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Old 07-28-2006, 09:17 AM   #11
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Don't worry about changing the pH. Your level is fine. A stable pH is better than a perfect pH. If you are worried about your angels, I have a pH of 8.4 and have 4 beautiful angels thriving in addition to German Blue Rams. Other than that, everything else has been covered.
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Old 07-28-2006, 10:11 AM   #12
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As for the pH, your fish are not likely to be wild caught. Captive raised fish are typically well adapted to the local pH. AS FF said, stable pH is most important.

Angelfish are hardy fish, but not hardy enough to cycle a tank with them. Since you have enough fish in the tank to cause an ammonia spike, you only have three otpions. First, lots and lots of water changes to keep the ammonia down. A python realy helps with this. Second, get some colonized biomedia from another FW tank to jump start the bacterial growth and limit the duration and peaks of the ammonia and nitrite spikes. Biospira could be tried as a substitute, but is more variable in effect. Third, take some or all of the fish back till the tank is cycled and settles down. If you take all the fish back, you will need an ammonia source to add to the tank to grow bacteria. If you take only some back, you need a really small fish load to establish a biofilter with fish safely.

Read up in the articles section, and you can see how I have used fish safely at:

http://home.comcast.net/~tomstank/to...s/page0017.htm

Some other things you can do, test your tap water for ammonia with a quality liquid reagent test kit. If positive, you have chloramines in your municipal supply, and need to always use dechlorinator. Also, test your tap for nitrates. If more than zero, you won't know your cycle is done till that level definitely increases. Since you have 5 ppm of nitrate in your tank this early, I would assume it came from the tap and you will need to see the nitrate increase to 10 or 20 (with ammonia and nitrite zero) to be certain the cycle is done.
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Old 07-28-2006, 10:31 AM   #13
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Well, to be blunt, the Angels are out of the equation. The midas cichlid took care of them

I wish I knew about this place sooner. I should have done some more research before just listening to the folks at Petsmart. "Sure, midas cichlid's and Angelfish are fine together."

Doh. Oh well, you don't learn unless you fail first
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Old 07-28-2006, 11:13 AM   #14
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mellofone - I agree about AA - I probably would have been banging my head against the wall if I hadn't found AA.

Now that you're here there are some great articles in the articles section and alot to learn from the "stickies" in each of the forums. Like you, I had no clue about anything - when I originally set my tank up nearly 20 years ago nobody talked about water chemistry, compatability, or cycling. When I decided to set it up again after a 15 year hiatus I somehow found the forum before I did anything - I guess I just got lucky It all started when I wanted to do a cichlid tank in my 29G .... decided against that in the end because of the limitations in a relatively small tank. But someday ............
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Old 07-28-2006, 07:03 PM   #15
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For water cycling, should I do it directly from the faucet/python or from a bucket that has had chance to sit and come to room temperature? I picked up some dechlorinator. Should that be added to a bucket and then mixed into the tank, or can I add water directly THEN add dechlorinator?

So many questions, so little time
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Old 07-28-2006, 07:39 PM   #16
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You can just python the water directly into the tank. Adjusted the faucet temp so it comes out at the appropriate temp. Add dechlor as the water is filling.
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Old 07-28-2006, 09:59 PM   #17
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Ok, I replaced 50% of the water and will wait a bit to test it. Wow that Python sure makes life easy. Well worth the money even if it were 10 times the price! I also tested water straight from the tap:

pH - 7.2
Nitrate - 10
Nitrite - 0
Ammonia - 2

EDIT

Tested the tank water about 2 hours later:

Nitrate - 10
Ammonia - 2

No change...
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Old 07-28-2006, 11:55 PM   #18
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Bummer. If your tap water tests positive for ammonia, you almost certainly certainly have chloramines in your municipal supply. That means you can't get the ammoni down below your tap baseline of 2 ppm. All you can do is use a dechlor that also has an ammonia binder in it, trying to keep the ammonia from harming your fish. The only positive aspect of chloramines of 2 ppm is that you could take your fish back, add a simple dechlorinator like thiosulfate, and do a fishless cycle with the 2 ppm of ammonia that comes with your tap water after dechlorinating.

http://home.comcast.net/~tomstank/to...s/page0018.htm
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Old 07-29-2006, 12:11 AM   #19
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Any specific brands I should try? I've read stuff here about AmQuel...

I got some Top Fin / Petsmart Dechlorinator that says it "removes Chlorine, Chloramine, and Heavy Metals" in my aquarium kit. Is that worth the attempt?
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Old 07-29-2006, 02:10 AM   #20
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The dechlorinator that you already have is worthless in your situation. It takes care of the basics, but there's simply too much ammonia in your water. You need a dechlorinator that will also detoxify ammonia (convert it to another form which is less toxic to fish but still available to the biofilter). Both AmQuel and Prime will dechlorinate your water and detoxify Ammonia.
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