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New guy. In need of some advice

Discussion in 'Our Community' started by Darren191287, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. Darren191287

    Darren191287 New Member

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    Hi all

    My name is Darren, I'm new here. I'm here because I wish to keep discus and in my quest for the information to do so successfully I came across this form.

    My first encounter with tropical fish was about 10 years ago. I kept a verity of guppys platies and other small fish. I kept them successfully for a few years, until after a day out I came home to find my heater had failed. Since then I've not kept fish until now. A friend of mine moved house and could no longer keep his tank and fish and offered it to me.

    So for the last few weeks I've been reading lots of information and learning as much as possible. So that I can ensure I have the maximum chance of doing a good job for my discus (when I finaly get them). I went out and brought a nutrafin test kit and I could do with some advice with the results specifically with my pH.

    I did a test about a week ago and my pH was about 6. This was one day after a 50% water change. I did a test today it's been 4 days since I did my last water change my pH is now at 5. The water straight out of the tap is 7. So is it normal to see such a change in the pH. From what I've read keeping a steady pH is important. Is this something that happens to all tanks or is there something I should be doing to stop this.

    Any info you could give me on this would be gratefully received. Thanks.
  2. TURKISHPAT

    TURKISHPAT BIDKA Member & Show Shareholder

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    first of all welcome to the madhouse plenty of people on here will answer all your questions so dont be afraid to ask as we all learn all the time. if you can tell us your water readings ph/ hardness etc it will help. your tap water may be very soft lacking carbonate hardness so will not have any buffering capacity so your ph will drop. my water in kendal is very soft so have to buffer it by havin crushed oyster sheels in a sock in my filter.
    Jay1 likes this.
  3. Jay1

    Jay1 Active Member

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    Hi Darren, welcome to BIDKA. As Pat says, post up your full perams, tank water and tap water. Tell us the size of the tank (ltrs or gals), what filtration you have and what fish are currently in there. It's all a bit of a pain at first if you haven't done it before, but once you know what your base is, you can implement a water management routine that makes it much easier in the long term.
  4. Steve Dawes

    Steve Dawes Well-Known Member

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    :w: Darren , as the guys above say we could do with seeing all your water parameters in order to try and advise you
  5. Darren191287

    Darren191287 New Member

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    Firstly thank you for taking the time to take a look at the post. I'll try to add everything I know. Hopefully it's all relevant info that I'm giving you and I don't miss anything out.

    The tank has a volume of approximately 200 litres. The tank contains a few plants and three pieces of big wood. The bottom of the tank is sand. Their is also an air pump.

    The fish that are in there are-
    3 4" silver sharks
    2 small gourami
    1 3" angel fish
    1 small albino catfish
    1 sailfin Pleco
    10 Cardinal tetras

    I have a external filter. A aquamania EFX 200.

    The water test I did last night returned the following resaults
    pH 5
    Ammonia 0
    Nitrate 5
    Nitrite 0.1

    At the moment I don't have the ability to test the hardness of my water so I found out what I could from my water supplier. The describe my water as "moderately soft" and give the following information-
    CaCO3 mg/l 83
    Ca mg/l 33
    Degrees Clarke 5.84
    Degrees French 8.34
    Degrees German 4.67

    The only other thing that might be worth me mentioning is that I recently added my first dose of API leaf zone. I only used half the recommended dose. Hopefully that will give u a slightly clearer picture as to what's going on. Again thanks for your advice.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2016
  6. Owl

    Owl BIDKA Member & Show Shareholder

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    Hi Darren :w:

    You can't go far wrong by following TurkishPat's advice by telling you he keeps some oyster shell in a sock in his filter.
    A good source to obtain oyster shell is a pet shop which sells bird food etc.
    hipflask likes this.
  7. hipflask

    hipflask Admin Without A Clue Staff Member

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    Hi Brian, hope all well your side:thumbup:
  8. Darren191287

    Darren191287 New Member

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    Yesterday I went out and got some crushed oyster shells. After plenty of fun with my filter I i got them in. Today I got a water hardness testing kit.

    My tap water is
    KH1 GH107

    My tank water is
    KH2 GH90

    From what I've read my KH would be better off being at least 3 to help the stability of my PH. Is that correct? Also so if the oyster shells don't do the job should I just add more? And how long should it befor I start to see a change in the water due to the shells.
  9. jizzy

    jizzy Well-Known Member

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    What u should of realy done is
    put coral/oyster shell into a foot of womans clean tights , tie it up and put it infront of the flow of the outlet side of the filter & gradually raise the kh/ph to a stable 7 (neutral) slowly so it doesnt cause ph shock to the fish if it rises too quickly,

    But anyway how u have done it is fine it just makes more work if u need to remove/or add more ,
    you should notice a rise in ph within imo 6 hrs
    id keep checking the ph every 5/6 hrs until the ph is stable , if the ph stableizes above 7 just remove small amounts of the coral/oyster shell untill the ph is neutral, or if it settles below say 6.5 then just add a little more & keep testing untill u reach the desired ph

    From experiance if ur ph is @5ppm then id add a large handfull of the shell and monitor from that , a large handfull probably works out around a cup full
    HTH
    TURKISHPAT likes this.
  10. Darren191287

    Darren191287 New Member

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    Just wanted to say thank you all . I've been monitoring the water and it seems the oysters shells have done the job. I rang devotedly discus yesterday to find out when there next order was going in. So I'll be getting my first few soon. That's if I can decide on what types to have.
  11. Jay1

    Jay1 Active Member

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    Which ever Discus you decide on from DD, they'll be stunners and hard as nails. :thumbup:
    jizzy likes this.

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