Ammonia won't go down? Need advice? - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 26 Old 03-10-2014, 09:53 AM
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A ph of 6.8 is fine for most community fish.You will be better served by getting fish that flourish in your water's natural parameters then by trying to change ph,hardness etc. I would only think of using fertilizer until you get to add fish. Then see how your plants react with the presence of the fish waste.Your plants seem to show new growth if that's the case I wouldn't be adding fertilizer anyway.Good Luck
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post #12 of 26 Old 03-10-2014, 12:18 PM
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I'm not sure how large of water changes are being done, but I would continue to do them. The ammonia is still too high. Since the test doesn't go any higher we have no idea if it is 8.0 or higher. Get it down to 4.0.

Honestly I would not worry about the tapwater pH at this point. jpepe1 is right that it is easiest to match the fish to the water you have when starting out. I have an even lower tapwater pH and my fish are fine.

Now that being said Flint is also right. If your pH continues to drop during the cycle you will have to buffer your water for the duration of it. After that you can stop buffering. A fishless cycle is like cycling on steroids. For people with softwater the nitrification process rapidly uses up carbonates and that is what buffers the water and keep the pH stable. Since you won't ever have any stock that produce as much ammonia as you are using for the fishless cycle that may not be a concern afterwards.
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post #13 of 26 Old 03-12-2014, 04:47 AM Thread Starter
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Yay My ammonia has finally dropped to 4ppm,what should i do next?
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post #14 of 26 Old 03-12-2014, 05:51 AM
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Wait for the tank to cycle lol. 4ppm is perfect. (:
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post #15 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 02:12 AM Thread Starter
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It's been 2 days and the ammonia is still 4ppm, nitrite is 0ppm and nitrate is 10ppm.

Does ammonia have to developed then nitrite and nitrate in exact order? to complete fishless cycle?
Do I need to do water change?
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post #16 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 03:16 AM
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Yes, ammonia is only converted to nitrite, never directly to nitrate. So for you to have high ammonia, no nitrite, and a reading for nitrate indicates that you have aa full cycle, but its getting backed up at the first stage...nitrite is being consumed as fast as it is produced.

First ammonia must be ppresent, then bacteria colonize and convert it to nitrite. After nitrite rises, another type of bacteria converts it to nitrate. Because you had very high ammonia and you are getting a reading for nitrate, you probaly have been colonized by both types of bacteria. Now that you have lowered your ammonia, the bacteria colony is consuming all of the nitrite that is being produced and turning it into nitrate faster than ammonia is being turned into nitrite.

It is rare to see ammonia remain high while nitrite is being efficiently processed so watch out for nitrite spike once the ammonia-consuming bacteria catch up. Your low ph may have somthing to do.with the ammonia remaining high, but usualy its the nitrite-consuming bacteria the have a hard time in acid water(pH below 7.0)

Sorry if this is confusing- I'm up at 4am due to insomnia and I just cant seem to simplify it in writing right now.

Thanks for posting your test results, this can be a learning oppurtunity for all of us.

Good luck!
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post #17 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 06:45 AM Thread Starter
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Sooo that means the cycle is done?
I tested my ph it was 6.6 and ammonia is still 4ppm. How do I raise ph levels naturally?
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post #18 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 07:11 AM
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a calcium source will work
cuttle bones are cheap
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post #19 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 10:02 AM
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Your cycle isn't done until you can dose your tank with 4 ppm of ammonia and have it completely cycled thru in 24 hrs. Looks like your low on bacteria that breaks down ammonia probably caused by your low ph. Be patient your almost done. You said your ph is 6.8 AFTER you let it sit for 24 hrs? To raise your oh you could also go with crushed coral in a mesh bag and you could remove it later if you need to.
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post #20 of 26 Old 03-14-2014, 01:27 PM
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Cycle is not done, ammonia over1.0 is dangerous longterm, and even short term I would be worried about why ammonia is not being consumed. When it starts to get processed efficiently you may see a spike in nitrite, which is also very dangerous to fish. Only after you see accumulating nitrate with very low ( under 0.5) ammonia and nitrite is your tank cycled and ready for fish. I think its taking so long because of low pH.Take Flear's advice of adding a cuttlebone or two. There was another member on this forum who struggled to establish a stable cycle till he raised his ph. Now his tank is fine and cycling well. I NEVER recommend altering ph unless it is required to get a cycle going.
Good luck!

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Last edited by rsskylight04; 03-14-2014 at 01:33 PM.
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