I have a new tank which I didn't cycle before adding fish (didn't know about it).
However since then I have read about cycling and have purchased a fresh water test kit. I tested my water and got the following:
- Ammonia 0
- Nitrite 5 ppm (this is the highest lvl my color chart has)
- Nitrate 0
Its been like that for a week despite 30% water changes every two days.
Everything I have read on internet forums say my fish should be dead. However they seem fine. They are not gasping for breath at the top of my tank like would be expected for nitrite poisoning.
I have 6 tetras and a bristlenose pleco in a 60 litre tank.
Has nitrite toxicity to fish been overstated? Why are my fish still alive?
Update Its been two weeks now, Nitrites are still at 5 ppm, I have upped the water changes to 50% every day, with no effects on the Nitrite readings. I still haven't lost any fish. My guess is that the nitrites are actually well over 5 ppm so the 50% water changes are not enough to bring it below 5 ppm. I'm starting to see Nitrates in the tank so the cycle is progressing.
Updates 2 Its been three weeks and the nitrites have now gone to zero. I havn't had lost any fish, or seen any signs of nitrite poisoning.