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Jackymg22

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I am new to the fish world and I am having trouble with getting my water levels correct. I got a 20 gallon tank and wait almost two months for the tank to cycle. The water levels were perfect. I started with two mollies and added slowly two mollies at a time over the next couple of weeks. I currently have 7 mollies. We lost one on arrival. I thought this amount of mollies would be ok but now I can’t get my water right. Ammonia levels are through ridiculously high. On top of that one of the fish I got was pregnant. I only have 6 Fry left out of ten in a net breeder inside the tank. I am currently looking for a bigger tank and stand because I know that my tank is over crowed now. My question is how do I get my levels right in my tank they are in while I’m looking for a new tank and setting that tank up? Also once I have that tank what can I do about getting my fishes in that tank. Do I have to wait again for that tank to cycle. My mollies won’t make it that long if they have to stay in the tank they are in now. Help please.
 

JettsPapa

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You said you waited two months for your tank to cycle, but didn't elaborate on the cycling procedure. Did you add an ammonia source and monitor the levels of ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates? If not, and the tank just sat there running then it wasn't cycled, which would explain the current high ammonia levels.

It sounds like you will now be doing a fish-in cycle. That's okay, but it requires frequent monitoring of your water parameters and doing water changes when needed to keep the combined ammonia and nitrites below 1.0 ppm, and ideally below 0.5 ppm.

You said "Ammonia levels are through ridiculously high." What is the current level?
 
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Jackymg22

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Sorry I didn’t put all the info in. Yes I put on
JettsPapa said:
You said you waited two months for your tank to cycle, but didn't elaborate on the cycling procedure. Did you add an ammonia source and monitor the levels of ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates? If not, and the tank just sat there running then it wasn't cycled, which would explain the current high ammonia levels.

It sounds like you will now be doing a fish-in cycle. That's okay, but it requires frequent monitoring of your water parameters and doing water changes when needed to keep the combined ammonia and nitrites below 1.0 ppm, and ideally below 0.5 ppm.

You said "Ammonia levels are through ridiculously high." What is the current level?
 

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Yes I used this and monitor all levels myself and also took water to my local fish store. The ammonia levels now according to the kit and I took a water sample to my local fish store was Ammonia 8 ppm and 0 Nitrate and 0 nitrite. The guy said it’s so high he didn’t know how my fish were still alive. I have been doing water changes every other day. So I don’t shock the fish or fry. I also add ammonia blocker. I know it doesn’t fix the problem. Just trying to save the fish. When I get my new tank am I going to have to do the whole process all over again or is there a way I can getting it started quickly. I need to get my mollies to the bigger tank. I figure the tank is over crowded and that’s why the ammonia levels are so high. I also have only fed the fry twice a day. The adults every other day
 
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Jackymg22 said:
Yes I used this and monitor all levels myself and also took water to my local fish store. The ammonia levels now according to the kit and I took a water sample to my local fish store was Ammonia 8 ppm and 0 Nitrate and 0 nitrite. The guy said it’s so high he didn’t know how my fish were still alive. I have been doing water changes every other day. So I don’t shock the fish or fry. I also add ammonia blocker. I know it doesn’t fix the problem. Just trying to save the fish. When I get my new tank am I going to have to do the whole process all over again or is there a way I can getting it started quickly. I need to get my mollies to the bigger tank. I figure the tank is over crowded and that’s why the ammonia levels are so high. I also have only fed the fry twice a day. The adults every other day
 

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Jackymg22 said:
Yes I used this and monitor all levels myself and also took water to my local fish store. The ammonia levels now according to the kit and I took a water sample to my local fish store was Ammonia 8 ppm and 0 Nitrate and 0 nitrite. The guy said it’s so high he didn’t know how my fish were still alive. I have been doing water changes every other day. So I don’t shock the fish or fry. I also add ammonia blocker. I know it doesn’t fix the problem. Just trying to save the fish. When I get my new tank am I going to have to do the whole process all over again or is there a way I can getting it started quickly. I need to get my mollies to the bigger tank. I figure the tank is over crowded and that’s why the ammonia levels are so high. I also have only fed the fry twice a day. The adults every other day
I don't think 7 mollies is all that overstocked, but when you get a larger tank move the filter and water over to the new tank. That should move the beneficial bacteria over to the new tank also so you don't need to go through this again.

You said you're doing daily water changes. What percentage (or volume) of the water are you changing?
 
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JettsPapa said:
I don't think 7 mollies is all that overstocked, but when you get a larger tank move the filter and water over to the new tank. That should move the beneficial bacteria over to the new tank also so you don't need to go through this again.

You said you're doing daily water changes. What percentage (or volume) of the water are you changing?
JettsPapa said:
I don't think 7 mollies is all that overstocked, but when you get a larger tank move the filter and water over to the new tank. That should move the beneficial bacteria over to the new tank also so you don't need to go through this again.

You said you're doing daily water changes. What percentage (or volume) of the water are you changing?
I’m doing every other day water changes of 15 to 20 percent. Not sure the percentage. I fill one Home Depot orange bucket. I afraid to do every day or do more because of the fry. How should I wait to switch them over to the bigger tank? Also is there tank and filter system you can recommend. This is my tank now
 

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Jackymg22 said:
I’m doing every other day water changes of 15 to 20 percent. Not sure the percentage. I fill one Home Depot orange bucket. I afraid to do every day or do more because of the fry. How should I wait to switch them over to the bigger tank? Also is there tank and filter system you can recommend. This is my tank now. Anytime I do research it’s so confusing because different websites say different things on taking care of the water. Forget asking petco or pet smart those people are useless and even my local store wasn’t to knowledgeable. They also suggested to add salt to the tank but some websites said don’t
 

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If your ammonia is 8 ppm, then you need to get it down to at least 1 ppm, but it should aim for as low as you can get it. That means large water changes. You also say you're using an ammonia blocker. Which one? Something like AmmoLock will work, but it's not ideal. It binds the ammonia into a harmless form for your fish, but it also prevents your bacteria from being able to feed. Seachem Prime is a better choice. I will neutralize chlorine and chloramines in your water, but it will also detoxify the ammonia, making it safer for the fish, but still available for the bacteria to feed on it. In an emergency, and I say this is an emergency, you can dose Prime up to 5 times the normal dose.

When you do a WC, you remove the same percentage of ammonia (or anything else) as you do water, so if you do a 50% (2 full buckets) WC, you will lower the ammonia from 8 ppm to 4 ppm, 50%. That will leave you with 4 ppm, but your fish are making more ammonia, so the level will continue to increase, until your BB can lower it naturally. Saying that you now only have 4 ppm, another 50% WC will bring that down to 2 ppm. Still too high, so you need to do one more 50% WC to get it down to 1 ppm. That's still too high, so you would need to do a fourth WC to get it down below 1 ppm.

I would recommend you start with a 75% (3 buckets) WC, and keep the fry in the breeder net. That will bring your ammonia from 8 ppm down to 2 ppm, then another 75% WC will bring that down to .5 ppm, and that should be much safer for the fish.

With any WC, make sure you temperature match the new water with the temp of your tank water, and treat it with a dechlorinator before adding it into your tank.
 
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Mongo75 said:
If your ammonia is 8 ppm, then you need to get it down to at least 1 ppm, but it should aim for as low as you can get it. That means large water changes. You also say you're using an ammonia blocker. Which one? Something like AmmoLock will work, but it's not ideal. It binds the ammonia into a harmless form for your fish, but it also prevents your bacteria from being able to feed. Seachem Prime is a better choice. I will neutralize chlorine and chloramines in your water, but it will also detoxify the ammonia, making it safer for the fish, but still available for the bacteria to feed on it. In an emergency, and I say this is an emergency, you can dose Prime up to 5 times the normal dose.

When you do a WC, you remove the same percentage of ammonia (or anything else) as you do water, so if you do a 50% (2 full buckets) WC, you will lower the ammonia from 8 ppm to 4 ppm, 50%. That will leave you with 4 ppm, but your fish are making more ammonia, so the level will continue to increase, until your BB can lower it naturally. Saying that you now only have 4 ppm, another 50% WC will bring that down to 2 ppm. Still too high, so you need to do one more 50% WC to get it down to 1 ppm. That's still too high, so you would need to do a fourth WC to get it down below 1 ppm.

I would recommend you start with a 75% (3 buckets) WC, and keep the fry in the breeder net. That will bring your ammonia from 8 ppm down to 2 ppm, then another 75% WC will bring that down to .5 ppm, and that should be much safer for the fish.

With any WC, make sure you temperature match the new water with the temp of your tank water, and treat it with a dechlorinator before adding it into your tank.
Thanks
 

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I can't say for sure, I've never raised fry., but I think they should be ok if you keep then in the breeder net, or transfer they to a smaller container with old tank water. Just be sure that you dechlorinate the new water, and it's the same temp as your tank water, when you add it back into the tank.
 

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