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Kribensis Cichlid and Dwarf Gourami - Compatibility Help Needed

This is a discussion on Kribensis Cichlid and Dwarf Gourami - Compatibility Help Needed within the Freshwater and Tropical Fish forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by Mathew1 well bumb ubm! Hey Byron, this is spam. This users entire post thread is the same post....

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Kribensis Cichlid and Dwarf Gourami - Compatibility Help Needed
Old 06-02-2012, 07:35 AM   #11
 
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Originally Posted by Mathew1 View Post
well

bumb ubm!
Hey Byron, this is spam. This users entire post thread is the same post.
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Old 06-02-2012, 07:44 AM   #12
 
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Termie, I'm really glad to see that you're addressing your nitrate issue, it's something that I know has been an issue in your tanks for some time now. Lower levels of nitrate are considered to be more of an irritant than a toxin, but at higher levels, nitrate can become deadly to fish. Some species are very sensitive to it - Bolivian Rams being one, tetra another. Also - in my experience - Apple snails have trouble when nitrate levels fluctuate (especially in softer water conditions). I've spent some time studying up on nature vs nurture in tank-bred fish, and while it is true that a creature born into your local water will likely fare better in water that isn't ideal to it, the ultimate goal is to get them into the water that they've evloved to tolerate. Also worth mentioning is that just because your fish was kept in local tap water at the shop doesn't mean that it was born into it, or adapted to it in any way. *SOME* fish in my LFS were born in-store or by a local breeder - but I've found that these fish are usually marked out and cost a bit more. Many others are being shipped from somewhere else, and it is really impossible to track that information down, in my experience.

What Byron says is right (of course). Even if a fish is 'home grown' and used to the water it was born into, it still may not be as hearty had been kept in ideal water conditions for it's species. It is quite possible that your Bolivian may have pulled through his illness if he had been kept in water conditions better suited to him. And also as Byron has stated, I've come across several LFS who flat-out refuse to carry Dwarf Gourami because they're very poor stock shipped in from other countries, though the larger breeds are stocked and seem to have FAR less problems. I've been curious about where the local chain store (PetSmart) gets theirs. In general, their fish come from within the country from trusted breeders, but I'm not sure about this fish in particular.

Though we live in the same state, our water obviously comes from different sources, however when I first got in touch with my water company to check stats they were equally worthless. I ended up talking to supervisors of supervisors, and the only information that I really ended up getting was that the people that WE are speaking to are getting their information from our annual water quality report. In my case the report is issued in December of the PREVIOUS year, and the number you are given is an AVERAGE of the tests results taken throughout the year just past. The monitoring of our tap water isn't being done by those who are working in the offices that we have contact with - quite frankly, these people know very little (if anything) about water or contaminates, aside from the report they are given (which you also should have access to via the internet). I frequently test my tap water, and found that in early March, the nitrate levels rose quite suddenly from 0 to 10. As of last week or so, they've fallen back to zero. I've done a lot of research into this, and the rise in tap nitrates was likely a direct result of springtime - people dumping fertilizers into their gardens, which then runs off into local water supplies. So be aware - the numbers can (and do) shift.

It seems to me that the wiggling causes the fish a lot of stress. One thing were the nitrates to slowly rise over time, another if they suddenly spike. . . I know your tanks are very well planted, what does the nitrate level in your tank read just before a water change? I'm curious to see how much lower it is than just after a water change - or if that number is stable. When my tap started reading a level of 10, my tank stats went from 0 to 2.5 rather quickly.

You know I'm newer at all of this than you are! I hope that this rambling has helped you out in some way. . . best of luck in finding a solution to the eternal problem of nasty tap water, and adjusting water hardness. I'll be watching and learning as much as I can from your experiences!
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Old 06-02-2012, 09:37 AM   #13
 
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Originally Posted by Termato View Post
Hey Byron, this is spam. This users entire post thread is the same post.
Another moderator got to this before I saw it and banned "Mathew1", but I have deleted the post in this thread. Thx, B.
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Old 06-02-2012, 10:40 AM   #14
 
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is nitrate, the same across the board? I mean is the the nitrate we find as a result of the nitrification process in aquariums from fish excretion and respiration etc, breakdown of food matter and (if planted) plant matter, exactly the same as the nitrates we find in our tap water?
As far as I know, yes. "Nitrate" in water is nitrate, NO3-, which the US Dept of Agriculture defines thus: "Nitrates and nitrites are nitrogen-oxygen chemical units which combine with various organic and inorganic compounds."

Quote:
I wonder, as from what I have read the nitrate in tap water usually occurs as the naturally occurring water drains through agricultural land picking up as it filters through the ground decaying plant matter, then goes onto the underground reservoirs which are tapped by the water companies. Am I also right in thinking that this is how water picks up its hardness, when filtering through areas high in minerals?
Water is one of the most powerful solvents on earth. "Solvent" means a substance that easily dissolves other substances to create a solution. Water thus takes up organics, minerals, etc. very readily as it comes into contact with these substances.

Quote:
So my question, how is high nitrate levels actually detrimental to fish? and is it just the decaying plant matter that is the problem? or is nitrate just a chemical produced by the decaying matter, and the decaying matter is not actually present physically? This is where I am confused, and would like clarification.
Nitrate is one form of nitrogen, as are ammonia/ammonium, nitrite and nitrogen gas. While nitrogen is essential to life as we know it on the face of the earth--nitrogen forms about 80% of the earth's atmosphere, and all life forms work hard to acquire it since it is essential for amino acids, proteins, DNA and RNA--it is also highly toxic depending upon the form in which it occurs. The diagram below shows the nitrogen cycle.

Organisms have a tendency to convert some nitrate back into nitrite which as we know is very highly toxic at a very small level. High levels of nitrate, above 40 ppm, have been shown to slow fish growth, suppress breeding, and depress the immune system making the fish much more susceptible to disease. Just as in humans where nitrates in drinking water most affect babies, in fish the fry are even more seriously harmed by nitrates. All of our fish occur in waters with nitrate so low it can scarcely be measured.

Here is some data pulled from an article on nitrates at OscarFish.com:

Kincheloe et al. (1979) reported larval mortality of Chinook salmon, rainbow trout, and cutthroat trout at concentrations as low as 2.3-7.6 mg/L NO3-N. That's equal to 2 to 7 ppm. We tend to think of keeping nitrate below 20ppm...quite a difference. Different fish species have varying levels of tolerance to nitrate. A recent study which reviewed all prior studies on the impacts of nitrates suggests that the most sensitive freshwater invertebrates and fish are affected by nitrate concentration as low as 2ppm, with the primary physiological impact being a decreased ability of the blood to carry oxygen (anemia).



A study on the effect of nitrates on fish found these effects:
  • Affects antibody production
  • Increased number of immature red blood cells
  • Lowered level of mature red blood cells (anemia)
  • Higher count of monocyte (a specific white blood cell)
  • Higher count of neutrophil (a specific white blood cell that is especially destructive to microorganisms)
  • Higher count of TLC - Thrombocyte-like cell (a blood cell of nonmammalian vertebrates that promotes blood clotting)
  • Higher levels of creatine (A nitrogenous organic acid found in muscle tissue that supplies energy for muscle contraction)
  • Higher calcium values in the blood
  • Lower Chloride values in the blood
  • Autopsy revealed damage to the spleen, liver, and kidneys
Also, nitrate damaged the gills and kidneys affecting osmoregulatory ability (ability of the fish to regulate fluid levels and release toxins, something we do via urination, something they do via osmoregulation); these observed changes are the result of a pathological response and not of a generalized stress response.

Quote:
are the two, nitrates present as part of the natural nitrification cycle in aquariums and tap water nitrates, that have come from a water treatment plant the same?
As far as I understand, yes.

Quote:
I also have around 40ppm nitrate right out of my tap, I just add it to my tank, it doesn't seem to bother the fish, although I know its a long haul problem, affecting the natural life span of the fish, I struggle to see how this is so bad for the fish?
The above answers the "how." I believe in the USA that 40ppm is the upper limit allowed for nitrates due to the effect on humans, esp children.
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Last edited by Byron; 06-02-2012 at 10:42 AM..
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Old 06-02-2012, 12:02 PM   #15
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chesherca View Post
Termie, I'm really glad to see that you're addressing your nitrate issue, it's something that I know has been an issue in your tanks for some time now. Lower levels of nitrate are considered to be more of an irritant than a toxin, but at higher levels, nitrate can become deadly to fish. Some species are very sensitive to it - Bolivian Rams being one, tetra another. Also - in my experience - Apple snails have trouble when nitrate levels fluctuate (especially in softer water conditions). I've spent some time studying up on nature vs nurture in tank-bred fish, and while it is true that a creature born into your local water will likely fare better in water that isn't ideal to it, the ultimate goal is to get them into the water that they've evloved to tolerate. Also worth mentioning is that just because your fish was kept in local tap water at the shop doesn't mean that it was born into it, or adapted to it in any way. *SOME* fish in my LFS were born in-store or by a local breeder - but I've found that these fish are usually marked out and cost a bit more. Many others are being shipped from somewhere else, and it is really impossible to track that information down, in my experience.

What Byron says is right (of course). Even if a fish is 'home grown' and used to the water it was born into, it still may not be as hearty had been kept in ideal water conditions for it's species. It is quite possible that your Bolivian may have pulled through his illness if he had been kept in water conditions better suited to him. And also as Byron has stated, I've come across several LFS who flat-out refuse to carry Dwarf Gourami because they're very poor stock shipped in from other countries, though the larger breeds are stocked and seem to have FAR less problems. I've been curious about where the local chain store (PetSmart) gets theirs. In general, their fish come from within the country from trusted breeders, but I'm not sure about this fish in particular.
I have been trying to address it but I have just been too lazy to do it :/ not now though! hahah

Honestly, that could have been the reason Burt died. Iin the end it didn't help. This whole fish keeping business is always complicated lol

I don't think im going to get the gourami from PetSmart. Super Pet or PetCo. They treat their fish better. I'm moving everyone out of the ten today. Going to get the fish hopefully today as well. All the new fish will be in the 10 gallon for at least a month.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chesherca View Post
Though we live in the same state, our water obviously comes from different sources, however when I first got in touch with my water company to check stats they were equally worthless. I ended up talking to supervisors of supervisors, and the only information that I really ended up getting was that the people that WE are speaking to are getting their information from our annual water quality report. In my case the report is issued in December of the PREVIOUS year, and the number you are given is an AVERAGE of the tests results taken throughout the year just past. The monitoring of our tap water isn't being done by those who are working in the offices that we have contact with - quite frankly, these people know very little (if anything) about water or contaminates, aside from the report they are given (which you also should have access to via the internet). I frequently test my tap water, and found that in early March, the nitrate levels rose quite suddenly from 0 to 10. As of last week or so, they've fallen back to zero. I've done a lot of research into this, and the rise in tap nitrates was likely a direct result of springtime - people dumping fertilizers into their gardens, which then runs off into local water supplies. So be aware - the numbers can (and do) shift.
I live across the bridge on the eastern shore in Salisbury. Completely different landscape over here.

My apartment is also next to a farm.....not good.

When I go back home to my mothers house its in Rockville where its more hilly but it used to be a swamp so the water still is a little hard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chesherca View Post
It seems to me that the wiggling causes the fish a lot of stress. One thing were the nitrates to slowly rise over time, another if they suddenly spike. . . I know your tanks are very well planted, what does the nitrate level in your tank read just before a water change? I'm curious to see how much lower it is than just after a water change - or if that number is stable. When my tap started reading a level of 10, my tank stats went from 0 to 2.5 rather quickly.

You know I'm newer at all of this than you are! I hope that this rambling has helped you out in some way. . . best of luck in finding a solution to the eternal problem of nasty tap water, and adjusting water hardness. I'll be watching and learning as much as I can from your experiences!
I also found an article on creating a home made algae nitrate filter with a high current though some kind of plastic mesh sheet. It's more natural and it take out nitrate. It is also cheaper, just takes up more space. Don't know weighing options. I don't really want to do anything about it yet until I feel its right.

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Old 06-02-2012, 12:07 PM   #16
 
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
The above answers the "how." I believe in the USA that 40ppm is the upper limit allowed for nitrates due to the effect on humans, esp children.
I also found this article on Nitrate. It was very informative and it reinforces Byron's statement of why the Nitrate levels are limited to 40ppm, especially for children.

Also, this article shows that 40ppm is a dangerous level and should be considered toxic, even to humans.

After reading this I am actually quite concerned for my health after readings.

Nitrates in Drinking Water
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Old 06-02-2012, 12:17 PM   #17
 
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I thought you said you had gotten a filter for your tap/drinking water!!? You're right - you should NOT be drinking that crap! Or even bathing in it, really. Consider that your skin is the largest organ in your body - you'll be absorbing more toxins through it than by drinking it, even.

Fishkeeping IS hard! The more you learn. . . the harder it gets! Funny how many people I know that just dump fish into tanks and after the initial cycling die-off, they think everything is juuuuuuust peachy. They all think I'm crazy. . . but their tanks make me sad.

I'm sure you'll figure everything out. You're on the right track! *hugs*
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Old 06-02-2012, 12:36 PM   #18
 
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Originally Posted by Chesherca View Post
I thought you said you had gotten a filter for your tap/drinking water!!? You're right - you should NOT be drinking that crap! Or even bathing in it, really. Consider that your skin is the largest organ in your body - you'll be absorbing more toxins through it than by drinking it, even.

Fishkeeping IS hard! The more you learn. . . the harder it gets! Funny how many people I know that just dump fish into tanks and after the initial cycling die-off, they think everything is juuuuuuust peachy. They all think I'm crazy. . . but their tanks make me sad.

I'm sure you'll figure everything out. You're on the right track! *hugs*
Yeah I have a filter, but i tested the filtered water....same nitrate levels.
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Old 06-02-2012, 12:46 PM   #19
 
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:03 PM   #20
 
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Byron, what is a good and cheap method to soften water?
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