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Nitrifying bacteria have been used for so many years, do you really understand it?

Times:2023-03-14 09:40:00 From:Okobake
Nitrifying bacteria is a kind of aerobic bacteria, which is actually composed of nitrifying bacteria and nitrosifying bacteria who love each other. They live in aerobic water or sand layers and play an important role in the nitrogen cycle water purification process. Nitrifying bacteria are usually invisible to the naked eye, and they can only be seen red after bathing them with Gram's stain.

Ten years ago when we raised fish, we didn’t know what was in the water, but now everyone is a chemist and physicist when raising fish. In particular, the term nitrifying bacteria is no longer unfamiliar to many aquarists.

In the mid-to-late 1990s, nitrifying bacteria products made their debut. No matter whether you are playing with seawater or fresh water, no one will ignore the problem of nitrifying bacteria. But after listening to it for so many years and using it for so many years, have nitrifying bacteria products played the role we imagined? What is the difference between adding and not adding? Perhaps the aquarists have not calmed down to study it in detail.

Nitrifying bacteria is a kind of aerobic bacteria, which is actually composed of nitrifying bacteria and nitrosifying bacteria who love each other. They live in aerobic water or sand layers and play an important role in the nitrogen cycle water purification process. Nitrifying bacteria are usually invisible to the naked eye, and they can only be seen red after bathing them with Gram's stain.

Nitrogen cycle process

Nitrogen is ubiquitous in our aquariums, including algae, fish, feed, plants, and biological excrement. Nitrogen is also an essential element for protein. So where does the nitrogen from dead organisms/plants/algae, uneaten feed and excrement go? In fact, they are decomposed by some guys called saprophytes, and the organic nitrogen becomes inorganic ammonia. Ammonia NH3 is highly toxic to fish. It can denature the protein in fish blood and lose its physiological function. As long as the concentration of ammonia in the water exceeds 0.2ppm, it will cause acute sudden death of fish.

The main factors that poison fish are ammonia NH3 and nitrite NO2, etc. If it is so poisonous, why are the fish in the aquarists' homes still alive and well? Haha, it is because of the credit of nitrifying bacteria, the protagonist of our article today. First, the younger brother nitrous bacteria are responsible for oxidizing ammonia into nitrite, and then the older brother nitrobacteria oxidize nitrite NO2 into slightly toxic nitrate NO3.

Nitrates are relatively harmless to fish unless they reach very high levels. Nitrate can leave our aquarium in a number of ways. We can get rid of it by changing the water. Or some algae and even some corals can use it as food.

Self-supporting bacteria

Nitrifying bacteria are self-sufficient bacteria. Scientists call them self-supporting bacteria. They use the simplest inorganic substances such as carbon dioxide as carbon sources to form their bodies, and their daily energy sources come from the oxidation of NH3 and NO2. the energy released during the process. Corresponding bacteria such as saprotrophs are called heterotrophic bacteria.

residence of nitrifying bacteria

Although there are free nitrifying bacteria in the water, nitrifying bacteria must be on the surface of the attachment to work well. We use porous reefs to provide as many hotbeds as possible for the growth of bacteria. Once they find any solid substance such as the reef in our tank, they will immediately secrete a viscous substance, firmly stick themselves to the attachment, and so on, layer by layer, until the formation is formed. A thin film called a biofilm.

Breeding of nitrifying bacteria

It takes more than 10-20 hours for nitrifying bacteria to multiply for one generation (and one heterotrophic bacteria can split into 1 billion in less than a day), so it usually takes more than 4-5 weeks for us to open a tank and establish a nitrifying system time. Especially in the case of food shortage and harsh environment, nitrifying bacteria will automatically enter a dormancy period of up to several years, and the nitrifying bacteria products on the market take advantage of their characteristics, such as Cody from France Nitrifying bacteria are packaged in ampoules, with a shelf life of up to five years.

Open vat syndrome

Everyday when we start a new tank, we may encounter a situation called "open tank syndrome", which is manifested by the fact that all fish will die for no apparent reason within a month. In fact, it is mainly because the biological filtration system is not yet mature at the initial stage of opening the tank, and some aquarists can't wait to put in their favorite fish or creatures. Fish excrement is decomposed by heterotrophic bacteria into ammonia and other harmful substances, and heterotrophic bacteria multiply too fast, more and more ammonia is decomposed, gradually exceeding the tolerance limit of organisms, so...

The correct approach should be to add nitrifying bacteria into the preset and immature biological filtration system according to the instructions at the initial stage. Then select some fish with strong physique and low water quality requirements to enter the tank (such as damselfish).

Some of our daily behaviors will also be detrimental to the health of nitrifying bacteria, such as some fish medicines for treating fish diseases, copper sulfate, potassium permanganate, etc. Therefore, we must pay attention after the treatment of fish diseases. If all nitrifying bacteria are killed, even old tanks may have open tank syndrome, and we must pay attention to timely replenishment.

Aerobic, anaerobic

Nitrifying bacteria have a deep love for oxygen, and cannot work effectively in a low-oxygen environment. Some people may not know how afraid they are of light, especially the younger brother nitrous bacteria are extremely sensitive to ultraviolet rays. Therefore, in the process of establishing the nitrification system, ultraviolet disinfection lamps must not be used, and a darker working environment should be created as much as possible.

When to Use Nitrifying Bacteria?

Nitrifying bacteria should not only be added when the tank is opened, but also should be added regularly during daily water quality maintenance. Because the water body of the sea tank is limited, it cannot self-regulate and maintain stability through a powerful biological system like the natural ocean. The nitrification system of aquariums is relatively fragile, and it is likely that some small changes will cause huge impacts.

If the metabolism of organic matter fluctuates, for example, the amount of feeding increases occasionally, or a few fish are suddenly added, it will cause fluctuations in ammonia, nitrite and other elements in the water. Deterioration, the concentration of toxic substances in the water rises sharply, and a large number of bacteria die, which further weakens the ability of the nitrification system. Such a vicious cycle causes the nitrification system to collapse.

Don’t regard nitrifying bacteria as something miraculous or think that it is a medicine that you dare not use. Nitrifying bacteria are not so miraculous and are not “medicines” because they are not chemicals but biological agents, so they have no toxicity and will not be used if they are added. Accumulate toxic substances or cause certain chemical substances to exceed the standard. Aquarists should treat and use it as a daily water quality maintenance agent.

Selection of nitrifying bacteria

Some aquarists may say that they have seen a lot of nitrifying bacteria products advertised so amazingly that they can quickly decompose feces, organic matter, etc. It seems that adding nitrifying bacteria can wipe out all the dirt in the tank. This is indeed the case. After so many years of research and development, many nitrifying bacteria products on the market are now compound bacteria preparations. Taking into account the actual daily use scenarios of aquarists, not only rely on nitrifying bacteria to treat ammonia and nitrite, etc., but also Will add other strains to help with other issues.

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