Help reading water results


New Member
9 Jun 2019
First pic is nitrate and second is ph. Ammonia and nitrite are reading 0.

I bought 6 guppies, two of each variety.

One died because it became stuck behind the background I managed to free it and block any access to the background. Even though it seemed ok at first, stress took over and I moved it back to the quarantine tank, it died about 12 hours later. Now the other matching guppy is acting odd, staying in one place of the tank and sometimes resting on the gravel, compared to the other 4 fish it is hardly moving.

I've spoken to the store I purchased them from and they suggested my water parameters could be off, mainly my ph level.

Now I'm concerned I'm reading the test result wrong as I do really struggle with them. The nitrate looks orange in real life, between 5.0ppm and 10ppm. The ph looms like it's either 7.8 or 8.0.

What do you think?


24 Dec 2014
If the shop is nearby, I’d drop in and request a water sample from the guppy tank - compare test results (at home) with your own tank water
You could also bring in a water sample for shop to test (but I like to check as well)

Guppy’s are very prone to Columnaris disease (which unlike the mad protestations of magic elixir retailers, is not easily treatable ... lab tests to identify the Columnaris strain, and determine drug sensitivities, and fish populations still experience high mortality rates) - supportive care does impact survival, soft acidic water and low fish density and optimal water quality (especially good oxygenation of water column re gills are often first site of infection, also heart tissue, then body muscle tissue and so on) are significant factors
(Of course as a livebearer, most guppies are maintained in harder, alkaline water)

Daily water changes
Treat for external parasites (not infrequent secondary infection)
If you observed increased activity (and less shimmy)- you’re on the right path

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