Treating Tank Water For Ammonia These Days

Discussion in 'Aquarium Water' started by wilfie, Feb 13, 2006.

  1. wilfie

    wilfieNew MemberMember

    ;D ;D This may sound real stupid but
    I have to ask

    Forty years ago I kept lots of fish

    Bred fancy tail guppies(only ones around then were black and yellow "LACETAILS" )

    I also kept MARINE fish

    NOW tell me

    Why is all this AMMONIA---NITRITE---NITRATE nonsense
    all I did WAAAAAY back then was top off the tanks when necessary due to evaporation


    What has happened in the meantime ??????????
  2. Isabella

    IsabellaFishlore VIPMember

    Hi Wilfie. I have read an interesting explanation for what you are talking about.

    The author of the book I have read calls it "Dark Ages" (lol). Well, here is what he says. In his own words: "Back in the old days the common wisdom was that the older the water in your tank, the better. The only reason fish even survived is that by having old water and undisturbed tanks, we also tended to have functioning biofilters on the plants and in the gravel without knowing it. If we set up a new tank and moved fish into it, they often died. You see - 'new tank kills'! This way fish have adopted slowly to increasing quantities of pollutants, particularly nitrates, that accumulated in the never-changed tanks, so when we greatly freshened their water it was an enormous shock, even though the water was vastly superior. At the same time, the new tank had no biofilter established, so ammonia began to accumulate the instant the fish were added. I am telling you this to demonstrate that I once believed that water changes were unnecessary, even bad. What changed my mind? Water changes! I found out that when I paid attention to biofiltration and performed lots of water changes to remove nitrates and other pollutants, my fish thrived as they never had before. I was spawning fish I'd never been able to keep before. But what really convinced me was the fish themselves and their reaction to water changes - they love them!" (David E. Boruchowitz, in "The Simple Guide to Freshwater Aquariums")

    I hope that helps :)
  3. not4you

    not4youValued MemberMember

    How did people add new fish to their tanks in the <i>Dark Ages</i>? When new fish were added to a tank that has never had the water changed (resulting in nitrates off the chart) wouldn't that have killed most of the new fish? Did people just expect to lose a certain percent of new fish added to a tank? I'm just wondering being that recently I too was living in the Dark Ages. I added new fish to my tank once and within two weeks I lost all but one (which is still kickin' today ;)) fish. I wanted to add more fish to the tank once again but not lose most of them and that's how I found this site and saw the light ;D
  4. OP

    wilfieNew MemberMember

    ;D ;D Isabella

    Thanks for your reply

    It truly makes sense---what the article said

    But I'm still baffled as I bred ZEBRAS and BETTAS as well as many livebearers

    without problems back then and all went well

    It's a strange fact of fish life l guess