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Thread: Main Tank leaked, rescue attempt to Ikea container, situation grim

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    West, Singapore
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    Main Tank leaked, rescue attempt to Ikea container, situation grim

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    Gonna be a long post, relative newbie here. Please bear with me

    As I posted on another thread, my main tank leaked on 15th September... Main tank was an established 3ft X 1.5ft X 1.5ft community tank.
    Had a total of 10 fishes and a pleco in it.

    Fishes were :
    1) 2 small blood parrots
    2) 3 balloon belly mollies
    3) 2 Swordtails
    4) 3 loaches
    5) 1 Pleco
    6) Small live Plants X 4

    This 3ft tank was fully cycled and was running with an E-jet Canister filter rated 2000l/h. Last water readings with API testkit was Ammonia 0ppm, Nitrites 0ppm, Nitrates 40ppm, PH 7.4 to 7.6.

    When the leak was detected, I put them another tank and ran to Ikea and got 2 SAMLA transperent storage containers of 45liters volume. Dimensions 56cmx39cmx28cm cm/45ltrs

    Let us call these containers T0 and T1 respectively.

    I equally divided the substrate and driftwood/decorations,plants between the two containers and also divided the fishes. I put 7 fishes in the container T0 with pre-established canister filter(let us call it F0) and 4 fishes in the other tank T1. I setup T1 with 1 brand new submersible pump with an internal corner filter and another new submersible filter with 600l/h.

    I also opened the pre-established canister F0 and took some of the filter media and put it in the internal filter of T1 to seed and started both T0 and T1.

    T0 with pre-established filter(F0) stayed 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and 30 Nitrates 3 days after this.

    But my other container T1 with only 4 fishes(3 mollies and 1 pleco) started showing ammonia. 3rd day Ammonia was already more than 1ppm. So I went and got Ammolock. But ammonia kept on climbing. I did 50% water change also no avail.

    By 7th day ammonia reading of container T1 was above 4ppm (with ammolock) and nitrites were 0ppm. Showing that tank was not cycled at all.

    I am surprised that how this tank did not cycle at all even if substrate, driftwood and decorations and water came from an established tank which leaked. Even I had put some media from the Established canister F0.

    Both T0 and T1 had same original source. Difference was T0 got to run with the pre-established filter F0 while T1 got a internal corner filter and another submersible filter.

    So last Friday 23rd, I went and got myself a used Atman DF1300 Canister filter(let us call it F1) with new media. And Friday to Saturday afternoon(23rd Sep) I ran both canisters F0 and F1 in the container T0.

    Then I took the previously established filter F0 to container T1. While leaving the newly bought Filter F1 in the established container T0.

    Now almost 48hours later, the status is still bad in T1.

    T0 with F1(New filter) : Ammonia 0ppm, Nitrites 0.25ppm, Nitrates : didnt test, PH 7.4 to 7.6(cant make out). Number of fishes: 7

    T1 with F0(Old established filter): Ammonia 4ppm+ Nitrites 0ppm, Nitrates : didnt test, PH 7.4 to 7.6(cant make out) No of fishes: 4(1 pleco, 3 mollies)

    I have been using Prime, API Stress Coat and API Stress Zyme+ inT1 once I started seeing ammonia. Also every 2nd day I am doing 50% water change now along with redosing Ammo-lock.

    I am confused and left with many questions now

    1) Why I did not see any improvement even after using the original established canister filter from T0 for 48hours?

    2) Could it be that the Ammolock is killing my beneficial bacteria?

    3) How is the water quality in T0 staying in decent range even with a new filter + new media(except that I ran it along with F0 for 12hours)?

    4) Should I put back F0 to T0? If not will I risk losing cycle on both the containers?

    5) Will the established bactera in F0 die cos of the conditions in T1?

    6) What are the mistakes I did?

    Oh yeah, I lost 1 Swordtail from T0 a week into this mess. No fishes died in T1.
    Last edited by RonJ; 25th Sep 2017 at 15:39. Reason: Further indo

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Feedback Score
    1 (100%)

    Re: Main Tank leaked, rescue attempt to Ikea container, situation grim

    if most fishes are doing ok in the containers, forget about the readings...
    The Ikea container you've got is almost the size of a 2 feet tank and should be sufficient to house all the fishy..
    you are already stress with the leak tank, why don't you just scope the fishes from the T1 container to T0 container and pour away the water in T1 container. provide some hiding space for the moliies incase the parrot turns aggressive.


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