0 Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate After A Week With No Water Change?

  1. akitaken Initiate Member

    I took a water sample down to my LFS to have it tested before I picked up some kuhlis today. It tested 0 ppm ammonia, 0 ppm nitrite, AND 0 ppm nitrate. Tank is a 40 breeder stocked w/ a male betta, 4 tetras, 2 rosy red minnows, and a common pleco. I am dosing excel once a week. I have not done a water change in probably over a week and I'm thinkin' my tank definitely shouldn't be at 0 nitrate... I DO have plants, 4 spiralis, two swords, a tiny bit of micro sword, a java fern, and an anubias, but this shouldn't be enough to get rid of all my nitrates. Is something wrong w/ my filter or are my fish just not producing enough waste? If they aren't producing enough waste somehow... Would that mean that my filter's not really cycled? I've had .25 ppm of ammonia and 40 ppm of nitrate before in this tank. Never nitrite, though, but maybe that's because I did not purchase the nitrite test until after I cycled the tank.

    (BTW, I already know my current stocking is way messed up for a variety of reasons, but I got a few "gift" fish from well-intentioned family members...)
  2. BottomDweller Fishlore VIP Member

    It sounds like your cycled so I wouldn't worry about that. I would expect nitrates though with a common pleco in there. What sort of test kit were they using?
  3. akitaken Initiate Member

    They were using just the standard API liquid tests, and I'm assuming as the owner of a fish store they've got a lot more experience doing those tests than I do. I'll recheck myself when I get home though, I guess.
    Yeah, it's absurd how much that tiny baby pleco cranked out when I turned him loose on a tank full of algae. That fish had me doing tri-weekly gravel vacuuming!!
  4. BottomDweller Fishlore VIP Member

    Haha yeah plecos are messy little guys :) All I can suggest is testing the nitrate again and really shaking that bottle as hard as possible, the longer the better. If your nitrates are truly at 0 though then that isn't a bad thing.