Suddenly add 20 fish to Established tank

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Tou

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Hi Reefers
I need some advice from experts here.
So my 65 gallon tank is about 2 years old and was housing 4 fish and around 20+ anemone.
Recently I converted into a clownfish harem by adding 20 clownfish all at one time. Suppose 20 is a good number for them not to fight.

Right now everything is doing great, I am checking water everyday but I am bit concerned about ammonia spike since I added So many fish at one go.

My question is if ammonia spike happens because my bacterial can't handle the bioload what should I do?
-Should I buy a bacterial in a bottle and just pour it in? I am looking at either DR. Tims one and only or instant ocean bio spira.
-Is it a good idea to pour those bacterial into an already established tank?
-if I do more frequent water change, will the bacteria start to balance out the bio load on its own?

Also any other good recommendation on product for bacterial in a bottle or idea on how to deal with this situation?
I am all ears and here to learn.
Thank you all
 
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NeonRabbit221B

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How long between removing the 4 fish and adding the 20? If ammonia happens and it’s detectable with standard test kits then my immediate response is to aerate the tank with additional surface flow, 4x dose prime and a hefty water change to reduce the bound ammonia that will be released in 24 hours. Adding bacteria is unlikely to help much because bacteria live on surfaces and surface area don’t scale with bioload. Increasing bacteria surface area via adding additional precycled rock can help.

How much rock do you have on wise? How long ago did you add them to the tank?
 
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Tou

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How long between removing the 4 fish and adding the 20? If ammonia happens and it’s detectable with standard test kits then my immediate response is to aerate the tank with additional surface flow, 4x dose prime and a hefty water change to reduce the bound ammonia that will be released in 24 hours. Adding bacteria is unlikely to help much because bacteria live on surfaces and surface area don’t scale with bioload. Increasing bacteria surface area via adding additional precycled rock can help.

How much rock do you have on wise? How long ago did you add them to the tank?

I removed the 4 fish the same day I added 20 clownfish.
That's good idea with prime + surface flow.
So if I did what you say, and continue doing it. will that evenutally balance out and I won't have any more ammonia spikes?

I did add more bio rings for bacterial to live on. And I don't think I have room to add more live rocks at this point. I would say I have around 80 lbs on rocks that's been in tank for 2 years. So if I pour in bacteria in a bottle into those bio rings. Will that help?

Any recommendations which brand of bacteria in a bottle to use for an established tank?
Thanks
 
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Dan_P

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Hi Reefers
I need some advice from experts here.
So my 65 gallon tank is about 2 years old and was housing 4 fish and around 20+ anemone.
Recently I converted into a clownfish harem by adding 20 clownfish all at one time. Suppose 20 is a good number for them not to fight.

Right now everything is doing great, I am checking water everyday but I am bit concerned about ammonia spike since I added So many fish at one go.

My question is if ammonia spike happens because my bacterial can't handle the bioload what should I do?
-Should I buy a bacterial in a bottle and just pour it in? I am looking at either DR. Tims one and only or instant ocean bio spira.
-Is it a good idea to pour those bacterial into an already established tank?
-if I do more frequent water change, will the bacteria start to balance out the bio load on its own?

Also any other good recommendation on product for bacterial in a bottle or idea on how to deal with this situation?
I am all ears and here to learn.
Thank you all
@brandon429 what is the answer here? Seems do nothing but monitor is one. The second might be to have Bio Spira on hand for a quick boost of ammonia oxidizers. A third might be to lower the pH to reduce the level of NH3 if it rises. Have a bottle of Prime ready was already suggested.
 

brandon429

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we know his active surface area carries X number of fish before the tipping point where everything dies in two hours

nobody in reefing has found the breakpoint number / X for live rock and or sand for fish loading, so we are intuiting outcomes from other post patterns at best

I’ve seen the lfs keep many many juvenile clowns in a separated twenty with only live sand on the bottom- no skimming or rock. I dont recall how they moved water it was years ago but even then I remarked on the surface area help by the sand. It was a stand alone temp tank not plumbed it was in the middle of the sales floor

Lfs routinely stack max carry onto small zones of surface area, rock or sand and they seem never worried about crashes, I like to keep that balance along with forums that always tend to bac needing help.

100% agreed adding bottle bac won’t help without new attachment points, but adding some along with the new media made sense as thats new vital space

that action will carry the fish I’m certain. I also feel 99.99% were they just added things would be fine simply because i can produce a semi relevant thread for any tank bad outcomes lol and I cannot recall or produce one where active surface area was overcame by fish, we are all dealing in gross excess. All my crashes on file are peroxide wipes, old sand upwells etc

I wish we could have a running seneye on the tank a month before the addition to chart its readings, then the + fish, and chart it only adding the cheats if we rose above hundredths. Since we can’t the moves taken already are sure to work
 
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brandon429

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I think they’re the same ends, already active lr would indeed add to carry ability or new inert surface area + bottle bac that would quickly inhabit the new zones would work as well

lets see pic of this fish holding setup. I feel going off patterns that this would work without any supplementation
 

brandon429

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I just re read to see eighty pounds of lr cured.

im 100% sure this tank can handle the fish as is, but we don’t have reliable means to measure that it seems. Most will add the extra as insurance

eighty pounds of lr in high flow/display is so powerful as an ammonia filter...the guys in the ammonia dosing thread are adding huge amounts of nh3 routinely and I think that equates / rivals a twenty small fish bioload
 

brandon429

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This is why I won’t believe any ammonia alert post made on the forum and in turn we expect all bioloads tested to pass just the same. They’re dumping in straight bathroom cleaner so their corals get steroidal nitrogen heh


***there’s no way all reefs above happily take on liquid ammonia and then the same kinds of tanks below can’t even process a quarter ppm****


a new posting trait has been discerned from patterns and its that the title of a post alters how the respondents feel about surface area and bacteria, but what really goes on tank to tank is a consistent undercurrent of reliability. something objective,
details tbd - we don’t even have good measures to see what a hundred tanks do regarding nh3
but we have hints

all these posts were marked emergency, therefore it was.
All bacteria and surface area assumed unable.

what did the objective evals say, especially given the command for nh3 the tank dosers in the top link

we can detect nh3 action so many other ways even as good testing awaits...water clarity, smell of water, animal location typically, known history of substrates, fish breathing rates,

everyone’s ammonia alert was test based only, had completely non indicating tank details once we got pics. this post above that wants to add in many fish, all these are linked jobs

I believe all this is linked to the undercurrent of reef tank nh3 truth yet to be outlined.
 
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Tou

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Wow thank you guys, those are very good and helpful information.
Here is what my tank looks like the day before 20 clowns went in. Hope that give you an idea on how much LR I have in the tank. So yea adding more LR won't be possible at this point. Can only do bio rings for now.
Also sand bed is around 2-3 inchs.


IMG_20210214_103103__01.jpg
 
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brandon429

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that very nice matured tank is absolutely full up on surface area, extras cannot even help it has so much. Im 100% certain no rings are needed here just due to the ratios alone. nice thread for sure. This also relates to how bottle bac are being sold after cycling, that's a big deal in our hobby. its millions of dollars, based on surface area doubt

I can find many articles about cycling and bacteria for reefing

I can find zero regarding active surface area physics, that's a powerful market void.
 

brandon429

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just so it doesn't sound like its making up things on the spot wanted to offer this:

that exact setup is found to carry twenty fish in several posts. a reef, teeming with fish and life and thousands in coral

all Im claiming is that no ramp up is required to get there, the day that live rock is set in a tank as active, it carries its max fish load and disease will take them long before nh3. that's far more surface area than LFS' use to house new shipments for days on end as well. since its never a harm to add the extra surface area it makes sense to do so, that safety net keeps us from seeing the true effects of surface area physics in my opinion.

its very easy for someone across the web to advise on someone elses $ lol agreed but its neat we can tie in this work request to several other pertinent threads vs just random guessing. Im all chips in that system carries 20 instant fish even if we remove the entire sandbed first (not hyperbole, the sand rinse thread is exactly that for years)
 
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Tou

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Oh man
Thank you Brandon
Is such a relief hearing that, I will still keep an eye out for sure. But definitely got me stop worrying on one morning, everything died from ammonia spike.
I appreciate everyone that pitch in this conversation to help a fellow reefer.
Thank you all
 

brandon429

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I do believe that a loss cascade can occur if anems or big fish die and overcomes things agreed fully. our main issue in the ammonia emergency thread above was the days/weekslong sustain reported after any losses were cleared. I wouldn't think a fish load can cause the same loss risk.
 
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Tou

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I do believe that a loss cascade can occur if anems or big fish die and overcomes things agreed fully. our main issue in the ammonia emergency thread above was the days/weekslong sustain reported after any losses were cleared. I wouldn't think a fish load can cause the same loss risk.
Totally agreed!
Thank You
 
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brandon429

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hey you have the worlds most sensitive weakest reef tank mine canary

the lysmata

if he goes well you can bet that nh3 did not budge not an iota

*disclaimer, for titrationers lol

we routinely see api and or red sea indicate a change to signal ammonia. it causes every single emergency post on the web as the animals run fine. until we get a blend of animal behavior (hovering, can't breathe, darn sure not feeding) tied with a reading spike, I take the readings as fallible and defer to the whiskers in that shot above. if your water begins to cloud at all, water change time it's being eclipsed. but I bet all chips in vegas it wont happen.
 

brandon429

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did you add the bac or not add the bac :) is this a surface area test, or as advised with a reef tank worth $1000+ by any practical person add the bottle bac and rings

if people want to do crazy things w reef tank extremes in test I always want to be there w notepad to log results.
 
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Tou

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did you add the bac or not add the bac :) is this a surface area test, or as advised with a reef tank worth $1000+ by any practical person add the bottle bac and rings

if people want to do crazy things w reef tank extremes in test I always want to be there w notepad to log results.

I did not add the Bac yet but I did add bio rings. Right now Ill just let my tank do the work and seed those bio rings and see how it goes. People did say those seed quickly so we should see. It never hurts to have more bac. I will update this in couple days and see how it goes. So far is the 4th day and ammonia still remain at zero. So I am guessing is working?? *Fingers Crossed *
 

mickeysreef <*))))<

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i would add double dose of prime and stability everyday for 14 days at least. clownfish are hardy so they can survive a little ammonia burn but why put their health at risk?
 
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