High ammonia, nitrite and nitrates

•crystal•
  • #161
Whoops, changed the media every two weeks! I've always changed the water every week.
 
Charley_on_a_pier
  • #162
And unfortunately that stores aquatic training process is very minimal. The best way to find someone to help you at a chain LFS is ask them about their tanks. If they don't have one go back another time when the "fish person" is there.

If you change the carbon that frequently it doesn't give the bacteria enough time to grow and colonize in your tank which could be a cause of your cycle problems
 
el337
  • #163
Testing tap water now.

I've had it for about 4 months. Yes it was cycled before.

I have one betta (cycled with tank), 2 platies, two corydora, and one Africa Dwarf Frog

HI

Your levels right now are extremely toxic to your fish so I would do a few back to back water changes of at least 50% to bring the ammonia and nitrite down close to 0. A 30% water change isn't going to be effective.

Also, a 20 gallon long minimum is recommended if you planned to keep a betta with other fish. The corys need at least 6+ of their own species and would do best in a 20 gallon min. If you're unable to upgrade, I would just keep the betta or the 2 platies, rehome the rest and cycle the tank before getting more fish.

If you can, pick up a bottle of Seachem Prime and a bacteria supplement like Seachem Stability or Tetra SafeStart Plus to help speed up the cycling process to around 2 weeks. Normally, it takes anywhere from 4 to 10 weeks without a bacteria starter.
 
•crystal•
  • #164
Charley_on_a_pier
I have been going to an actual LFS for the past few months now. How often would you suggest changing the media?

Thank you for this info! I will hopefully be getting a larger tank or donating the fish to a friend.
I will also be doing a few 50% water changes back to back.
 
el337
  • #165
I don't recommend changing the media unless it's falling apart. It's where your bacteria lives. You only need to rinse it in old tank water during a water change at least weekly. If you need to change it because the water isn't flowing through it, you can cut the floss surrounding the cartridge and stuff that next to the new cartridge for 2-3 weeks before removing the old floss.
 
Charley_on_a_pier
  • #166
You're supposed to change carbon media just once a month because by that time the carbon has lost its effectiveness. And honestly I personally wouldn't say you NEED a larger tank. Cories will only get about 3" and following the inch to gallon rule they should be totally okay. Plus the bettas in a community needing a 20 gallon tank is ridiculous. I have a 5 gallon for my betta 2 guppies and 2 danios. I change my water weekly and my fish are healthy and happy.
 
el337
  • #167
You're supposed to change carbon media just once a month because by that time the carbon has lost its effectiveness. And honestly I personally wouldn't say you NEED a larger tank. Cories will only get about 3" and following the inch to gallon rule they should be totally okay. Plus the bettas in a community needing a 20 gallon tank is ridiculous. I have a 5 gallon for my betta 2 guppies and 2 danios. I change my water weekly and my fish are healthy and happy.

The inch per gallon rule is outdated and should not be used when stocking a tank. Even though corys stay small, they are an an extremely active fish and do best in a larger shoal of at least 6+ of their own species.

Bettas in a community tank needing at least a 20 gallon is not ridiculous. You need a large enough tank for all the fish to have enough hiding spaces and to be able to get away from each other if they need to. A 10 gallon just doesn't provide that.

You have some stocking issues as well if you want to discuss. They may appear healthy but they won't be long term.
 
•crystal•
  • #168
I've been told that as long as a tank is impeccably taken care of then all my fish are just fine where they are. The LFS aquarium "master" told me that. Also to just submerge the new media in old tank water for 5 minutes before replacing it every 4 weeks. However I've been told so many other things as well. It's a bit confusing.
 
el337
  • #169
Proper maintenance doesn't compensate for providing the fish the room they need. Just because you are kept in a closet that's impeccably clean doesn't mean you'd be happy living there for the rest of your life.

No, just submerging the media that way and replacing it will not keep the cycle going. The floss surrounding your cartridge houses your beneficial bacteria as I previously mentioned. You throw that out, you throw away your cycle. I'd research the nitrogen cycle so you have a better understanding of it. I would also stop listening to the advice of that store "master". It's horrible advice.
 
Charley_on_a_pier
  • #170
You're LFS "master" sounds spot on! Good job! I hope your levels get back to normal!
 
•crystal•
  • #171
Obviously I am aware of that. I do understand they are living creatures and deserve to have the best life possible. I also do have an very good understanding of the nitrogen cycle.
 
Aquaphobia
  • #172
I agree with el337, the "master" doesn't know what he's talking about. Nitrifying bacteria do not live free-floating in the water but adhered to surfaces. Just dipping the new media in the tank isn't going to prepare it to deal with the fish wastes. You need to tuck it in with old media for at least a couple of weeks before it's seeded with enough bacteria to kick-start the cycle and even then you may have to do extra water changes to get your fish over a cycle bump as the bacteria grow to sufficient population for the bioload!
 
Charley_on_a_pier
  • #173
If you want the carbon to still be effective and make your tank nice. Then you change it once a month. Keep it in there longer and it's not doing its job. Most filters these days do come with some sort of place for colonizing those good bacteria that isn't just the carbon media.
 

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