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Am I still doing the right things?

This is a discussion on Am I still doing the right things? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by GwenInNM I'm over 3 weeks trying to cycle a 30 gal FWT. I have only 4 small Danios that I bought ...

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Am I still doing the right things?
Old 02-02-2011, 07:22 PM   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GwenInNM View Post
I'm over 3 weeks trying to cycle a 30 gal FWT. I have only 4 small Danios that I bought the first day. I added a Mystery Snail about one week ago, to clean up the white-cotton looking slime I had gather on a piece of previously, well-boiled African wood (snail did a great job).

I do frequent water changes (10-50 %) every couple days. I only did one 50 percent WC, (maybe that wasn't good). I have a Aqua Clear filter, which I have a sponge and ceramic chips in (threw away the Ammo-block), read those aren't so great. Just threw those yesterday.

Again today, Ammonia reading at .25 and I only have a kit that measures Nitrates, which keep showing up as 0. PH is from the tap at 8.0. Though the driftwood may have lowered, I don't measure PH. Even after water changes, I don't get a big difference in a Ammonia reading from 0.25ppm

I added one bunch of Anacharis plant and one java fern, hoping to help with cycling. Today, I added a Seachem product for plants called "Plant Pack Enchancer". To add Nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.

Probably shouldn't have messed with that till the tank cycles, but figured, I guess I'll find out what happens. I hate to see the plants start dying. Fish are fine, when they exhibit the darting/erratic behavior I do a water change, and will end up doing one tomorrow, I'm sure. Just didn't do it now when the tank is showing 0.25, because the fish seem fine, no strange behavior.

Just trying to keep on the right track - any feedback appreciated. I did leave a message for a neighbor that has an established tank to try to get some gravel - maybe that will help cycle too??

Thanks

Gwen
hi gwen and welcome!!! I see that you have some of that white cotton-looking slime that is a fungus you need to get rid of it before the fish are tempted to eat it .

Get some fresh water aquarium salt and add some in to get rid of that. Water changes those you must do regularly because your danios are suffering when ever ammonia and nitrites get too high. I think next time try doing a fishless cycle so that no fish undergo stress or minor suffication issues. If they get stressed their immune system weakens and if that happens they could be very vunerable to many diseases and that can affect your tank long term.

just keep asking questions anything that you might have doubts about ask it could mean a big difference to the health and well-being of your little fishies!

once again welcome and we are glad you are here:)

Last edited by leogtr; 02-02-2011 at 07:25 PM..
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:36 PM   #12
 
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Originally Posted by leogtr View Post
Get some fresh water aquarium salt and add some in to get rid of that.
Here's an excerpt from another thread as to why salt has no place in a tropical freshwater tank:
(courtesy of Byron)

"Salt is detrimental to freshwater fish and plants in varying degrees. To understand why, we must understand what salt does in water.

Salt makes the water more dense than the same water without salt. The aquarium contains water. The bodies of fish and plant leaves also contain water [just as we do--we are, what is it, 70-some percent water?]. The water in the aquarium and the water in the fish/plant are separated by a semi-permeable layer which is the cell. Water can pass through this cell. When either body of water is more dense, the other less-dense body of water will pass through the membrane to equalize the water on both sides.

Water is constantly passing through the cells of fish by osmosis in an attempt to equate the water inside the fish (which is more dense) with the water in the aquarium. Put another way, the aquarium water is diluting the fish's body water until they are equal. Freshwater fish regularly excrete this water through respiration and urination. This is the issue behind pH differences as well as salt and other substances. It increases the fish's work--the kidney is used in the case of salt--which also increases the fish's stress in order to maintain their internal stability. Also, the fish tends to produce more mucus especially in the gills; the reason now seems to be due to the irritant property of salt--the fish is trying to get away from it.

I have an interesting measurement for fish. Dr. Stanley Weitzman, who is Emeritus Research Scientist at the Department of Ichthyology of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington and an acknowledged authority on characoid fishes, writes that 100 ppm of salt is the maximum for characins, and there are several species that show considerable stress leading to death at 60 ppm. 100 ppm is equal to .38 of one gram of salt per gallon of water. One level teaspoon holds six grams of salt, so 1 tsp of salt per gallon equates to more than 15 times the tolerable amount. Livebearers have a higher tolerance (mollies sometimes exist in brackish water) so the salt may be safe for them. Use of salt for treatment purposes should first consider the level of tolerance of the respective fish in the aquarium; any medication is likely to cause some stress to fish, but those species that are particularly adverse will be significantly weakened further by salt.

Plants: when salt is added to the aquarium water, the water inside the plant cells is less dense so it escapes through the cells. The result is that the plant literally dries out, and will wilt. I've so far been unable to find a measurement of how much salt will be detrimental to plants; all authorities I have found do note that some species are more sensitive than others, and all recommend no salt in planted aquaria."
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:51 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aunt kymmie View Post
Here's an excerpt from another thread as to why salt has no place in a tropical freshwater tank:
(courtesy of Byron)

"Salt is detrimental to freshwater fish and plants in varying degrees. To understand why, we must understand what salt does in water.

Salt makes the water more dense than the same water without salt. The aquarium contains water. The bodies of fish and plant leaves also contain water [just as we do--we are, what is it, 70-some percent water?]. The water in the aquarium and the water in the fish/plant are separated by a semi-permeable layer which is the cell. Water can pass through this cell. When either body of water is more dense, the other less-dense body of water will pass through the membrane to equalize the water on both sides.

Water is constantly passing through the cells of fish by osmosis in an attempt to equate the water inside the fish (which is more dense) with the water in the aquarium. Put another way, the aquarium water is diluting the fish's body water until they are equal. Freshwater fish regularly excrete this water through respiration and urination. This is the issue behind pH differences as well as salt and other substances. It increases the fish's work--the kidney is used in the case of salt--which also increases the fish's stress in order to maintain their internal stability. Also, the fish tends to produce more mucus especially in the gills; the reason now seems to be due to the irritant property of salt--the fish is trying to get away from it.

I have an interesting measurement for fish. Dr. Stanley Weitzman, who is Emeritus Research Scientist at the Department of Ichthyology of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington and an acknowledged authority on characoid fishes, writes that 100 ppm of salt is the maximum for characins, and there are several species that show considerable stress leading to death at 60 ppm. 100 ppm is equal to .38 of one gram of salt per gallon of water. One level teaspoon holds six grams of salt, so 1 tsp of salt per gallon equates to more than 15 times the tolerable amount. Livebearers have a higher tolerance (mollies sometimes exist in brackish water) so the salt may be safe for them. Use of salt for treatment purposes should first consider the level of tolerance of the respective fish in the aquarium; any medication is likely to cause some stress to fish, but those species that are particularly adverse will be significantly weakened further by salt.

Plants: when salt is added to the aquarium water, the water inside the plant cells is less dense so it escapes through the cells. The result is that the plant literally dries out, and will wilt. I've so far been unable to find a measurement of how much salt will be detrimental to plants; all authorities I have found do note that some species are more sensitive than others, and all recommend no salt in planted aquaria."
oh no. I shouldnt have listened to that lady in petco
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:42 PM   #14
 
but don't they have freshwater salt or something... Or petsmart scammed me
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:12 PM   #15
 
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Unfortunately Petsmart and Petco employees are under the mistaken belief that salt is beneficial. Whenever I've been in those stores I always see that they have salt containers in their tanks.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:13 PM   #16
 
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Originally Posted by Christople View Post
but don't they have freshwater salt or something... Or petsmart scammed me
thats what the lady said....She was the aquarium specialist at petco and she said the the aquarium salt would help with the white fungus junk in fresh water aquariums..she told me to add double the normal dosage so I did

good thing there are no fish or else I wouldve been really upset..I hope the plants can go through with it :l

Last edited by leogtr; 02-02-2011 at 09:17 PM..
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Old 02-04-2011, 10:27 AM   #17
 
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slime removing

Like I said earlier, my mystery snail did a fantastic job of getting rid of the slime, which I read appears to be of not damage to fish, it's just ugly. Try a snail if you have slime you want to get rid of.

Can someone tell me how long I should leave the gravel I got from an existing tank, in my filter? It appeared to be the catalyst that cycled my tank, but I don't know how long now I should leave it in my filter. Thanks for help!!

Gwen
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Old 02-04-2011, 01:24 PM   #18
 
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Originally Posted by GwenInNM View Post
Like I said earlier, my mystery snail did a fantastic job of getting rid of the slime, which I read appears to be of not damage to fish, it's just ugly. Try a snail if you have slime you want to get rid of.

Can someone tell me how long I should leave the gravel I got from an existing tank, in my filter? It appeared to be the catalyst that cycled my tank, but I don't know how long now I should leave it in my filter. Thanks for help!!

Gwen
If you are getting a reading for nitrAtes then you can do away with the "borrowed" gravel.
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Old 02-04-2011, 11:36 PM   #19
 
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Originally Posted by GwenInNM View Post
Like I said earlier, my mystery snail did a fantastic job of getting rid of the slime, which I read appears to be of not damage to fish, it's just ugly. Try a snail if you have slime you want to get rid of.

Can someone tell me how long I should leave the gravel I got from an existing tank, in my filter? It appeared to be the catalyst that cycled my tank, but I don't know how long now I should leave it in my filter. Thanks for help!!

Gwen
The issue of the white fungus "slime" on the Mopani wood went by me earlier, sorry. I should warn you about this.

I had the same thing on that type of wood, i believe it is Mopani, it is two-toned, buff colour on one half and very dark on the underside, or something like that. I bought quite a nice branch piece, the first of this type of wood I've ever had, and within a few days this white fungus appeared all over it. I was puzzled but not worried, until I noticed the fish respirating much faster, especially the corys. This is a sure sign something toxic is in the water, so I did a major water change, about 70%, and pulled the wood out. Fish recovered and no relapse.

Coincidentally, I was in a local fish store the following weekend and overheard a customer asking about the same issue with a piece of Mopani wood; his corys had suddenly died. I told him to do a major water change and pull the wood out.

In my case, I placed it in another tank with no fish after i had scrubbed it with a stiff brush under hot water. After a few days, a minor bit of the fungus appeared, I left it and it went away. Some weeks later I used it in my 33g and no more issues; it is still there.

We had a thread or two on here at that time, last summer/autumn I think it was, and this is a fungus. Clearly it affects fish, so I would ensure it is thoroughly cleaned before fish go in the tank. For my part, I will never buy it again; it is expensive, and with a larger piece I might have lost several fish.

Byron.
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