Cloudy Tank

Luna0341

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So I've got 10gal tank that planted, it might be overstocked but only slightly. I got a female Betta, 3 Endlers, 3 bronze cories. ( Before you respond about the tank being too small, I've already heard it, we plan to upgrade them soon, before you respond about my Betta , Ive already heard it.... And so far haven't had any aggression problems.) Here is what I want to talk about........
I've got Cloudy Water. I understand that be beneficial bacteria can cause cloudy water but this tank is Cycled and been Cycled a long time now, this isn't a cloudy water during cycling issue. This has just been a recent thing and I don't understand. I let my new filter sit with old filter about a month before changing. And I do weekly water changes ( the percentage of the water change based on testing) I test water parameters every 3 days. I've had problems with my plants last few months so Ive added small amounts of fertilizer and it has helped my plants and I do see an increase in Nitrates, but nothing abnormal. I've cut back on feeding. And nothing seems to work, even 20-50% water changes, the water only be clear for a day, then back to cloudy. Any advice?!?
 
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Luna0341

Luna0341

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This is my tank
 

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Luna0341

Luna0341

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Some of you may say overstocked. But these fish all have low bio loads. And besides the Betta they are all babies. So the tank my eventually become too small and overstocked but because they are all maybe a couple weeks old. I don't believe overstock is my problem. And my parameters are looking. Good. No ammonia no nitrites, 20 ppm Nitrates. I do have hard water. My alkalinity is ideal. I have very hard water, my PH is at 7
 

BrianK

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I would recommend some floating plants. And when I feed my plants (which isn't often), I only use only half doses.
 
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Luna0341

Luna0341

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I would recommend some floating plants. And when I feed my plants (which isn't often), I only use only half doses.
Can you explain? Will this help my cloudy water? Do you know why my water is cloudy? I don't understand.
 
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Luna0341

Luna0341

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Another problem I'm having is the lower half of my plants, look sick or dying, but the top is blooming and growing huge looking healthy..... Is this normal? Also roots are spreading from top of the plants. I'm assuming this is to help the plant absorb nutrients. Do I need a thicker substrate? My substrate right now is gravel. About an inch and a half thick, I want to switch to sand but I e been lazy and haven't gone through with it.
 

BrianK

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The plant at the back looks like a Java fern. You have to keep the rhizome above the substrate. If you bury it, you will kill the plant.
I think the other is water sprite? I think that is normal for roots to grow from anywhere but I could be wrong.

My thinking on the floating plants is that I think the cloudiness is from bacteria or algae feeding on the nitrates in the water and the floaters will soak some of that up.
 

Colin_T

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Milky cloudy water is a bacterial bloom.
Green cloudy water is an algal bloom.

The easiest way to deal with a bacterial bloom is by doing a big (75-80%) water change and gravel cleaning the substrate. You might need to do this every day for a few days but it usually clears pretty quick.
Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it's added to the tank.
 

Essjay

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Just to add that a bacterial bloom is not caused by the beneficial bacteria which remove ammonia and nitrite. They are completely different bacteria which 'eat' carbon based food rather than nitrogen based food like ammonia & nitrite. They also multiply very quickly and live floating in the water, unlike the beneficial bacteria which multiply slowly and live attached to surfaces.
 

Byron

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Whitish blooms are usually bacterial blooms, but can also be diatom blooms and organic blooms. Work at resolving it naturally, never resort to any "additive" to clear the water as these are harmful to fish and only "cloud" the actual issue anyway (not suggesting you intend these, just a caution not to).

Understand that organics occur not only from the biological system but also can be present in tap water especially in summer. I remember one summer back in the late 1990's when the bacterial organisms in our source water exploded; after a water change I could not see the back of the tank. This went on for the summer months. It does not harm fish, but is unsightly. Bacterial blooms in new tanks are usually (if not always) the result of dissolved organics in the source water, but these can occur at anytime. The organics in the filter and substrate also contribute obviously.

You mention adding plant fertilizer...which and how much? At the very least, these can displace the natural nutrients taken up by plants, if they are excessive or the wrong sort.

And, how long is the tank light on each day?

BTW, you do not want to be deliberately increasing nitrate. Nitrate is harmful to all fish; the level, the species and the exposure time all factor in as to how nitrate will affect the fish, but keeping nitrates as low as possible is always going to help the fish. This may be connected to your fertilizer, some contain nitrate which is never needed in a natural or low-tech planted tank.
 

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That One Guy
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Seven small fish in a ten gallon is nowhere near being overstocked. Your aquarium looks nice . If it was me I would not feed the fish for a couple days and wait for it to clear up. It probably will.
 

Matty24

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I had a small issue with cloudy water for a few weeks I'm no expert but from what I worked out I was dosing to much of one fertilizer I scaled down slightly and changed my dosage and I've not had a problem since, could be a similar issue to what I had just putting it out there 🤷‍♂️
 

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