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Hey guys I'm about to do a water change and my tank is 6 months old. My nitrate is high but my ammonia and nitrite are both 0 ph is 7.2. Is there something wrong here cause my filters were cleaned 2 weeks ago with used aquarium water. The only thing is that a visitor put a fair amount of food in my tank while I was away cause they wanted to see them eating... Not happy.

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Nitrites and Ammonia are supposed to read Zero. Nitrates possibly are high because the good bacteria have converted the excess waste to the less harmful nitrates, and the only way to fix this is with either a large water change, or very regular smaller water changes until nitrates are down to a level you are comfortable with.

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lol yeah anubias is a bit slow growing. get some java fern, not many fish likes it so it has a decent chance of growing. and it seems to do well floating or planted.

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High nitrates you say..

Adding plants can help but I would manually reduce the nitrates if I were you.

Remember to regulate the temperature during WC as a drop in temp will wipe your fish of their slime coat "which is essential for health. " it getting cooler now summers over so try the water change during the day so your tap water isn't too cold but do watch the temperature when filling up.

You never stated your nitrate result but I would suggest 50% WC or a few 25% WC over 3 days. But that all depends on your parameters.

Is your pH where it's suppose to be..?

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Both anubias and java fern won't do diddly squat for your nitrates. Regular water changes is the best option. A denitrater is an expensive option. What fish are in the tank? Do you run a light on the tank? If you run a light then decent fast growing plants may help. But seriously a 6 month old tank with no mention of a water change schedule, nitrates are gonna be high. Many things can be done but a little more info on filtration, stocking, feeding etc will help give you some sound advice. And by high what figure are you actually talking?

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err.... how high is your nitrates?40ppm is good...60 is gettin there...and if you gotta lot of fish in there ,they poo a bit...I've always gone like this...

do a quarter volume water change,10 days later,a quick clean of filter,in another 10 days,do the qtr water change again...ect

but it all comes down to the size of tank + how many fish....or the size of the fish,fishes in it,on how often you have clean it..........

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Both anubias and java fern won't do diddly squat for your nitrates. Regular water changes is the best option. A denitrater is an expensive option. What fish are in the tank? Do you run a light on the tank? If you run a light then decent fast growing plants may help. But seriously a 6 month old tank with no mention of a water change schedule, nitrates are gonna be high. Many things can be done but a little more info on filtration, stocking, feeding etc will help give you some sound advice. And by high what figure are you actually talking?

I never said its my first water change I changed every week for the first two months and scaled it back to every 3 weeks. It was about 80-100 ppm and I have American cichlids in my tank so I think the ph is good. I've never had really any high levels at all until now. It's a 6x2x2 with about 10 juvenile to mid sized fish (4-8 inch). Every fish looks good apart from the small rivulatus. 2 hardly grow and have no colour. Every other fish in the tank including 1 bit bigger riv are flourishing. The two little ones look ordinary and I am a bit stumped.

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I've been doing about a 30/40% change but just lately I've gone from every 2 weeks to every three. I'll just have to go back to 2 I suppose Donny. I might wind back the food a bit too cause they have stopped growing. Ammonia was 0 so good to see the bacteria is working.

Edited by Mitch86

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Mate I usually give the cannisters a clean using water taken from the aquarium, this prevents nitrates bouncing back after a water change. Then get in 2 or 3 water changes. Usually a day apart and usually 50%.

Say you had 100ppm nitrate

after the first 50% change you then have 50ppm nitrates

after the second 50% change you then have 25ppm nitrates

Then I would test the tank and see how long it takes to get past 40ppm. That will give you an idea on how lazy you can be.

I like to try keep nitrates below 40ppm......... that way if something happens in life and you cant do a change for a while it wont get super high.

If its already at 100ppm and something stops ya from water changing for a few weeks......... it can mean deaths.

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Thanks bud, I'll do that. Just did a 50%wc tonight before I left home for emerald and will do one when I get back. All these road works give me a bit of time on here lol ;)

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Your doing a good job

And may I suggest new life spectrum worlds best food and the effects are almost instant.

Just remember what goes in must come out.. So more food = more water changes

Fish can go upto 3 weeks without food as I fast my fish once or twice aweek on clean water. eg, after WC.

And just so u kno pH is normally between 6.0-9.0 and yours should be somewhere between 7.0-7.8 but stability is key.

And add a little salt for good health,

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Ph was 0 so good to see the bacteria is working.

PH has nothing to do with your bacteria working or not, and would never read Zero. PH refers to water being acidic, basic (alkaline) or neutral. With a measurement of 7 being neutral, less than 7 is acidic and greater than 7 is alkaline. Brisbane tap water typically sits at about PH7.8.

If you have plenty of time, I suggest you read some of the following articles; Cichlid Chemistry

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Both anubias and java fern won't do diddly squat for your nitrates.

I have Java fern in my 700 litre breeding setup which has 15 electric yellows (juvies) and a heap of bn in the smaller tanks, my nitrates are always 0, i do have a crap load of java fern in the 4ft tank (probs around 15 decent size plants) with 3 of 4 planted and the rest floating around. i do a water change every 1-2 weeks that is only for cleaning out the bn tanks via siphon, which would be around 90 to 100 litres max.

Unless the java fern really does nothing for nitrates and my water changes are the only thing keeping my nitrates down then i would say that they java fern are doing something to reduce the nitrate levels in my tanks.

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