Surely Not Cycled Already?! - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
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I have to admit I prob feed too much veg, every couple of days because there are so many mooching around the tank looking hungry. And with some that are pretty small compared to others I've thought maybe wasn't feeding as much as I should. Stupid me. Should know better!

And annoyingly my epilepsy has kicked in the last couple of months so water changes not as great as usual. 25% once a week is the norm, but if I'm having a bad time with seizures can take me a couple of days to recover, should have prob doubled with the snails in there. Yup feeling stoopid!
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post #17 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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pH crashes are not likely with weekly water change unless you are taking measures to alter the pH or..water changes have become fewer and farther between.With weekly water change,water chemsirty should not be much different than source water you are using for the water changes with regard to pH.
This is the first time this has happened, all the other tanks are fine. I've had a stable ph for years. Why I was so shocked when it came up so yellow! When been so blue for years!

Have read about ph crashes in other's tanks, normally when cycling/new tanks etc. So has frightened me a bit. When tank going nearly 9yrs!

So I need to avoid that need-to-feed thing that I seem to have going at the moment!! And what would you suggest for w/cs at the moment as don't want to shock them?
Small daily or every other day? For a few days/a week?
Thanks
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post #18 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 03:16 PM
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Although I agree that a pinch of fish food takes a long time to decay into nitrogenous waste, I have "instant cycled" many times by squeezing the sponges from an established tank into a new tank, and added fish an hour or two later....with 100% success.
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When you think about it....when you add fish to a new tank, there isn't an instant explosion of ammonia - it's very gradual and very diluted. If there's already BB in the system from established filter "sponge juice", it begins feeding and replicating relative to the food source right away.
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I'll grant you that putting sponge smutz in a fresh, new tank may look/seem a little gross, but it really, really works....and better than any bottled BB product.
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Frankly, there's nothing better than seeding a new tank with BB from a healthy, established tank and it makes way more sense than establishing BB colonies from the sky or buying bottled stuff that sat in a warehouse and on a store shelf for who knows how long!
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post #19 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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@AbbeysDad , I followed the advice you gave on a previous thread of mine you replied to a few months ago!
Which is why the 6.5g is going well!

I have suddenly realised though that I've been using a different water conditioner for the last two weeks, ran out of Stress Coat, and that's pretty much the only one I've used since starting the tank. And my goldie tank.
I've used a bit less in the other tanks, just because this has more fish and I'd added plants and messed with filters, said was good for it on bottle.
It's from wilkos if anyone from U.K. reading.

So wondering if that's caused the issues/added to them. Grr

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post #20 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GobyWan View Post
This is the first time this has happened, all the other tanks are fine. I've had a stable ph for years. Why I was so shocked when it came up so yellow! When been so blue for years!

Have read about ph crashes in other's tanks, normally when cycling/new tanks etc. So has frightened me a bit. When tank going nearly 9yrs!

So I need to avoid that need-to-feed thing that I seem to have going at the moment!! And what would you suggest for w/cs at the moment as don't want to shock them?
Small daily or every other day? For a few days/a week?
Thanks
Small water changes every three days while changing out larger portion each time till you get to 50 %.
Then 50 % weekly.
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post #21 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-20-2018, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadmaster View Post
Small water changes every three days while changing out larger portion each time till you get to 50 %.
Then 50 % weekly.
Thanks a lot. Hopefully my stupidity won't cause any more problems!

And back to Stress Coat just in case!!
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post #22 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-21-2018, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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No casualties this morning thank god. Really expected half the fish to be ill today but looking ok.

Am still feeling pretty stupid though!
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post #23 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-21-2018, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by GobyWan View Post
No casualties this morning thank god. Really expected half the fish to be ill today but looking ok.

Am still feeling pretty stupid though! <a href="https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/images/smilie/icon_sad.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Sad" >:-)</a>
A few notes.
1) it's extremely unlikely that a pH change will kill your fish, so take a deep breath. Panicking causes more problems than stopping to carefully consider.
2) don't feel stupid. This is a complex hobby with a lot of unseen elements. That's why this forum is active, everyone needs help sometimes to puzzle things out.
3) as much as everyone wants to recommend huge water changes, it's almost always better to do smaller ones more frequently than to do 50% changes. This can actually kill your fish if your new water is hugely different from your old water. (i.e tap has 0 nitrate and tank has 160 nitrate) Smaller changes are fine, even stimulating for fish, but very large, very sudden ones aren't good, especially if it means a huge change in nitrate levels. There are a few instances where large WC's are warranted, but they shouldn't be considered a panacea, or cure for every and any problem.
4) if your pH has changed, it has changed for a reason. Any change in your weekly fish tank habbits could be the cause. Keep in mind that your tap may have a different pH when it's fresh, than when it's been sitting for 24 hours, so that could be a part of what you're reading. It could also be an error on your part with the test, or your test strips or chemicals could be quite old. Either way, figuring out WHY it's changed is just as important as trying to correct the problem. WC's might bring your pH back to it's usual level, but if you don't know WHY it dropped, it could very well drop again and your back to square one.
5) If you have a GH and KH test kit, try checking those. Water hardness can raise, and also stabilize your water parameters in regards to pH. If you are adding plants to a tank with almost no mineral content you'll have two problems: your plants will do poorly as they need calcium and magnesium to live. Those minerals are usually found in most tap water at various levels, and those are the minerals that make water "hard." Secondly, if you have very low mineral content (GH& KH) plants will consume parts of that over time, and as they do, your water will become so soft (i.e. lacking in minerals) that your pH will swing much higher or lower when it is affected by any type of basic (high pH) or acidic (low pH) chemical. This could possibly play a role in your pH change recently.

AS FOR YOUR NEW TANK. (Sorry this is getting quite long)
Fish food will work, but it will be an unsightly mess and far slower to work, than to do what has been recommended: dose ammonia or buy a bacteria boosting product.
If you buy some, just add a tiny bit every day and measure your nitrogen cycle parameters like you've been doing.
If you'd rather skip the purchase element, just remove all that leftover food, and add a few snails. They can stand a bit of ammonia, just feed them sparingly while you keep a close eye on your parameters. They will provide you with a slow release of ammonia, to establish your BB (beneficial bacteria). If the ammonia levels get too high you can stop feeding for a day or two and/or do a small water change.

Also, if you have too many mystery snails, see if your pet shop will take them off your hands in exchange for store credit. Then you can buy ammonia/bb bacteria/GH or KH tests.

Lastly, if you are still reading, congrats, and sorry about the shakes. My friend has them too and it can make life complicated when they flare up.

Christian, husband, brother, friend, hobbyist.
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post #24 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-21-2018, 01:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much @Blacktetra , definitely been panicking about it since yest! The ph could have been like this since my last water test a week ago I guess, just not really seen the fish showing any probs so hadn't realised!
Was just worrying could have been a big shock to their systems, being in the same (stable) water for years.

I've always thought smaller w/cs were the best from everything I've read over the years! Especially for issues like this. My tap water ph is around 7.2-7.4 (same as my tanks always been), my goldie and baby Rainbow tank, and this new one, still showing this when tested yest so think def a prob with this tank. Grr

I threw away my GH and KH tests a few weeks ago (typical!) as realised they'd been open for ages and was supposed to replace when I ordered the tank but completely forgot so will get ordering new ones ASAP. I'm in a hard water area.
I added the few new plants (easy ones, another amazon sword (pretty large), echinodorus ozelot leopard green) as thought might be good with all the nastiness from the snails.

I called the LFS around me a couple of months ago when I realised how fast the snails were growing, had read many people lost a lot of them when breeding but my 10 were going strong and weren't going anywhere! They only take from suppliers apparently, so with me not being able to drive at the moment I came to decision I'd just have to get a new tank!
Should have prob culled or given my goldfish a nice meal but ended up in this position instead!

Think I might move a few over to the new tank, will help with all the waste in the 29g and with the bit of it the new tank needs.
I was sent a free bottle of API Quick Start with the tank and stuff for it. I've never used it, or anything like it really. Says it detoxifies ammonia and nitrite. So could maybe give it a go.

Most annoying thing (after the banging head and feeling like I've ran a marathon!) is the reverse sleeping patterns, will sleep pretty much all day and when wake up properly it's 1am and really don't want to go disturbing fish for w/cs!

Pretty long there too! Thanks if you got through it!!
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post #25 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-22-2018, 12:40 AM
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post #26 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2018, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Quick update on tanks!

In 29 gallon I've done roughly 25% w/cs daily.
One day chopped back my huge amazon sword that was taking over the tank and a few questionable leaves on others in tank (mainly crypts).

Two days later cleared out some gunk! Bottom of filter, pump etc, random areas that get a bit forgotten about when not feeling too great.

The ph has gone up, first two days had risen that evening obv after w/c but back to 6 in the morning. Monday and today are showing 6.4 ish so hoping back on track.

My 20g had two Mystery snails from this tank moved over Friday. One of the adults and a medium sized baby.
All results the same as before 7.2ish ph and 5 nitrate, 0 ammonia and nitrite. Same for three days so I moved two more over last night. One adult and m sized bab. Same results today.

Hoping that ridding some of the forgotten waste and moving a few of the Mysteries nasty stuff will get 29gallon back to normality and this new one will carry on going well!
New GH and KH tests came earlier so will test when back home later.

Fingers crossed it carries on

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post #27 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2018, 11:13 AM Thread Starter
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I've just tested my GH and KH levels in the 29g and my tap water with API test kit.

TAP WATER-
GH - 13 drops, over 214.8, only goes up to twelve drops on conversion chart!!

KH- 6 drops, 107.4.

TANK WATER-
GH- 10 drops, 179.

KH- 3 drops, 53.7.

Can anyone help out with my limited knowledge!? Is this normal or could this difference be the reason I've had a ph crash? Or is the difference because of the crash? A bit useless with GH and KH!

Ph still showing 6.4 today.

Thanks for any help
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post #28 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2018, 12:36 PM
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DOC (dissolved organic carbon) in 6 to 9 year old substrate + mulm,detritus, could help drive down pH over month's/year's but as mentioned,, larger weekly water changes should prevent much of a change.
Could be that now that the plant matter and detritus has been cleaned up a bit, and possibly decaying matter removed from filter(s) the tank will be much more stable.
I would put test kit's away and see how fishes respond to the larger water changes each week with less food's and subsequent waste cut back.

I have used soils with peat mixed in long running tanks of a couple year's and tanks still remained fairly close to pH I have from the tap with weekly 50% water changes.

If fishes have done fine for years, I would not get too worked up chasing GH.Kh number's and might add say 1/4 tsp Epsom salt once a week to the tank to achieve slightly more hardness if and only if pH drops even lower than stable 6.2 to 6.4 with the weekly 50% water changes.
My two cents.
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post #29 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2018, 01:53 PM
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Roadmaster has some good advice. Don't let the numbers scare you too much when the fish seem happy and healthy.

I suggested the GH and KH tests mostly to ensure that neither were close to 0, as that can cause a huge swing in pH.

Still a bit of a mystery how/why this tank has a lower pH, but it's not likely to bother your fish if it's relatively stable.
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post #30 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2018, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much to you both for all the help and great advice!

Will definitely be increasing amount during water changes and have already cut back the amount of fruit and veg I'm feeding (helps with 4 of the snails moved too).
The tank will obviously have a few less snail inhabitants soon when I make sure new one will be ok for them.

Everyone seems happy in the tank so will hide the kits away for a week and stop testing like a nutter!
Forget the tank's so old sometimes so will give it the attention it needs to avoid any more problems!

Thanks again
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