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Old 03-07-2004, 06:35 PM   #1
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To salt or not to salt?

How much salt should be added - and what type - and how often?

I used Aquarium Salt when I first setup my freshwater community tank. Actually I added about 1 tbsp per 20 gal because I read somewhere that it helps with stress and disease, but I wanted to add the bare minimum. I haven't added any since then. I'm now cycled and am wondering if and when I should add some more and how much? Maybe I should just wait until someone just needs a "salt bath" and treat them seperately? Help

I read somewhere that you need to be careful about adding more salt because even with water changes, the salt never really leaves your tank.

One website I was just at says:

"A tablespoon for every five gallons of water works well for us. Use either "Aquarium Salt" from the aquarium shop or Kosher or canning salt from the grocery store; the idea is to get just salt, with no additives like iodine or potassium. Salt should be added with the initial setup and only replaced thereafter with water changes (e.g., if you change 10 gallons of water in a 30 gallon tank, add 2 tablespoons of salt)."

That totally contradicts my original understanding from somewhere else! What do you do
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Old 03-07-2004, 06:46 PM   #2
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A tablespoon for every five gallons of water works well for us.
That's odd--that was the recommended dose for a BW tank for bb gobies (of course, that's different salt, but I don’t know what the difference is!)
I have two aquarium salt containers in front of me, one says, "one level tablespoon for each 10 US gallons." The other one says, "one rounded tablespoon for every 5 gallons."

Hmmmm, I had not really thought much about it. I would go with the lesser amount for general water condition and stress reduction. Remember--FW in nature is not 100% salt free.
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Old 03-07-2004, 06:49 PM   #3
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I only add salt for disease treatment. Salt is unneccessary for most FW fish. It is the recommended treatment for nitrite poisoning, and can be used in the treatment for ich. Otherwise, theres no need for it IMHO.

Some folks say salt is needed for slime coat, stress reduction or electrolytes. Unless your fish is sick, it doesn't need help with its slime coat, and as long as your not using 100% RO water, theres plenty of electrolytes in your tap water as well as salt. It doesn't reduce stress either.
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Old 03-07-2004, 07:36 PM   #4
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I have useed salt in my tank only when treating a disease and once after a water change when the fish seemed a little stressed (it had been a while since I had done one at the time). The box I have says 1 tsp for every 10 gal.

Also, if you have mollies or most any FW sharks, salt is reccommended to put in the water. I know where I work, if the mollies go a while with no salt, they start to act all funny. So it depends on what you have in your tank also! HTH
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Old 03-07-2004, 07:43 PM   #5
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Good point Devilish; thing is, with research folks will discover mollies prefer brackish conditions as they travel between FW and SW. Soft water, and neutral pH are recommended for FW sharks tho (not the true sharks, but the cyprinids; there are true sharks called FW sharks, but they do need at least brackish conditions).
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Old 03-07-2004, 11:21 PM   #6
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I have "Doc Wellfish's Aquarium Salt" (Treating my Oranda for "ICH") and it says "add one rounded tablespoonful for every 5 gallons (18.9 L) of aquarium water". But I don't know.
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Old 03-08-2004, 01:40 AM   #7
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Beacious~use that to treat your Oranda and when's he's better, go back to the way the tank was when the Oranda was not suffering from ich.
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Old 03-08-2004, 01:50 AM   #8
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i usually don't add salt. i don't keep molllies, most of my fish are fine without salt. i do use it for treating ich though. i dunno, one less thing to keep track of. i'm busy enough with fertilizers.
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