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Old 07-05-2003, 04:15 PM   #1
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AMMONIA

hi i just took the ammonia levels for my tropical fish tank, and they were from 6 to 7. I was wondering if this is hazardous, and if so what can i do to lower it. Do i just have to wait? thanks for any help!
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Old 07-05-2003, 04:45 PM   #2
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I would do a small water change.
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Old 07-05-2003, 05:45 PM   #3
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ok, thanks. but i still am wondering if those levels are hazardous?
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Old 07-05-2003, 07:20 PM   #4
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It is pretty high and i wouldn't say its hazardous but keep a close eye on the fish. Do water changes 20% every week to reduce the ammonia level. Try not to feed the fish as much because uneaten food increases ammonia levels.

How long has the tank been set up?
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Old 07-05-2003, 07:41 PM   #5
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IMO, yes, it's too high. I'd do several 20% water changes over the next few days and try to keep it below 2.0. Ammonia causes chemical burns on the fishes gills. This type of damage is irreversible and will shorten the fishes life. It may not show up immediately. Once the ammonia spike is over, try to keep nitrites down to .5 or so. .25 would be better. Nitrite inhibits the bloods ability to carry oxygen. The fish will suffocate at high levels of nitrite.
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Old 07-05-2003, 08:25 PM   #6
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well i dont have a nitrite test kit, but i will get one. the tank has been set up for about a month now. i will do water changes. i did one today. thanks a lot fo the help!
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Old 07-05-2003, 08:29 PM   #7
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Hmm, did you let the tank cycle.
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Old 07-05-2003, 10:20 PM   #8
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how do you let it cycle? I did add a lot of fish all at once, which was a mistake. Oh well, i am sure in time it will lower. thanks for the help
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Old 07-05-2003, 10:29 PM   #9
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Ok, you did not let it cycle then, well that is over by now, I hope. You need to do some research on ammonia, and how to control it, i am sure you will find something that meets your situation
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Old 07-05-2003, 11:09 PM   #10
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Oh well, i am sure in time it will lower
I'm quite sad to say that i don't think the fish will survive that long


Try products like ammo-lock which changes the ammonia to ammonium which is less toxic to the fish
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Old 07-06-2003, 12:02 AM   #11
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this is horrible news. So there is no products that can lower ammonia? you would think that there would be. Hmm.... i really hope that they dont die. I will just keep up with the partial water changes. and hope for the best
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Old 07-06-2003, 01:29 AM   #12
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THere are heaps of products in aquariums( Don't try to get stuff from pet stores they don't give good advice IMO)

Ammo-lock is a really good product IMO. It neutralises the ammonia into ammonium.
It really helped my tank in the early stages of cycling.

What types of fish are in there? Is the tank overpopulated? 1 inch of fish for each gallon
What types fish are in there?
You'll just have to hope for the best and hope that the fish are hardy enough
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Old 07-06-2003, 10:42 AM   #13
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Most people dont really like to use chemicals, but I hear a few work ok.
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Old 07-06-2003, 11:38 AM   #14
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well there is 3 tiger barbs, and 3 albino tiger barbs in a 10 gal. so i dont think that they are that crowded. However i did introduce them all very quickly. any other advice?
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Old 07-06-2003, 11:45 AM   #15
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The ammonia levels you're seeing are quite toxic and will have an adverse effect on the long-term health of your fish. I'd suggest daily water changes and testing until the ammonia is greatly reduced.

The water changes are a short-term solution-- but are not going to fix the problem. Either your tank hasn't finished cycling or the waste load is over-loading the filtration system. This could be caused by either over-crowding or over-feeding. How big is the aquarium and what types/how many fish are you currently housing? The "One inch of fish per gallon" theory was mentioned, but that is a terribly inaccurate way to determine a safe bio load for a tank. For example-- 5 one-inch neon tetras will not produce near the amount of waste as a five-inch goldfish.
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Old 07-06-2003, 07:46 PM   #16
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You definitely need to do some major water changes, and get some ammonia reducing products; your tank IS cycling at the moment.

Ammonia, as everyone said, is MAJORLY deadly to fish. Burns and destroys their gills (as was said before). Personally I recommend a big water change; like 50% asap. Then daily changes of small amounts (maybe 10%?) till your ammonia is converted to nitrite then nitrate. Nitrite is also deadly; it takes the place of oxygen in the bloodstream and suffocates the fish, so don't stop when your ammonia levels go down. Wait until the Nitrites also lower. Nitrates, in VERY high amounts, can be deadly as well, but amount up to 40 ppm hardy fish can handle. The problem with frequent water changes, is it takes a LOT longer for the cycle to complete; keep in mind the bacteria needs the ammonia and nitrites to reproduce: more bacteria = more reduction of ammonia and nitrite. However, whats more important? Getting the tank to cycle quickly or live fish? I prefer live fish myself *grin*

You will probably want to use an ammonia reducing product. Problem with those is you won't be able to test for ammonia then. The products binds the ammonia so it is no longer toxic, but do not get rid of it, so most ammonia tests still come up positive. Thing is, you don't know if you put in enough to combine ALL the ammonia, or you are getting a mix of bound and the deadly type. Its a tough call, but one I would probably chose to do as well; combining that with the water changes should keep your guys alive.

You may also want to look into what they call "bacteria in a bottle". Cycle and Bio-Spira are 2 examples. They are basically the bacteria your tank needs to get the nitrogen cycle going. I've heard positive and negative about Cycle..works for some, not others. May be due to the how long the bacteria can live in the container. I've heard great stuff about Bio-Spira, but its hard to find.

You can read more about the cycle here: http://www.skepticalaquarist.com/doc...t/nitcyc.shtml . The article can be a bit technical, but I think you can handle it.
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Old 07-06-2003, 07:50 PM   #17
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I second the huge water change, but didnt you say they came down a bit?
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Old 07-06-2003, 07:53 PM   #18
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Do a big water change 50% now. Then do partial water changes every other day. Just keep in mind that although water changing lower ammonia build up, it also causes a lot of stress for the fish.
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