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Re: Nitrate


This is my conclusions on possible sources of nitrates in the tank (why
your tank is reading 50ppm)

A) a bad test kit,  You didn't state what type of kit or the expiration
date of the kit.  Some kits gives results similar to pissing in the wind.
I suggest a good hach/lamotte/salifer test kit if your in doubt about any
test results.  

B) A bad test.  Some test kits will have known agents that reacts badly
with them.  You could even have a contaminated test.  I would advise
running several samples and checking it with other sources, i.e. tap
water, distilled water, etc..

C) the water you use in the aquaria.  Some tap water does contain
nitrates, the lower the better.  In polluted areas it's not uncommon to
have high levels of nitrates out of the tap.

D) Fish food.  Fish food does contain nitrates.  Over feeding may result
in nutrient buildup.

E) Filters.  Filters will litteraly become nitrate farms if not handled
properly.  Media change very often is required to keep the numbers in
check as with water changes.  The common practice of over sizing filters
is usually a no-no for maintaining nutrient levels that are adequate (like

F) Fertilizers.  Overdosing.  Need I say more?

G) decomposing material.  Stuff like mulm, dead leafs, dead fish, fish
waste, etc.. will eventually turn into nitrates.  The biggest key here is
water quality and water changes ;)

I believe that I am missing a few key factors here but I hope you get the
picture ;)  Honestly it can be any one of the above or a combination

Hope this helps,