ok im having an ammonia problem (long running) in my 29g tank. Lemme go into some of the background.
it started out plastic everything with normal gravel. I think it was 2 blue gouramis and 2 bala sharks (no lectures pls... i know) and 2 cory cats. upgraded the aquatec filter to a penguin biowheel 200, the ammonia just never went down. fish came and fish went, had a few dwarf gouramis, some female bettas in there, ammonia never went down. I could get it down to about .25ppm but after a few days it would be right back up to 2ppm.
I tried running my canister filter from my cycled 110g tank (ehiem ecco 2236) in the 29g and the ammonia still persisted. I tried moving the tetra 60 size HOB filter also from my cycled 110g tank and the ammonia persisted.
since then i have COMPLETELY removed everything in the tank. The current inhabitants are 1 green severum (hes only about 2.5-3") 10 glowlight tetras, 1 apistogramma, 6 trilineatus cories. Its decorated with some plastic plants but a few live... red ludwigia (i think) and a couple I have not yet identified, as well as a few healthy sword plants. there is one big piece of driftwood in the bottom (not original, had the ammonia before the wood) and I have swapped out the substrate for aquariumplants.com's own substrate, and im currently using a tetra 60 sized double HOB (set about 1/2 way down for flow rate) and the penguin 200.
I only feed 1 pinch of tetra color crisps and 2 or 3 sinking tropical wafers, sometimes freezedried blood worms, and if there Is uneated food after the severum gets done the cories are awesome at cleaning up.
sooooo thoughts? why do I still have ammonia?
EDIT: just to add... i have private well water, which i still tested anyway for shiz n giggles and its 0 ammonia. And occasionally i will add some seachem prime at water changes anyway to help reduce the ammonia toxicity.