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Water testing

This is a discussion on Water testing within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I've not had a planted tank before and wasn't sure how many plants are needed to nullify the ammonia. Also I don't know if ...

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Old 05-01-2013, 11:16 AM   #11
 
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I've not had a planted tank before and wasn't sure how many plants are needed to nullify the ammonia. Also I don't know if the plants will thrive or die so don't want to rush things. I have another 7 fish from the small tank that I can introduce into the 55g in the coming days.

I've lost my fair share of fish with new tank syndrome and other beginner mistakes that I am over cautious this time. But from the advice on this thread it looks like I can loosen up and introduce some more fish. I've stocked up on test kits, plant food and joined this community so the future looks good for my new fish in their new tank.
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Old 05-01-2013, 11:48 AM   #12
 
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Be cautious in this hobby isn't a bad thing. So stalking slowly is always a good practice. Plants will help ad in the removal of Ammonia but only if they are healthy and thriving.
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Old 05-01-2013, 01:00 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eldamo View Post
I've not had a planted tank before and wasn't sure how many plants are needed to nullify the ammonia. Also I don't know if the plants will thrive or die so don't want to rush things. I have another 7 fish from the small tank that I can introduce into the 55g in the coming days.

I've lost my fair share of fish with new tank syndrome and other beginner mistakes that I am over cautious this time. But from the advice on this thread it looks like I can loosen up and introduce some more fish. I've stocked up on test kits, plant food and joined this community so the future looks good for my new fish in their new tank.
Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.

The cycling problems you experienced previously were due to the tank size, plus lack of plants. As other members have pointed out, the more water volume the more the ammonia disperses, plus live plants take up a lot of it if it is present.

Weekly partial water changes are important, about 1/3 to 1/2 the tank depending. Right now, 1/3 will be fine, but when the tank is well stocked, do 1/2.

Byron.

Last edited by Byron; 05-01-2013 at 03:26 PM..
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:08 PM   #14
 
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The bigger water volume is an eye opener for me. It is logical but, with all the other information I'm learning it didn't occur to me - it's been good to hear the advice from the community and making me feel welcome.

As the weeks go by I'll be asking more questions on the plants, especially CO2 as I'm not sure if it's needed for my low tech tank. I'll monitor my plants and see how they do with the liquid CO2 for now.
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:31 PM   #15
 
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Fish and the breaking down of organics by the bacteria will create Co2. In low tech tank/low light tanks most ppl don't use Co2 and rely on it being made naturally. Be cautious about liquid Co2 as its made from a nasty chemical that some plants don't like. It can make some melt such as Jungle Vallisneria. Some fish don't like it as well.
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:32 PM   #16
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eldamo View Post
The bigger water volume is an eye opener for me. It is logical but, with all the other information I'm learning it didn't occur to me - it's been good to hear the advice from the community and making me feel welcome.

As the weeks go by I'll be asking more questions on the plants, especially CO2 as I'm not sure if it's needed for my low tech tank. I'll monitor my plants and see how they do with the liquid CO2 for now.
CO2 occurs naturally in the tank, mainly from the breakdown of organics by bacteria in the substrate, but CO2 also occurs via the respiration of fish, plants and bacteria of course. A natural or low-tech planted tank uses this natural CO2, and balances light and other nutrients with it. It can take a bit of experimenting to find the balance, but it is not difficult.

I am not a fan of liquid carbon supplements like Excel or CO2 Booster. These contain a toxic chemical called glutaraldehyde which is used in hospitals to disinfect surgical instruments, in anti-freeze, in embalming fluid... you get the idea. It kills bacteria, and according to the product safety sheet is toxic to humans if splashed on your skin or the fumes are inhaled. It will kill some plants outright; if overdosed, it can kill plants, fish and bacteria.

Back to the water changes, this article I prepared may help to explain their importance:
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...hanges-117205/

Byron.
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eldamo View Post
The bigger water volume is an eye opener for me. It is logical but, with all the other information I'm learning it didn't occur to me - it's been good to hear the advice from the community and making me feel welcome.

As the weeks go by I'll be asking more questions on the plants, especially CO2 as I'm not sure if it's needed for my low tech tank. I'll monitor my plants and see how they do with the liquid CO2 for now.
I would suggest skipping the CO2 for now and consider not even using the liquid version, it has some nasty chemical issue that are not great for the fish... others can comment if particulars are needed but many tank never see CO2 being added and get along fine. You need more light and more fertilizer to make CO2 work without having issues with balance, algae blooms can be one such issue.

Yes, it will speed up plant growth IF everything else is in balance so it depends on your goals for the tank.

Jeff.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:05 PM   #18
 
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I'll stop the liquid CO2 on your advice as my week old Jungle Vallisneria is starting to go brown. I wasn't sure if it was the change in water from lfs to home or something else - I know fish don't like a sudden change of water parameters, but wasn't sure about plants.

I've got a few root tabs in and use Flourish complete so will leave out any further additives at the moment.

I'll do a water change tonight and check the water. Don't ask me about Kh or GH as I haven't got that far yet - I did look at the online water report for my area but it didn't give me any numbers that I've seen on this forum. I'm not too worried about this yet, I just want to make sure the water is healthy and safe.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:12 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Eldamo View Post
I'll stop the liquid CO2 on your advice as my week old Jungle Vallisneria is starting to go brown. I wasn't sure if it was the change in water from lfs to home or something else - I know fish don't like a sudden change of water parameters, but wasn't sure about plants.
City water tends to be soft and the vals like hard water.... I'm pretty sure the platys also like hard water so you'll want to know this sooner rather than later in case you find that you need to add hardness to help with plants and fish.
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I've got a few root tabs in and use Flourish complete so will leave out any further additives at the moment.
That's all a lot of people ever use.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eldamo View Post
I'll do a water change tonight and check the water. Don't ask me about Kh or GH as I haven't got that far yet - I did look at the online water report for my area but it didn't give me any numbers that I've seen on this forum. I'm not too worried about this yet, I just want to make sure the water is healthy and safe.
If it's online, post a link here and someone will take a look and see if we can tell your from the report.

Jeff.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:21 PM   #20
 
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Jeff - the platy's were born in my old tank, I couldn't believe it with my lack of care at the time, but they survived! I take your point about the water hardness, but I know the platy's are happy at the moment.

Here is the link to the water quality report for my area
Basic
http://www.amwater.com/files/NJ_2004..._Brook_TWQ.pdf
Detailed
http://www.amwater.com/ccr/raritan.pdf
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