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new freshwater tank problems. need advice!

This is a discussion on new freshwater tank problems. need advice! within the Freshwater and Tropical Fish forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by ahoffmann4 wow! I had no idea! petsmart told me the algae eaters would just help with maintenance and keep my tank ...

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new freshwater tank problems. need advice!
Old 07-07-2011, 12:01 PM   #11
BarbH's Avatar
Originally Posted by ahoffmann4 View Post
wow! I had no idea! petsmart told me the algae eaters would just help with maintenance and keep my tank running smoothly. I've been doing water changes everyday and I'll definitely get the test kit you guys suggested. If this is a cycling problem, does that mean that if I keep up with the water changes and keep an eye on it it will start to get better? I'll test my home water asap after I get the better test kit. This was supposed to just be a fun happy thing and now I feel so guilty about my fish :(

We all have been there ourselves, when I first started I had a petshop worker tell me that a 5 gallon tank would be okay for 5 angelfish Fortunately I did do some of my own research and quickly learned that the 10 gallon I had gotten was not going to work, so along came my upgrade to my 50 gallon very soon after. Unfortunately most of the time one is unable to trust the advice given at places such as petsmart, and sometimes even the local fish stores. Most of them are trying to make as much money as they can and are not interested in the best interest of the hobbyist or the fish that they sell. Fortunately we have forums such as these to put us in contact with other people that share our interest and will help us along the way as we learn. Once things get on track for you tank this will be fun, and will be something that you will be able to enjoy. You will want to keep an eye on the water parameters and continue with water changes as needed. As the benificial bacteria establishes itself in the tank things will get better. Also once you are able to test your tap water you will be able to rule out any ammonia or nitrites coming from the tap water.
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Old 07-07-2011, 05:30 PM   #12
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I'll just pick up on a few things from this thread.

I agree, get rid of the Chinese Algae Eaters. Even if they did turn out to be the Siamese Algae Eater, they still get much too large for a 10g and a group is best. You can read about these fish in our profiles as Barb suggested, click the shaded names to see the fish's profile.

Second issue, the ammonia/nitrite/nitrate...if ammonia or nitrite is above zero, do a partial water change of 50% of the tank using a good conditioner. With a new tank and these issues, Prime or Ultimate water conditioners are good. They handle ammonia and nitrites as well as chlorine/chloramine.

The pH is low, but this is good and bad depending. We still need to know the pH of the tap water on its own to assess what is occurring. If the tap water is also acidic, that is fine but you will not have success with livebearers. Guppy and Molly need harder water or they will develop various health problems and die prematurely. Tetra, kuhli loaches, and many other fish are soft water and will be fine in a lower pH. But it can get too low, that's why we need to know the tap water pH to assess things.

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