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Help with High Nitrites & Nitrates

1607 Views 5 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  badxgillen
I have a 130 liter red sea max nano reef that i was given a few weeks back, it came fully stocked with corals live rock 5 fish 4 invertebrates. I've set it up aquascaped it and re positioned a few corals. my nirates and nitrites are high. I run and pressurized external filter through a uv steriliser salinity is at 1.025 and temp is a little high at 26. fish all seem happy torch coral seems ok and brain coral ok too. Should i worry about the nitrates/nitrites or just monitor them for a week or two with the shock of moving
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You most likely started a mini cycle, are you showing any ammonia? I would do a water change and re rinse or change the media you are using. Macro algaes,water changes, and absorbtion medias are your easiest ways out. You could wait the nitrites out but some of the sensitive animals may suffer.
You mention a external filter.what kind a canister? I am not a fan of those as they will tend to naturally raise your nitrates unless serviced frequently. Having a wet skimmate and rinsing the prefilter sponge and carbon\media should be enough to keep your system good.
One possible problem is that if your saturation levels have reached a number that is high,say 40 Parts, and you do the %10 you are only removing 4 of the 40 so I usually recomend about %25-%30 as long as the water parameters of the new salt water and tank water are similar enough.This way the added waste products of the current life forms is diluted enough until the tank balance can re establish. I and many other reef tank hobbyists do not employ the use of canister filters as they tend to trap particles and then not get rinsed out,this causes even more nitrates. If I was going to run a canister I would make sure to clean the floss out frequently any ways as it is the excessive build up of organics that is broken down by the aerobic bacteria that leads to some nitrate issues. If you can simply keep the particles from breaking down in the system in the first place ,via regular cleaning of the pre filter sponges or carbon bags,you will be ahead of the game. If you are set on using the canister I would get some live rock rubble to put into a couple of those trays to try and combat the aerobic bacterias reactions.
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If you don't want to use chlorine on rising your sponges you can simply use a pitcher\bucket of dechlored water or the water from a tank change.
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