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Old 10-17-2010, 06:30 AM   #1
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Is my bacteria still safe after medicating?

I started treating a Gold Gourami in my 55 gallon tank for what I believed to be a parasite and was using an API general cure powder with a Jungle Anti-Bacteria fish food. My charcoal filters are still removed and I was having nitrite problems. Before I started this, my ammonia was completely cycled, but nitrites were high. This morning when I woke up I had about 0.5 ppm ammonia, 0.25 ppm nitrite, and didn't test my nitrates until after a 50% water change. After the water change they're sitting at: 0.25 ppm ammonia, 0-0.125 ppm nitrite, ~2.5 ppm nitrate, and the temperature is hovering between 84-86F for ich treatment. The tank has been running for about 6 weeks now, is this to be expected for part of the nitrogen cycle or did I kill my bacteria by using these two products?
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Old 10-17-2010, 10:56 AM   #2
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Sadly a lot of the medications can impact the good bacteria in a negative way. I always tell people if you have to use meds, use them at half dose for a longer period of time to avoid this problem. It's easier on the bacteria and the inhabitants of the tank. I've neve known of meds to completely kill off the bacteria, just the majority of it.

You could have killed off the bacteria or it could just be a side effect of the meds. Some meds will also alter the water readings.

You're taking the right steps by testing the water and doing changes. Sadly you might have to let it cycle again, however in my experience, this cycle shouldn't take as long since some of the bacteria should have survived. If some of the bacteria didn't survive the meds, then you're in for a full cycle again. (chances are slim though)

Before I found out about the half dosing method (years ago) I would do full treatments for whatever the problem was and never had to go through another full cycle, just mini cycles.
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:56 PM   #3
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I think I will just have to wait and see if I killed off the bacteria and just be on top of the water changes and make sure the fish have good living conditions. I appreciate the tip about the medication though, I'll keep that in mind the next time the fish are sick so that I don't have this happen again.
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Old 10-17-2010, 03:48 PM   #4
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Also, treating in a QT tank is a good idea if it's not something like ich (which infests the whole tank). Anyway... hope you can get your tank stable!
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