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Old 08-09-2012, 06:46 PM   #1
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Nitrate Problems

In my ten gallon fowlr nitrates are really getting out of hand. In there I only have a firefish, two scarlet skunk shrimp, a hermit crab, and four nassarius snails. I'm supposed to get a clown goby soon, but I might not be able to because nitrates are getting out of hand.

I always have trouble bringing my nitrates down below twenty. Everytime I test, which is once a week, they are 40 and then I have do several water changes to bring them down, and I only ever manage to get them to twenty. Does anyone know good methods of controlling nitrates? I was considering placing some live rock in my HOB filter. Please help!
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Old 08-09-2012, 06:58 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettafanatic
In my ten gallon fowlr nitrates are really getting out of hand. In there I only have a firefish, two scarlet skunk shrimp, a hermit crab, and four nassarius snails. I'm supposed to get a clown goby soon, but I might not be able to because nitrates are getting out of hand.

I always have trouble bringing my nitrates down below twenty. Everytime I test, which is once a week, they are 40 and then I have do several water changes to bring them down, and I only ever manage to get them to twenty. Does anyone know good methods of controlling nitrates? I was considering placing some live rock in my HOB filter. Please help!
The live rock wouldn't help the only thing is pwc or find what's causing it. How's your filters and are you sure your not over feeding?
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Old 08-09-2012, 07:06 PM   #3
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My filter is pretty good. It does its job well. My problem may be overfeeding. I usually feed every day except for Sunday, but I'm switching to every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday because of these nitrate problems. I'm going to do a few pwc to bring them down tomorrow, prepared the saltwater today. I'm going to make some more saltwater in case I have to do more than one.
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Old 08-09-2012, 07:10 PM   #4
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How often are you doing pwc's now? That is the best way to control trates. 10% weekly...
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Old 08-09-2012, 07:29 PM   #5
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I agree that that is the best way. I would do a lot of water changes to completely drop them to 0 and see if you can keep them down. Live rock may help a bit actually if it's thick enough because anaerobic bacteria in the center of the rock would convert nitrate into harmless nitrogen gas. You could put chaeto into the HOB with a little light. That would definitely help.
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Old 08-09-2012, 07:40 PM   #6
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I do 20% weekly. Tomorrow I'm doing my weekly water change. Tomorrow I need to prepare a lot of saltwater and I'll go into battle against the nitrates the next day. I might try and put some chaeto in the filter. Would I need to put sand or anything else in there too?
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Old 08-09-2012, 07:56 PM   #7
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I would watch the quantity you are feeding at each feeding. You don't want a bunch of extra food to fall to the substrate and with one fish, it doesnt need much food at all and the inverts can go with very few feedings. One a week could be enough for them. I would cut way back on the food and continue your wc and i am sure you will see improvement without messing wih your filter.
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Old 08-09-2012, 08:11 PM   #8
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I would watch the quantity you are feeding at each feeding. You don't want a bunch of extra food to fall to the substrate and with one fish, it doesnt need much food at all and the inverts can go with very few feedings. One a week could be enough for them. I would cut way back on the food and continue your wc and i am sure you will see improvement without messing wih your filter.
That sounds like a good plan. The chaeto will be plan B. Thanks everyone! I'll lower the feeding quantity.
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Old 08-09-2012, 08:24 PM   #9
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Hey betta, sounds like overfeeding. Nothing wrong with feeding everyday but how much are you feeding each time and what are you feeding?

I would be feeding a quarter of a frozen cube or less a day. Shouldnt be feeding much more than a cube and a half a week probably. Not sure if your using filter pads but cleaning them every few days and replacing them weekly or biweekly will help considerably. Also you probably have a lot of organic matter rotting in your sand bed so siphoning it could be a good idea and will help reduce the problem from past overfeeding.
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Old 08-09-2012, 10:30 PM   #10
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Hey betta, sounds like overfeeding. Nothing wrong with feeding everyday but how much are you feeding each time and what are you feeding?

I would be feeding a quarter of a frozen cube or less a day. Shouldnt be feeding much more than a cube and a half a week probably. Not sure if your using filter pads but cleaning them every few days and replacing them weekly or biweekly will help considerably. Also you probably have a lot of organic matter rotting in your sand bed so siphoning it could be a good idea and will help reduce the problem from past overfeeding.
I usually feed a quarter of a frozen cube at each feeding, but the last few times I've been feeding half a cube for reasons I don't even know O_o I switched back to a quarter of a cube at the last feeding because of these nitrate issues, and now that I'm feeding even less it should help considerably. I'll give the sand some vacuuming but I can't do too much to the sand because of the nassarius sails hidden in there. Wouldn't want to crush one or suck one up.

I don't like changing filter pads because of the risk of a mini-cycle, but I do clean them often. I think I have to start cleaning them even more often now. I usually only change pads when they're worn or torn.

By the way, I feed frozen mysis shrimp, frozen brine shrimp, and marine pellets. I switch between them at each feeding. I'm thinking of adding daphnia or something to the menu too.
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