High ammonia help - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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High ammonia help

HELP!! I have a 4 week ammonia tester that gives real time readings i did a 30% water change earlier today because I saw it said caution(.02), which is the 1st step up from none at all. I left and its been around 12 hours and I came home only to find my ammonia level has actually INCREASED! its now at stressed (.05)

Here is my aquarium.

10 gallon with 6 fish

water temp at 74-78 (having trouble keeping it steady i just moved the heater and knocked it outta whack but its maintaining between those temps)

2 Mollies (1.5" a piece)

3 Platies (1.5" a piece)

1 Pictus Catfish (2.2")

If my math is correct im still within the 1 inch of fish per gallon.

I just cant seem to get the ammonia level down. I thought the 30% water change would drop it. help please
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post #2 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 03:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishhobbiest View Post
HELP!! I have a 4 week ammonia tester that gives real time readings i did a 30% water change earlier today because I saw it said caution(.02), which is the 1st step up from none at all. I left and its been around 12 hours and I came home only to find my ammonia level has actually INCREASED! its now at stressed (.05)

Here is my aquarium.

10 gallon with 6 fish

water temp at 74-78 (having trouble keeping it steady i just moved the heater and knocked it outta whack but its maintaining between those temps)

2 Mollies (1.5" a piece)

3 Platies (1.5" a piece)

1 Pictus Catfish (2.2")

If my math is correct im still within the 1 inch of fish per gallon.

I just cant seem to get the ammonia level down. I thought the 30% water change would drop it. help please
Can do water changes every twelve hours if need be to lower ammonia levels.
Can reduce amount of foods and frequency of feedings to lower ammonia levels.
Would use a water conditioner such as PRIME that detoxifys ammonia from chloramines.
Feed fish tiny pinch (half dime size amount) every other day to help keep ammonia levels down.
If tank has been running for less than a month with fish, you may need to perform more frequent water changes until the biological filter has developed to a degree to support the fish you currently have.(see cycling a new aquarium)
Would not add any more fish until tank has (cycled)
Stay on top of testing.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #3 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 10:51 AM
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+1

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post #4 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 11:17 AM
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Also the fish you got might not be full grown yet. When getting fish I always calculate the full grown size.So lets say you got an angelfish that is the size of a nickel at about 1" well that 1" will grow to be about 6"-7" full grown you need to keep that in mind. Your Mollies will get to be about 3-4" grown depending on the type just like swordtails get to be about 4" full grown. I would also like to mention that the Platies are little eating machines and are big poop produceres same goes for some catfish like Bushy nosed plecos. I have both BN plecos and Bumblebee Platies and I have to check the water all the time and clean the poop off the sand of my tanks.

This will raise the Ammonia levels. All I can say is water changes are the best to get rid of the ammonia spikes. If it is a new set up you put to many fish in a new tank and that will set off the cycle process. Fish have to be added slowly over several months to keep the cycle balanced. To speed the cycling process you can always add a product called Cycle or something like it that has good bacteria to get things going. Once that gets going you don't have to add that anymore. The good bacteria is in your filter box, gravel or sand and everywhere in your tank once it gets going. You should never clean out your tank completely as this will disturb the good bacteria in the tank. If you change filters once a month do not do a water change on the same day.I also alternate the filters I put the old one in front and a new one in back. For a 10 gal. you might just have 1 filter cartridge. I would get one of those bio sponges and cut that to fit in the front of your outflow of water and put that in front of your filter cartridge. I did this to all my tanks that did not have a bio filter. When it gets really dirty I rinse it in treated water slightly as I do not want to get rid of all the good bacteria in it.

Last edited by eileen; 05-14-2010 at 11:20 AM.
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post #5 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 11:20 AM
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Not sure how I missed it but I see you have a pictus cat. Mine is now 6", so your pictus will not be able to do well in a 10gl long term. As adults they require some major swimming room which a 10gl does not offer. Just a heads up.

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post #6 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 12:55 PM Thread Starter
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thank you guys for alll the help i appreciate it! yes I know about calculating an adult fish size i am buying a 55 gal aquarium next month so They will be transfered =) i will just do 2 water changes a day and see if that helps ill also cut back on feeding.

Thanks again!
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post #7 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 01:16 PM
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Cycle your new tank with White cloud tetras or Zebra danios. I cycled my 20 gal. and all the white clouds survived and I rehomed them on craigslists. Do not add all you new fish to a new tank that is not fully cycled or you will have problems. I used this product called Cycle for a few months. Adding your fish from the smaller tank to a new set up all at once will throw off the cycle of the new tank.
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post #8 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 02:39 PM
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cycle is good for beneficial bacteria.i believe a must in your bottle lineup though is a product called prime(very concentrated dont overuse) and a product called stabalize.make sure when adding water you use a product that removes ammonia,chlorine..etc.

i would cut back the feeding to every other day if not more.ammonia is simple..food and waste make it skyrocket..but if you have a good bacteria system they degrade the ammonia.
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post #9 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 07:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you guys. Yes it is indeed my fault. I didn't allow the cycle this is my first aquarium so I just kinda assumed it wasnt important, but I guess it is! I lost a Platy today=( but we live and learn I suppose. I just did a 50% water change. I will be doing a 35% every 12 hours to keep the ammonia level down and am feeding every other day. I believe I may have been over feeding as well so I will cut back. Thanks again you guys your comments and help was very valuble
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post #10 of 17 Old 05-14-2010, 11:57 PM
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I hope you don't lose the pictus! Great cats and a personal favorite of mine. He will love the 55. Good luck! (The product RedBelly is referring to is Seachem's Stability)

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