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Trouble with new tank

311 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  Robin Conor Sallade
Hi, I'm fairly new to fish keeping, and this is my first planted tank. I've done a lot of reading to learn how everything works.
So I recieved an old 30 gal tank that I fixed up and started cycling. I did a fish less cycle with nutrafin cycle. Everything seemed to go alright levels were good. I got 4 platys. Had them for 1.5 weeks and everything was ok. Other than a faint bit of cloudiness when looking through the side.
I have an aquaclear 70 with a 70 sponge, 2 50 sponges and the bio pellets. I decided to take out the 2 50 sponges and put my carbon bag in to clear it up...which I now realize was probably a bad idea?. Then I added a tiny bristlenose pleco. And then a couple days later I brought home 2 young pearl gouramis. Everything was fine all of the test readings were good. Then one day I had nitrites, 1ppm, so I did a big water change. I've been doing anywhere from 50 to 25% water changes a day for about a week now with nitrites at 3ppm for sure possibly higher. One of my pearls got aggressive, I thought it was likely because of the stress so I took him back so he didn't add more stress.
So my question is, how long will I have to do these water changes and are my fish going to be permanently harmed? I never intended to do a fish in cycle, which I'm assuming is what happened when I removed some of the filter sponge. Any help would greatly appreciated
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I will preface this with im not super experienced and still learning allot but here's what I think. So gourami wise they can be aggressive like their betta cousins, they are hit or miss so that's what happened with the pearls. Removing the sponges does hurt the cycle some but it's more of a set back less of a whole recycle, you could replace them and if they were stored in water and it would clear up faster like putting old media in a new tank. Otherwise if it was fully cycled before hand you probably added too much at once and overloaded the bacteria as long as you stay on top of the nitrites as you are the fish will probably be fine. Timeline guess I'd say anywhere from a few days to a week for the water changes. Im assuming ammonia? levels are fine as well.
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