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My set up story - Nitrate of 0 ?

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  • m0cke
    Hi all, I ve set up a 15 Gal (displaced) tropical aquarium again after some years of being out of the hobby. The setup is a Jewel Record 70 but i ve also put
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 1, 2005
      Hi all,

      I've set up a 15 Gal (displaced) tropical aquarium again after some
      years of being out of the hobby.

      The setup is a Jewel Record 70 but i've also put an reverse flow UG in
      this tank long with the existing box filter.

      When I set the tank up I used Nutrafin Cycle & Aqua Plus to help the
      tank mature quicker / remove nasties from the tap water, I put in
      about 2" - 3" of medium sized gravel and 10 plants (some bunched)

      I left the tank for a week and kept checking the water, the PH was 7.8
      (Same as tap), ammonia was down to zero, Nitrite was 0.5, Nitrate was
      5.0 (Same as tap).

      I then purchased 5 leopard dannios to keep the children happy although
      I wanted to wait until the Nitrite was at 0.

      A week on with daily checks and 15% water changes daily the PH was
      still 7.8, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate was 5.0 (although during the
      weeks tests it had risen to 20 and the nitrite had peaked at 1.0)

      So with the tank seeming to have matured in 2 weeks using Cycle, i
      decided to add another 5 fish, these being Silver Tip tetra.

      again test done during the week and ammonia & nitrite are still 0, PH
      has now risen to 8.2 and the nitrate is 0 ..... ??????

      Any ideas what is going on, I can never remeber from previous fish
      keeping experiences the Nitrate being 0 without the assistance of a
      removal tool.

      I'll keep testing the tank every couple of days to see what happens, I
      intend on a regieme of a 15% water change weekly, along with the Jewel
      white wool pad clean and then every 2 weeks hoover the gravel (maybe
      a 25% change here) and every 3 - 4 weeks to clean the filter sponges.

      The plan for fish is to have 5 Leopard danio's, 5 Silver Tip Tetra and
      3 Small Corydoras.

      Cory's will be added in a few weeks time - hopefully.

      I actaully tested the water from the LFS this time and the PH is 8.2
      as per my tank now, so I guess this is OK?

      Any thoughs on the Nitrate, are the plants using it all ..?

      Thanks for any advice.

      Regards,

      Jim
    • Patrick A. Timlin
      ... It could be the plants you added are starting to grow now and using up the nitrates. With a low fish load in the tank, they might use up the nitrates
      Message 2 of 2 , Mar 1, 2005
        --- m0cke <m0cke@...> wrote:
        > again test done during the week and ammonia & nitrite are still 0,
        > PH has now risen to 8.2 and the nitrate is 0 ..... ??????

        It could be the plants you added are starting to grow now and using
        up the nitrates. With a low fish load in the tank, they might use up
        the nitrates faster than they can be produced in the tank.

        Also tap water is often lower out of the tap than what it is after
        sitting around at atmospheric pressure for a while. When delivered to
        your faucet, the water is under pressure and so there can be
        dissolved gasses in the water due to this increased pressure. In
        particular, CO2 gas dissolved in water creates carbonic acid which
        will lower the pH. Let the water sit for a while or run in a tank and
        this excess CO2 gasses out and the pH will rise.

        In addition, well planted tanks often have large pH shifts during the
        day due to the plants using CO2 up while the lights are on and then
        giving it off again when the lights are off. So often the pH of a
        tank with plants will be very different in the morning (when pH will
        be at its lowest) vs. the pH if measured at the end of the day (when
        pH will be the highest). Most people tend to not notice this because
        they measure the pH at the same time, say every Saturday afternoon
        when they do their water changes. But if you take a reading in the
        morning before the lights come on and another the same day just
        before the lights go off, with lots of plants you will find a
        difference in reading, sometimes surprisingly large.


        =====
        Patrick Timlin
        http://www.geocities.com/ptimlin/
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