Question about AMMONIA, NITRITE, NITRATE

maritzsa

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Hey guys this is my second post and since I received so much help regarding my questions on my first post I want to, once again, come here and ask a question. So I have had my tank for over 3 weeks now with fish in it (was established prior to putting fish in through a fishless cycle with Fritz TurboStart 700 and adding ammonia chloride as food for the bacteria). During my fishless cycling I was fully established in around 10 days and throughout the cycle I did regular testings with the API liquid kit and did see that desired reduction of ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate. However now that I have actual fish in etc, I have been doing regular testings everyday the first week and now every other day for the last week but could not catch any increase in ammonia or nitrite they just stay at 0 and/or very close to 0ppm. Plus my nitrates show no dramatic increase only between 0-5ppm. According to research I should see like more dramatic numbers on my nitrate, I am worried that there is no ammonia or nitrite to feed the bacteria. I got a 10GAL with 6 harlequin rasboras and one male opal betta they get along nicely, the betta sometimes goes around with the small group. They feed together very enthusiastically, begging for food when I come close or open the lid and they see my hand. They poop etc, so how come I can't catch ammonia or nitrite does it just cycle super efficiently over night? Sorry for long post!
 

Slaphppy7

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Yes, an established BB colony will consume ammonia as quickly as it is produced.
Is the tank planted?
 
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maritzsa

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Yes, an established BB colony will consume ammonia as quickly as it is produced.
Is the tank planted?
OMG I can't believe I forgot to mention that the tank is HEAVILY planted, 2 amazon swords, 1 Argentinian sword, 1 java fern, some java moss, 2 hornwort bunches, and duckweed on the top. I know they might be consuming any excess ammonia etc too but does it really happen that fast, I am just astonished!
 

Slaphppy7

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OMG I can't believe I forgot to mention that the tank is HEAVILY planted, 2 amazon swords, 1 Argentinian sword, 1 java fern, some java moss, 2 hornwort bunches, and duckweed on the top. I know they might be consuming any excess ammonia etc too but does it really happen that fast, I am just astonished!
Yep, cycled, properly stocked tanks are pretty darn efficient with ammonia removal
 

Essjay

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Plants take up ammonia faster than the bacteria. And they turn it into protein rather than nitrite.
 

P J

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Hi Maritza, rest easy you don’t have any problem here, there’s always a slight imbalance the healthy bacteria will develop in your filter fine - this can take up to three months. Just don’t wash out your filter as it develops unless the flow is clogged, just gently swish in tank water. PJ
 

Byron

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Your numbers are very good, you deo not want nitrate higher if at all possible. Zero is achievable in some planted tanks depending upon the bioload, but as low as you can keep it (your weekly partial water changes should ensure this with the plants) is the goal. Nitrate is harmful to all our fish in varying degrees, but whatever the level or species, as close to zero as you can is where you want it. My tanks have run in the 0 to 5 ppm nitrate range for over a decade now, never rising from water change to water change.
 

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