Keywords: Koi, Goldfish & Pond Health Nitrite - By Product of Cycle Metabolism of Ammonia by Beneficial Nitrogen Reducing Bacteria in the Pond Brown Blood methemoglobinemia
In ponds with healthy colonies of beneficial bacteria living in the filter and on the ponds aggregates, we see Ammonia naturally reduced to Nitrite. In some cases, the Nitrite can build up in the pond and cause harm to the fish. Nitrite levels should be assessed with a common test kit for Nitrite, or have the testing done for you at a local garden or pet shop. If the Nitrite levels are measurable, this is too high. Low levels of salt can block the harmful effects of Nitrite, or you can remove harmful nitrite with water changes as well. Soon, beneficial bacteria should occur in the pond that will remove the Nitrite, but in the meantime, assure a healthy pond by doing water changes to remove the offending Nitrite, and reduce feedings in order to reduce Ammonia production by the fish which is then converted into Nitrite. A chronic high nitrite level is a common symptom of over feeding. In other instances, a lack of calcium in the water can cause nitrites to accumulate. Beneficial nitrogen reducing bacteria require calcium to forge their own bodies.
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