High pH; cloudy water
The last 3 weeks my freshwater 25g tank has been very cloudy when viewing from the side, and even a little from the front. Been testing the water and it is consistently .25 ammonia, 0 ppm nitrites, and 5 ppm nitrates. PH was always around 8.2.
In an effort to clear up the water, i started doing weekly 25% water changes. This has not been helping the water clarity. Took readings this evening and after a 30% water change yesterday, I now have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 5 nitrates and the ph jumped to 8.8. I have never seen a reading on nitrites above 0. I am using the API Master Test Kit.
How do i get the nitrogen cycle to start. I have 8 livebearers, 2 Corey's, and 4 Ottos. I don't overfeed the fish. I do clean the fake plants once they are fully covered in brown algae which takes around 3 to 4 weeks to occur. The aquarium is never in direct sunlight. I keep the led light on for about 9 hours per day.
During every water change i add some water conditioner.
I have been researching this and working on it and am getting very discouraged. Any assistance would be appreciated. The tank was setup on July 25, 2013.
Here are some pictures.
From the side
Did some additional reading and i think i found why the water is murky. I have a fluval accent tank with the water change spigot in the cabinet. I have done all water changes this way and never once vacuumed the substrate using a python or similar device. If i have nitrate readings then i believe the nitrogen cycle is complete. Maybe i just need to clean the gravel???
Would that reason also be the cause for the high ph reading??
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How long has the tank been running? If more than amonth with never-cleaned substrate and never replaced filter media, it's likely that your tank has cycled and that you just missed the nitrite reading (some keepers have just the opposite problem.) If your nitrate increases with every water change, then you're definitely cycled.
The haze might be related to your substrate, or it might just be a harmless bacteria bloom. It happens. Vacuum your tank carefully and rinse your filter media in old tankwater (do not replace). See what that gets you.
Decomposing organics in/on your substrate would tend to reduce your pH, I would think. Sometimes pH varies at the whim of the water supplier. In any case, as long as it doesn't change like that quickly, yourfish will tolerate it.
The tank has been running since July 25th. It started getting cloudy on September 1st and I thought it was because three snails died. I was on a trip for a day or two and when I returned, they were dead at the bottom. So... been doing water changes more often etc but lately, it is really cloudy - I would say for the past two weeks.
I ordered the python system and will be cleaning the substrate on Wednesday evening. If it is a bacterial bloom, I thought it would be gone by now but what do I know... ;-)
Thanks for the advice!!
I would kill the lights and suspend all feeding until it clears (usually 3-4 days but sometimes 1-2 weeks)
the resume with 1/2 duration lighting and feeding and adjust untill it stays clear.
(I would also add live plants like anacharis if you don't already have some.)
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