New member
My tank is 55 gallons with fish and corals in it the nitrtaes are around 20ppm and it has been up and running for about 4 months. The fish and corals look healthy I'm gonna buy a new test kit to make sure the readings are matching. I dont have any SPS in there yet, I wanna make sure before I put them in..... Can my nitrates be this high? I'm assuming no.
The fish include:
1 maroon gold striped clown
1 lawnmower blenny
1 blue chromis
1 blue yellowtail damsel
1 blue tang
1 diamond watchman goby
There are a few corals, 2 brains, 1 mushroom rock, 2 torch, 1 plate, 2 clams, 1 polyp rock and a few other small pieces that i cant name off hand.
There are numerous different kinds of cleaners also in my tank....
I plan to add more things slowly but surely and was wondering if anyone new if the sps would last with nitrates at 20ppm.
I changed 3 days ago from a Coralife super skimmer to a Tunze 9010 (i finally see what a real skimmer works like). Will my nitrates go down a little and will my water quality be better now that I switched to a REAL skimmer.
Thanx DRU


New member
You have alot going on in there for a 55gal. Nitrates are probably correct. I would wait before adding any sps to the tank. Personally I would start a separate tank with no fish for the sps. Considering nitrates are not that high. Do water changes to help lower the nitrates to 10-15ppm. Think about adding a refugium for better phosphate and nitrate control.


New member
ditto with all of the above. fuges work best, however since now you have "real" skimmer, you might experiment with sugar. ...oh, watch out for the "tang police" :)


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That's a lot of fish? Am I overloaded--2 gsm, 3 chromis, lawnmower blenny and a small foxface, as well as the normal cleaner uppers and two rbta. i have a 44G with 50 lbs of LR, a 7 gallon fuge w/cheato and 8 lbs lr, and an octopus 110.

we are currently working on upgrading to a 65 w/ a 55g fuge, but that wont be for another few months (i've been saying a few months for a few months already...).

besides bacteria, what in the ocean consumes or converts nitrates?



Premium Member
Any photosynthetic organism is likely consuming nitrate, as one example, along with bacteria and archaeans. I don't know off-hand of many other consumers.

The foxface can get rather large, so the tank is over what I'd add to it.


New member
We tried the DIY de nitrator coil, with little to no result. your best bet is maintenace. make sure sponges and pads are clean every 4-7 days, make sure skimmer is foaming good. and macro algaes, rake the sand bed at least once a week with the fish load you have, do it slowly to not stir it up. do a weekly water change as well 10% or so. should keep you in the 5ppm or lower, if you want 0, try mangroves, its what we are trying now. just started 3 weeeks ago to try to get it to 0.


New member
i dont think your overloaded at all....nitatres in the 20 ppm range arnt all that bad for fish and soft corals and lps..with the tunze and bi weekly 10% water changes,youll get the nitrates down to 10 ppm in a matter of a month or two...there are a lot of by the book type of opinions on rc,so most people on here dont believe in a tang in a 50 gallon...i personally think a blue tang will be happy in a 4 ft. long 55 gallon for a few years,eventually youll have to get rid of it my 90 gallon i have a blue tang,tomani tang,naso tang,clown tang,gold stripe maroon clown,six line wrasse,flame angel,royal gramma,2 firefish,engineer goby and 2 cleaner shrimps....oh yeah and about 50 various corals and 50 snails and 40 hermits or tank parameters are perfect with the nitrates hovering around 10 ppm....i do weekly water changes and all my tangs are small and amazingly happy....i usually only keep my fish for a year before i trade to a freind with a bigger a jazz musician,so im constantly takin chances with music and reefing,and if your fish are happy,youll know it,dont worry about the by the book opinions,as there not always right....just keep up on your water changes..also,please dont flame my post,as this is my tank,im an adult,and i know what im doing.


New member
have you thought about a rdsb?... i have heard very good things about these and you will start to see results within days of setting it up. just a thought


New member
i read the ENTIRE rdsb thread.

my two concerns for nitrate control using a device instead of a technique:
size (limiting factor more than a concern)
water under pressure outside the tank


New member
if the rdsb is set up correctly the water pressure outside the tank should not be a concern. as far as the size goes a 5 gallon bucket should be enough. in the rdsb thread they said 5 gallons per 50 gallons of tank volumn... your running a 55 which i would say close enough. if still a 5 gallon bucket is still to large for you maybe there is a way you could manage to have it hooked up some way just for the short time that you will need to get the nitrates down. after you get them down just do regular water changes.