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Old 03-10-2009, 03:10 PM   #1
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Water levels A.OK, except Nitrite

Hi there, I have a 30 gallon goldfish aquarium which is 2.5months old, which is fully cycled. I added the fish and snails a few weeks ago, and now the water looks a little (not foggy, not murky), blurry? I'm trying to come up with the right word, but its just not crystal clear anymore. Have checked the water the last 3 days, and Ammonia is at ZERO, Nitrate, PH, are both within recommended levels, except my Nitrite is at .50ppm.

I normally add 1/2 tsp of aquarium salt per gallon of water added, but did some reading and found that if i up it to about 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons, it will help the fish tolerate this period when i'm trying to get the nitrite under control. The last two days, i've also done a 25% water change, and it doesn't really change - what gives????
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Old 03-11-2009, 11:54 PM   #2
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If you have nitrites, the tank is not completely cycled. In a cold water tank, it can take up to 8 weeks to get past the nitrite phase. <That was how long mine took!>

If you've done a fishless cycle, then added the fish just a couple weeks ago, this would indicate that bacteria colony is not big enough to support the bioload (& goldfish are messy!). The bacteria will catchup in a week or 2. <This is what people call mini-cycle.>

You would want to maintain nitrites at 0.25 or less. That would mean water changes for the next little while.

You actually don't need a lot of salt to protect against nitrite poisoning (Cl- level 20x that of nitrite is needed.) 1/2 tsp/gal is around 0.07% & is perfectly adequate.
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Old 03-12-2009, 06:33 PM   #3
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Thanks for the response - yes after a few daily water changes of approx 25%, the nitrites are back to zero, water is clear, fish are happy.
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