Continuous cloudy cycle... won't go away...details inside. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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Continuous cloudy cycle... won't go away...details inside.

I have an established 60P, setup around September of last year. The basics are, it's about 18 gallons, has an Eheim 2215, no heater, high light, CO2 injected. The reason I don't run a heater is I do not need to.

Lately, I have had extremely cloudy water. I get about 1-1.5 weeks of cloudy water, then it clears up, then it gets cloudy again.

First things first, about a few months ago, I put in Guppies, they have been breeding. Part of me thinks that it's a constant increase of bio load, though, it didn't happen when they started breeding, maybe once the first babies got big. It may be as simple as that.

The other major change is I went from low tech to high tech. Around the same time this started happening, I increased my light and started injecting CO2. I have never had issues doing this, it is strangely about the same time it happened though. I also add ferts, while low tech, I really didn't use any.

My water parameters are:
Ammonia: Zero
Nitrite: Zero
Nitrate: lost the card, low, zero to 5PPM and I do dose it so it is not concerning if it's over zero.


I started out with 3 male guppies, 4 female. Since then, 3 are getting close to adult hood. All others are still far from being adults. I would guess I have 15-25 fry, hard to see, but still very small. I would doubt that increase in bio load is significant enough to cause a cycle, much less give me constant cycles but I could be wrong. I know I have added more adults in shorter periods of time with no cycle, plus this tank has been up for close to a year now.


I don't know why or how going higher light and injecting CO2 could make this happen either, the timing of it just seems a bit odd.

Lastly, everything in my tank is healthy, both plants and fish. I even switched to RO water after two instances of cloudy water to rule out my tap water. It did nothing positive or negative to the cloudy water, I have had two more instances of cloudy water afterwards.

I have not had a single death, my fish actually look even healthier after switching to RO but at no point did they look unhealthy, or did I have any concerns.


I can hook up a second filter, add a UV, even a heater if need be, I know the UV will likely clear it up no issue. I don't like the UV's effect on flow, one reason I took it out. When I did have it plumbed in, I don't recall ever using it, on this particular tank.

Anyway, in all the years in this hobby, never had anything like this happen, it's very confusing to me. My tank is so cloudy right now, I can't see the back plants, it's pretty significant. Water changes only seem to make it cloudy for longer, the water will clear for a day or two but then get worse than it was.

Any help is appreciated, I would like getting down to the root cause, rather than just turning the UV on and hoping it doesn't come back when I turn it off, I just have no idea what's going on, especially given the fact I see no evidence of a cycle, much less a significant one with my water testing.


I can only get a picture on my phone right now. The water may look slighly green but it's not, back glass is cracked and takes bad pics. Definitely white cloudy, not green at all.


-Matt

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Last edited by talontsiawd; 07-27-2014 at 08:34 PM. Reason: Pic added
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 07:54 PM
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As a test, raise you outflow pipe up to get a decent ripple across the surface, for 3 - 4 days.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:05 PM
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Picture and filter details ? And WC schedule ?
Ordinarilly a 7.5g tank is not suitable for more than 3 Guppies and then it's pushing it somewhat. If the AqAdvisor(I don't at all believe it 100%) is saying that you have
a stocking of less than 80% then you very seldome have issues.
A personal belief of mine is that 98% of non fert related problems/w tanks are in tanks with over an 80% stocking rate. Plant mass is not accounted for by the AqAdvisor either and does count...but to what extent ?

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:08 PM
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Cloudy water always says bacteria to me. Sure you can have problems with precipitation of fertilizers but you seem like you know what you're doing. Sometimes you simply don't know why a bacterial infection strikes. You can spend hours trying to figure it out or simply treat it. If you go to a doctor with an infection you get antibiotics. For the most part the source is not important unless it reoccurs over and over.

I would fire up the UV and ignore the cause for now. If it returns then I would think about what the heck is going on. Just my two cents but that's what I would do.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:09 PM
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Sounds to me like you are having a heterotrophic – autotrophic bacteria problem, which I think means you need more O2 as was suggested. Cleaning the filter usually helps as does frequent water changes for a while.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:15 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
As a test, raise you outflow pipe up to get a decent ripple across the surface, for 3 - 4 days.

v3
Ironically, I kind of did that at the same time too by ditching my UV and inline heater at the same time, then again by cleaning my filter about 1.5 weeks ago. I also kept the water level intentionally low so it's been about that, the biggest ripple I can really get without splashing but it takes no effort to not raise the water level. See if that helps longer term.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raymond S. View Post
Picture and filter details ? And WC schedule ?
Ordinarilly a 7.5g tank is not suitable for more than 3 Guppies and then it's pushing it somewhat. If the AqAdvisor(I don't at all believe it 100%) is saying that you have
a stocking of less than 80% then you very seldome have issues.
A personal belief of mine is that 98% of non fert related problems/w tanks are in tanks with over an 80% stocking rate. Plant mass is not accounted for by the AqAdvisor either and does count...but to what extent ?
I will try to snap a picture later.

Water changes are 50-60%, once a week. The tank is 18 gallons, not 7.5,

Filter details, it's a 2215. I went with a 2217 impeller when mine needed replacement. All the Eheim media that it comes with, though all the filter pads are on top, the rings and balls at the bottom. Has been setup like this for may 5 years, never an issue before. Filter has been going almost constantly for 6 years, maybe more, but with various bioloads. Tank was fully stocked about 5 months ago, my heater failed and because I usually use colder water for water changes (before RO), I accidentally killed some fish, then decided to relocate the rest. Bio load dropped to 3 guppies, then 4, then babies, cycling did not start with any introduction of new fish, it's a new thing, though I do have new fry about once every week or two.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zorfox View Post
Cloudy water always says bacteria to me. Sure you can have problems with precipitation of fertilizers but you seem like you know what you're doing. Sometimes you simply don't know why a bacterial infection strikes. You can spend hours trying to figure it out or simply treat it. If you go to a doctor with an infection you get antibiotics. For the most part the source is not important unless it reoccurs over and over.

I would fire up the UV and ignore the cause for now. If it returns then I would think about what the heck is going on. Just my two cents but that's what I would do.
That's kind of what I was thinking, throw the UV on and let it clear 100%, then see later on if it comes back. Funny, never needed the UV for like 4 years, take it out, need 2 months later. That's how this hobby goes.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceF View Post
Sounds to me like you are having a heterotrophic autotrophic bacteria problem, which I think means you need more O2 as was suggested. Cleaning the filter usually helps as does frequent water changes for a while.
I will look into that more. I can also put a HOB for the time being, I don't want to do that, and put a UV on, simply because the UV will take care of it so I won't know if the HOB worked or not.

-Matt

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:34 PM Thread Starter
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Pic added in first post.

-Matt

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 10:02 PM
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Cloudy water can be from several sources, several of which you have eliminated with your information posted above.

Ammonia

pH/minerals- if you are adding anything like pH products, or GH boosters.

Bacteria: The heterotrophic bacteria grow fast enough to cloud the water. A water change, filter cleaning and vacuum the floor of the tank as well as you can to remove organic debris.

Substrate getting stirred up. Got cories, loaches or other bottom fish in there?

Half a dozen adult Gups and a few dozen babies is not overstocking this tank. I just took over 100 Endlers out of a 20 long. Mostly fry, 1/2" or smaller, but LOTS of them. Not a problem at all.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana View Post
Cloudy water can be from several sources, several of which you have eliminated with your information posted above.

Ammonia

pH/minerals- if you are adding anything like pH products, or GH boosters.

Bacteria: The heterotrophic bacteria grow fast enough to cloud the water. A water change, filter cleaning and vacuum the floor of the tank as well as you can to remove organic debris.

Substrate getting stirred up. Got cories, loaches or other bottom fish in there?

Half a dozen adult Gups and a few dozen babies is not overstocking this tank. I just took over 100 Endlers out of a 20 long. Mostly fry, 1/2" or smaller, but LOTS of them. Not a problem at all.
I did start adding GH booster when I switched over to RO, but I did not use it before, which still had the issue, I can't say that would eliminate that issue but it did occur before making the switch.

I did have quite a bit of organic matter in the substrate. That was both from fish dying (and being eaten partially) due to the heater failing, and from plants. I am not able to to vacuum my tank without pulling up a lot of stuff so sometimes I will fan it with my hands to get it into the water column, so that the filter can catch it. That just may be it, not only am I getting that into new places, both the water column and filter, I am also stirring up the substrate, that could be my answer right there. I rarely do it but never had issues before this. However, I did it longer than usual. That may be it right there.

Anyway, I think I am just going to stick my UV on for now, though this all is very helpful.

-Matt

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 11:16 PM
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To me, you have a classic bacterial bloom:

http://www.fishforums.net/index.php?...oms-explained/

That's why my recommendation to increase o2, especially with the style of your outflow pipe.

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
To me, you have a classic bacterial bloom:

http://www.fishforums.net/index.php?...oms-explained/

v3
What I am not sure about is why it clears up to crystal clear water, just to do it again. 4 times now, but each gets worse. I do need to do the basics though, clean the substrate, I just cleaned the filter, and either add aeration (probably have to switch out lily pipe) or add a air pump in the short run.

-Matt

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 11:25 PM
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If this is happening often enough then it's your answer to why the plants are not coloring up: the light does not penetrate the soup.

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 11:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
If this is happening often enough then it's your answer to why the plants are not coloring up: the light does not penetrate the soup.

v3
You may be right there but even the plants that are right at the top don't color up so I am not sure it's the whole story yet but the UV is on now so we will see how that changes things.

-Matt

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