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Old 05-14-2022, 06:20 PM   #1
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Help Nitrite spike uncontrollable causing death ammonia 0.0 and Nitrate 0.0 - low

I have (15) 10 gallon tanks keeping Giant Bettas in. All tanks run dual sponge filters made for 30 gallon tanks Temperature is 75 to 80 PH is
7.4. I had multiple fish deaths over a 3 day period so I tested the water all but 4 tanks had Nitrite levels all of sudden spike up to 0.50 or higher the Ammonia is 0.0 and Nitrate is low 0 - 0.10. I performed 5 90% water changes
broke down and clean all 11 tanks no change found that the sponge filters were holding this anomaly. As a test I cleaned 1 tank and both sponges completely and tank is stable but without the bacteria to allow tank to cycle. The sponges in the other tanks were cleaned in their tank water as you would normally. 4 of these tanks received a sponge from one of the tanks that did cycle to spread the good bacteria. The 11 tanks also have received a dose of Prime every 48 hours *** well as Stable every day. I also added API starter bacteria to all 11 that did not cycle. This has been going on for a week with no change in the Nitrite levels. I also just added lava rock to trap additional anerobic bacteria. I now trying something I read about on 2 of the tanks 1 is getting 0.002 of 80 proof Vodka to increase carbon and the other experiment is getting 1.5 ml of 5% white vinegar started today. Does anyone have expertise with this and could offer their fix to this issue?

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Old 05-15-2022, 03:22 AM   #2
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You have somehow lost your cycle. No need to be adding vodka or vinegar, ive never heard of these helping with cycling tanks.

Could you post a source indicating how these help cycling tanks.

Just recycle the tanks following a fish in cycle process.
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Old 05-18-2022, 12:31 PM   #3
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I found a temporary fix Seachem Prime

I bought a gallon of seachem prime that is helping a lot the rest of the tanks were dosed with 4ml of Prime and followed by 1ml Prime each day along with 2ml of vinegar and a teaspoon of salt till the tanks cycle. Vinegar lowers the PH because high ph paired with high nitrates or ammonia is even more deadly. Below is a search for all the info using both vinegar and vodka to help tanks to cycle. 1 tank I had nothing in due to dead loss I doses the tank with a high concentration of vodka and vinegar and 2 day's later the tank cycled

https://www.google.com/search?q=vodk...hrome&ie=UTF-8
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Old 05-18-2022, 01:07 PM   #4
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OK. I see where see you are getting your reasoning with the vodka and vinegar. I just disagree with it.

While ammonia is less toxic at lower pH, deliberately adding more chemicals to lower pH and toxicity is going to cause more issues than it solves. It also does nothing to assist with recycling the tank and will not help at all with nitrite and nitrate toxicity as these are totally not pH dependant.

Just do your water changes to lower nitrite levels as you should be doing with a fish in cycle.
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Old 05-23-2022, 12:49 AM   #5
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I had the same problem, had a fully cycled tank according to testing, added shrimp, had to remove one of the filters bc the shrimp wouldn't stop getting stuck in it & bam nitrite spike out of nowhere off the charts and I could not get it to go down no matter what.

It is finally down to the 1 and below range now. It took a week and a half of daily 25% water changes using fritz detoxifier as my dechlorinator as well as adding full doses of it to the tank daily. I'm now doing 50% water changes and adding the full dose of fritz detoxifier and adding seachem stability to rebuild my bacterial colony. I think it would have gone down faster had I been doing 50% water changes and adding full doses of the detoxifier/bacteria from the get go, I was worried the large water changes could stress my shrimp to death but the fear was unfounded in my case. Before I started doing all this I was losing 1 cherry shrimp a day, after I started doing this I did not lose any more shrimp and hopefully will not lose any more!! (Knock on wood lol)
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