Ammonia spike

Discussion in 'Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle' started by Botter, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. BotterNew MemberMember

    Hi im still fairly new to this amazing hobby. I've had my tank for about 7 months now and its been doing pretty good other then the fact that I learned the hard way not to use paper test stripes. My aquarium went through the hole initial cycle phase pretty well. I have a 45 gallon tank. 3 angels. 3 Cory cats ( lost a few in cycle phase with slow reaction because of expired stripes)3 pleco. And about 8 tetras again lost a few. It's been about 5 months since that and all was good. So i finally decided to splurge on a couple of younger discus and a couple of hillstream loaches. And 4 plants. Now about a week later and caught very early this time my tank started to cycle again. My ammonia and nitrites spiked pretty high. It's been 4 days since. I've done water changes and been treating with prime and my normal maintenance cycle and conditioner. I now have the nitrites almost perfect but ammonia is not changing. It's was darn near 4 ppm today. I know prime might hide fish show no signs of stress. They are eating. They seem alittle exited at most. Did I add to many fish at once?or plants? I have noticed the foggy coming and going so i no there are blooms happening. Any thoughts?
  2. FiscCyningWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to Fishlore! I'm sorry you're having trouble with your tank but hopefully we can help.

    Unfortunately adding so many fish overwhelms your beneficial bacteria and put your tank through a mini cycle (sometimes not so mini!). Keep up with large, frequent water changes to keep those ammonia levels low. You also are actually overstocked anyway. You may need to consider returning or rehoming some of your larger fish, unless you want to upgrade to a bigger tank.

    Also, what kind of plecos do you have? Unless they are a small species like bristlenose they will outgrow your tank. They are also quite messy and you definitely don't want three in your tank.
  3. BotterNew MemberMember

    Thanks for the welcome. Yes they are bristle nose plecos. Two of the three rarely come out of the cave. You really think over stocked? I was told as a rule of thumb 1 gallon per 1 inch of fish and that cleaning crew doesn't count towards that. Is that not correct?
  4. AquaristFishlore LegendMember

  5. BotterNew MemberMember

    Very informative. Thanks again everyone. Seems like it might be finally coming to an end. Ammonia was down to 2 ppm and nitrites bang on. My one discus is feeling it now. This afternoon it was bouncing off the walls and just loosing it.within an hour it was just sitting in the plant at the top. So I put it in my quarantine tank. It goes from being on its side then swimming around fine. It's trying so hard i hope it makes it.
  6. RivieraneoModeratorModerator Member

    Botter, the best way to manage ammonia in your tank while experiencing a mini cycle is by conducting water changes. If your discus is bouncing off the tank walls, this is a sign of severe stress. I suggest you take action as soon as possible and reduce your ammonia reading to below .25PPM. By chance, do you have your PH and nitrate reading ?

  7. BotterNew MemberMember

    Been doing water changes daily. Been doing between 10 and 15 gallons at a time. Should I be doing more? It's weird cause there was absolutly no signs of stress really and within hours one just started to loose it. My PH is 6.6 Ammonia is now down to 1. Nitrite is 0. Nitrate is 20.

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