60l Starter Tank

Discussion in 'Beginner Discussions' started by Bluefinllama, Mar 5, 2021.

  1. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    It sucks that your tap water has nitrites and nitrates in! It probably has ammonia too :(
     
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  3. OP
    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    @A new day
    Now that you mention it, the shrimp died after I did the first water change, so it was fine with the nitrites which were at 0.25, but ammonia introduced with the water change would've killed it as well as made the nitrites spike back up to 0.25 as well.
     
  4. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Yes that kind of thing would have me very worried. There was a similar thing with Rand Water about a year ago.

    Hope local guys latch onto this. Otherwise start a separate thread about water quality. It’s not normal.
     
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  5. OP
    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    So another update - today I got the new filter, I decided on the Seachem Tidal 35, it's a bit more expensive than the Aquaclear, but it has the impeller on the inside of the tank in the water which means it should be more reliable with our Eskom woes as well as comes with Seachem Matrix which I would've gotten for the Aquaclear which evens out the price. I've taken out the airpump / stone as the filter and plants combined should supply sufficient oxygen.

    Jeff seems to be much happier with the new filter, he can swim anywhere in the tank without much current now (he still loves surfing up and down where the majority of the current is however). I have also spotted the baby shrimp which has pretty much doubled in size by now, I think the other shrimp could possibly have died from old age or Jeff harassment instead of water parameters since the baby one survived? I want to get other test strips, I'm not convinced the ones I'm currently using is up to scratch, might have expired or something?
     
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    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    So I've run into some troubling developments:

    Firstly an outbreak of cyanobacteria, which tells me something might be off with tank parameters / lighting etc?

    Secondly I bought a new test kit, my test strips are reading Nitrates at >40, the test kit reads at <5, how do I decide which to believe?

    Other than that I've gotten a nerite (female) little white eggs all over my driftwood and the shrimp is still alive although I haven't spotted it again, I have found it's molt.
     
  7. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Hi @Bluefinllama

    - the Cyanobacteria might be due to circulation issues. I have a small spot in the 1,5m which I syphon with airline tubing and this keeps it in check. You might want to look at adjusting flow in the tank? There are also chemicals you can use, perhaps others could advise.

    - what is your new test kit? Liquid tests are more reliable than strips.
     
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  8. OP
    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    @A new day

    I did reduce circulation a bit for Jeff, but since the cyanobacteria I turned it up a bit again, I've removed most of it, but there are a few small patches still on the substrate similar to your tank.

    I've also lowered the amount of light to 9 hours a day thinking there might be an imbalance between minerals / fertiliser & lighting. Some of my plants are doing well, some not so much (mostly the hair grass which doesn't seem to be spreading etc).

    I got a JBL liquid test kit because something seemed off with the strips (remember getting 40 Nitrates from tap water etc). But the big discrepancy is what worries me, if the difference wasn't as big then it would be fine.
     
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  9. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Cools. I might be wrong but don’t think the light cycle is a big factor in Cyanobacteria.
    The JBL liquid tests are accurate, that’s the one to go by.
     
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  10. OP
    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    @A new day

    My worry with the JBL liquid kit is that I can't find any expiry date on the kit itself or any of the bottles, everything else except the nitrates seem to add up though when comparing it to things like my seachem alerts etc. Jeff is as gluttonous as ever and the snail laying eggs and being active also leads me to believe parameters should be fine.
     
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    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    @A new day

    I have been doing some research and also tested both my tap water as well as the tank water again today, from the JBL Liquid test it seems both are low in nitrates which might be the cause: https://www.tropicalaquarium.co.za/threads/erythromycin-for-cyanobacteria.32853/page-3

    I'm pretty sure that the low nitrates is part of the problem (my plants aren't growing as well as I'd like as well), I've been very slow to add any livestock (because the test strips are giving huge errors if it says nitrates are >40), it's just Jeff, the shrimp and the nerite.

    Here are the readings I took today:

    Tap water (after standing for about 3 days with airstone):
    Nitrates = 3-5
    Nitrites = <0.01
    KH = 5
    PH = 7-7.5
    Ammonia = <0.05

    Tank before 50% water change:
    Nitrates = 15-30 (about 4 days ago this was 5 - I reduced time of light being on downwards and this shot up a bit)
    Nitrites = <0.01
    KH = 3
    PH = 6-6.5
    Ammonia = <0.05

    Did the 50% water change removing lots (hopefully all) of the cyanobacteria I could see and unfortunately had to replant a few things, I hope it will get better now, I also think because of the above-mentioned post that it might be time to introduce some more livestock.
     
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  12. Shabir

    Shabir

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    How come you're still testing ammonia and nitrite after your tanks cycled?
     
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    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    Well, I replaced my filter with another (kept the old filter's sponge in for a bit) but wanted to make sure it remains stable throughout.

    When I spotted the cyanobacteria I was also doing so to test water parameters trying to find the possible reason for it).

    Another update, got 4 otocinclus today and they're busy acclimating. I found another shrimp molt, do they molt this quick in succession or is it possible there's more than one?
     
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  14. HugBug

    HugBug

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    When I first got my shrimp I would find molts every few days. It felt crazy frequent. It has slowed down somewhat. The younger they are the more often they molt. Think of it like babies, children and adults. Babies grow really fast, children still a lot but not as fast, and adults don't grow much at all. The shrimp molts due to growing.
     
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  15. OP
    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    This is the second in 2 days though, very similar size. Possible it might have been a few days apart and I didn't see it immediately I guess.
     
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    Bluefinllama

    Bluefinllama

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    And another update today. Jeff eats EVERYTHING. I need to find a way to keep him from eating zucchini, algae wafers and everything inbetween.

    I dropped a piece of zucchini in the tank for the otos and he just destroyed it and now he's on a feeding timeout again since he's such a fatty. I have also added 7 chili rasboras today and luckily they are too fast for him, but he keeps trying his luck - at least this little workout is burning his belly down a bit.
     
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