Need help...ammonia spike - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 03:07 AM Thread Starter
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Need help...ammonia spike

Can a big piece of driftwood cause ammonia spikes?
the picture is of the tank in question.

It is a new setup. Plants are ludwigia repens, anacrhis, cambomba, moss, egeria najas, hygro polysperma. The wood has been soeaked and there is no noticeable effect. The ph is at 7, nitrates between 5-10ppm, nitrites 0 and ammonia is high according to test kit and lsf. Substrate is Soilmaster Select and ADA aquasoil. It is an invert tank.

I am thinking that maybe it is eaither the driftwood or the ammonia changing to chloramine and been read in the test kit giving me a false read. The tank has a molly and few cherry red.

I need to get this thing going and transfer my inverts here, including some expensive ones due to an illnes in the family.

Some good advice needed here ASAP.








Thanks,
Pedro
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 12:40 PM
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where did you get the driftwood . I suppose it you picked it out of a pond and its soaked with organics its possible but i wouldnt rule it out but it wouldlnt be my first suspect either.
Dave
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
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Driftwood was bought at LSF. what would your first suspect be?

THanks
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 12:55 PM
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Its a new tank your gonna get a cycle unless you pack it full of fast growing plants.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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So you are saying based on the pictures that I need more plants?
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 02:41 PM
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I would but that wont solve your ammonia now since you already have it . It will help but it would not be instantanious. You have a new tank that is cycling. If you had a ton of plants to start with this may not of happened. You have fish fish food and possibly plant organics (a few dead or rotting plant leaves) that are producing amonia this is a normal part of the cycle unless you start with a lot of plants. Adding plants now will improve future water quality and prevent algae from growing but since you already have ammonia it may not make a immediate impact. You may have to wait out the cycle dont add anymore fish and feed spareingly. also keep up on your water changes.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 07:01 PM
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Pedro, just try floating a lot of plants like anacharis or hygro or ludwigia - they should take up the ammonia pretty quickly.

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 12:31 AM
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If your local water source is treated with chloramine then you may well have a false positive test. Most common test kits will give the false positive. You need a Salicylate based test kit.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-10-2006, 02:59 PM
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You have other tanks, don't you? Swap out some of the filter media from an established filter and put it in this one. THat's the best way to cut down your ammonia in a hurry.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-10-2006, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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I did the swap of media an this is doing nothing. The thing is it is very well planted and I have cherry shrimp in there. The shrimp are all accounted for and do not seem stressed at all. Anything else I can do?
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-10-2006, 07:20 PM
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The best indicator is your livestock. At 6ppm you're off the charts high and everything should be dead.

I cna't imagine your drift wood would be doing it. It would have to be covered with dead/rotting vegitation and you would have smelled it when you put it in the tank.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-10-2006, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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The driftwood is fine, the molly is fine and the cherry red are fine. I find this kinda strange. I will let you know what happens later today...


Thanks,
Pedro
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