Nitrates Disappeared
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Nitrates Disappeared

This is a discussion on Nitrates Disappeared within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> ...and I hope that you didn't click that link to tell me that my tank is not cycled. I have more problems than just ...

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Old 10-23-2013, 07:58 PM   #1
 
Nitrates Disappeared

...and I hope that you didn't click that link to tell me that my tank is not cycled.

I have more problems than just that though, and is related to a previous thread regarding a problem that is just getting worse. Here goes:

30 Gallon FW tank

pH: 7.3 (Up from 6.8 over last two months, checked at same time as always)
Ammonia: 0
NitrItes: 0
NitrAtes: 0 (down from the usual 20ppm before weekly water change)
Phosphates: .25ish (now controlled from the previous month of 10+ppm)
KH: ~53.7

All tests done using API Liquid test kit, pH confirmed using a different brand as well.

Stock:
x3 Black Phantom Tetras
x5 Von Rio Tetras
x5 Gold Barbs
x1 Sunset Platty
x3 Cory Catfish
x2 Ottos
x2 Assasin Snails
x1 (or 3) Ammano Shrimp (1 definit, two I have not seen in a few days)

I use two Ehiem 2213 filters with the flow reduced by taking off the end cap of the outflow pipe, flow is good, not excessive. Added the 2nd filter last week due to outbreak of something nuts and trying EVERYTHING to control it. See below.

Temperature remains at 78.

x2 T5 HO lights 1 @ 5000k and the other @6500k ran about 8 hours a day.

Gravel Substrate, multiple live plants, and two driftwood pieces.

Tank has been cycled 5 months.


Here is my issue:

#1 Algae or Cyanobacteria. See my previous post and pictures below regarding this stuff. It won't go away. It's a green goo and everytime I clean the stuff up it comes back days later with a vengence. Now, it has bubbles growing on it. What is this stuff and how do I control it?

Tried adding the extra filter. Reduced phosphates using Liquid Phosphate remover. Only fertilizing my plants with Flourish Excel until this stuff is gone (although there are 3 Flourish tabs in the substrate). Picture of phosphate remover below. It removed the phosphates (used 1mL / 24 hours over 5 days).

#2. My usual reading of 6.8 pH is now 7.3, not too big a deal I don't think. But Nitrates is at 0ppm. Nothing changed in my tank other than reducing the phosphates and adding the filter. No mini-cycle either. I know how to use these tests.

Please help. Doing a water change now so I will read your replies as I do it.
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Old 10-23-2013, 08:36 PM   #2
 
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Plants will often suck up nitrates. Good stuff.

Ah, algae issues. Lovely. I had an issue with algae similar to that, it cleared right up when I bought a bunch of cherry shrimp and malaysian trumpet snails. If your other fish wont eat them, I suggest trying those, you may have to remove your assassins though.

I'd also suggest keeping the light on for only about five or six hours and do regular ripping out of the obnoxious stuffs. lol

Over-feeding is also a big cause of algae and slimey yuck(that stuff is probably actually fungus, not algae), so be sure you're not feeding too much, and suck up all extra food after half an hour.

Someone will probably have more experienced answers for you, or at least more ideas to help.


The other thing is, though you may not want to hear it...your tank stocking is off and it could cause aggression and stress issues for your fish if not fixed. Your tetras, cories and otto's need to be in groups of 5+ and your platy need at least two more friends, preferably three or four more. They're one of the few livebearers, the only one I think actually, that can be happy in a group of three, the rest need 5+. The tank you have though, cannot handle that amount of fish.You would need 50+ gallons for it, so I suggest you get rid of the platy and cories, and fix the other groups. I say the cories instead of the ottos because they both need groups, but cories must have sand substrate or very smooth, rounded rocks or their barbels errode over time and cause infections and eventually death. Gravel bottoms are big killers of cories, they can also injure their delicate, less armored bellies on it. I'd also suggest removing one group of tetras or barbs and get maybe groups of 6-7 for the other types of schoolers you have.
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Last edited by Sylverclaws; 10-23-2013 at 08:40 PM..
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:02 PM   #3
 
I enjoyed your answer up to the last part lol. I understand the corrys and substrate issue, will be upgrading to 60 gallon hopefully in a few months and will have a softer substrate. Regarding the stocking... lost one phantom to ich a few months ago and another one 3 weeks ago to unknown reasons. Also lost two plattys to unknown reasons but possibly during the ich treatment. I dont believe my tank is overstocked. It is well filtered and did quite a bit of research prior to stocking it. They have more than enough hiding areas when needed as well. I dont buy fish from petco or smart. Only from 2 local tropical fish stores here and they usually give me pretty sound advice. Regardless, my tank size will increase soon enough due to my love of the hobby. Not arguing with you though, if more people tell me its overstocked then it is but ive posted that stock a few times and havnt heard it. Overfeeding def was anbissue in the past though, btw. Fixed that a couple months ago but I think im paying the consequences now.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:09 PM   #4
 
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That green goo as you so call it LoL looks very much like cyanobacteria to me! Is it slimy?
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:15 PM   #5
 
Yes it is. Was told that before now it has the bubbles though. No idea how to get rid of it.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:17 PM   #6
 
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At the moment I wouldn't say it's over-stocked too bad, more a matter of space for the tetras and barbs, the smaller dart shaped species like to have about 20 gallons per group of 6-7, the larger bodied ones need 30 gallons per proper group. But when they get bigger and have proper groups it will be. Extra filtering and plants help a lot, but only so much. In a sixty gallon, you could easily get proper groups of everyone and probably be just fine.

I'm glad you enjoy the hobby! Good luck with it. =P It's quite fun, but it can be a lot of work, especially when problems like algae like to pop up to pester you. It certainly doesn't look good, the slimey stuff needs to be removed, but the other stuff is USUALLY edible and safe, if not pretty.

I also wasn't trying to bust your chops, just trying to give some tips. =) It happens to the best of us.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:23 PM   #7
 
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Cyanobacteria is well a bacteria that will thrive off of high orangics in your tank. Need to figure out the source of that and then correct it. When you do a water change are vacuuming the gravel? How often are you doing them? Do have driftwood in the tank? If so what is it and how old is it.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:53 PM   #8
 
Sylverclaws yeah the maintenance that comes with problems is a pain but I will fight it to the end.

Boredum... I was overfeeding up to about a month 1/2 ago (2x day) and have cut back to every other day. I think there are remaining organics from that. I do a water change with gravel vac weekly. I have rwo pieces of driftwood I picked up from a lds... two of the same types of wood and I think the most common. No idea the name though. Only been in tank 3 months.
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Old 10-23-2013, 10:08 PM   #9
 
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If it was me I would up the gravel vacuuming making sure to get as much as you can out of the gravel. Making sure to go all the way down to the bottom of the gravel all over. Do you dose fertilizers? If so I would cut back on them for a lil bit.
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Old 10-23-2013, 10:09 PM   #10
 
I stopped dosing except for flourish excel. Put 3 flourish tabs in there 2 months ago though.
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