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View Full Version : Nitrate Trouble! Emergency!



Myke
09-21-2009, 04:06 PM
Hi guys, sorry for being a newbie to the forum and requesting help straight away!

Anyway, I have 6 fish in a 8Gal tank, 34L? I was told by the aquarium that's fine. Anyway, high nitrate, one fish died the other day, was at bottom breathing heavy, so I bought three live plants to consume the nitrate, nitrate hasn't changed much, I've got another fish at the bottom now, same symptoms, don't want it to die! Been doing 25% change each day, using gravel vacuum.

Using my litmus strips (I know, inaccurate, no money atm), it says that it's about... 160 ppm. I think!

What can I do :(

:help:

Thanks guys!

robflanker
09-21-2009, 04:09 PM
Do a WC immediately - at least 50%

8 fish is way over stocked

You will need to cycle ur tank

Lab_Rat
09-21-2009, 04:11 PM
Agree with immediate water change of 50%, you'll need to do 50% water changes daily until nitrates are around 10ppm. Tank sounds like it's cycled, just massively overstocked. What are the 6 fish you have in this tiny tank? Are they all goldfish? If so, you will need a much much larger tank.

Myke
09-21-2009, 04:16 PM
Nonono @ first poster, it's 6 fish. ok. maybe it's not a 8gal then... eurgh I have no idea... anyway, no, i have 4 *small goldfish, one mini mini mini black moor and a pleco. fish keeping is so difficult... told one thing by an aquarium.. spose they just want me to buy their fish 8-) ...

well i have no money so i can't get a bigger tank, and i'll do the fifty percent changes. what if i get some more live plants this weekend??

robflanker
09-21-2009, 04:19 PM
Ok sorry i misread the number of fish

Your tank is way over stocked. Based on the numbers, you need at least a 30-40g tank.

Fish stores will tell you whatever they can to sell you fish

You should return or sell all of your fish - none of them are appropriate for an 8g tank.

50% is necessary immediately.

Plants wont make a massive difference as your fish are simply too big for the tank

Myke
09-21-2009, 04:22 PM
These fish are tiny, seriously, about the size of my thumb.

mommy1
09-21-2009, 04:23 PM
if you post the length, hieght and width of your tank we can tell you how many gallons it is, there is a calculator in the left hand menu.

also do you have any idea what your ammonia and nitrite levels are? this will help us determine if your tank is cycled or not.

robflanker
09-21-2009, 04:24 PM
Its not about how big they are now - its about how big they get, and how much waste they produce.

Goldfish produce tons of it. The stocking rule for goldfish varies between species, but is basically 20g for the 1st one, and 10g for each additional one

Lab_Rat
09-21-2009, 04:24 PM
Nonono @ first poster, it's 6 fish. ok. maybe it's not a 8gal then... eurgh I have no idea... anyway, no, i have 4 *small goldfish, one mini mini mini black moor and a pleco. fish keeping is so difficult... told one thing by an aquarium.. spose they just want me to buy their fish 8-) ...

well i have no money so i can't get a bigger tank, and i'll do the fifty percent changes. what if i get some more live plants this weekend??

What are the dimensions of the tank? If you tell us those then we will know how big it is.

Rule of thumb for goldfish stocking is 20g for the first fancy goldfish, then 10 more gallons for each additional goldfish. So 4 fancy goldfish, I'd say a 55g tank would be appropriate. But you throw in a common pleco, you're gonna need 125g. If the goldfish are common goldfish, they really need to live in a goldfish pond as they get very large.

If your financial situation does not allow you to properly care for the fish, maybe rehoming is the best option. You could then restock your tank with fish suitable for the size of the tank. Do not listen to pet stores, they are there to make money, the more fish they sell the more money they make.

Myke
09-21-2009, 04:38 PM
Well I've taken one of the fish out of the water (the hard breathing one), but what makes me laugh right, they've lived happily like this for almost a year now, they haven't grown any larger and only one is a fancy goldfish.

robflanker
09-21-2009, 04:42 PM
Well I've taken one of the fish out of the water (the hard breathing one), but what makes me laugh right, they've lived happily like this for almost a year now, they haven't grown any larger and only one is a fancy goldfish.
How do you know they are living happily?

They havent grown any larger because there growth has been unnaturally stunted by being in a tank too small for them.

None (0) of your fish are appropriate for that size tank, if it really is 8g

Afk4Jfk
09-21-2009, 04:42 PM
I did almost the same thing when i first started... listen to these guys , they all helped me out alot. Im still learning. But stick with it its a very rewarding hobby! good luck myke

dragoonwoman
09-21-2009, 04:51 PM
I wouldn't keep a pleco with goldfish. I did and the pleco would attack the goldfish at night to eat their slime coating. Every morning I woke up to another shredded goldfish!! HORRIBLE!!!!! It took me much too long to figure out what was happening, and the poor goldfish took the hit.

Pleco's get BIG too - mine was over 8" when I found him a new home. He outgrew every tank I had!

Lab_Rat
09-21-2009, 05:38 PM
Well I've taken one of the fish out of the water (the hard breathing one), but what makes me laugh right, they've lived happily like this for almost a year now, they haven't grown any larger and only one is a fancy goldfish.

Where did you put the fish you took out of the water? If you just put him into new water the sudden change in water parameters may do him in.

Honestly, I think you should add an "un" to the word happily, as surely the fish are stunted, especially with your comment about them not having grown any larger. You're seeing the results of poor animal husbandry, with the nitrates at 160ppm. We all make mistakes in the beginning, what is important is that we learn from them. If you are unwilling to accept the fact that the situation these fish are in is a poor situation for them then there is no way that I can help you.

megastealer
09-21-2009, 07:53 PM
Well I've taken one of the fish out of the water (the hard breathing one), but what makes me laugh right, they've lived happily like this for almost a year now, they haven't grown any larger and only one is a fancy goldfish.


Guess why they haven't grown any larger... the toxins stunted their growth. Goldfish and animals don't grow much differently than humans. 99.99% of humans grow at about the same rate, hitting puberty in their early-mid teens, and having growth spurts. 99.999% of fancy goldfish grow like crazy during their first year of life, and if they are in a healthy environment, are nearly 6 inches long and 3-4 inches tall.

If your goldfish are still tiny after an entire year, I can assure you they are not happy. Goldfish can have a 15 year lifespan in captivity, 10 years without even much difficulty if they are properly cared for.

Look at this video for reference. This is a 55 gallon tank. This tank is fully stocked, and has as many fish as yours does. Your fish if they are a year old should be at least this size by now.

P.S. I read that only one is a fancy.. if the other ones aren't fancy goldfish I would have to let you know that normal, common goldfish grow almost to be twice as large.
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Lady Hobbs
09-21-2009, 08:31 PM
Myke, there's no point in beating you up any future over your stocking. By now you've probably figure out that you're overstocked. Read the articles in this forum at the top (red stickies) and that should tell you all you need to know.

Afk4Jfk
09-22-2009, 04:43 AM
Hey Mega dont they say if you feed something and then throw it, if it comes back to you....do it again? lol the vid was great

Myke
09-22-2009, 05:46 PM
i feel quite insulted by the replies to this thread.
let me get two things clear...
1. I am not stupid nor a retard.
2. i think that i kinda recognised by the first few posts that i am "overstocked".

put your pitch forks away.

dragoonwoman, thanks for the tip, i did know of this before, but my pleco seems to be vegetarian and happy with what i feed him, thanks though. :)

you all make me sound like some retard that abuses his pets ... seriously. ;l

& rob, i am aware of what none is thanks.

like it was said, people make mistakes... no biggy, people being toffee nosed and stuck up and toffee nosed like "OMG HOW CUD U EVEN DO THAT TO YOUR POOR PETZ *+*+"... really really doesn't help.

i don't have a problem with being wrong or making mistakes, but i do have a problem with the amount of disgust put into the posts.

thanks for almost nothing, apart from treating me like an absolute invalid.

Lab_Rat
09-22-2009, 05:55 PM
i feel quite insulted by the replies to this thread.
let me get two things clear...
1. I am not stupid nor a retard.
2. i think that i kinda recognised by the first few posts that i am "overstocked".

put your pitch forks away.

dragoonwoman, thanks for the tip, i did know of this before, but my pleco seems to be vegetarian and happy with what i feed him, thanks though. :)

you all make me sound like some retard that abuses his pets ... seriously. ;l

& rob, i am aware of what none is thanks.

like it was said, people make mistakes... no biggy, people being toffee nosed and stuck up and toffee nosed like "OMG HOW CUD U EVEN DO THAT TO YOUR POOR PETZ *+*+"... really really doesn't help.

i don't have a problem with being wrong or making mistakes, but i do have a problem with the amount of disgust put into the posts.

thanks for almost nothing, apart from treating me like an absolute invalid.

Wow Myke, no one has called you stupid or a retard or anything of the sort. You have not been accused of abusing your fish, in fact I even said that it's ok to make mistakes as long as you learn from them. Every one of us has made mistakes. It's how you learn. Now not acknowledging mistakes and taking steps to remedy them is where I get frustrated.

Sounds like you've got other issues, people here have only tried to help you.

Lady Hobbs
09-22-2009, 06:00 PM
OK. We have all had our say and perhaps now we can all bury the hatchets and proceed? Many of the posts here were over-the-top and a person really only needs to be told a time or two they are overstocked. They pretty much "get it" if they hear it once or twice.

I think when someone says they are a newbie that they are here looking for some guidence and not ridicule. Please let's all try to post to others who may not know much about fishkeeping with less ridicule.

Myke, on the same sense lashing out hardly helps the situation altho I can understand your frustration. Many of us forget we were also newbies at one time and made some of the same errors along the way. My first tank was a 10 gallon and I bought 3 bala sharks. OH DEAR!

But let us all show more support and continue to welcome our newbies in a more friendly manner.

I think enough has been said in this thread for now and we all need a cooling off period. Therefore, I think it's best to put this particular thread to rest.

Myke
09-22-2009, 06:01 PM
Wow Myke, no one has called you stupid or a retard or anything of the sort. You have not been accused of abusing your fish, in fact I even said that it's ok to make mistakes as long as you learn from them. Every one of us has made mistakes. It's how you learn. Now not acknowledging mistakes and taking steps to remedy them is where I get frustrated.

Sounds like you've got other issues, people here have only tried to help you.

I rest my case.

yes, i must admit, you were one of those who didnt have your pitchfork.


it's just annoying that people have said over and over again here YOU'RE OVERSTOCKED LALALA, it just makes me feel stupid and a retard. :(