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Old 05-03-2012, 06:55 PM   #1
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Nitrate levels

Just have a quick question, what are the best nitrate levels in a heavily planted fish tank?
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:07 PM   #2
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Heavily planted tanks can have 0 nitrates.

I'd say if I heavily planted I'd aim for 5-10ppm, but that'd depend on stocking too I guess
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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So true. In my 20g heavily planted tank I have to add nitrates every 2-3 days to keep them above 0. I feed about 4 times a day, too. Small small feedings though.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:27 PM   #4
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So true. In my 20g heavily planted tank I have to add nitrates every 2-3 days to keep them above 0. I feed about 4 times a day, too. Small small feedings though.
I hope I'm not derailing...but...you add nitrates? Did I miss something in researching plants? Hehe
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:36 PM   #5
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How do you guys keep up your nitrate levels? Mine are currently at 0ppm
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
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How do you guys keep up your nitrate levels? Mine are currently at 0ppm
By adding KNO3. I keep my nitrates between 40 and 80 ppm.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:06 AM   #7
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By adding KNO3. I keep my nitrates between 40 and 80 ppm.
Isn't that bad for the fish? I'm pretty new so this is news to me lol I thought you want zeros across the board...
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:22 AM   #8
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Isn't that bad for the fish? I'm pretty new so this is news to me lol I thought you want zeros across the board...
Most fish that people keep with plants can handle some nitrates. In a regular community fish tank you really do want 0's across the board. The reason you want 0 nitrates in regular tanks is to control algae. Nitrate is a fertilizer that spurs plant growth. In a tank with a plastic ship and plastic plants it's bad to have in the water because only algae can use it. In a tank full of growing live plants, the plants will use the nitrates. Without it they can suffer. Same with phosphates. In a fish only tank nitrate grows algae. In your tank it'll help your plants.

For instance, if you had a healthy good looking fish tank, without plants, and added co2, root tabs and ferts it would be a disaster. Would be like trying to feed a hatchet fish tank sinking algae wafers. It's the wrong food for that fish. Nitrates are a type of plant food. If you have plants you want nitrate. If you only have fish you don't. Man, I'm half asleep. I hope I'm making sense!
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:33 AM   #9
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Makes sense to me...I just didn't know that...I have a tank right now that's planted and I'm stressing cause its a 20ppm nitrates...

So that being said...not that I really wanna push it but when should I start to stress about nitrate levels in a planted tank?
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:19 PM   #10
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You don't have to stress at all! Your levels are fine as long as you're doing regular water changes. I wish I had nitrates without having to add them. Not knowing the details about these things and asking about this stuff is what the forums are all about! Keep up the good work.
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