Ok, first time here so please bear with me. I have been keeping aquariums a long time and never had as many problems as I have had with this tank.
I have a 35 gallon freshwater tank with 4 swordtails, 5 longfin zebra danios, and 3 killifish. The water parameters today were 6.0pH, 0.5 Nitrite, 200 Nitrate.
I don't know what to do! I have this really large plant in my tank, I don't know what it is, but it used to be beautiful. It came down with some furry black algae, and I was never able to get it under control. I decided to pull the plant out and trim back the leaves that were the worst affected. I may have left the plant out too long, and now part of it is dying and decaying in the tank. I tried to pull out the dead parts but there are just so many of them floating around now.
I came home today to find my ten year old chinese algae eater
and a new blue dwarf gourami both dead. I think the crazy high nitrates killed them, it's my best guess anyway. I think the high nitrates are due to the decaying plant, but I don't know how to deal with it at this point. I tried pulling off all the dead parts, but I don't know if that will be enough.
Am I fighting a losing battle? Should I just pull the plant out and get a new one? Its such a lovely plant I am really bummed I might lose it. Any advice is greatly appreciated!
Pics attached of the plant and a close up showing leaves. On the right is where most of the dead plant is. You can see some of the algae here and there. It's black, fuzzy, and dense.
Thanks for the help!