Quick question: I've just tested all my tanks today. And I notice that just about every tank has a reading of 40ppm for nitrate, yet the ammonia and nitrite readings are "0". How can that be and what does it mean?
All my tanks appear to be in good working order. My fish don't look stressed or ill, and there's no sign of any problems.
I'm just wondering why the nitrate is so high.
Any help is greatly appreciated.
I must admit that when i first read this a few hours ago i was lost for words until i tested my tanks and their all the same as yours. The only thing i can come up with is the sudden change in weather in the uk. Dont know where you are or what yours is like but its changed dramitaclly here.
Sometimes, nitrate is present in tap water, which can be tested just like aquarium water. If that's the problem, you can use distilled or reverse osmosis water for some but not all of the partial water changes. If tap water is not the problem, it could be over feeding or over crowding.
I thought I'd come back and report what I've found out. I tested my tap water only to find out that it's coming out of the tap at 40ppm, so there's not alot I can do. I've had many a conversation with different people over this issue and we've come to the conclusion that, because my nitrates aren't from fish waste, or uneaten food, etc., it shouldn't be as bad to the fish as if it were from me not maintaining my tank as I should do.
I know that my tanks are showing zero ammonia and zero nitrite, so that makes me feel good.
After alot of thought, and conversing with different people with different perspectives, I've come to the conclusion that all I am going to do is add some floating plants and see how that goes.
For all I know, my nitrates may have been high all along and if that's the case, then my fish have not been affected by it (at least not noticeably) and all seems well. I only found out because I decided to use another test kit that included a test for nitrate.
I will continue doing my weekly water changes, but it doesn't do any good, not that I can think anyway, to do more than I'm already doing since the source of the high nitrate is the tap water itself.
So I'm going natural on this one.
Just thought I'd share that with you all.
That sounds like a very good approach. Most fish that are sold for aquariums have been captive bred and are able to tolerate a variety of conditions. Wild caught fish are another story.