Feeding Question

  1. kennya Member Member

    I tested my water levels last night and I was showing a small amount of amonia, less than .25 and my Nitrates were over 40. I am 99.9% sure this is due to me overfeeding. When I get hometoday I am goingot do a 25% water change, hit the gravel with the vac to try and get the levels back down to normal.

    I think the reason I over feed is a lot of the food sinks to the bottom so half my fish lets say, dont get any. I am not sure why it just hit me, but I thought about turning my filter and air stones off during feeding time. Is that ok?
     
  2. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    It is ok ..but why not switch to some type of quality floating flake or pellet instead? with the fish you have listed, im going to guess you give them a bit too much (im guilty of that also) as they are just the type of fish that dont usually leave leftovers LOL
     

  3. kennya Member Member

    I use floating flakes, but they travel straight over to the water coming back into the tank from the filter and it just throws it straight down to the gravel.

    Oh, started using algea wafers the other day also. Only one or two every couple days.
     
  4. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    you don't want to have any food left over in the bottom of the tank. Try cutting back how much you are feeding.

    Also, consider varying the diet: you could try frsh veggies like cucumber and zucchini, or frozen or freeze-dried bloodworms or daphnia (any freeze-dried food needs to be soaked in liquid first, preferably garlic juice). My fish go crazy for shrimp pellets. I have 15 fish and put only about 5-6 in at once, end up with no mess.

    This is bit off-topic, but if you have the space in the tank, you may want to consider getting more buddies for your schooling fish. Also, a few more cories (I know you have the 2 plecos as well, so you'd have to see about space) may help your problem.
     

  5. kennya Member Member

    Meenu, thank you for the advice. I do want to get some different foods, but I cant even feed them right with flake food, so thats why I am so hesitant! LOL!!

    Yes, I definitley need 3 more tiger barbs. One of them is nipping the fins on the larger one bad. I feel so bad for him. I would like to get a couple more cory's too. We did have a total of 4 danio's and 6 tetra's, but we have lost two tetra's and 2 danios to the filter, so I am taking care of that this week too. They are getting sucked to it. Also bought 3 guppies the other day and lost one of them to the filter and one was in bad shape when we got home and he only lasted a couple days. Would have taken him back, but it is a 2 hour drive to the LFS.

    So yea, I want to get the schooling fish up to 5 or more, but just going to take my time with it so I dont lose any more to the dang filter.
     
  6. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    oh the filter intake is a quick fix.

    You can either put a sponge (without any soap) down into the tube or wrapped around the intake, or you can take a brand new, never seen soap pantyhose, pull it over the intake, and rubberband it. The water will still flow through, but the fish won't.

    Your tank is so big that you your fish would probably like bigger schools. The only thing is that I'm not very familiar with plecos, so I don't know how they factor into the stocking. If you have the space, you may want to bring the cories up to about 8, and the schooling fish to 8 or so as well. In fact, I'd consider even more of the tetras, maybe about 12.

    check out aqadvisor.com - it's a great tool for stocking ideas. The only thing I recommend is to use the program but then get on here and tell the forum members what you are planning before you purchase, as sometimes people have had particular experiences with fish and make a different recommendation.

    Also, if you aren't already doing it, make sure you are quarantining your fish (you can set up a q tank for under $40), and are taking your time acclimating them. Since it is such a long drive back home after you buy the fish, you may also want to ask your lfs to package each fish in its own bag, to keep down the stress and ammonia levels until you get the fish into a bucket or whatever you use for acclimation.
     
  7. kennya Member Member

    The sponge is what I am going to do. Going ot look for one today or tomorrow.

    Thanks for the site, I am going to check it out tonight and see what it tells me. I dont quarantine the fish when i get them. I have a Fosters and Smith magazine that explains how to acclimate them. Takes about an hour or so before I put them in the tank. We have another LFS that we usually go to that is only 45 minutes away, so I am going ot stick with that one.

    Thanks again for the info!!!
     

  8. Llama Well Known Member Member

    If you want to help reduce the amount of nitrates, try getting some fast growing plants. Plants use nitrates to make proteins -> to grow. Elodea grows very quickly, if you keep some of that and trim/replant it reguarly, it'll drop down quickly enough.
     
  9. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    Although it is true that plants help with nitrates, I think in this situation, it is important to address the underlying problem first, which is most likely the overfeeding. With proper feeding and weekly water changes, along with the 3 live plants already in the tank, the nitrate levels should get under control pretty easily.

    Llama-guy, I think live plants are beautiful, and it's fine if Kennya wants more of them, but I also think that just sucking the nitrates out with more plants won't be a long-term solution. There really shouldn't be so much leftover food that it's just sitting on the bottom of the tank.
     
  10. gunner13 Well Known Member Member

    Amazon sword is another good quick growing plant.
    You could also not feed for 3-4 days and it won't harm the fish.
     

  11. Llama Well Known Member Member

    While I do agree with this - 40 ppm of nitrates is not going to go down to acceptable levels unless there are many water changes - which will defentally disbalance everything else.

    So yes, I do agree that the underlying problem should be solved, but plants will help solve the currently one.
     
  12. harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    Extra water changes won't interfere with the balance of the tank at all. IMO they are necessary to address the issue at hand.
     
  13. Neji Member Member

    Before I left my native homeland the pet store owner gave me a big advice :) he said only give enough food (flakes, pellets etc) in the tank and if the fishes can eat all of the food (flakes, pellets etc) in the tank within 15 seconds then you are feeding a good amount of food. If they don't finish it in 15 seconds then you put a little too much into the tank.
     
  14. Aquarist Fishlore Legend Member

    Hello Kennya. :;hi2

    I reduced my feeding schedule down to 1 time a day. I was feeding twice a day. The difference in my water clarity is amazing. I'm not a big fan of fasting my fish or any fish for that matter. I'm not going to miss a meal and I won't let my fish miss a meal either. (I know sometimes it may be necessary to fast a day especially if constipation issues develop but with a varied diet this shouldn't happen).

    Turning off your filter and air pump while feeding is ok. However, if you forget to turn it back on then problems could develop. Try using the flow control knob on your Aqua Clear 110 to reduce the flow instead. You could also place a sponge in the out flow area of the filter to disperse the water flow so it isn't so strong.

    Remember that for most home aquarium tropical fish (not all) the stomach is only as large as one of the fishes eyes. A combination of different types of food at the same time will help as well. I use pellets, sticks, fresh veggies and flakes, sinking foods too and all at the same time. Too, feeding in different locations each time will help. (dropping the food in different places of the tank and not always in the same spot) These tips will help to make sure that everyone gets a bite, reduce the amount of food you have to use each day and help to keep your water chemistry in check, and keep your water clear.

    Ken:animal0028:
     
  15. freak78 Well Known Member Member

    I feed twice a day but only enough food they can eat in about 2 minute's. So far the food has never hit the bottom. My fish are crazy at feeding time. Even if the food did hit the bottom my tiger's are constantly on the bottom looking for scrap's of leftovers. Didn't know tiger's were so interested in bottom feeding.