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  • Results 1 to 13 of 13

    Thread: Constant nitrite at 0.4 - 0.8 ppm dangerous?

    1. #1
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Constant nitrite at 0.4 - 0.8 ppm dangerous?

      Hello friends:

      Nitrite has been at 0.4 - 0.8 ppm for at least 1.5 months, meanwhile ammonia has been zero and dKH has been kept at 10-15. Nitrate has fluctuated 20-40 ppm. Konstant water change (new water is trickling into the tank while 10% old water is removed every day or about 20% every second day). Temperature is constant at 18.5 centigrade.

      I have been adding NaCl to 0.1 - 0.15% all the time. From what I have read 100-times more chloride ion than nitrite is good enough to protect the fish completely from nitrite. Since I have roughly 1000-times more chloride ions than nitrite in the water, so my fish must be very safe, am I right?

      Thanks for your thoughts!

      Simon

    2. #2
      trapper is offline Senior Member
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      I'm not familiar with the stuff that you are using, I have used salt in the past to protect the fish from nitrite and I know it works.. Someone will be here soon that will be able to answer your question..

    3. #3
      RichToyBox's Avatar
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      Fish should be safe. I am concerned that the fish load may be too high for the volume of water. With the water changes you are describing, I would believe that the nitrates would be very low, and without the high water changes your nitrates will climb very high very quickly. I think the nitrites should drop very quickly, based on time since startup, but it may be that that level is what will be the normal level due to size of filter for size of fish load, in which case adding additional filtration may be necessary to bring the nitrites to a level that is imperceptible.

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    4. #4
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Thank you Richard!

      Yes the load must be quite high: In a volume of about 1.2 m3 I have two koi of about 55 cm, one of 45 cm, six of 35 cm, and twenty of 20 cm.

      I have been feeding them 4 times a day, about 20 g koi food (34% protein) each time. From now on I will reduce the feeding to 3 times a day and see if nitrite will go down.

    5. #5
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Simon, am I missing something here or are you saying that you have all of those koi in roughly 320 gallons? I am hoping you have more volume than that.

      Just to make this easier for those that don't make the metric conversions on size, that's:

      two koi of about 22"
      one at about 18"
      six at about 14"
      twenty at around 8"
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    6. #6
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Marilyn View Post
      Simon, am I missing something here or are you saying that you have all of those koi in roughly 320 gallons? I am hoping you have more volume than that.

      Just to make this easier for those that don't make the metric conversions on size, that's:

      two koi of about 22"
      one at about 18"
      six at about 14"
      twenty at around 8"
      Hello Marilyn:

      Thank you for your reply!

      I am ashamed to say yes. This is my emergency solution to keep them alive over the winter. I am relying on the constant water change and water checking. Next winter I will have to increase the volume drastically if I will have to take all of them inside again. My plan is to give away half of the smaller ones including the third largest.

      I may have overestimated their size. They may be 5 cm (or 2 inches) smaller when I now have looked at them and the ruler again. I have unfortunately not measured them before I took them inside, so all the sizes are my estimations.

      As volume (body mass) is cubic of length I have calculated that all these koi (if I have overestimated them by 5 cm) are equivalent to one 80 cm (32 inches) fish. So that is not so dramatic to have one 32-inch fish in 320 g?

      Anyway I am feeding less now.

      What I think strange is that ammonia-oxidizing bacteria obviously have no problem handling the load but the nitrite-oxidizing bacteria have. I just wonder if I have missed something for the nitrite-oxidizing bacteria to thrive.
      Last edited by SimonW; 2 Weeks Ago at 03:28 PM.

    7. #7
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      Even if all the fish were 5", it would be a sizable fish load for that volume of water.

      Make sure there is adequate GH, KH and the water temp is above 72 degrees. Those are the components needed for a tank to fully cycle. I agree that it is good the ammonia seems to be processing but the lingering nitrite is definitely an indicator that all is not well.
      For that fish load, I hope you are turning the water over very frequently. Something along the lines of 4-6 times an hour is not unreasonable.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    8. #8
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Marilyn View Post
      Even if all the fish were 5", it would be a sizable fish load for that volume of water.

      Make sure there is adequate GH, KH and the water temp is above 72 degrees. Those are the components needed for a tank to fully cycle. I agree that it is good the ammonia seems to be processing but the lingering nitrite is definitely an indicator that all is not well.
      For that fish load, I hope you are turning the water over very frequently. Something along the lines of 4-6 times an hour is not unreasonable.
      Thank you again Marilyn!

      Yesterday I started to reduce feeding from 4 to 3 times per day, that is 60 g food (earlier 80 g), and I also increased water change, not sure how much as water is trickling into the tank, but my ambition is from about 10% per day to 15-20% per day.

      Today I measured the nitrite and it is down to 0.2 ppm. I will do a new test tomorrow again.

      Theoretically the water turn-over is OK, as the pump nominally pumps 6 m3 per hour. But since I also use heavy aeration (8 m3 per hour) which makes huge waves and disturbs the stream, so I donīt know if it is optimal.

      If nitrite does not go down to zero soon I will reposition the water intake and outlet.

    9. #9
      Marilyn's Avatar
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      I'm glad you're trickling in water. A flow through is one of the easiest ways to purge waste laden water in the water column. One recommendation is to have the influx trickle on one side of the tank and the overflow to waste on the other. It maximizes its efficacy.

      Glad to hear the nitrite is dropping. You're closer to zero and that is a good thing.
      Still learning as I go but y'all can call me Marilyn

    10. #10
      trapper is offline Senior Member
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      I'm not sure on your filtration setup but it sounds like you need to up the bio, do you have a shower? If not I would suggest making 1 and I think you would be good to go..

    11. #11
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by trapper View Post
      I'm not sure on your filtration setup but it sounds like you need to up the bio, do you have a shower? If not I would suggest making 1 and I think you would be good to go..
      Thank you for your advice!

      The biofilter is a pressure biofilter nominally for a pond with a size of 16 m3 (The tank is 1.2 m3). Inside it there are several layers of sponge, and I think the volume is 50 liters. I have been flashing it once per month.

      I have limited space in my garage and that pressure filter is what I could squeeze into it. I have another pressure filter nominally for a pond with a size of 6 m3, and I am considering using it as well, if the nitrite continues to be detectable.

    12. #12
      trapper is offline Senior Member
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      In my opinion the pressure filters are more of a mechanical filter than bio, probably the least effective of the filters for bio. You could hang a shower over your tank and not take up any floor space as well. JMO..

    13. #13
      SimonW is online now Senior Member
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      Update:

      The nitrite is slowly getting down, now very faint pink, 0.1 - 0.2 ppm.

      What I have done: Increased the water change from about 10% per day to 15% per day, and feeding reduced from about 80 gram to 60 gram per day.

      Ammonia is still zero.

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