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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I recently changed the decor in my tank. I removed a piece of plastic decor and replaced it with a piece of driftwood. Over night my ammonia levels went up(seems like the decor was a bacteria bed) and three fish died. Question is, can I place some Bio spira in the tank to off set the ammonia? Or will that kill the fish in the tank?

I have removed the driftwood because it was too large for the tank. Should I place the original decor back in the tank or should I let it level off by itself?

Thanks,
 

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Er, that shouldn't have changed a thing. Sure, decor and rocks can have some bacteria, but as long as you have a biological filter (biowheel or canister), removing even ALL the decor shouldn't cause any spike.

I would bet the driftwood wasn't clean... Did you soak it first? If your levels are still super high after the driftwood is removed, your bio could've just spontaneously and coincidentally crashed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am going to do another reading.

It's a 35 gallon high. I have a bio wheel and an eheim 2028 canister filter(which are well estabilshed) on it.
I soaked the driftwood for about an hour before I placed it in the tank.

Under the original decor had a bunch of stuff that was growing, as soon as I removed it, It got suspended in the water. I tried to siphon as much of the stuff out. Hoping the fish wouldn't eat it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Okay,

I just did an ammonia test(the drops not the strips.)
It gave me a reading of .5 ppm. Not bad, but not good!
before I made the changes, it was at 0ppm.
 

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The detritus buildup no doubt was the cause of the spike, not the removal of any bacteria on the driftwood. Good news is that your filters should respond fairly quickly to handle the spike. Faster than bio-spira would anyway. In the meantime, keep doing the water changes at least daily, twice if possible, while vacuuming out whatever you can from the gravel. I'd stop feeding for a couple of days. This should resolve pretty quickly. Also consider using Prime or something similar to detox the ammonia.

HTH
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So,

I went to Fish store earlier today. I have decided that I am going to change out the gravel and with a more natural brown look. I also purchased some rainbow rock slates. I am going to break up some of them and build a rock slab formation. I plan on doing this in a few weeks after my water levels off.

I talked to the manager at the fish store(He knows his stuff. I didn't go to a chain store)
He told me turn off the filters and put water from the tank in a container and place the fish in it.
However, The best I have is a five gallon container that I use for water changes. If I bought a trash barrel or something, my wife would look at me as if I two heads.

He also mentioned that thing to watch out with afterwards is nitafying(sp(or nitritfying) considering that the changes in the tank might cause it to initially spike.

He's the problem, I don't want to kill any fish in the process. What is the best way of dealing with this problem.

Also, should I pick up a bottle of Bio Spira just in case and a bunch of ammonia clear or other detoxifyers?

thanks,

PS...

Should I also get some egg crate for the bottom of the tank for the rocks?
 

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He told me turn off the filters and put water from the tank in a container and place the fish in it.
And then what? Put them in a bucket with no heat or filters?? Why does he have you turning off the filters?

What is the best way of dealing with this problem.
prov356 said:
keep doing the water changes at least daily, twice if possible, while vacuuming out whatever you can from the gravel. I'd stop feeding for a couple of days. This should resolve pretty quickly. Also consider using Prime or something similar to detox the ammonia.
Also, should I pick up a bottle of Bio Spira just in case and a bunch of ammonia clear or other detoxifyers?
Prime, or AmmoLock would be great. Don't bother with the bio-spira. It takes a week to 10 days to be effective. The bacteria will recover on their own before then.

Should I also get some egg crate for the bottom of the tank for the rocks?
No, just my two cents. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hi thanks for the reply,

for the filter, yes I would put that in the container. I'd probably just use the penguin200 on it.

thanks for the other info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
BTW,

I recently had some forktail(furcatus) rainbow fish die on me. I tested the water again this morning. the ammonia is coming down. Between 0-.5ppm. However, my PH is 6.0. I believe my PH might have killed the rainbow. I currently have live plants in the tank. It not full of plants but this what I have: green myrio, some ambulia and Java fern.

My S/A cichlids(Blue Ram and Apisto Cac.) seem to like the lower PH.
don't know what it would do to my other fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Believe the culprit in my PH drop may have been the driftwood. After a water change, I am going to check out the PH again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well, I spent most of the day this past saturday redoing my tank. I went for the stones and live plant theme. Looks really nice. The ammonia level dropped off too.

I'll see about getting up pictures so you guys can check it out.
 
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