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Old 05-15-2005, 03:55 AM   #1
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nitrates what to do

90g 440w vho 180lbs LR 40lbs agronite 1200 mag drive in sump 250 mag drive in tank culerpa growing in sump
fish: 1 snowflake eel, 1 enginer goby, 2 pajama cardinals, 1 yellow tang, 1 blue hippo tang, 1 star & stripes puffer, 1 purple firefish, 1 black percula clown, 1 true percula clown, 1 osciliris clown, 1 cleanr shrimp, 1 queen conch, 1 florida fighting conch, 2 green chromis, 2 yellow tail damsels, 1 cucumber,
yes alot of fish but all are fine but nitrates are over 160ppm water changes wont bring them down could it be my substrate not deep enough? or something else? Please help thanx
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Old 05-15-2005, 09:01 AM   #2
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Too many fish! The eel and the puffer are both going contribute alot to the nitrate levels, and they might also end up eating some of the other fish. I don't think you are going to reduce the nitrates until you get rid of some of those fish. If you don't move them you will start to lose them because of nitrate poisoning (slow death). The cucumber will be the first to die. Please consider removing some of these animals soon.
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Old 05-15-2005, 01:38 PM   #3
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Yes you have alot of fish and others in that tank for its size. Make sure before you purchase fish on what they eat and what size they will grow to. Removal of some will be necessary to lower nitrates. The first ones to be effected will most likely be your invertabrates, they are very sensitive to nitrates. I would recommend doing a 20% water change ASAP. HTH
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Old 05-15-2005, 01:57 PM   #4
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Take the fish back to the store! 8O

They will die unless the nitrates go down, and until your system can handle that much nitrate, the levels will never go down. Start off slow... a 90 can be TINY if you pack that many fish in there! (regardless... that's more than a fully stocked tank for a mature aquarium). How long has the tank been running? Let us know.
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Old 05-18-2005, 12:15 AM   #5
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Excuse my ignorance...but according to the research that I have conducted, scientists believe both fresh and saltwater fish are insensitive to nitrate (from what it seems). I do not believe nitrates at 160 ppm (although this is extremely high) are going to kill any of his fish, let alone a puffer, eel, or clownfish.

Of course, invertebrates such as corals, shrimp, starfish, snails, etc are sensitive to nitrates. The snails in his tank are probably not exactly in paradise.

I will however admit that high nitrates can possibly lead to viral infections, especially in "less nitrate tolerant" fish. But I cannot believe that nitrates are going to kill fish. Maybe someone can clear this up for me.
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Old 05-18-2005, 12:45 AM   #6
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from what i understand, and have read high trates effect the red blood cells of fish and add to stress leading to diseases... id say.. think if of it as fish aids lol.. it might not be what kills them but its what can help lead to a weakened immune system and disease / death
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Old 05-18-2005, 01:10 AM   #7
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I can definately agree with you that high nitrates may increase a fish's susceptibility to disease (both viral and bacterial) and may inhibit the abilitiy of the fish's red blood cells to carry oxygen, however I do not believe anyone can say nitrates are certainly going to kill fish.

The saltwater fish system of a LFS in my area has nitrate concentrations near 150 ppm (which is quite high but you must consider the amount of fish being housed, the amount of food going into the system, and probably the lack of frequent large water changes). However, the store has a few large display tanks connected to the system which have been housing triggers, sharks, groupers, etc for over 5 years. These fish have not died and from what it seems are showing no signs of any water quality issues.

It just seemed like a few members almost attacked "Elke" insisting that he/she remove the fish immediately before they die. Without a doubt, the inverts are probably not in the best of shape and I do believe the tank was way too crowded. But I do not believe anyone can affirm that high nitrates are definately going to kill fish. JMHO. Maybe someone with a little more expertise than myself can chime in.
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Old 05-18-2005, 08:29 AM   #8
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Aren't there biological methods of removing nitrates? Such as--setting up a refugium with macroalgae....

Nobody seems to have suggested that. Everyone said to remove fish.

Just curious.

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Old 05-18-2005, 08:40 AM   #9
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No attacks, just concerned about a person's hobby and animals. I disagree with your statement that Nitrates don't kill fish. Please read the following from another website. I think even you would concede that Nitrates are not good for the fish and especially not the invert.

Dr. Robert Fenner, author of "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist: A Commonsense Handbook for Successful Saltwater Hobbyists", also disagrees with you regarding nitrates at 160 ppm. He calls it deadly. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/no3probfaq61.htm

While not as poisonous, nitrates are an overall indicator of the health of the tank. For a fish only tank I wouldn't want nitrates over 30-40ppm. But with that invert in the tank anything over 10 is detrimental to the overall health of the inhabitants.
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Old 05-18-2005, 09:31 AM   #10
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I agree with mjvincent, everything I've read says nitrates affect fish and shoud be kept between 10-20ppm.
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