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Abyss

Questions about my tanks nh3-nh4 readings

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Ok I recently set up my new 130g tank with established media (bio-max) put into my fluval 405 canister and put into my AC110. I have been testing the water every 3 days to see what the parameters are.

I have 2 fish in qt I will be adding to the main tank if their time in qt goes well, which so far they are. They are on their 2nd round of prazi and looking good :)

The main tank currently has my 3 adult fish 2 moors around 41/2-5" and a fantail (thought she might be ryukin but not showing any hump so I'm calling her a fantail) about 31/2-4" and one pleco that I'm trying to rehome atm around 41/2".

I thought my tank might go through a tiny mini cycle that's why I have been checking my water, I also wanting to slow down on my water changes since I had been going 2x weekly WC and it was too much time spent doing them, I was looking forward to doing one weekly WC with this much larger tank. I was planning to do a 30% WC once a week.

The week started I was mid-week on Wednesday and checked to see what the numbers were planning to go a WC on the weekend and here were my findings.

Wednesday

Ph: 7.2 good

Ammonia: 0.25ppm

Nitrate:0ppm

Nitrite:0.ppm

I'm not too sure really what an unreasonable amount of ammonia is... Is 0.25ppm that worrysome? I was worried so I did a 30% WC.

I tested again today and my readings were:

Friday

Ph: 7.2

Ammonia: 0.25ppm

Nitrate: 0ppm still blue but an off blue (not showing the purple for the next number)

Nitrite: 0ppm

Again the ammonia is over 0.

I'm going to be changing my WC schedule to 50% WC on Saturdays to see if that makes it better.

I'm wondering If the ammonia levels are at 0.25 just because not enough BB are colonized yet? Maybe its going through a mini-cycle? I'd really like the parameters to be good before I add my new fish next month.

I will be adding 1 juvenile moor (11/2"), a very small lionhead (~11/2") and a calico ryukin (2").

I'd love to have a schedule of WC once a week. I'd love my params to be in check before adding those fish.

I've seen people with fully stocked tanks doing once a week WC with fine params so wondering why mine aren't 0 with an understocked tank.

Hopefully its something simple that's going on, I thought maybe it was due to over feeding, so I've cut down on the amounts I'm feeding and doing 2x a day instead of 3. The fish seem fine. One other thing, there was a spawning of both my females yesterday so lots of eggs, most were cleaned up by the pleco and them, still a small amount in the substrate but I'm doing a cleaning tomorrow. Maybe this is why my numbers are higher than 0.

Is it normal to have ammonia reading higher than 0 in a tank that is around 2week/6days running with established media and 4 fish?

Thanks for your help :)

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Edited by Abyss

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Does your tap water have ammonia?

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Definitely check your tap for ammonia first.

But, for whatever reason, sometimes swapping tanks causes a cycle bump, which is what you're having if there is not ammonia in the tap. My guess is that the cycle bump is caused by the fact that you are losing some BBs that cover the walls of the tank when you switch to a new tank that is not established, and perhaps even disruption of BBs in the substrate (if you have it) since BBs primarily colonize the top layer and that layer will get mixed in as we move substrate from one tank to another :idont

.25 ppm is not hugely worrisome, but obviously not ideal. The good thing is that ammonia toxicity is lower at a lower pH, so .25ppm ammonia is less toxic to your fish at your pH of 7.2 than it would be at say a pH of 8.2.

I would suggest simply dosing prime instead of water changes. Prime will detox any ammonia that is in the tank for 24-48 hrs. Continue to test daily, if ammonia is less than 1ppm, dose prime, if it is 1 ppm or over do a large water change to bring it back down. (and of course continue with weekly water changes either way)

Keep testing for nitrites too, but it is possible you will not see any and your cycle will recover by ammonia simply going to 0.

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The other thing you might want to do is test a bottle of water for ammonia just to make sure your test is working properly and you are reading it properly (bottled water should definitely test 0)

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Thanks for the info Tithra :) you're very helpful all the time!

That's great to hear that the ammonia levels aren't horrible! Ill keep monitoring what my lvls are, I did add new substrate so hopefully you are right about the mini cycle.

I don't have any prime, its not that big here in Canada. I was using Aquaplus as a decholinator, ill order some prime though since I always see everyone saying how great it is, is there a cheap place to order it and can you get it in bulk bottles? I can get a huge 2litre jug of the Aquaplus can you get bottles that big of prime?

My tests should be working they don't expire until 2016.

I tested my tap water because I can't rem if there is any ammonia in the tap water...

It says there is no ammonia.

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You can get large volumes of Prime. You can also get it in powdered form. It's called Safe. :)

Both are made by Seachem.

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You can get large volumes of Prime. You can also get it in powdered form. It's called Safe. :)

Both are made by Seachem.

Some of us get both...you know :rofl

(Why? G-d only knows.)

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Prime can be ordered from Amazon here for less than $12. For that price you get a bottle that treats 5,000 gallons. 5ml treats 50 gallons. Prime is a lot more concentrated than most other dechlorinators, so check your Aquaplus to see how much you need to treat a given amount of water. Even though Prime may come in smaller bottles, it usually is a better deal due to its concentration. For example, a 16oz. (473ml) bottle of Aqueon Water conditioner treats 946 gallons, while a 100ml bottle of Prime treats 1,000 gallons. That is more than 5x the concentration of the other brand. Also, Prime detoxifies ammonia like tithra said. :)

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Actually, I lied. It's EXACTLY 5x more concentrated.

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