Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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battynatty2003 07-22-2014 09:13 PM

gasping and darting fish
Hi i am new at keeping fish and hope someone can help. I have had my fush 1 week and noticed they have been gasping over 48 hours. I cannot seem to lower the nitrate and nitrite levels. I have a 40 litre tank with 2 mollies, 2 swordtails, 1 betta and 2 african dwarf frogs. They get fed on 1 cube of frozen bloodworm twice a day and i have performed a 50% water change which has had no effecton the fish. Nitrite is reading 10ppm and nitrate is reading 200ppm. I am using the api 5 in 1 test strips. Can someone please help me before i start losing my fish??
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tankman12 07-22-2014 09:36 PM

Are frozen bloodworms the only thing you feed? Some people say only once or twice a week. I feed them every other day, but every day twice is to much. The only way to lower nitrates are live plants and water changes. In a cycled tank you shouldnt have nitrites.
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Flint 07-23-2014 07:12 AM

That is far too much food, it's not being eaten and dirtying the water. I suggest you look into a high-quality pellet such as New Life Spectrum (NLS) and do as large of a water change as your gravel vac will allow. It is not necessary but a bottle of Tetra Safe Start could help you. I suggest you stop feeding for now while we get the water under control (fish can go months without food, don't worry) and you get a quality pellet. Most of us have been down this road and we are here to help!

battynatty2003 07-23-2014 07:59 AM

Thank you so much! I have done a water change of just over 50% and gravel vac. Nitrates and nitrites from my tap are reading 0ppm and 0.25ppm. I hope they can withstand it all
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Flint 07-23-2014 08:00 AM

Once cycled, your tank will take care of that tap reading.

battynatty2003 07-23-2014 08:15 AM

Thank you i will post with an update within the next few days on how it is all going
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SeaHorse 07-23-2014 08:27 AM

A 40 Liter is only a 10 gallon tank correct? We strongly advise you don't add anything else to this tank as it is overstocked and as the other members said, being overfed. We can sort this out and hopefully stabilize this tank.
Can you tell us what type of filter you have on this tank? It is very common when the surface tension isn't being broken for the fish to gasp at the surface. Is this what you are seeing? (I'm assuming it will be a HOB, hang on back type of filter and usually the output is above the tank and eliminates this surface tension problem as the water falls back into the tank. But I want to double check that the filter is in place).

Flint can you please elaborate on your comment above.
This: "Once cycled, your tank will take care of that tap reading."
I'm not sure that I understand what you are saying. Tank and tap water are unrelated so I'm missing something here. Just need clarification. Thanks!
Yes it is always good to know what your tap water readings are so that you know if you are adding to the numbers.

OP: Get yourself a tiny bottle of Prime water conditioner if you don't have it. Yes it stinks, that's normal btw. It can be used at 5 times the amount to neutralize and help protect your fish thru the cycling process which can take up to 6-8 weeks.

battynatty2003 07-23-2014 08:36 AM

Hi i have an aqua one 101f filter i have no idea what gallon it is i only know liters sorry. I realise that maybe i have overfed and have stopped food. Will stop at a local petstore and get a bottle of prime too
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Flint 07-23-2014 08:40 AM

Wow, I missed the fact it was a 10 gallon! I would rehome your swordtails immediately. They get too large for a 40 liter tank.

SeaHorse, when you have ammonia, nitrite or nitrates present in tap water, it will be transferred in with water changes. In a cycled tank, however, the ammonia or nitrites will be proccessed into nitrates with the fish waste. That's all I meant. :-)

tankman12 07-23-2014 08:42 AM

Swordtails and the mollies, both get WAY to big for a 10 gallon.
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