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I squeeze my sponges from filters with every cleaning...have not had a problem so far (since 2005). Strum is right, the "bacteria" once well established are pretty hardy.
Indeed - I would not expect you would have a problem. You use the sponges in your tanks as mechanical filtration and primary biological filtration comes from other media. (Me remembering from previous discussions we've had - please correct me if I'm wrong:)). I use sponges in my system as primary biological filtration. The squeezing of sponges would have much different impacts on our systems.
 

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Hmmm. I do have some tanks that have only the sponge as media and I squeeze vigorously...no problem. I imagine the bacteria growing on the tank/decor surfaces could be compensating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Well everyone here is a turn up and what I hope is not a complete tank crash!!! So I came back and added my new fish. All seemed fine until I realised my FX6 (the other filter) and the one that carried most of my media was not running!!! How long it had not run for I have no idea at all. I checked everything and found a small stone in the impeller which I can only think meant my filter just shut down. I opened it and it smelt not great at all!! My ammonia had spiked and I immediately did about 80% water change. I added an existing U4 from my grow out tank and chucked in some live bacteria I had along with a new purigen pouch to my fluval 307. I dosed the tank with prime and I’m holding my fingers. I’ve just tested and the ammonia is now 0 nitrites 0 and low to trace nitrates. I’ll re test in the morning but does anyone have any idea how long bacteria can survive for in a stagnant canister? Is this bacteria now dead? And if so how long will it take to re establish with what now is two other seeded filters running.

what a nightmare to come home to!!! Any help or advice on what I should be doing would be helpful and very much appreciated. I don’t want my fish to die.

mall filters are now running ok.
 

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You want to see the nitrates increase over time as this is evidence of bacteria waste and health.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Can I get your advice please. Further to my FX6 shutting down for 48 hours and the fiasco of having to add my U4 I’ve had two ammonia spikes. Everything was fine until I fed them twice in one day as normal and the next morning my ammonia spikes to just under 1ppm. I then did a 25% water change and took it back to 0. 24 hours later another ammonia spike which was less but still at 0.5ppm so again I did a small water change which was today and again it’s back to 0. Nitrites are at 0 and my nitrates around 0.25. Last fed was yesterday and nothing given to them today.

what’s everyone’s advice here? Should I keep water changing as and when the ammonia spikes?
How often should I be feeding if at all?

fish all look ok, wanting food, swimming well, gills look fine.

I don’t want to lose any of these guys.

please advice
 

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I would not feed and keep changing water to keep ammonia under 1ppm. Do you have other established filters you can use?
 
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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Only some smaller ones from my grow out tank. But the ones I could remove are only really good up to maybe 60-100 litres….very small.

So don’t feed at all?
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
The fluval U4 internal I have added is the largest established filter I have. Plus there’s a fluval 307 which is established too.
 

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Don't feed at all. Malawi are good for 30 days without food. Hopefully your bacteria will kick in before that.

What media you have already added is not processing the ammonia. If you don't have other media available, don't worry, but worth checking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Also if I have readings of 0 ammonia and 0 nitrites how long from then shall I fed them? Not at all or fed them but if it spikes after then what do a water change? Or should I wait for a few days of 0 readings if I’m making sense.

thank you DJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Last tests of the day as it’s 11pm here.

0 ammonia
0 nitrites
5-10 nitrates

nitrates have gone up since last tests so there is a cycle going on.

if the readings are similar tomorrow morning shall I fed them as the ammonia would be under 0 or wait longer?

thank you and sorry for so many questions
 

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I would skip another day to be sure and then begin feeding sparingly....1X daily and only what they can eat in 30 seconds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Good morning

so first tests of the day are:

ammonia 0
Nitrites 0
Nitrates 10-20 more towards 10 though I would say but definitely gone up a little
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
Just done lunchtime test and had another ammonia spike.

ammonia 0.25-0.5
Nitrites 0
Nitrates 10 ish

should I do a 25% water change?
 

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Ongoing better to do a PWC than dose with chemicals. You can check 1X daily instead of every 4 hours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
So done a 30% water change done and ammonia back to 0. So I’ll test daily from now evening to evening starting tonight. If ammonia is 0 tomorrow do I feed or still leave it as ammonia is still spiking?
Thanks
 
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