What could cause an increase in Nitrates? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-20-2014, 04:34 AM Thread Starter
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Question What could cause an increase in Nitrates?

My tank has been up and running since July 2010. Heavily planted no fish or shrimp deaths in a year. But, my normally 0 nitrates have gone up to 5ppm. Everything else is within normal limits. I normally do water changes every 2 months or so, but not because of water quality, but because I'm paranoid. I can't see any reason for the nitrates to increase like this. They have not been an issue since my fishless cycle 4 years ago.
Also wanted to add, my RCS have started reproducing "better" in the last month. I'm also curious why this is. So something is going on strange. Shrimp are breeding and water quality is decreasing? Doubt a few baby shrimp could cause such a problem.

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Pristella tetras, cardinal tetra, amano shirmp, bamboo shrimp, nerite snails, assassin snails and red cherry shrimp.

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Last edited by PlantedTankLover; 09-20-2014 at 04:36 AM. Reason: more info
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-20-2014, 04:49 AM
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Hi PlantedTankLover,

Possibly you are feeding more food due to the increased population? If so then fish and/or shrimp poop.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-20-2014, 05:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantedTankLover View Post
My tank has been up and running since July 2010. Heavily planted no fish or shrimp deaths in a year. But, my normally 0 nitrates have gone up to 5ppm. Everything else is within normal limits. I normally do water changes every 2 months or so, but not because of water quality, but because I'm paranoid. I can't see any reason for the nitrates to increase like this. They have not been an issue since my fishless cycle 4 years ago.
Also wanted to add, my RCS have started reproducing "better" in the last month. I'm also curious why this is. So something is going on strange. Shrimp are breeding and water quality is decreasing? Doubt a few baby shrimp could cause such a problem.
Nitrates as opposed to nitrites are nothing to be concerned with in my understanding. Nitrates are non-toxic to fauna for the most part and are used by plants as a nutrient, so it looks like the plants have stopped using nitrates like they use to. I've always seen it said to maintain nitrate levels between 10-15ppm for the benifit of the plants, people commented on my 0ppm nitrate as being to low as far as my plants were concerned. Though in my case I don't think I was shaking the bottle enough to get a good test read.

Do you dose ferts?
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-20-2014, 09:49 PM
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At 5ppm, I would not be concerned one bit especially in a planted tank. Once you get to 30-40ppm then you can worry. It's possible that the breeding is putting extra organics in the water column. Breeding means an increased bio load. Shrimp account for almost nothing but all together the produce waste, molt and even die without a trace.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-20-2014, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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Hmmmm. Maybe my normal 0ppm could have always caused my slow plant growth. I have increased their food because of all the new shrimp, but only feed every other day. No do not use any ferts. I used to but never seen any change. I was using flourish excel, but it started killing my moss.
Alright so let me see if I have this right. A small amount of Nitrates is a good thing. Scratching my head here.
My first instinct was to do a large water change, but wanted to see what y'all had to say first.

46 Bow Front Planted
Eheim 2217 & 2236, 2-39wt T5 bulbs (10,000), 72-75*
Pristella tetras, cardinal tetra, amano shirmp, bamboo shrimp, nerite snails, assassin snails and red cherry shrimp.

My tank:
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-21-2014, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantedTankLover View Post
No do not use any ferts. I used to but never seen any change. I was using flourish excel, but it started killing my moss.
Excel isn't a fert, it's a carbon supplement source. When ferts are referred to it's about Macros/micros.

Explained here: https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=517945
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 03:26 AM Thread Starter
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Then no, other then root tabs I'm not using fets

46 Bow Front Planted
Eheim 2217 & 2236, 2-39wt T5 bulbs (10,000), 72-75*
Pristella tetras, cardinal tetra, amano shirmp, bamboo shrimp, nerite snails, assassin snails and red cherry shrimp.

My tank:
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