Water quality problems and toads

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denise

Guest
I have been having some water problems in my firebelly toads aquarium. I put them in on Tuesday, I tested the water on Friday and it was high in both ammonia and nitrites so I removed and replaced about 2 gallons. There is only about three gallons total of water in the aquarium. Then yesterday I tested it again and it showed ammonia about .50 and nitrites were really high at 5.0 ppm. I did another large water change. I just tested it now and the ammonia is at 0 but the nitrites are up to .50 ppm.

Should I be doing another water change already today??

How will this tank ever get cycled if I have to do so many water changes?

I'm really worried now because I have to go away in two weeks from Friday till the Monday night. I could change the water on the Friday morning but judging by what is going on right now, that just isn't going to be good enough.

Any suggestions would be appreciated. I have a fluval 1 for a filter and I put in about 1 1/2 cups of gravel from my cycled tank but it doesn't appear to have helped so far though.
 
J

jennifer

Guest
I have one major suggestion (and you won't like it): redesign the tank, or get a larger tank, so you have more water volume. You say "toads" so I assume you have at least two of them. Even for two, I would suggest a water volume at least double what you have.

Basically, you are doing the right thing: large scale water changes until the levels settle down. As long as you don't do a total change, the tank will still get cycled.

The whole cycling process takes 3 weeks, more or less. By the time you go away, water quality should be more stable. But you are still going to be running the risk of excess ammonia and nitrite if the capacity of the tank is too small for the amount of waste production.
 
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denise

Guest
hmmm? It's a 15 gallon tank and I set it up this way on suggestions I received from other firebelly toad owners on the net. I have the piece of glass siliconed in place so I don't think I'll be able to change the set up at this point.
 
D

denise

Guest
<blockquote><hr size=0><!-quote-!><font size=1>Jennifer Macke (Jennewt) wrote on Monday, May 24, 2004 - 16:26 :</font>

"By the time you go away, water quality should be more stable. But you are still going to be running the risk of excess ammonia and nitrite if the capacity of the tank is too small for the amount of waste production."<!-/quote-!><hr size=0></blockquote>

Hi Jen, I was told on another forum that I should do 50% water changes until I go away for those few days. They also told me not to worry about testing for ammonia/nitrites/nitrates because the toads are not as sensitive to the water problems as fish are.

Would you agree with this? I do have to mention that it is a forum where they advocate testing for all new aquarium set ups for fish, and they also recommend continued testing after the tanks are cycled.
 
J

jennifer

Guest
The extra water changes won't hurt. If you still have detectable ammonia, you should do them. I don't have any real scientific knowledge about the relative sensitivity of FBT versus fish. But I do know that most amphibians are able to absorb liquid through their skin, so my guess is that they are just as sensitive. With the small water volume you have, you should continue to test the water even after cycling, especially if the frogs spend a lot of their time there.
 
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