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Results 1 to 10 of 17
  1. Default Need some advice

    0 Not allowed!
    I have had tropical fish all of my life. I recently had a 55 gallon with a large ornate bichir, two large blood parrots and another common bichir. We moved and I lost all but the ornate and one blood parrot in the move. I lost the other parrot a month ago and I was left with the Bichir. He did fine in the tank. I had tried putting a few other things in the tank with him like some african cichlids, another blood parrot, and I would always wake up to find the other fish dead. I figured he was killing them overnight. I decided to get rid of the remaining bichir and my kids wanted some fun tropical fish. I got some guppies, and they all died within hours. I tested the water and my nitrates are high, around 80 ppm and my alkalinity and ph tested high also (ph tested toward acid). I am at a loss. I dont know whether to start over and drain the tank and start fresh or just treat the tank. What should I do?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Frozen Wastes of the Upper Midwest

    Awards Showcase

    Asking good questions, keep it up! - Slaphppy7 Congrats on the tank move - Slaphppy7 Thanks for being the 2000th poster on the 40B! - Slaphppy7 Thanks for the B-Day wish - Strider199 Here's to one crummy Superbowl, lol! - Slaphppy7 
    T.G.I.F.! - Slaphppy7 Stay warm!! - DeboraBremner Here's to good friends, and new fish! - Slaphppy7 T.G.I.F.! - Slaphppy7 Happy Easter! - Slaphppy7 


    0 Not allowed!
    If there are still fish in the tank I would do a 75% water change or 2 50% water changes minimum.

    Have you tested the water out of the tap as well? What are your ammonia and nitrite levels as well.
    Current tanks:
    37G FW - 3 Pearl Gourami, 4 Black Mollies, approximately 20+ Molly Fry, 5 Assassin Snails | 10G Planted FW - 14 Molly Fry, rocks, DW and an Anubias Nana - journal
    "We come from the land of the ice and snow" | "I reject your reality and substitute my own" - Adam Savage | What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?
    How to cycle without fishies!

  3. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    No fish in the tank currently after all guppies are gone now. My nitrite is at 0. The only thing out of norm was nitrates and ph and alkalinity.

  4. #4


    0 Not allowed!
    Would you be against completely re-cycling the tank? Draining it completely and refilling it? That seems like the most promising solution to me, but the most time consuming and most troublesome. Thinking about it, I would do the 75% water change. And if that doesn't fix it, I'd suggest completely re-cycling the tank. Good luck! Tell us how it goes!

  5. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    That was my thought too. What about my current filter media? I run two emperor biowheel 400's. Should I just start fresh with them too and get new biowheels and filter pads? I also have an undergravel filter, would I need to take all that out and get all gravel out and clean it as well? Thanks again.

  6. #6


    0 Not allowed!
    Starting over now does sounds like a good idea

    But please keep in mind, you don't want this to happen again. Once your cycled and have your tank stocked, test your nitrates regularly and complete enough water changes to maintain your nitrate levels below or at 20ppm. That will help to keep you from ever being in this situation again
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  7. #7


    0 Not allowed!
    Good point Cliff! Since you've had issues with this, you really want to watch it and make sure it doesn't happen again.

  8. #8


    0 Not allowed!
    Since there are no fish in there anyway, the bacteria will die yeah, start over with a fishless cycle. Vacuum the gravel REALLY well, or change it out if you want a new look, etc.
    20 gallon with a male betta, neons, glowlights, and red cherry shrimp. (work in progess) Recently added a few LIVE plants and driftwood, Woooohoooo!

  9. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    I emptied the tank yesterday cleaned all of the equipment and driftwood, and filled it back up. I used seachem prime to treat the water and a safestart solution to get bacteria going. I tested levels today and so far my nitrites are 0, nitrates are 0, but my ph is still low. What can I do to raise it. It was 6.2 according to the kit.

  10. #10


    0 Not allowed!
    Your pH is going to be unstable until you are cycled. No nitrates at all means you are not cycled. Bacteria need something to eat, so unless you are dosing ammonia, the safestart isn't doing any good.

    Once it is cycled, there are a few options for pH change, but really, it's best to just adapt to what you have. Fluctuating pH will be very bad for your fish, and every WC will make it dip.
    20 gallon with a male betta, neons, glowlights, and red cherry shrimp. (work in progess) Recently added a few LIVE plants and driftwood, Woooohoooo!

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