I recently posted a thread about my high ammonia levels. I am already running a fluvall 205 on my 30 gallon tank. Would a protein skimmer help with my ammonia problem and would it reduce water changes?
Protein skimming can be effective in freshwater, but the size of the air bubbles needs to be smaller than those used in saltwater. It is difficult (AKA expensive) to get effective freshwater skimming, but possible.
Your ammonia problem is likely due to having lots of voracious predators in a very small tank (6 red belly pirahana in a 30 gallon if I remember correctly). There is probably lots of uneaten food and lots of fish poop. Both lead to high ammonia levels. Your filtration will need to be very strong to keep up. To get your ammonia under control you will need to do one of the following:
1. Get a bigger tank
2. Reduce the number of fish in the tank
3. Do frequent, large water changes
Is 205 gal per hr not enough filtration. And I did get rid of 3 today, there were 9 in there hiding. I originally ordered ten 2-3 in for $8 a piece thinking i would lose some due to shipping and survival of the fitest. so now I'm to square one but i have someone interested in 3 so hopefully that goes thru. since i paid for over night shipping $66 which took 2 days a got a refund and sold 3 for $75 so at least i got free fish and some.
Any time a Fw tank has measureable ammoina with the API test kit, the plants and bacteria are not keeping up with the bioload.
During initial cycle I get a .25-.5ppm spike that only lasts 1 day at the most. Because I use heavy and fast growing plants which consume the ammonia directly. And a similiar 1 day spike in nitrItes. Meanwhile I will get almost immediate measureable nitrAtes that lasts for 2-3 weeks. PH sometimes will be "low" for a little which then jump up to 8.4-8.8. But that high pH is probably because of the combination of heavy plants, no circulation, and no water changes.
If you could get a lot of anacharis and vals in your tank, and protect the plants from the fish if necessary, you would not be able to measure ammonia after a day or two.
You may also want to consider not adding food until ammoina is unmeasureable. I don't add food for a week after adding my fist fish.
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