Cloudy Water in a Fish Tank and What to do About It!
Cloudy water in the aquarium, how to deal with it?
In a normally functioning aquarium with fish and turtles, many particles float in the water. These are particles of sand or fish waste. If their density is higher than the density of the water and poor circulation is present, they will tend to sink to the bottom. Such particles are usually visible to the naked eye and do not primarily affect transparency. However, if they are smaller and there are a lot of them, then the effect of milk water appears.
In such cases, novice aquarists ask themselves: why does the water in an aquarium become cloudy and how to avoid it?
For obvious reasons, everyone wants crystal clear water in the aquarium. In addition to the obvious aesthetic results, clear water improves the light transmission, illumination of fish and ornamental plants, it is especially important to maintain good transparency for deep aquariums. If the water becomes cloudy or even more stinking, this must be dealt with.
Why does the water in an aquarium turn cloudy quickly
Water turbidity can appear for several reasons.
It is important to determine what caused the turbidity in order to effectively resist it. It happens that the reason is the lack of filters or their poor quality. Therefore, first of all, you need to purchase a good filtration system.
Modern carbon or synthetic filters work great. An ozone generator is a very useful piece of equipment to help clear water from mud. Coagulants will help remove mineral turbidity. An ozone generator and coagulants are preferably used in combination with a good skimmer.
Why filter aquarium water can become cloudy
- Mineral haze usually arises from floating dust particles or calcium carbonate deposition. It can occur if there is too much circulation, poor pump operation, or an improperly installed water softener. Suspended minerals are not polar and therefore difficult to remove with a skimmer. In this case, a coagulant can be applied which aims to adhere mineral particles to such an extent that they are removed through the skimmer;
- Water can become cloudy and stink in the aquarium because there are organic reasons - mainly bacteria and phytoplankton that bloom. Bacterial contamination occurs mainly in young water bodies in which heterotrophic bacteria prevail over autotrophic. The excess organic matter is consumed by heterotrophic bacteria, which secrete ammonia, which in turn is consumed by autotrophic bacteria. Such biological chains lead to turbidity;
- This is a fairly common cause of turbidity in new water bodies. It happens that the deficiency manifests itself when the aquarium is first filled with water, because microorganisms in these conditions have an excess of food, which creates excellent conditions for their reproduction. Usually, after a few days, when the food dries up, the microorganisms die and the turbidity decreases. If after a few days the cloudiness does not disappear, you should use special products that are sold in pet stores. If that doesn't work, you will most likely need to re-create everything;
- Another reason for organic water turbidity is phytoplankton bloom. Like bacterial blooms, phytoplankton require water rich in nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus and trace elements. This is usually due to water pollution;
- Why is the water in an aquarium with turtles or fish getting cloudy? Overfeeding of the inhabitants of the reservoir may also be the reason. Excess food starts to deteriorate and causes turbidity;
- A sudden cloudiness of water, even in waters with ideal parameters, can occur if, for example, all snails release their gametes into the water. In nature, this is a fairly common phenomenon. In a small body of water, a few snails can cause a milky water effect.
What is the harm of turbidity of water due to flowering? The greatest danger of bloom is the rapid decrease in the oxygen concentration in the water. Undetected bacterial growth can lead to suffocation and death of fish.
What to do if the aquarium water blooms and becomes cloudy
The main method of blooming is to use a good skimmer. In case of strong flowering, an ozone generator or at least a powerful UV light should help its work.
Ozone also helps to solve this problem, but if you do not have it, then a dose of activated carbon with an active water flow will help.
Is it possible to measure the clarity of water in a home aquarium? Of course, electronic devices can be used for this, but they are not cheap, and the high measurement accuracy they provide is not so important.
Such measurements can be performed in a different way, much cheaper.
A quick assessment of the transparency of water can be achieved using the so-called Tyndall effect, which consists in the formation of a light cone in a colloidal suspension. In a darkened room, direct a beam of light from one side of the aquarium. The more noticeable the beam of light, the less transparent the water and the more impurities in it. You can also measure transparency by dropping a piece of paper with text on the bottom and trying to read what is written on it.
These measurements will not give a very accurate result, but they will allow you to evaluate transparentlywater by eye. This can be done periodically so as not to miss the moment of severe cloudiness.
Many people strive for perfectly clean water. This, of course, has its justification in a number of cases. Keep in mind, however, that floating particles in moderation are quite natural. Too cloudy water is always an alarming signal. Then you need to act quickly, because in extreme cases this can lead to suffocation of the fish.
It is advisable to have on hand a device for additional aeration of water and use it in these conditions, and it is also necessary to increase the circulation of water by pumps.
Intensive aeration will give you some time to connect the ozone generator and filters. Prolonged turbidity can affect the health of the aquarium inhabitants, especially fish and corals.