filter to give it more strength since you have some big fish in there. I have a tank that I keep a couple of sponge filters in all the time in case of power outages that are rated for twice the size of the tank and that way the cycle is protected. They are cheap insurance and also provide oxygenation to help add oxygen and help the fish and they help the heaters to spread the heat to prevent hot spots. I also do not need airstones with these running.

Hope this is helpful. Please keep us aware of how things are going. Good luck!

Rose
 
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