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Nitrates climbing

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tampaken

Member
Joined
May 5, 2004
Messages
8
Location
Tampa, Florida
After messing up my first attempt by killing all of my fish, I started over. Tank is 44 gallons. I have live sand, live rock, crabs and snails in the tank. I’ve been doing a 10% water change & changing the carbon the last two week to get the medication out of the tank from the ich treatment. It looks like the tank has cycled. Nitrites 0 and Ammonia at 0. My question is the nitrates are climbing. Over the last two weeks they have been at 10. I did a water change three days ago. Today the nitrates are at 20. Do I need to do more then 10% on the water changes to get the nitrates down? I also noticed the protein skimmer has not produce any foam in over a week. Is this because there’s no fish to create the protein?

Thanks, Ken
 

Elmo18

Clownfish
Joined
Aug 5, 2003
Messages
2,662
Location
Seattle
Exactly which medication did you use to treat your tank/fish of ICH?

I would start from there... ;)

- Elmo
 

tampaken

Member
Joined
May 5, 2004
Messages
8
Location
Tampa, Florida
Tank has been up for about 2 ½ months. I overloaded the tank with fish before the tank cycled. I was ignorant about the cycling process. The nitrites in the tank went through the roof and everyone got ich and died about 3 weeks ago. After the fish died, I took all the “fake” decorations out of the tank. I put 5 pounds of live sand over the crushed coral, and added 20 pounds live rock and 40 pounds of “non- live” rock to the tank. After the fish died, I’ve been doing a weekly 10% water change (about 5 gallons) and running carbon to get rid of the ich meds. I don’t understand why the nitrates are rising while doing the water changes and no fish?

Thanks for any help and suggestions. I’m leaving this morning for a long weekend. I’ll check back on Sunday evening, Thanks again. Ken
 

Ed Hahn

Life is A Highway...
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
3,955
Location
Kennewick, Wa
Ken,
You did a lot of changes pretty fast. I am guessing your skimmer is not adjusted properly. If you added live rock and lace rock you should be producing skimate. How long are you running your carbon before it is exchanged? Have you Tested the water you are adding to make your saltwater mix? Are you using RO or DI water to make your saltwater?
 

Curtswearing

Mantisfreak
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
2,203
Location
St. Louis, MO
The live sand and live rock is causing it's own cycle. However, you have enough bacteria in there to convert the ammonia to nitrites and nitrites into nitrates. Removing nitrates can be accomplished efficiently with a good sized water change (i.e. bigger than 10%).
 

Ed Hahn

Life is A Highway...
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
3,955
Location
Kennewick, Wa
Some other things to consider could be water movement in the tank. You want water movement for oxygen. You have 20 pounds of live rock. I suggest the next time you add lace rock at a slower rate. Again, I would recommend a new skimmer or a skimmer that can handle your bioload. Test your water for nitrates, use a high quality salt that does not contain nitrates, I recommend Instant Ocean or Oceanic. Your temperature, salinity, water movement, and If you add fish do it slowly let your tank adjust to new fish. Your tank just ran a marathon it is still recovering. Things in moderation. When your system is stable, do one filter change one day. Do not do water change on same day. You want to create the least stressful environment for your fish. Sometimes fish will stress upon adding them to your system. Next time give them 3 days to adjust with out adding chemicals. Tangs are notorious for breaking out in iche. They usually will heal themself within 3 days without meds. Think how you feel when you are traveling. You have to adjust to Jet lag.
Fish have to adjust also. They are trying to adapt to your time schedule of lights, etc. Please go in moderation. This is a great hobby. You have learned a very common mistake. Do not feel you like you failed. You have gotten better. You came to the right place. Good luck, listen to oppinions and trust your heart.
Ed
 

mojoreef

Reef Keeper
Joined
Jul 5, 2003
Messages
7,530
Location
Sumner
If your tank has cycled and you are at the nitrates stage just wait it out. The nitrates are a biproduct of the bacteria ahead of them on the bacterial reducing cycle. Each element ammonia/nitrite and nitrate has a particlar bacteria that will reduce each of the above, what you are doing when you cycle is building up the each particular bacterias population. So right now you if you have alot of nitrates, the bacteria that reduce it are in the building stage. Once they have build up a good enough population the nitrates will go down.

good luck.


Mike
 
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