I finally got the chance to switch my tank to a soil-based planted tank on Sunday. It was a looooooong process, but I'm happy it's done! However, I've seem to run into a problem.
Last night when I went to bed, the water column was clear. It took three complete drainings of the tank to get it that way, but the end result was water that was as clear as glass. This morning when I woke up (around 7:30am), the water was sort of murky, but not completely turbid. Then, when I came home from class, I noticed my tank water had gotten so dark that I could barely see anything in it. Out of curiosity, I decided to check the ammonia reading and it read an outstanding 8ppm
. Thankfully, I had decided last night not to put my fish & snail back into the tank, so they weren't exposed to the sudden ammonia spike.
I'm just really confused because all of the guides I've read have said that you should be able to safely add your tank inhabitants the day you set up the tank, but had I done that, I'm pretty sure I would have come home to a dead fish this morning.
I have a 5 gallon tank that's filtered & heated to about 80 degrees.
One Zoomed Daylight bulb; 10 watts, 6500k; 12 hour photoperiod
Miracle-Gro Organic Choice All Purpose Plant Food * capped with Floramax
dwaf saggitaria, giant hygro, hornwort, anacharis, narrow-leaf anacharis, bacopa caroliniana, two small stalks of bacopa monnieri, a tiny portion of a pennywort plant, wisteria, watersprite, "dwarf amazon sword", one stem of ludwiga, a little guppy grass, one marimo moss ball, duckweed and salivinia minima
my betta & mystery snail will eventually be going back into the tank, as well as three trumpet snails and a varied mix of about 10 pond & ramshorn snails.
* After having to set up this tank TWICE, I only JUST NOTICED (as in, while I'm typing this) that this isn't what I thought it was (Miracle Gro Organic Choice Potting MIX
). Could this be the reason for my high ammonia?