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Old 15th March 2011   #1
Sherleelee
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Angry Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Ok so its been about 2 months since i got my axolotl bubbles. I was cycling my tank with bubbles in, due to my impatiant husband. I did 10L water changes ( the tank is 60L) everyday for a month as ammonia went up then to 0ppm but the nitrite has stuck at 5ppm since it 1st spiked over a month ago... and even with my water changes it does not go down. I stopped doing water changes for a few days and tested for nitrates and that was at 80ppm... and nitrites still at 5ppm. i did a water change today and still no change. What is happning! bubbles eats fine, is very active and doesnt show any sign of stress. I just really need to know what i can buy or do to make it go down, i have reserched as to why my nitrite isnt going down but none of the situtations i have read pertains to mine. Any help would be greatly appriciated.
As it stands, My levels are
ammonia 0ppm
Nitrite 5ppm
Nitrate 80ppm
i do not have a ph test kit yet
Here is his tank setup, the 2nd photo is bubbles in his old setup ( its just a good pic of him ^.^)
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Old 15th March 2011   #2
Carson
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Water changes are really the only thing you can do to get rid of nitrite. If you're not actively trying nitrate removal strategies, like the addition of plants, or an algae turf scrubber, the only thing to get rid of nitrates is also a waterchange. I'd recomend a larger waterchange. Your tanks about 15 gallons, and your waterchange is about 2 gallons. I'd recommend doing a 50% waterchange when you have such high nitrite/nitrate, and 25% on a weekly basis to keep nitrate below 40ppm's.



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Old 15th March 2011   #3
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

I'll bet you have nitrate in your tap water. It's quite common. Have you tested it to see?



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Old 15th March 2011   #4
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

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I'll bet you have nitrate in your tap water. It's quite common. Have you tested it to see?
No my tests came out normal nitrite at 0, nitrate at 0 and ammonia at 1.0 but i already knew about the ammonia one.



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Old 16th March 2011   #5
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

I was advised to change 20-25% of the water daily during cycling.

10 litres of 60 lt is only about 15 % - so maybe you are just not quite changing enough out.

I'd try something like what Carson suggested, change out 25-30 litres out today, then increase your daily changes to 15-20 litres from then on (20-25%) until the tank cycles.

Put a ton of plants in as well, they chew up bad stuff, slowly but surely.


I wouldn't worry too much, my nitrites stayed at a 5 reading for a few weeks before reducing suddenly while cycling.

It actually sounds to me like you are right on track, maybe just not quite changing enough out daily

Bren



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Old 16th March 2011   #6
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

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I was advised to change 20-25% of the water daily during cycling.

10 litres of 60 lt is only about 15 % - so maybe you are just not quite changing enough out.

I'd try something like what Carson suggested, change out 25-30 litres out today, then increase your daily changes to 15-20 litres from then on (20-25%) until the tank cycles.

Put a ton of plants in as well, they chew up bad stuff, slowly but surely.


I wouldn't worry too much, my nitrites stayed at a 5 reading for a few weeks before reducing suddenly while cycling.

It actually sounds to me like you are right on track, maybe just not quite changing enough out daily

Bren
Ok i will def do that, as far as plants go i cannt STAND THEM!!! i had 4 in when i 1st setup the tank and 2 of them started dieing pretty soon after and the other 2 just had heaps of leafs ect falling off at all times. So along with the water changes everyday on bubbles tank and changes every couple days on my other 4 fish tanks i just couldnt be bothered going through the tank with a net for an hour getting all the **** out. unless you have some adive on a good plant to go with and a way to have them wighted to the bottom of the tank, i think ill stay away from them. :) will do a water change asap then test the levels, hope it goes well.



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Old 16th March 2011   #7
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

To help keep the nitrate levels down, try putting a few stems of lucky bamboo in. They're extremely hardy (especially for those who aren't so plant savvy) and suck up nitrates like there's no tomorrow! I've got a few in my axy tank as well as my planted discus tank. Perfect water parameters every time!



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Old 24th March 2011   #8
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

I am really at a loss everyone... im doing 50% water changes and the levels do not budge EVEN after the water changes! i just dont get it. why is bubbles not being bothered by the high levels of nitirte and nitrate! im glad he isnt but i really do not get it. i gave my filter a bit of a rinse in old tank water to see if maybe the bactieria was "stuck" but a week later and nothing, i have just done another 50% water change after about a 3 day wait ( was watching bubbles to see if he was stressed at all and wasnt) to see if maybe having the water sit for a few days would help but still nothing. i just dont get how it hasnt fully cycled it been over 3 months.... please anymore ideas?
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 5.0
nitrate 40-50
And i use API test kits



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Old 24th March 2011   #9
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Have you tried the Bamboo option? I personally would be very interested in this as I have just started cycling a new tank of my own



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Old 24th March 2011   #10
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

are you using liquid tests or test strips? Test strips are inaccurate and not a way to properlly measure what is in your water.

API master freshwater test kit is a good investment and not overly expensive - the kit also lasts a LONG time because you use such a small dose for the testing


And as always - the best thing you can give your fresh water species - is just that, FRESH water

25% is the smallest water change you should ever do - more is always better!



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Old 24th March 2011   #11
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Do you know what plants you tried?

Until recently I'd never managed to keep plants a love, be it aquatic or normal house plants, but, I seem to have successfully broken my plant murdering ways!

I have moss balls, java moss tied to ornaments and in a moss wall, a few anubias varieties, and lilaeopsis (which is growing like CRAZY!) and all in a tank that gets very little light, only LEDs on in the evening. I am astounded I have had success, to be honest!

other than that, slightly bigger water changes and patience should do the trick!



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Old 24th March 2011   #12
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

More is not always better. Big water changes can lead to wild swings in water quality. More frequent water changes might be warranted though.

How well do you vacuum your sand?



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Old 27th March 2011   #13
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Havent been able to try the bamboo yet, but that will only take down nitrates as far as im aware.. I use Api liquid test kits for all my tests. I am honestly doing 40-50% water changes EVERYDAY for the past few days and after each change it still shows up nitrite 5.0
nitrate 40
ammonia 0
I cant really change more than that casue i will have to turn my filter off ect cause of how low the water is. Once i get this tank fully cycled i will def be getting gava mosss and what not, i dont really syphon the sand casue its very light and i end up syphoning up all the sand itself, i only go along the top for poo ect. i feed him cod worms so there really isnt much of a mess to clean now. I just dont understand it. How is he alive and active and healthy with test results like that?? espically it being like that 2 months! this must be a rare case cause i have serched all over the internet and no where talkes about the problem im having for so long. I have only one idea left as to why the levels will not budge. When i 1st setup the tank i had live plants, they all died and each die as they where dieing they lost alot of leafs ect,. The tiny bits got into the filter pad same with the beef heart. Could it be casue of that , that maybe that all that gunk could be causing this? If so would it just be worth it starting over... i really want to avoide this cause when it was in the ammonia phase bubbles did get stressed out alot. Anyway more advice is need >.< i really cant find my answers on the net



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Old 27th March 2011   #14
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Hi, just wondering: How do you do the bamboo thing? I mean, I've been pretty lucky with big tank's parameters (let's not go into the small Shrimpie's tank), but now I've added Peter back into the big tank (Soon to be followed by Izzie once she reacclimatizes to out of the fridge conditions...-Her gills are looking fuzzy on the edges!), and I've had to stop using my power filter thanks to the shrimp (who are doing a MARVELLOUS job on housekeeping-THANK YOU DAVID!!!), I'm looking for a nice, byproduct suckery plant that I could also use to make Pete and Izzy some new places to hide... It'll be even more interesting when the Trio join back in....
So is it just normal lucky bamboo? can you plant it in the bottom of the tank, or does it need to be out of water? Any tips for ensuring a lack of death (Yeah, weird phrase-it worked in my head)?



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Old 27th March 2011   #15
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherleelee View Post
Havent been able to try the bamboo yet, but that will only take down nitrates as far as im aware.. I use Api liquid test kits for all my tests. I am honestly doing 40-50% water changes EVERYDAY for the past few days and after each change it still shows up nitrite 5.0
nitrate 40
ammonia 0
I cant really change more than that casue i will have to turn my filter off ect cause of how low the water is. Once i get this tank fully cycled i will def be getting gava mosss and what not, i dont really syphon the sand casue its very light and i end up syphoning up all the sand itself, i only go along the top for poo ect. i feed him cod worms so there really isnt much of a mess to clean now. I just dont understand it. How is he alive and active and healthy with test results like that?? espically it being like that 2 months! this must be a rare case cause i have serched all over the internet and no where talkes about the problem im having for so long. I have only one idea left as to why the levels will not budge. When i 1st setup the tank i had live plants, they all died and each die as they where dieing they lost alot of leafs ect,. The tiny bits got into the filter pad same with the beef heart. Could it be casue of that , that maybe that all that gunk could be causing this? If so would it just be worth it starting over... i really want to avoide this cause when it was in the ammonia phase bubbles did get stressed out alot. Anyway more advice is need >.< i really cant find my answers on the net

Sher, i'm a bit confused and befuddled by this last response.

With a quick look over the string of posts here, you have been advised -

* Do daily changes of about 20-25% - above you state you are doing 50%
* Clean your sand more often - You dont want to because......
* Use some plants - You dont want to because.......

Can i just say, try some of the things that have been suggested, you've benn given some good advise in good faith, yet seem to have "excuses" (cant think of a different word) of why it wont work for you

Just try and see how you go.

Besides anything else, you said yourself that your axie doesnt seem to be stressed by the readings? So why are you so stressed? Frankly, for a tank that is still cycling, the readings don't seem that bad to me. If you are keeping up with 20-25% water changes and watching your axie carefully for streee, then i dont think you have a big problem yet

It does seem to be a long time for a tank to cycle, but maybe (just maybe) you are doing too much fiddling around and the tank just cant complete the cycle?

I buggered up about a month ago - i accidentally left my filter off for nearly a week.

When i noticed it, i had a dilemma - do i turn it on straight away, or leave it off until i can deal with it properly? I could not deal with it straight away, i had to wait until later that day , so , i turned it on.

Big mistake. Straight away i knew i'd done the wrong thing due to the horrid stech that came from the water coming out of the filter - i can only imagine what it was like for the poor old axies!

Anyway, i cleaned it all up, got rid of the smell after a coule of days - and i wathced the parameters very carefully for a week or two just in case the cycle crashed.

It was a little up and down, i obviously caused a mini - cycle - i spent two weeks fiddling with the water trying to get it perfect agaian.

After two weeks of this i thought - bugger this! it's ridiculous, the axies are fine, the water is a little up and down but pretty good overall - LEAVE it alone! So i did, i didnt touch it for 2 weeks, just watched the axies for any signs of stress.

Last night i tested the water and EVERYTHING was EXACTLY where it should have been, PH, amm, nitrites, nitrates, gh, kh, just perfect!

So - moral of the story, maybe you need to take a breath, watch the tank carefully, but dont stress and let it do it's thing.

Bren



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Old 27th March 2011   #16
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackdog View Post
Sher, i'm a bit confused and befuddled by this last response.

With a quick look over the string of posts here, you have been advised -

* Do daily changes of about 20-25% - above you state you are doing 50%
* Clean your sand more often - You dont want to because......
* Use some plants - You dont want to because.......

Can i just say, try some of the things that have been suggested, you've benn given some good advise in good faith, yet seem to have "excuses" (cant think of a different word) of why it wont work for you

Just try and see how you go.

Besides anything else, you said yourself that your axie doesnt seem to be stressed by the readings? So why are you so stressed? Frankly, for a tank that is still cycling, the readings don't seem that bad to me. If you are keeping up with 20-25% water changes and watching your axie carefully for streee, then i dont think you have a big problem yet

It does seem to be a long time for a tank to cycle, but maybe (just maybe) you are doing too much fiddling around and the tank just cant complete the cycle?

I buggered up about a month ago - i accidentally left my filter off for nearly a week.

When i noticed it, i had a dilemma - do i turn it on straight away, or leave it off until i can deal with it properly? I could not deal with it straight away, i had to wait until later that day , so , i turned it on.

Big mistake. Straight away i knew i'd done the wrong thing due to the horrid stech that came from the water coming out of the filter - i can only imagine what it was like for the poor old axies!

Anyway, i cleaned it all up, got rid of the smell after a coule of days - and i wathced the parameters very carefully for a week or two just in case the cycle crashed.

It was a little up and down, i obviously caused a mini - cycle - i spent two weeks fiddling with the water trying to get it perfect agaian.

After two weeks of this i thought - bugger this! it's ridiculous, the axies are fine, the water is a little up and down but pretty good overall - LEAVE it alone! So i did, i didnt touch it for 2 weeks, just watched the axies for any signs of stress.

Last night i tested the water and EVERYTHING was EXACTLY where it should have been, PH, amm, nitrites, nitrates, gh, kh, just perfect!

So - moral of the story, maybe you need to take a breath, watch the tank carefully, but dont stress and let it do it's thing.

Bren
I said i do 20-25% water changes when i 1ST asked for advice then i found out through this thread that doing 40-50% water changes would be better so then i upped it to that.

I do not clean my sand because my water vac sucks up all the sand with it, so in turn i just stir it up a bit and it seems fine, the layer of sand is very thin aswell so again i see not much need in cleaning it extentsivly (cant spell >.<)
I have not been able to get plants casue i cannot afford them and the husband and i have been flat out soon as he gets home, and by the time he gets home all places are closed. I am freaking out cause i just want to KNOW why my levels will not budge, i have come to realaize no matter how often i change the water the levels will nto change so i have stopped and do it every 2nd day now. I have had this tank going January i think ( bit fuzzy on that one) and i just dont see how it can take so long to cycle. I am freaked out casue i take really good care of all my animals , and when i do my reserch the net is basically telling me that with how my levels are that my axie should be dead... wouldnt that make you freak out and try your hardest to find the answer?
( just going to add, i think it had nothing what so ever to do with my sand, casue even when i had it a barebottom tank for a few weeks levels did not budge) I was going to clean the tank today but i think im just going to vac the poo and leave it as that. ill let the tank for for a few more days without a water change and see how it goes...Im not trying to act as if im mad at you.. im just really fustrated at this... i really want to get another axie but im not going to shove it into a tank with levels such as they are now...



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Old 28th March 2011   #17
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherleelee View Post
I said i do 20-25% water changes when i 1ST asked for advice then i found out through this thread that doing 40-50% water changes would be better so then i upped it to that....
Actually, you said in your first post you did 10 litre changes out of a 60 lt tank (which is only about 16%) and that you had stopped doing them for a month.

And the advise you got was to do a 50% change, then 25-30 % daily.

Above, most agree 50% per day is too much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherleelee View Post
I do not clean my sand because my water vac sucks up all the sand with it, so in turn i just stir it up a bit and it seems fine, the layer of sand is very thin aswell so again i see not much need in cleaning it extentsivly....
Use a smaller vacuum, like a length of air line tube - and no, it doesnt seem "just fine" as something is wrong with your readings, if it was "just fine" you wouldn't be here asking for help.

It has been suggested a couple of times that if your sand is a bit cleaner it can help with lower readings, take the advise - or don't , up to you

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherleelee View Post
I have not been able to get plants casue i cannot afford them ....
i'm not going there, what might seem cheap for me is not for someone else, so that is an individuals assessment. But you can get (what i think are) very cheap plants from ebay, it's open 24 hrs a day


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherleelee View Post
i have come to realaize no matter how often i change the water the levels will nto change so i have stopped and do it every 2nd day now. I have had this tank going January i think ( bit fuzzy on that one) and i just dont see how it can take so long to cycle. ....
Reading through the thread abopve, it seems to me you have not yet just done 20-25% per day for any length of time - i think 50% per day is too much, and 15% not enough - do 25 - 30% everyday for a fortnight and see what happens.

Yes, the cycle seems to be taking a long time, but if 4-6 weeks is normal, then 6-8 weeks where you are is not unheard of.

I'm suggesting It might be taking a long time because you are changing different amounts of water, on an irregualr basis.

I'm suggesting you do the same thing (25% changes) , for an extended time (2-4 weeks), and see what happens.

In the meantime, again, i think nitrites of 5 and nitrates of 40, is not too high IF you are changing some water every day, so i dont think you need be freaked out.

Bren




Last edited by blackdog; 28th March 2011 at 00:38.
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Old 28th March 2011   #18
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackdog View Post
Actually, you said in your first post you did 10 litre changes out of a 60 lt tank (which is only about 16%) and that you had stopped doing them for a month.

And the advise you got was to do a 50% change, then 25-30 % daily.

Above, most agree 50% per day is too much.



Use a smaller vacuum, like a length of air line tube - and no, it doesnt seem "just fine" as something is wrong with your readings, if it was "just fine" you wouldn't be here asking for help.

It has been suggested a couple of times that if your sand is a bit cleaner it can help with lower readings, take the advise - or don't , up to you



i'm not going there, what might seem cheap for me is not for someone else, so that is an individuals assessment. But you can get (what i think are) very cheap plants from ebay, it's open 24 hrs a day




Reading through the thread abopve, it seems to me you have not yet just done 20-25% per day for any length of time - i think 50% per day is too much, and 15% not enough - do 25 - 30% everyday for a fortnight and see what happens.

Yes, the cycle seems to be taking a long time, but if 4-6 weeks is normal, then 6-8 weeks where you are is not unheard of.

I'm suggesting It might be taking a long time because you are changing different amounts of water, on an irregualr basis.

I'm suggesting you do the same thing (25% changes) , for an extended time (2-4 weeks), and see what happens.

In the meantime, again, i think nitrites of 5 and nitrates of 40, is not too high IF you are changing some water every day, so i dont think you need be freaked out.

Bren
I didnt stop doing water changes for a month. I do not do 50% water changes everyday.. i only did it everyday for 3 days or so to see if the levels went down and when they didnt i was to doing 20L every other days ( swicthing out 3 buckets of water fkin sucks so made it 2) Even going back and reading some of my posts as far as water changes go i have no idea what i was saying lol. i was doing 10L changes till i founf out about the 50% and then to 20% i did the 50% water changes for about 3 days to see if levels went down and nothing, so after a few days i started doing 20L water changes every 2nd to 3rd day, and now its been almost a week since my last water change and levels are still the same... im doing a water change of 10l ( just to clean poop ect) and topping that off then leaving it for another week.
As i said with the sand i stir it up and get what ever floats from it, but since i only feed her worms i have nothing come out of the sand.. and the poo jsut sits on top. So if you dont understand that.. I DO NOT syphon my sand i stir it up and syhon what comes out of it. I really do not like a bucket of sand and bald patches in my tank.
So i still do a sufficiant clean!
Some of my earlyer posts are all over the place but what i have stated above me is the full extent to what i do with my tank. As far as plants go, they are not a nessasity. (spell fail i know) But if someone where to point me to a name of a plant and how to anchor it to the bottom that can take out NITRITES! i will find the money to get said plants. But i have had a bad expireance with live plants and really do not want to go there if i dont have to. My husband and i are building a house so any bit of money we have goes towards stuff to fill said house. but yea a nitire sucking plant i will make money for if i can get a name.



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Old 28th March 2011   #19
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Ok, so do everything you are doing now, change nothing.

How's that workin' for ya?

B



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Old 28th March 2011   #20
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Default Re: Nirtate and Nitrite Spike please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackdog View Post
Ok, so do everything you are doing now, change nothing.

How's that workin' for ya?

B
Well as you can see pretty ****, but im doing the best i can, I have taken the advice of almost everyone and tryied to make a routine of it.
Some say wait a few days to a week and see how the levels are..
some say change the water everyday more is best!
some say dont change to much water cause you will fk up the balence... so wtf else am i suppose to do



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