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Old 08-18-2017, 09:53 AM   #1
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Water has been testing 0/0/0 for three weeks

Hey all. I'm confused about why my water has been testing 0/0/0 the last three weeks. My aquarium is a 5 gallon that's been up for about 2 and a half months. I have substrate for live plants, three small amazon swords, a morimo ball, a java fern, three random pond bulbs that have recently sprouted, and some pothos cuttings. I have a heater and 2 filters, one that came with the tank and a sponge filter. I did a fishless cycle and when it was complete I added a single male Betta. The tank is doing great except for algae, and most of my plants are improving after I started dosing with co2 supplement every day. My betta is experiencing rapid fin growth and is very lively and active.

Now I'm worried because for the last three weeks, basically ever since I added the betta, my water has been testing 0 all across the board! I know my API master kit is good because I test my tap water with it with varying results. What's going on? Is the bio load too small to feed the bacteria? Did my cycle crash?
Thanks all.

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Old 08-18-2017, 10:38 AM   #2
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It looks like everything is working perfectly. Your betta is flourishing, and the plants are improving. Evidently your BB and plants are consuming the potentially polluting wastes and nutrients, resulting in the straight zeros. No worries.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:16 AM   #3
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That is a relief! Thank you! Now if only I could get on top of this algae haha.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:43 AM   #4
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A large number of plants can be a dramatic shift in a small tank. I always have to dose for nitrates in my five, six or eight lol.
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Old 08-18-2017, 02:45 PM   #5
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Hello Rae...

The dissolved waste from one, small fish in 5 gallons of treated water, may not show up on a water test. The roots of the Pothos is likely taking in the nitrogen, before the bacteria are getting much. Review your testing procedures and retest the water. You should be following a good water change routine by removing and replacing a couple of gallons of water every few days to maintain a steady, healthy water chemistry.

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