Hi All. I am new to the hobby and set up my Juwel Rio 180 tank 17 days ago. It turns out I was given very bad advice from the shop where I bought it. They told me to add 10 Cardinal Tetras which I foolishly did. Of course I have now lost 6 of them they also told me to use API testing sticks to keep an eye on the water. I then went to a specialist shop who told me to use Prime and Stability which I have done everyday when testing with the API Master Test Kit they also sold me. My 4 remaining Cardinals seem relaxed and happy and are eating normally and the tank looks good, with the beginnings of green algae on the glass. I have been doing 15% water changes every 2 days. My problem is that my water parameters are not changing. They have remained constant now for 6 days. They are pH 7.2 Ammonia 0 or 0.25 depending on the light. Nitrite at 2.0 (Hard to distinguish the different shades of purple) and Nitrate at 0. Is this normal or have things stalled. I have some live plants in the tank. Some advice badly needed as I have made one fish fatal error and don't want to make any more.
As you're probably now aware, both ammonia and nitrite are toxic to fish, so the key will be to do whatever frequency and size of water change you need to in order to get and keep them at 0 - this may even be a couple of 40% water changes per day. Read and follow the advice in this https://www.fishkeeping.co.uk/articles ... ammonia-nitrite-spike.htm , and hopefully your remaining 4 cardinals will survive the experience.
In due course (maybe a month or two from now), consider adding more cardinals to the shoal - but keep monitoring ammonia, nitrite and nitrates for the next couple of months after that too.
HI, Thanks for the welcome and fast reply, much appreciated.
If I do continual water changes to reduce Nitrite levels, will that affect the formation of the Nitrite eating bacteria, thus stopping my cycle? Everything just seems to be static with no movement in any reading at all, and do I continue to use Prime and Stability while this continues?
It is a huge learning curve, but I am determined to get there and do it all properly. I live in a very rural part of the Rep of Ireland and have no mains water. It comes from our own well and the tests show it to be very good so no worries on that score. I have found a decent Aquarium specialist, but they are 3 hours drive away in Galway or Dublin!
Thanks Fishlady. This is all very new and confusing but I WILL get there. Going to do a big water change tomorrow, but Prime seems to be keeping it under control as the Cardinals are relaxed and eating normally. All the levels are still unchanged so at least the tank seems stable and has been for a week. When do you think I should expect to see some movement and is there anything I could do to expedite things? I have read the article and added ti to my favourites for future reference. Thanks for that