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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-03-2010, 07:40 AM Thread Starter
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need help on substrate change in hi-tech established...

hey everyone
so i've had my 40 gallon set up for about 6 months w/ PFS, and as luck has it, it has gone anaerobic, releasing rotten-egg smelling bubbles whenever anything is moved. i've lost 3 fish and prob 2-3 RCS since i realized this in the past month. i'm planning to change to a nutrient rich, better sized granule substrate, probably eco-complete/flourite or similar.

i have a canister filter on this tank that i clean about once every 30-60 days. i plan to transfer all the fish and plants to a temporary bin w/ filter and heater during the substrate change.

so my question is... do you guys thing the canister filter will have enough nitrites to avoid an ammonia spike after the change? should i play it safe and do frequent water changes after? or is it safe to leave them in the bin with current tank water for about a week?

currenlty i change about 5 gallons twice weekly for 10-15 gallons once a week as it is. depending on how busy i am

pressurized co2 + dry ferts & seachem liquid micros (comprehensive).

i consider this tank heavily stocked @ 4 praecox, 6 rummies, 6 neons, 2 ABN, 1 otto, 20+assassins, 50+ pond snails, and 50+ RCS

looking for input and personal experience thx guys! as always you are a huge help!!!

-jenna

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-03-2010, 12:47 PM
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First thing get the new substrate rinsed ready to go so you wont have too much coudyness then I would do a 50% waterchange then use some of that tank water in the bin. You should areate the water in the bin or have some surface movement, transfer substrates as quickly as possible fill the tank get the filter running and acclimate the fish/shrimp back into the tank. Make sure you get your temperature stable before you start the acclimation.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-03-2010, 01:02 PM
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I have used mature canister filters as the only bacteria I moved to a new tank with new substrate. It worked fine and zero ammonia spike. The filter has many times more bacteria in it. I was moving 20 large African Chichlid's.


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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-05-2010, 03:59 PM
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Save as much of the mulm from the old substrate as possible and put this on the bottom of the tank underneath the new substrate.

Between that, the filter, some old water (which I save and use to make sure the water params don't change too much for the sake of the fish), and the plants, you should minimize the time it takes the tank to re-stabilize. I'd just check the water parameters every day for a few days to be sure you don't get a minicycle, and just a few water changes should be all you need to do.





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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-07-2010, 05:00 AM Thread Starter
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great! thanks for the responses guys!!

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