Testing the water!!!

Nrboxer

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So every time I test the tank with a new setup I get ammonia at 0ppm and nitrite at 0ppm and nitrate at 0ppm on a master kit. I figure I would have some kind of spike. I have 7 angels 3 pletcos and 4 Molly’s. Any advice? All the fish are hiding for the most part since my kids came over lol. I also have 2 amazon swords in the corners!!!
 

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Nrboxer

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It’s a 48 gallon tank and I have set it up about a week and a half ago I have not done a water change it since the parameters are zero
 

Byron

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Your plants are probably saving you (and the fish, more to the point). Amazon swords are fairly rapid growing plants, and yours look in good shape. You might be amazed at how much ammonia/ammonium these can take up as their preferred source of nitrogen. And when plants use the ammonia, nitrite is not a by-product, and that means no nitrate as well. Though some ammonia will get past the plants to the nitrifying bacteria, but (hopefully) not enough to cause issues.

Floating plants would really seal the deal, and they would calm the fish a lot. Angelfish come from very dim waters and do not like overhead lighting, so floating plants help reduce this, and that makes them less timid to other things as well--like the kids!

Monitor ammonia for a few days though, just in case. But given the volume, and the small size of the fish, the plants are likely easily handling this.

BTW, swords being heavy feeders really benefit wiith substrate tab fertilizer, if you don't already have this. Seachem's Flourish Tabs are one of the best.

Now, to something really important...you must do a weekly partial water change regardless of test results. Change at least half the tank volume, but 60-70% is better. Once each week, forever. nothing is as important to fish health.
 
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Nrboxer

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Your plants are probably saving you (and the fish, more to the point). Amazon swords are fairly rapid growing plants, and yours look in good shape. You might be amazed at how much ammonia/ammonium these can take up as their preferred source of nitrogen. And when plants use the ammonia, nitrite is not a by-product, and that means no nitrate as well. Though some ammonia will get past the plants to the nitrifying bacteria, but (hopefully) not enough to cause issues.

Floating plants would really seal the deal, and they would calm the fish a lot. Angelfish come from very dim waters and do not like overhead lighting, so floating plants help reduce this, and that makes them less timid to other things as well--like the kids!

Monitor ammonia for a few days though, just in case. But given the volume, and the small size of the fish, the plants are likely easily handling this.

BTW, swords being heavy feeders really benefit wiith substrate tab fertilizer, if you don't already have this. Seachem's Flourish Tabs are one of the best.

Now, to something really important...you must do a weekly partial water change regardless of test results. Change at least half the tank volume, but 60-70% is better. Once each week, forever. nothing is as important to fish health.
Thank you very much for the information I am using fertilizer tabs from sea chem flourish tabs! I put them in today and it says I should put them in about every 3 4 months. What floating plants would you recommend that are easy to take care of?
 

Byron

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Thank you very much for the information I am using fertilizer tabs from sea chem flourish tabs! I put them in today and it says I should put them in about every 3 4 months. What floating plants would you recommend that are easy to take care of?
I prefer what I call the more substantial plants, that have larger root masses and a good leaf spread. Not onlydo these provide shade, but fish will browse the root masses for food, fry will be protected, amd some fish spawn among the floating plants.

Water Sprite (Ceratopteris cornuta) is without question #1. Close followers are Tropical Frogbit and Water Lettuce. Some stem plants can be effective if just left to float, pennywort is one.
 

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