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Old 06-24-2011, 04:47 PM   #1
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Ammonia problem

Hi everybody, I have a trigon 190l tank with 10 neons, 10 zebra danios, 2 corys, 2 clown plecs and a Siamese fighter (betta?).
I thought my tank was cycled as I had no ammonia, no nitrites and 5 nitrate.
This last week the ammonia readings have been as follows
Day 1- 0.25
50% pwc
0.5!!!! Later that night
Day 2- 0.25
50% pwc
0.25 later that night
Day 3- 0.25
75% pwc
0.25 later tonight

There are no dead fish, rotten plants, uneaten food etc
I use prime in the untreated water before adding to the tank.
I change the top White poly filter every 2 days. The other sponges I rinse every week or so in tank water that I have taken out for pwc's.
I'm using the api ammonia test kit.
Other readings are ph 7
Temperature 27
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 10
What am I doing wrong??
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Old 06-24-2011, 05:50 PM   #2
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How did u cycle it?
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:06 PM   #3
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Started off with fishless cycle and then with fish as nitrates dropped. This is first time I have had nitrates and ammonia though.
I put in fish too early on the advice of my lfs. Now I know to trust you guys
I was told to use bacterlife to kick start my filter and I used bio balls and some gravel from an established tank for a couple weeks too.
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:18 PM   #4
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Sorry I meant I put in fish when my nitrites dropped and nitrates increased!
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:22 PM   #5
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It definitely sounds like the fish were added too early at the advice of the lfs and your cycle was not complete. Although there may have been conversion happening, the beneficial bacteria was most likely not prepared to handle a constant bio-load.

You're doing the right thing with daily pwc's as needed to keep ammo and no2 under .25 until the tank fully cycles. the other possibility could be that the bottled bacteria created an unstable bio-filter and you are basically witnessing a crash.

Continue to treat it as a fish in cycle, don't use any more bacteria products and keep us posted
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:29 PM   #6
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Ok will do
Everyday the ammonia seems to be doubling and that is with daily pwc's, is that normal?
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottishnewbie
Ok will do
Everyday the ammonia seems to be doubling and that is with daily pwc's, is that normal?
There's a lot of fish making a lot of poo which is going to build up ammonia pretty quickly. Since there is not sufficient amounts of nitrifying bacteria to convert it...there's nowhere for it to go other than the water column for now. It may also be a good idea to test for ammonia directly from your tap. A bottle of quality water conditioner like Seachem Prime will also be a big help.

Here's a great guide to walk you through it-
I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?!
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:44 PM   #8
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I'm using prime and when I tested my tap water the ammonia was 0.25, the same as my tank.
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottishnewbie
I'm using prime and when I tested my tap water the ammonia was 0.25, the same as my tank.
As long as you are using Prime, it will detoxify the ammo and no2 for 24-36 hours rendering it harmless to your fish during that time. Since you have ammonia in your tap water, it will be common to see traces of it after every pwc, but once cycled your bio-filter will consume it within 24 hours.

Unfortunately, you are definitely in the stages of a fish-cycle (thanks to the magnificent advice from the lfs), or at the very least a mini-cycle. You'll just have to keep testing daily and perform pwc's as needed to keep the ammonia in safe(ish) levels until the tank stabilizes.
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Old 06-24-2011, 06:53 PM   #10
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Ok will do, thank you! Will post readings again tomorrow.
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Old 06-25-2011, 01:47 PM   #11
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It's yellow and not green!!! My ammonia test for today using api ammonia test kit.
Is this ok????
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Old 06-25-2011, 02:02 PM   #12
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I put in a few of the bio balls out of my established cold water tank yesterday into the top of the filter, surely that couldn't have helped already? Should I leave them there?
Sorry for all the questions.
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Old 06-25-2011, 02:12 PM   #13
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I put in a few of the bio balls out of my established cold water tank yesterday into the top of the filter, surely that couldn't have helped already? Should I leave them there?
Sorry for all the questions.
That can pretty much instantly cycle a tank with enough seeded media. I cycled a 10 gallon tank in 15 minutes over the weekend using ceramic media from my canister filter. I'd definitely leave them in there, and if you wish to move them back after the tank cycles...just remove a little bit at a time so the tank adjusts. Also keep an eye on the tank you removed them from to insure it doesn't cause any mini-cycles from losing the bacteria. If it does, a few days of pwc's should get it right back into shape.
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Old 06-25-2011, 02:18 PM   #14
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Thank you, I've just tested other stuff and the ph is 7.0, nitrites are 0 and nitrates are 10.
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