Suspended particles and nitrates?

reefguy24

New member
I looked at my water last night and it's running at 80ppm nitrates.

I went out and bought chemi-pure and put it in the middle chamber of my jbj 24 nano. I then did a 4 gallon water change with Catalina water (mixed with ro/di water to get salinity down to 1.023).

I awoke this morning and my nitrates are still at ~60ppm. It seems as if the water change and the chemipure didn't do their job (at least over the past 12 hours since I did them).

I'm looking at my tank now and I see "snow" particles suspended in the air.

Should I be using the "ghetto protein skimmer" that came with the jbj nano? It's a piece of plastic that looks like a comb and fits over the intake.


I was feeding the two clowns and one dottyback (and CUC) 2x a day (very small portions) but I'm lowering that down to 1x every 2 days.

My parameters (partial) are as follows:

Amonium: 0
Nitrites: 0
Salinity: ~1.023

Also at the top of the water there's a ton of snowflake particle matter.



thanks


/edit

I should also mention that I have been feeding nothing but frozen shrimp cubes (cut one cube into halves and feed 1x per day)
 
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MrTuskfish

Team RC
The nitrate dropping from 80 to 60 is a real improvement. Did you expect overnight elimination of nitrate? Chemi-Pure does nothing to lower nitrate. From what I've read, posted by RCs water chemistry expert, CP really isn't a product for SW at all. I prefer a good carbon. Keep doing the WCs and feed your fish. If this is a fish-only tank; your nitrate is not at a danger level. Nitrate is a danger to corals and other inverts; not fish. Also, your fish need a varied diet; clowns are omnivores and need greens. Try some frozen Formula II.
 

reefguy24

New member
Hi Tusk,

Yes....I did expect overnight elimination. A bit disappointed, but starting to realize nothing good comes quickly in this hobby. I'm disappointed because I thought nitrates were a detriment to the fish.....and I like my clowns and want to make sure they're happy.

I got the clowns because the "strips" that I used to check the water quality showed very low nitrates.

Last night, I got the "chemist set" and did the test tube and solution #1 and #2 and was amazed the nitrates were so high.

Those test strips aren't worth the paper they're printed on.

So I freaked out and went to the fish store late at night to get something to bring down the nitrates....hoping the fish wouldn't die.


I have one anemone but he's white (with yellow tips) and according to some people on this forum....he doesn't look so good. I will post a pic of him/her/it down below.

I also have 3 coral frags....one is a zoa the other two....I will post another pic down below.

I also have a decent size CUC:

2 emerald crabs (who play nice with each other and everyone else.....so far)
2 small snails
3 hermit crabs.....but they don't seem to be very active in the past 48 hours I have had them.
2 conch shells (they do a great job sucking up the brown algae at the bottom)
1 fire red shrimp

I only have 3 fish in the tank: 2 small clowns (immature and non-sexed) and one purple fish that someone identified as a "purple dottyback" in another thread....but the fish store calls it a "false" something or other. All 3 fish are playing nice.

I don't have any intentions on getting anymore fish for a very long while. I'm happy with what I got and am hoping the clowns will pair up and breed. One clown sleeps in the anenome at night while his buddy stays at the bottom.


I got:

live rock
live sand
2 bags of ceramic "beads" (one from the local fish store that was already "cultivated")


Should I be cleaning out the sponge filters in the back of the tank? Maybe that's why the nitrates are high? Left over food particles and etc?
 

reefguy24

New member
Here's a pic of the unknown purple fish (I forgot the name....it starts with "false") and the three frags and one anemone in my tank. The outside glass is a bit dirty because I haven't yet cleaned it today.

I'm debating on adding some chaeto in the very back so it gets some light....but I won't be able to see it from the front.


ouaEQmH.jpg
 

reefguy24

New member
nice tank! I'm excited for mine to be cycled :D

Thanks, it only took about a week and a half to get the amonia up, then nitrites up, then everything down to 0.

I think I screwed up by slightly over feeding....thereby increasing the nitrates to the current level they're at.
 

Reefmedic79

Life and Reef Saver
Thanks, it only took about a week and a half to get the amonia up, then nitrites up, then everything down to 0.

I think I screwed up by slightly over feeding....thereby increasing the nitrates to the current level they're at.

How old is the tank?

Aside from over feeding I think your tank may be too new as well. Best way to get you nitrates down are to continue water changes, approx. 10% every 5-7 days, and I would reduce your feeding to once every other day. Also, if your using frozen brine or Mysis, thaw and rinse the food before feeding the tank.
 

reefguy24

New member
Thanks medic, it is fairly new.

I'm going to stop using frozen shrimp cubs and only feed flake food until this problem is under control.

Will also only be feeding once every two days. Hope the fish don't starve....
 

thatreefguy22

New member
Thanks, it only took about a week and a half to get the amonia up, then nitrites up, then everything down to 0.

I think I screwed up by slightly over feeding....thereby increasing the nitrates to the current level they're at.

I think mine has already cycled in the first 2 weeks, as well.
My api was reading about 0.50 ammonia then dropped. and stayed in the range of 0-.25ppm. and then skipped right to nitrates within the 2 weeks.

10/21/2013, I added a shrimp to get a noticeable amount of ammonia (2ppm to 4ppm). I then removed the shrimp early this morning, and is now about 1ppm to 2ppm. still with no nitrites, and 10ppm to 20ppm nitrates.

It's my fourth week! still no fish, or cuc. (not much green algae, and ZERO diatoms).
 

thatreefguy22

New member
Thanks, it only took about a week and a half to get the amonia up, then nitrites up, then everything down to 0.

I think I screwed up by slightly over feeding....thereby increasing the nitrates to the current level they're at.

I think mine has already cycled in the first 2 weeks, as well.
My api was reading about 0.50 ammonia then dropped. and stayed in the range of 0-.25ppm. and then skipped right to nitrates within the 2 weeks.

10/21/2013, I added a shrimp to get a noticeable amount of ammonia (2ppm to 4ppm). I then removed the shrimp early this morning, and is now about 1ppm to 2ppm. still with no nitrites, and 10ppm to 20ppm nitrates.

It's my fourth week! still no fish, or cuc. (not much green algae, and ZERO diatoms).
 

reefguy24

New member
I leave my light on for about 12 hours a day (cut back yesterday and today to 8 hours).

As I'm writing this, I got 4 janitors (2 conch, 2 hermits) currently on clean up duty and they're all working at the moment.

Am dealing with runaway anemone right now.....something ****ed him off. He was fine for the longest, now he's looking like he's going to bail the spot I placed him in.

I think it's due to the emerald crab getting underneath the anemone and ****ing it off.

Not sure what to do as the emerald crab is a bit of a jerk.
 

thatreefguy22

New member
I leave my light on for about 12 hours a day (cut back yesterday and today to 8 hours).

As I'm writing this, I got 4 janitors (2 conch, 2 hermits) currently on clean up duty and they're all working at the moment.

Am dealing with runaway anemone right now.....something ****ed him off. He was fine for the longest, now he's looking like he's going to bail the spot I placed him in.

I think it's due to the emerald crab getting underneath the anemone and ****ing it off.

Not sure what to do as the emerald crab is a bit of a jerk.


I don't know when I should add my CUC. Suggestion?

and as far as fish, and inverts/corals. I do plan on having an emerald, and few small fish, and soft corals :)
nothing too much, considering my tank is only a 20gal long. But I'm sure I can do plenty with this to mess around, it is my first tank.
 

Rumjahn

New member
Partial water changes will only partially reduce nitrates. 4 gallons out of 24 is 17%, and the change from 80 ppm to 60 ppm is 20%, so you're right on target with the expected nitrate reduction from the water change.
 
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