problem with nitrates - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 04:54 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation problem with nitrates

Ah, lovely Nitrates How will we ever get along. I added 2 bala sharks to my tank (can't wait to get my 160 gallon dream tank) and the next day thought hey! I will check my Nitrates and Boom!! wow super dark red so I did a 50 percent water change and my boyfriend changed out the Carbon and Bio filter and put in clear max to help with those nitrates. 3 days later....today I did another 50 percent water change since I was still reading high and my boyfriend changed out bio max for new bio max and changed the carbon for zero carb and then changed out more carbon for clear max. The layers in my filter go 2 biomax on the top, 2 zero carb second and 2 clear max on the bottum. The tank is 47.5 Gallons, livestock is:

2 Electric Yellow Cichlids
3 gouramis
Angel Fish
2 Bala Sharks
Toothnose Pleco
1 Blue Peacock Cichlid

They are all juveniles, and 60 gallon tank on the way to start my cichlid tank!

Now we play the waiting game, I have not had any deaths yet and next water change I am going to be cleaning all the plants. I think maybe I feed them too much, so tomorrow will be cutting their food for sure, they just always seem so desperate haha.

If you read this.... and can think of anything to save my @$$ please comment
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post #2 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 06:20 PM
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Ah, lovely Nitrates How will we ever get along. I added 2 bala sharks to my tank (can't wait to get my 160 gallon dream tank) and the next day thought hey! I will check my Nitrates and Boom!! wow super dark red so I did a 50 percent water change and my boyfriend changed out the Carbon and Bio filter and put in clear max to help with those nitrates. 3 days later....today I did another 50 percent water change since I was still reading high and my boyfriend changed out bio max for new bio max and changed the carbon for zero carb and then changed out more carbon for clear max. The layers in my filter go 2 biomax on the top, 2 zero carb second and 2 clear max on the bottum. The tank is 47.5 Gallons, livestock is:

2 electric Yellow Cichlids
3 gouramis
Angel Fish
2 Bala Sharks
Toothnose Pleco
1 Blue Peacock Cichlid

They are all juveniles, and 60 gallon tank on the way to start my cichlid tank!

Now we play the waiting game, I have not had any deaths yet and next water change I am going to be cleaning all the plants. I think maybe I feed them too much, so tomorrow will be cutting their food for sure, they just always seem so desperate haha.

If you read this.... and can think of anything to save my @$$ please comment
Do you mean nitrite or nitrate? Nitrates are not an issue normally, unless very high. You don't give a number...

If you are using the API nitrate test kit, shake Regent #2 for 2+ minutes, not just the 30 seconds in the instructions. You can get false (high) readings otherwise.

When you post the nitrate number, we can offer advice.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #3 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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its reading 110, darkest ya can go.... we are reading up now on adding more cycle that the nitrits are interfering with the nitrate test kit.
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 07:03 PM
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Can you just confirm, is it nitrite or nitrate that you are testing high?

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #5 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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nitrate
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post #6 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 07:12 PM
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nitrate
OK. Are you using the API test kit, and if yes, did you follow my suggestion? Shaking Regent #2 for 2 minutes can result in more accurate readings.

If that still results in high nitrate, can you give us the number? The colours on the chart (if it is the API like I have) have numbers beside them and this is important. There are several shades of red on this chart.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #7 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
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Can you just confirm, is it nitrite or nitrate that you are testing high?
We are using a Nutrafin Test kit. The reading is approximately 110mg/L. We also tried your suggestion and gave that regent 2 a good shake. I read in the instructions for the test kit that Nitrite levels will interfere with the nitrate test results. I am going to pick up other test kits as well to check ammonia and Nitrite levels.
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post #8 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 07:59 PM
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There is one thing I can offer in the meantime.

Have you tested your tap water alone for nitrate? Some areas do have nitrates in the tap water, and this is worth knowing because it may not be an issue in the aquarium. Using Prime as the water conditioner at water changes handles this problem.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #9 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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There is one thing I can offer in the meantime.

Have you tested your tap water alone for nitrate? Some areas do have nitrates in the tap water, and this is worth knowing because it may not be an issue in the aquarium. Using Prime as the water conditioner at water changes handles this problem.

Byron.
Our tap water tested 0mg/L Nitrate. We will let you know what we have for Nitrite and Ammonia levels once we do the tests. Thank you so much for your input.
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post #10 of 17 Old 01-10-2011, 08:22 PM
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I got a little confused with all the filter switching, I just wanted to make sure that your not taking out filter media that has beneficial bacteria living in it and replacing with new stuff that does not. This would actually be counter productive to your tank.

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