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Water Chem Help

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Ok so i have kept fish for a while now but never really had any idea about water chemistry.

i have the usual ph test kit test usually test weekly but thats about it.

Lately though my guppies have been dying by the 2's and 3's over say a 3 month period.

i have got a new stand and hood coming and i want to get this right. so what i would like to do is get the tank up running right then repopulate the tank with guppys and a couple of bristle nose catfish.

i would like to catalogue the water chemistry but i don't know what i should be testing daily, weekly and so on.

ill do a work log on getting the tank right with setup furnishing water chem and everything but i have to do it right the first time i don't want to kill anything else. i also need to clean my canister filter to the point where it looks like new so if anyone has any tips for that as well i would love some help there.

so if anyone could flash up a list of stuff ill need to properly test water i would be greatly appreciated i know I'm asking a lot but i thought i would come to the professional people first :P

Many Thanks


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Personally I test ammonia, nitrite and nitrates just before each pwc (currently every 4 days). This goes to daily if either ammonia or nitrite is above 0 and water changes are increased to keep those values low.

If I notice problems with the fish, snails or plants I will test other things. For example I had snails with badly developed shells, tested for calcium and found that it was minimal so I've supplemented some calcium....

Have you cycled the tank?

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Yeah mate buy that one just make sure you shake them before you use them.

You probably will need a gh / kh test kit as well. (sold seperately)

How dirty is your canister. Surely couldn't be that bad. I clean mine just under the hose with a brush.

Is the tank for the stand I built you. I could get a price from a fella up here to suit it.

When are you up here next you'll have to call over and I can get you pointed in the right direction =)

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its terrible jaypee it hasn't been cleaned for ages I'm not saying how long I'm too ashamed :S The media needs to be replaced with something a little better and having trumpet snails in the tank i think it would be better to replace it rather than clean it i don't won't those buggers back again. All my gear needs a extra good clean i want to do this right right from the start so i want to do everything stage by stage your cabinet that you made me looks feckin awesome so when i set it up i don't want to have to play with it too much. i still have to decide what substrate i want to use and what kind of plants i want to use. tonight i put together an excel spreadsheet to keep track of levels. When i get it all sorted out I'm gonna have a crack at a small breeding setup in my office but the display tank is where i want to take my time.

i might call you on the weekend jaypee i wouldn't mind having a chat i got some bristle noses for you if your keen :P

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