Monday, February 16, 2015

New Tank Syndrome: Adding Healthy Bacteria to your Aquarium

For the ones that are new to the aquarium hobby, you may inadvertently find out about an aquatic condition some people call "new tank syndrome." Unfortunately, it can be lethal to the more sensitive fish, but it can easily be avoided.

Anyway, when you first set up a fish tank, everything is obviously fresh. There is no waste, no fish, etc. Well, this also means that there is no bacteria present in the water (in most cases), as well. Not all bacteria is bad, and an established aquarium should always have the most healthy bacteria, of course. Well, after you get all your primary components, gravel, air pump, water filters, etc., it is time to start adding some fish. When you start adding these little creatures and start feeding 'em, the waste will begin to accumulate. If you add too many fish early on and/or start overfeeding them, your ammonia levels can soar to unsafe levels. In due time, ammonia-eating bacteria will form and turn this into another harmful substance called Nitrite. Hopefully the nitrite will not hang around too long, and the nitrite-eating bacteria will soon appear. When they do show up, they will change the nitrite into a much safer Nitrate. You can easily remove a lot of the nitrate that builds up, from periodic water changes albeit most fish can handle high nitrate levels.

Outside of sheer neglect and ignorance, most of the premature deaths of aquarium fish happen early on, in a new tank, with a beginner hobbyist. Oh, I forgot to mention: Even if you do everything right and only add a small amount of fish and feed sparingly, it is totally normal to have a cloudy tank in a couple days after first setting it up. Do not change the water when this happens, as this is called a "bacteria bloom." Yeah, the stuff you need. Eventually, the healthy bacteria will find various types of substrate and settle, colonize, and so on. A lot of the bacteria will thrive in the water filter housing and the water filter itself, along with the gravel and other objects in the tank. I'm not getting into vacuum pumps for gravel cleaning or the best types of filtration today, so let's move on.

Okay, so here is the main point of this post: If you are unsure and impatient when it comes to slowly building up your community fish tank, they do make a product just for you. Depicted above, is a product that contains live, healthy bacteria. It helps prevent ammonia and nitrite build-up and allows you to add more fish early on, without having to worry as much about the "new tank syndrome." This product comes highly recommended.  After your tank gets established, you shouldn't need to use this product anymore.

Anyway, I hope this post helps a few people that are just starting out in this aquatic hobby; cheers!

Image Credit: Fair Use. Product Image is found on various websites and catalogs throughout the globe.

Shopping Link:  "Click Here' for this SafeStart Aquarium Product from Amazon"


---End of Post "New Tank Syndrome: Adding Healthy Bacteria to your Aquarium"

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