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  • help with my water report please

    Here is my water report, please if you are knowledgeable in this, review it and help me out. I have never struggled keeping fish before and would like to solve this problem. I'm stubborn and the more things don't work the more I want to fix it. My electric blue rams just don't seem to make it. I have had success with only one, which just passed after a water change. I don't know what is going on.

    here is a link to what I believe is the most recent water test available for my area:

    http://www.grandforksgov.com/Reports...eport_2009.pdf

    these are my tested parameters by a redsea freshtest kit: dGH=12, dKH= 4 or 5; pH straight from the tap measured 8.0. When tested in a 1 week old low tech with aquasoil the pH was around 7.4

    I dose EI, pressurized CO2 inline atomizer, two koralia 1's, 37 gallon tall tank, Eheim 2217, 50% weekly water change

    Can I keep Blue Rams? does the electric variety matter? Is there something in these measurements that would make it difficult for these fish or am I way off track and should be looking somewhere else for the issue? CO2 has been no problem, O2 problem has been resolved, other fish are healthy (cardinals, SAE's, furcata rainbows, otos, amano shrimp) I had lost some shrimp too frequently for a brief period a while ago, but I think that was due to my oxygen problem.

    Should I consider some sort of conditioning of the water? peat? acid buffer? RO? I've been looking into saving for a good RO unit like a seachem pinnacle RO/DI. Is it necessary if I want to keep blue rams happy and healthy with my tap water?

    as always thank you for taking the time to read and post.
    Last edited by ShadowMac; 03-23-2011, 11:42 PM. Reason: the water report link was wrong

  • #2
    I work in the water industry. Nothing jumped out at me. Rams can be difficult to keep. Your best bet is to try to find a breeder in your area who has bred multiple generations in your city tap water. Either that or you need a well stabilized tank with very few fluctuations in temp, pH and water perameters. Rams also do well in higher temps, 80-82 degrees.

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    • #3
      I had to change the link, it was incorrect.

      something that jumped out at me was my avg. pH was 9.0!!!!!!!

      Comment


      • #4
        I didn't read all 26 pages, but of what I did read, there is nothing wrong with your water. Is it ideal for soft water dwarf cichlids? Maybe not, but your fish will probably do just fine in it. I think you need to stay out of the fish store and not buy any chemicals for while. You also need to challenge each one of your conclusions to date.

        Why wasn't it ammonia? Didn't you just add some fish? Was there ammonia in the bag water when you let the fish loose in your tank? Well, whatever. What you need to do is to start water changes - 50% with your tap treated for chlorine / chloramine brought to the temperature of the tank. Do this for a couple of days until you have flushed your tank to rid it of whatever was bothering your fish. BTW, if it was ammonia, damage to fish is often not manifested for several days after exposure. You may lose more fish, but you need to stop thinking in terms of adding things and instead think in terms of stabilizing things.
        125G Planted Tropheus / Epiphyte: 9hr 156W T5's; KH12; CO2 inj; UGJ's supplied by an Eheim 1262; Eheim 2128 filter; automated WC system; Aquacontroller Jr..

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        • #5
          I kept and bred blue rams for several generations in relatively soft, slightly acid water. The original pair were F1 generation of wild imports.

          When I put them in tanks with harder water and a pH in the high 7's, they did not thrive. They still bred a few times, but the eggs didn't hatch.

          Bill

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Cyclesafe View Post
            I didn't read all 26 pages, but of what I did read, there is nothing wrong with your water. Is it ideal for soft water dwarf cichlids? Maybe not, but your fish will probably do just fine in it. I think you need to stay out of the fish store and not buy any chemicals for while. You also need to challenge each one of your conclusions to date.

            Why wasn't it ammonia? Didn't you just add some fish? Was there ammonia in the bag water when you let the fish loose in your tank? Well, whatever. What you need to do is to start water changes - 50% with your tap treated for chlorine / chloramine brought to the temperature of the tank. Do this for a couple of days until you have flushed your tank to rid it of whatever was bothering your fish. BTW, if it was ammonia, damage to fish is often not manifested for several days after exposure. You may lose more fish, but you need to stop thinking in terms of adding things and instead think in terms of stabilizing things.
            I think a heavily planted tank would neutralize any ammonia very quickly. In fact I think many or most plants will uptake NH3/NH4 before NO3. Plus if using prime after the water change that would have neutralized the ammonia as well.
            Fred

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ShadowMac View Post
              I had to change the link, it was incorrect.

              something that jumped out at me was my avg. pH was 9.0!!!!!!!
              Your water parameters per test were consistent with the water report averages. The pH is as a average seems odd based on the numbers in the water especially with the Carbon/CO2, kH and gH, I almost wonder whether that was a typo and should have been 8.0, but nothing that stuck out to me as an issue.
              Fred

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              • #8
                it wasn't a typo, i checked 2008's report and the avg. pH was 8.9.

                cyclesafe,

                I'm certain its not ammonia, I didn't add that many fish 3 EBR's and 2 cardinal tetras. I did not dump water from the bags in. I always take them out with a net. Secondly, my problem arose when I did not add what I had been adding. There was a very obvious change in behavior to the blue ram that died that day immediately after the water change, the cardinal that died quickly as well. This was something directly related to the water added. Another cardinal died tonight. I'm fearful of doing water changes since this is what caused the issue. Its not ammonia, its a heavily planted tank that has been established for a year.

                the report has 6 pages, one of which is the area of interest that contains the measurements. I'm not sure what are acceptable ranges for fish keeping, so i'm relying on others to help.

                I often wonder about this time of year here, when the snow melts and the rivers flood, and they flood a lot, the tap tastes "off". Yes I have some preconceptions about what it could be, but my observations are supporting that.

                I'm ruling out CO2 because a couple fish that generally respond first to too much CO2 have had no problems, furcata rainbows. I will turn it down just in case, but I don't think this is it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ShadowMac View Post
                  the report has 6 pages, one of which is the area of interest that contains the measurements. I'm not sure what are acceptable ranges for fish keeping, so i'm relying on others to help.
                  Your water is fine for fishkeeping. Its not ideal for softwater fish and its probably more ideal for livebearers and african cichlids and most rainbowfish. However, most fish will adapt to your water. Rams and cardinals are just fish where if something goes wrong with the water they will be the first fish to let you know. They are probably also among the least adaptable of fish to harder water. Cardinals though will adapt to harder water, but they will have problems with fluctuating kH, which is what happened in your case I believe, especially since your water out of the tap comes from a source of 271 ppm total alkalinity or approx 15 kH from the source, if there's flooding and run off the parameters are more likely be off and not adding the discus buffer may have caused too much of a change kH.

                  I find the rainbows in my tank to be the first at the surface if CO2 is too high as well. If fish aren't gasping I wouldn't be inclined to turn down the CO2, because then you'll be setting the stage for algae.
                  Fred

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by fjf888 View Post
                    I think a heavily planted tank would neutralize any ammonia very quickly. In fact I think many or most plants will uptake NH3/NH4 before NO3. Plus if using prime after the water change that would have neutralized the ammonia as well.
                    Fred,

                    Of course. Except very quickly isn't instantaneously. The OP introduced during WC a large quantity of much higher pH tap water which may have converted NH4OH to NH3. He also doesn't (hadn't) mention plants, nor the use of Prime. One thing I have learned about life in general is that there's a reason for everything and when I make incorrect assumptions, the result is unwarranted frustration. Perhaps others experience this too....

                    Steve
                    Last edited by Cyclesafe; 03-24-2011, 03:21 PM. Reason: (hadn't)
                    125G Planted Tropheus / Epiphyte: 9hr 156W T5's; KH12; CO2 inj; UGJ's supplied by an Eheim 1262; Eheim 2128 filter; automated WC system; Aquacontroller Jr..

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ShadowMac View Post
                      it wasn't a typo, i checked 2008's report and the avg. pH was 8.9.

                      cyclesafe,

                      I'm certain its not ammonia, I didn't add that many fish 3 EBR's and 2 cardinal tetras. I did not dump water from the bags in. I always take them out with a net. Secondly, my problem arose when I did not add what I had been adding. There was a very obvious change in behavior to the blue ram that died that day immediately after the water change, the cardinal that died quickly as well. This was something directly related to the water added. Another cardinal died tonight. I'm fearful of doing water changes since this is what caused the issue. Its not ammonia, its a heavily planted tank that has been established for a year.

                      the report has 6 pages, one of which is the area of interest that contains the measurements. I'm not sure what are acceptable ranges for fish keeping, so i'm relying on others to help.

                      I often wonder about this time of year here, when the snow melts and the rivers flood, and they flood a lot, the tap tastes "off". Yes I have some preconceptions about what it could be, but my observations are supporting that.

                      I'm ruling out CO2 because a couple fish that generally respond first to too much CO2 have had no problems, furcata rainbows. I will turn it down just in case, but I don't think this is it.
                      OK. Not ammonia.

                      In San Diego during the fires of 2008, our water company tripled the amount of chloramine in the tap. They did this without warning and the only reason
                      i found out is that I regularly check my carbon filter by testing for chlorine downstream of it. After a negative test there, I verify the test strip by looking for a positive reading in tap. And wow was I surprised. If I had used Prime rather than a carbon filter, I would have lost fish because I wouldn't have used enough.

                      Could it be that your water company has spiked your tap with chlorine or choramine? I didn't see in your water report which they use. That would also explain the "off" taste.
                      125G Planted Tropheus / Epiphyte: 9hr 156W T5's; KH12; CO2 inj; UGJ's supplied by an Eheim 1262; Eheim 2128 filter; automated WC system; Aquacontroller Jr..

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        fjf888, thank you for your help. I ended up with a staghorn bloom because I left my CO2 off for some days while acclimating the new fish. My lights were off too, but I left some of my LED's on and I think they feed the staghorn a bit.

                        For now I think I will get a basic water filter for my hose and use that until I can get a practical RO setup. Maybe then I will try more sensitive fish.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I work in public health and had a conversation with someone this morning who said they do alter how they treat the water this time of year. I wouldn't be suprised to see an increase in chlorine.

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                          • #14
                            Chlorine and alk(KH) are the too biggies to watch.

                            I'm not sure why they say the tap's alkalinity is 271 ppm and then later say the average alk is 82ppm.
                            One is 15 and the other 4-5 degrees.

                            The alk will change a fair amount due to winter and spring melt etc and fall dry spells etc.
                            www.BarrReport.com

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                            • #15
                              so when keeping sensitive species who may react poorly to any sudden fluctuations, say the first water change during the spring thaw, the only way to guarantee a level of consistency is with RO water. correct?

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