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Hello! Looking for new tank setup critique, plus a couple of questions

This is a discussion on Hello! Looking for new tank setup critique, plus a couple of questions within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Jim and I have looked at this, and suggest a partial water change might be advisable. I'm assuming the fish are showing no ill ...

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Hello! Looking for new tank setup critique, plus a couple of questions
Old 03-09-2010, 04:35 PM   #131
 
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Jim and I have looked at this, and suggest a partial water change might be advisable. I'm assuming the fish are showing no ill effects, like red gills, gasping at the surface, or increased respiration (at non-feeding times)?
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:43 PM   #132
 
No, fish seem fine. They're pretty active, colors look good, and they're eating well (though I've cut back feedings to every other day, so I'm guessing they're pretty hungry when I do feed them).

The pH tonight seems to be back down to ~7.5 (kinda weird...looks like 7.4 or less on the High Range test, but over 7.6 on the low-range test). Ammonia is still at ~2 (maybe a bit less than yesterday), Nitrites at 0, and Nitrates maybe a bit over 0.

Think I should go ahead w/ the water change tonight, or maybe wait it out another day, since the pH seems to be back to what it's been averaging for the last week or so? Could that be some kind of indicator to something?
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:56 PM   #133
 
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Someone else has noted there is ammonia in your tap water. This thread is so long I can't remember all of it, can you confirm? If there is ammonia in your tap water, what is the reading? B.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:13 PM   #134
 
Yes, my tap water does test positive for ammonia. Currently, I'm reading 1ppm. I guess that if I was to do a 50% water change at this point, it would only bring the ammonia down to 1.5ppm (from 2ppm), right? Almost doesn't seem worth doing, especially since I'm not showing NO2/NO3.
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:24 PM   #135
 
Okay, I've been refraining from posting because things haven't really changed much, though I'm starting to see some differences in the last few days.

First off, I did a 35% water change on Saturday. Also, I did a LOT of vac'ing and found that the Hornwort I added a couple of weeks ago wasn't doing as well as I thought and was shedding its leaves everywhere. I cleaned up the Hornwort w/ the vac and since then, the water's been much clearer, but still has a bit of a haze to it. I added the 2 Corys that were in the hospital tank back to the main tank, and they seem to be doing great, and another bunch of Hornwort I picked up at a local aquarium club swap meet. I've only been feeding the fish every 2-3 days, and haven't used any plant ferts since the big water change 2 weeks ago.

pH seems steady, and has been 7.4-7.5 for the last 2 weeks (except one day when it was up to 7.8 for some reason).

Ammonia was holding steady at 2ppm since the big water changes 3 days in a row 2 weeks ago up to this past Saturday. After Saturday's WC, it was down to 1.5ppm the next night, down to .5ppm 2 days ago, but is now back to 1.5ppm.

Nitrite has always been 0, but Nitrate has been 5ppm for the last week and holding pretty steady.

Fish seem happy and healthy. Most of the plants still seem to be doing well. Not sure about the remaining Hornwort, which is currently floating instead of being anchored in the back corner like it was originally.

So, except for the slightly elevated ammonia levels, I think the tank is looking good. I just don't know why I'm still seeing ammonia, and won't add more fish until that's at 0. I'm thinking of doing another partial water change tonight, moreso because I want to vacuum the tank again (still a bunch of needle-leaves from the Hornwort on the gravel I'd like to remove).
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:36 PM   #136
 
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Aside from the Hornwort, are there other live plants that are from what you can tell OK?
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:48 PM   #137
 
Yes. Most of the other plants seem 'OK'. I have 4 large swords, 3 banana plants, and a Gold Llaydellia which all seem to be doing great. There's 2 Crypts (Undulata) that melted early on, but seem to be coming back w/ new growth. There's also a Cardinal Plant, a few stems of Moneywort, and what's left of 2 Giant Hairgrass plants that don't seem to be flourishing, but seem to be still alive.
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Old 03-17-2010, 08:25 PM   #138
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LMychajluk View Post
Yes. Most of the other plants seem 'OK'. I have 4 large swords, 3 banana plants, and a Gold Llaydellia which all seem to be doing great. There's 2 Crypts (Undulata) that melted early on, but seem to be coming back w/ new growth. There's also a Cardinal Plant, a few stems of Moneywort, and what's left of 2 Giant Hairgrass plants that don't seem to be flourishing, but seem to be still alive.
Then I wouldn't be overly concerned with the ammonia, and particularly if the fish are not showing stress (rapid respiration, gasping, lethargy). Hornwort is often a messy plant, when I last had it I got fed up and chucked it. Something wasn't right for it, fell apart continually.
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