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Old 12-30-2011, 01:01 PM   #1
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Ammonia Spike!

Hello everybody. For the past few months I have really cut down on feeding my tank. Only once a week. now I have started up again and started to feed in larger quantities. Well, that was a mistake. I tested my water 2 days ago and it read .25-.50ppm of Ammonia. I did a 25% water change to lower the levels down and stopped feeding. Today I checked and it read .25ppm, maybe a little less. I was thinking about getting some more fish, but that idea is scrapped for now until my tank gets up and running normally. Do you think some of the good bacteria colonies died when I wasn't feeding? How long do you expect for it to get up and running? Should I feed them nothing or just a little?

Thanks for your help!
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:19 PM   #2
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What type of fish do you have & how many & how big are they? What sized tank? How long has it been running? What type of food are you feeding & how much? Feeding only once a week sounds a bit drastic for any type of fish. I would not consider adding any more fish until your ammonia issues have been resolved. Water changes with a good water conditioner are the best route to control ammonia spikes though in an established tank you should not be having issues with ammonia & feeding & we need to figure out what is going on here. Some more information will help us to help you better!
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:37 PM   #3
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I'm sorry I didn't mention that. It's a 10 gallon tank that has been running for 4 months. I did a fishless cycle 8 months ago and it ended 4 months ago. It currently homes 5 Von Rio Tetras. I have been feeding Tetra Fish Flakes, about 4 of them crushed up. I used to feed once a week then changed to 3 times a day without gradually introducing more food. I'm pretty sure that was te mistake thy I made. Do you think so?

Thanks for your help, it's very much appreciated!
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:49 PM   #4
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You will be fine! Just keep on top of your water testing & changes until your tank stablizes itself. Most people follow a general feeding guideline of meals 1-2x day, only what your fish can eat in 1-3mins & remove any uneaten food. A day of fasting is generally recommended as well. Im giving just general recommendations here- you may want to start with just 1 meal every other day for few days until your ammonia stablizes & then work up gradually to every day/twice day with a day of fasting. If you do a search on this site for feeding guidelines/suggestions for tropicals, you will some more insight into feeding your guys as well. Hope this helps!
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:57 PM   #5
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Okay that's good to know! What do you recommend to combat the problem? Just my regular water changes?

Thank you so much for your help! I'll only be feeding one time per day from now on.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leader-Of-The-Fish View Post
Okay that's good to know! What do you recommend to combat the problem? Just my regular water changes?

Thank you so much for your help! I'll only be feeding one time per day from now on.
Your welcome! Just keep up with daly tests & water changes until things stabilize. I would do atleast 50%, possibily more with a good water conditioner. You want to keep those ammonia levels as close to zero as possible to keep your fish healthy. You may possibily see a nitrite spike once the ammonia zeros back out- just keep a close eye on everything & hopefully, this wont last long!
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:44 PM   #7
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Thanks! Just to clarify, 50% water change everyday until the tank is back to normal. Also I should feed minimal every other day.

Thanks so much for your help. I don't know what I would have done without you.
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Old 12-31-2011, 07:17 PM   #8
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Is this right ^ ?
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:14 PM   #9
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Yes, water changes & light meals until your tank stablizes itself. Hopefully, this will not take long! Then you can slowly work on adjusting their meal schedule to one appropriate for your fish.
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Old 01-01-2012, 08:24 PM   #10
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Jlk has it covered but yes I think increasing the food so rapidly was the issue and there is probably uneaten food leftover causing toxin issues. A small amount once per day is fine. I'd do water changes until ammonia is back to 0 and do a thorough vacuuming of your substrate to collect any uneaten food and waste which can contribute to toxins. You may also want to rinse out your filter media in old tank water during a water change to remove any uneaten food particles that may have gotten stuck there. A fish's stomach is about as big as it's eye so a little goes a long way.
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