nitrates, nitrites, ammonia and pH

inari

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what is the ideal range for Nitrates, nitrites, ammonia, and pH for hydras and crypts I'm concerned that they are not getting enough of these compounds with only a Betta fish in a 10 gallon I'm wondering if i should be using a fertilizer as well ??? if it helps my readings were as follows yesterday:

pH 8.4
Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrates: 0 ppm
Ntrites: 0 ppm

this is a new tank so idk if there will be any more fluxuations than i've already had but any help is appreciated thanx

brent
 

chickadee

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The ideal readings are: Ammonia 0 - this is the #1 cause of death in the aquarium (ammonia poisoning) so you want an absolute 0
Nitrite 0 - this is the next thing to ammonia in the harm of fish so you want a 0 there as well
Nitrate under 10 - congratulations on the 0!!!!

Your plants do not need these at all, in fact they are harmful to life of the aquatic kind. (plant and fish) So be proud that you have a 0 level on all three that is quite an accomplishment! As far as the pH goes, there is no real Ideal for pH. Generally the best one is the one that comes out of your tap water. Your fish and plants will adapt to what ever that reading is as long as it is not totally off the chart like a 10 or something. or below 6 (although there are a few fish who do like it in the 5.5 range) Your little Inari is going to do just fine with an 8.4 and your plants will too. Where people get into trouble with pH is when they try to change it with some of the commercial products that say they will raise or lower the pH to 7.0. It is impossible to get it the same all the time and the fluctuation and constant changes, plus the change of that much can and will kill your fish and plants very slowly and an unpleasant death. You are much better to allow them to be content in the nice water you are giving them. I think your parameter are great. I wish mine were that good. (I have high NITRATES)

Rose
 
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inari

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well that is good to know i thought that the plants would reduce and needed the nitrates and such.....that is y i was concerned thanx again

brent
 

Gunnie

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Plants consume ammonia and nitrites, but most folks like the live plants in their tanks because they reduce the nitrates. Do not use your plants as an excuse for not doing regular water changes though because the fresh water is necessary to add some trace elements back into your tank that are depleted, and to also remove toxins and compounds that aren't measured in your test kits, but build up in time without water changes. Unless your plants really look sick, I wouldn't worry too much about fertilizer. Adding fertilizer can also encourage algae growth if not dosed properly because of the excessive nutrients in the tank. It's all a balancing act, but if you take it slow, you will be able to figure out what your tank needs to keep it beautiful!
 
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inari

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one question does this look too sick to u???? one is very very very health and another is well not so health the second one doesn't seem to be taking a root system to speak of like my crypts or some of my other hyrdas any suggstions??
 

Isabella

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As Gunnie said, plants will consume ammonia and nitrite, and to a lesser extent nitrate. What plants also do is they remove heavy metals from the water as well as keep the pH stable (that is, if the plants are healthy). But just because your ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate all = 0 does not mean that it's bad for plants! You do not want to have these compounds present as they're deadly to your fish (except for the lower concentrations of nitrate). Besides, maybe you get some nitrite or ammonia but the plants remove it before you know it? It could be. And one last thing about trace elements - they're found in the water that you use for water changes. BUT there are dechlorinators that remove even the trace elements, so be careful about which dechlorinators to use. The dechlorinators that remove trace elements are good for non-planted tanks, but not for planted tanks, especially if the plants are not fertilized.
 
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