EI DOSING USING DRY SALTS

Kev_M

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Hi all,I'm a bit dubious about this. When I started keeping fish "aged water" was regarded as having all sorts of beneficial properties, and fish like Discus were impossible to keep. As soon as people started changing a lot more water Discus etc became a lot more keepable.
Channa generally react badly to water changes. Even small ones. They can sit in unimaginably poor water quite happily. They don't require filtration, etc. Large water changes just make them fight, in my experience. I only change small amounts as infrequently as possible, with crossed fingers.
 

Kev_M

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I believe it to be more of the latter, in general. Although I know some of the dwarf species are sensitive to sudden changes but will happily sit in more ammonia than the highest possible reading on a standard test kit. I have found that fry and juveniles of the medium-sized species react well to water changes but once they hit maturity a water change will send them loopy.

I had an old pair of Channa sp. "Laos Fireback" that not only spawned in a tank with an ammonia reading of over 8ppm (the highest the kit could display), but successfully raised dozens of fry in those conditions. They were perfectly happy but of course, upon testing the water we panicked and began to carry out regular water changes. These resulted in the female tearing the male to shreds and almost killing him. He recovered all of his missing scales (there were so many, he looked as if he'd been skinned) and his entire caudal fin within only a few weeks. This recovery took place in his festering swamp, without a filter running, with ammonia readings through the roof, and several dozen fry scampering about - all in a much too small tank. The pair are still happily living together in a larger swampy home today.
 
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ian_m

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tank with an ammonia reading of over 8ppm
I doubt it...

1. Test kit is clearly indicating something else.
2. Ammonia above 5ppm is invariable fatal.
3. Fish will generally show signs of ammonia in as little as 0.25ppm as it burns their gills.
 

Kev_M

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You're wrong. Do some research on the species I'm talking about. Perhaps it was a faulty reading, and the true level of ammonia was much lower but given the facts:

- Two 8" predatory fish, in 3'x1'x1' tank along with their fry.
- No filtration at all.
- Very little in the way of plants.
- No water changes for 6 months.

I'd say it should easily have been enough ammonia to be toxic to anything else.

I've kept and bred some finnicky species in my time, such as Tropheus spp. and they'd certainly have problems at 0.25ppm ammonia, for instance.

Many Channa spp. can live in completely stagnant water. I know importers that keep them in buckets for weeks at a time without water changes or any filtration.
 
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Kev_M

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Obviously, the pH has a rather large bearing on the lethal concentration, too. The pH of this tank usually sat somewhere around 7.8 but we had stopped testing some time before the huge spike took place. In any event. The water changes had the desired effect of reducing the ammonia level consistently but in the end, we moved them to a bigger tank with gentle filtration and left them alone.

If you do some reading up on the genus, I think you'll be very surprised. For example, in a study for the World Aquaculture Society, approximately 50% of the tested Channa striatus were found to survive 24 hour exposure to 10.3ppm ammonia at a pH of 8.0.

Anyway, I've derailed the thread quite a lot. Apologies!
 
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I doubt it...
1. Test kit is clearly indicating something else.
2. Ammonia above 5ppm is invariable fatal.
3. Fish will generally show signs of ammonia in as little as 0.25ppm as it burns their gills.
I agree but also disagree to an extent.

Years ago in one of my tanks I had a spike of ammonia over 8ppm. The way I noticed was because it stunk of ammonia/chemicals like in a pharmacy from a distance, the whole room. I went to sniff the tank and noticed that my group of corys had a severe finrot too that had happened overnight and the water was stinking of ammonia like hell. I took the ammonia test out, highest scale possible, dark green I remember...... I had done a very nice clean on the single filter until the sponges were bright and clean just the day before and I must have totally recycled the filter as the tank was just 3 months old. There was a growing common pleco in that tank too so in an uncycled tank the ammonia was getting really high.

To remove the ammonia I remember I had to do 2x90% water changes for the next 4 days at least, otherwise it was skyrocketing.

Now to the interesting part. The corys spawned in that ammonia stinking water while their fins were falling apart. I think that's a survival mechanism of sorts. I still can't explain it. There are no eggs that I kept at the time but I moved the corys to another tank straight away while I sort this one out, and they are still alive 5 years later. But they were in that water just 24-48hrs or so. The speed at which their fins deteriorated because of the ammonia was something I didn't know ammonia can do. The common pleco had to endure water changes and stay in that ammonia stinky tank seemingly unaffected himself.
He's still alive too and I still have him. However, the group of guppies that remained in the tank were dead within 2 months. They dropped like flies although not during the ammonia spike.
 

Tim Harrison

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Clive, I've read this and your sister article (CO2 Measurement using a Drop Checker) many times...I just want to say thanks for making both so easy to understand...I think sometimes it's easy to take such a resource for granted, especially when it's been around for some time...
...Edvet's Finest Green aside...of course...o_O
 

Calotype

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Hi every one, I read all this very reassuring thread , thank a lot Clive ! I hope you'll keep to share your advices !
I would like to know if we can safely start Ei from day 1 ? Who did it ? any advice about it ?? What are the risks ?
Many people in france told me to do not fert. until 3-4 weeks... But I believe with good water change from EI program and good grow with rapid growing plant to escape algae propleme at week 3 , am I right ??

thank' a lot
 

xim

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I've seen EI doers normally encourage you to dose since day 1. But I think it's more of a "defencing” the concept of “ferts don't cause algae”
more than anything else.

Yes you can. But I think it's unnecessary if you're using rich soil such as ADA Amazonia that already requires you to do water change
every 2 days or 2 times a week because of nutrient leaching in the initial stage.
 

Calotype

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Thank's Xim !
I really dislike my tap water so I'll only use RO water. Do you think i should start EI early for it's Trace mix part ( because i imagine RO wtaer is poor about those, maybe I'm wrong)? or rich soil allready contain a bunch of macro and micro ?
 

Zoe

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With regards to watts per gallon, if I have 2 x 20W lights, on a 30g tank, that's 40/30 so 1.3 wpg?
 

ceg4048

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Clive, I've read this and your sister article (CO2 Measurement using a Drop Checker) many times...I just want to say thanks for making both so easy to understand...I think sometimes it's easy to take such a resource for granted, especially when it's been around for some time...
...Edvet's Finest Green aside...of course...o_O
Thanks for the kind words mate. Much appreciated and thrilled to be of some help.

Thank's Xim !
I really dislike my tap water so I'll only use RO water. Do you think i should start EI early for it's Trace mix part ( because i imagine RO wtaer is poor about those, maybe I'm wrong)? or rich soil allready contain a bunch of macro and micro ?
If you are using an enriched soil such as new Amazonia then you can easily get away with not dosing for a while, however, as mentioned above, adding nutrients from day 1 does no harm. Aquatic plants feed from both their leaves as well as from their roots but it is much easier for them to feed from the leaves if nutrition is available at that location. In any case, Amazonia will leach nutrition into the water as it's concentration of nutrients is very high when brand new. Either way will work fine.

Hi every one, I read all this very reassuring thread , thank a lot Clive ! I hope you'll keep to share your advices !
I would like to know if we can safely start Ei from day 1 ? Who did it ? any advice about it ?? What are the risks ?
Many people in france told me to do not fert. until 3-4 weeks... But I believe with good water change from EI program and good grow with rapid growing plant to escape algae propleme at week 3 , am I right ??
Yes, you are right. Many people in France are wrong. That's why there is so much nutrient deficiency in France...and everywhere else for that matter.

Cheers,
 

Manu

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Hello Clive,
Thanks a lot for this wonderful thread. I read it a few months ago when I knew nothing about tanks, it gave me few headaches at that time ☺
I'm now going to give it a go at mixing the salts by myself.

Could you or anyone recommend where to buy the different salts?
Can I just go to a pharmacy?
Or is it cheaper elsewhere?
I've checked AE but they don't seem to stock them. I have seen stuff on gardendirect.co.uk but I'm not sure they are the right ones...

Thanks a lot for your help.
Cheers,
Manu
 
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