First testing of my tank

Neil
  • #1
So I took some water to the pet store to get tested and they said the ammonia levels was over 3ppm, toxic levels, and was told to do a 50% water change.
Did that yesterday and today did my own tests.

PH- 7.6
Hardness-425
Alkalinity-180
Nitrite- 2
Nitrate- 20
Ammonia 1.2

I added + bacteria to the tank as well.
Will do another water change in 3 days.
Fish look like their doing fine, darting around.
 
lilsoccakid
  • #2
that's still dangerously high keep doing changes
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Supposed to do a 25% change in 3 days. Any other recommendations?
 
sgould
  • #4
Yes. Don't wait 3 days. Your ammonia and nitrite are both at dangerous levels right now, never mind 3 days from now.

You could also look into a detoxifier such as Prime or Amquel+ to make things more pleasant for the fish. They do not remove ammonia/nitrite, but they do chemically "bind" them so they are not harmful to the fish.
 
lilsoccakid
  • #5
if you can't follow sgould's advise, then I would suggest at least daily 30% water changes
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
Thanks!
Did a test this morning and it read .8, did a about a 30% water change and took another reading an hour later, now stands at .6.

Tday its less then .6 , can barely see any color in the test liquid, so looks like its adjusting itself
 
sgould
  • #7
Sounds like you are nearing the end of the 1st stage of the cycle. How are your nitrite readings looking?
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
Sep29--- 30

Nitrate 20 --- 15
Nitrite 3 --- 2
Hardness 300 --- 250
Alkaline 120 --- 120
PH 8 --- 7.6

Oct 5

Nitrate---10
Nitrite----0
Hardness-250
Alkaline--120
PH---------7.6

Looking good
 
bhcaaron
  • #9
Congratulations! I'm just sorry that you didn't find FishLore before you started cycling the tank. Poor fishies!
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
Yup, Well they look healthy, boping around allot. So now trying to figure out what plants to put in their, Java fern for starters, but from my surfing including plant geek, I can't find any ware were they talk about the function of the plant, what's the best to contribute to the eco system etc
 
bhcaaron
  • #11
You need to talk to MrWaxHead on that one. He's the plant Guru on here.
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
Ok, would be nice if their was a sticky thread on the basics what what does waht so one can set it up for newbies.
 
MrWaxhead
  • #14
Yup, Well they look healthy, boping around allot. So now trying to figure out what plants to put in their, Java fern for starters, but from my surfing including plant geek, I can't find any ware were they talk about the function of the plant, what's the best to contribute to the eco system etc

Hey hey, your question about what's the best to contribute to the eco system, is basically any healthy growing plant, if they are doing that the are contributing, if they are dying they are putting ammonia into your tank. For your java fern, the only key thing to them is not to physically plant them, they will die. They like to be tied down to wood with cotton thread etc, and they will attach themselves by the time the thread rots away.

What would be helpful to know is your tank basically, how many gallons is it, what size length and width and how much and what kind of lighting do you have, that will determine tremendously on what plants you can have. Because if you start piling in light loving plants and don't have enough light, they will start to die and make ammonia which will start a algae onslaught.

Your choice of java fern is very safe it will grow in almost anything, but if you leave that info someone here can at least start to steer you in the right diffection as to plant choices that will work for your tank, or help you make choices for your tank.

Isabella has made up a great little sticky on low light plants with lots of good choices etc.


What I usually do, is research until I find a plant that I know I want that will work in my tank then find it. Or I will go to my LFS and see what plants they have, and if one I know nothing about catches my eye, I go home and research it before making that choice (I do the same with fish btw)

But as I said earlier, as long as you choose plants that work in your tank, they will grow and be a positive load on your tanks eco system. And without knowing more about you tanks setup, its really hard to help with types of plants that may work for you.

One of the best things to do is find a local aquatic club or local site that its members trade or sell there babies and plants etc. It saves you tons of money and usually the plants are of better quality as they are coming from healthy show tanks, not store tanks that are basically temp homes for revolving stock.
I see you are in alberta you could try the following and check the buy and sell sections. And once you have healthy stock its very easy to start trading your growth for other species of plants.
Forum
AlbertaAquatica

Clubs
Edmonton

I very recently joined one in BC that has amazing deals all the time and for pennies on the dollar (a good 75 yo 95% cheaper then petstores) you can get huge healty off cuttings from other members, you just have to be fast as people snag them up quick. Great way to meet others with similar interest too. You also see great deals on tanks and hardware too when people with the fish bug upgrade to bigger and better tanks, and sell their old stuff to help finance it.


Hope some of those help you out, and if you can add some tank specs I will try to help you out as well.
 
MrWaxhead
  • #15
You need to talk to MrWaxHead on that one. He's the plant Guru on here.

hehe and thanks a guru I am not, I just read tons from people who are, and spend lots of time trying new plants and methods to keep them healthy.
 
bhcaaron
  • #16
Wow! I didn't even know places like that existed. MrWaxHead, is there a site with such listings? I'd love to find stuff like that here. Unfortunately, I don't think there'll be any here, but, maybe Vegas or Phoenix or if I find enough people I might start one myself.

hehe and thanks a guru I am not, I just read tons from people who are, and spend lots of time trying new plants and methods to keep them healthy.

Haven't you heard that birds of a feather flock together? In Spanish that saying is:

Tell me who you walk with and I'll tell you who you are.

The whole "walk with" refers to who you spend time with or befriend.
 
MrWaxhead
  • #17
Not sure of any clubs etc there, or a master list of them as you mentioned.

The only thing I found was Arizona Aquatic Gardens,

they seem like they have a pretty good setup, and talking to them they may be able to point you to clubs or local boards. Google and look deeper and always ask about clubs or sites while at good fish stores, you will find them.

I also see you have a cichlid lover site in Arizona as well.


Most of the ones I see in arizona are pond and koi clubs though.
 
bhcaaron
  • #18
Yeah, figures I'd pick the one hobby that doesn't make sense in a desert lol.

Thank you so much I'll look into them. As for the LFS, the lady is so nice, but, WAY talkative. I really try not to ask her unless I REALLY need to. lol, I know, i'm being mean but, I .... Did you ever see The Devil Wears Prada? Think of the boss w/o the money and w/o the fashion and you've got me! There, that's an easier way to explain lol

Wow! Both of those are in Tucson. The opposite corner of the state from me, about 10hours away. But, hopefully they'll have other contacts, I'll be calling them this week, thanks again.
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
Thanks!
Have a 20gal tank (is my signature showing up ?) Theirs about 18" I want to plant that runs along the back and left side of my tank, that way theirs a good runway the rest of the tank around the driftwood, Got a 12" air stone running of my ellite 99, was using a optimum but was so frilling noise at times I switched. Want to get a couple catfish, if their are some appealing ones then later some maybe cherry shrimp. My Platy looks pregnant so hoping for a bunch more of them. Want to have a nice forest on the one end of the tank. So that's my near future plans.
O and my canopy is 15 w aqua glo

This is the current set up. To the left is were I want to build up.
 
bhcaaron
  • #20
I Think I see kitchen counter and telephone behind the tank ;D
 
MrWaxhead
  • #21
Personally if it was me, I would take that hornwort you have floating, and take a lead plant band and not plant but sink the base of the hornwort in the back left and side.

Then I would tie a few good healthy pieces of java fern and anubis to the what looks like rocks in the back rightish of the tank, and let the java fern basically spider leg off that base (maybe spin the base a bit so it was more on the right of tank ie not behind the rooty looking ones as much so the java could be seen in a full lush clump).

And that wood has so much character (nots and twists etc), I would basically age it (by that I mean very thinly tie a moss to it in random locations so it had a old growth forest kinda look.

And in the front left infront of the hornwort, I would put a low light loving crypts to add a little colour to your tank, something that is brownish to purple in colour, like Cryptocoryne beckettiI or Cryptocoryne petchii. All would be easy to take care of and grow fine in lower lighting. And the hornwort would bust algae while the slower stuff took hold. Also with crypts they can tend to melt on planting, if you leave them alone they will come back ie don't move them or rip them out.
 
Neil
  • Thread Starter
  • #22
Thanks!
Yup I like the idea of the horntail in the back left, it is blocking some of the light.
Went to the store and got 2 Anubis and 3 java ferns and a couple more fish , catfish I move some stones around and the right back were the slates are would be nice to have some plants, so next batch will go their.
Will check into Cryptocoryne beckettii, Cryptocoryne petchii, no idea what they are. Tieing a moss is something I need to find/figure out.

In regards to the moss on the wood, I noticed that their is gree fuzz growing on top, propably becasue it was above water for a time and now underwater. Might be a bit hard to see, bu this is the best pic yet.

Changed the hornwart position, weighed it down with a stone in the back corner, so hope it fills the corner. Its long enough that it curls up to the top left of the tank.

Nice side pan of tank.
 

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