Eheim Peat for Discus in Planted Tank - Question regarding API Ammonia test


Prolific Poster
Nov 27, 2011
Sarasota Florida
I have a lightly planted tank with a Finnex Ray 2 LED system that hangs (and another on top which makes it like a 4 bulb T5 HO system) and I just recently added some peat to my tank to tint the water. I suspect I'll have to adjust it as I came home to a BLACK tank with invisible fish (albeit the Discus were super happy which was funny with flaring fins). I did a water change and managed to reduce it but I found that my API test has gone nuts. It tested as if it was packed full of ammonia which made no sense as my fish would be very unhappy and probably dead. Luckily, I had a Seachem Ammonia test I use on occasion so I pulled that one out and it turns out that there's no ammonia in the tank. The peat modified my test and scared me half out of my mind! I thought this would be nice to share in case someone else ever tries this. Anyway....

Well, I was wondering if anyone has had experience with this type of Peat and whether I should expect the tank to be dark again tomorrow which means I may have to cut back on the amount in my filter. I only added 3 tablespoons but I was hoping someone has tried this before. I don't want to kill my plants but I do want a slight tint as the Discus seem to like it. I'm trying to find a happy medium so that my plants will grow and my fish will not hide in the back.


New Discus Lover in Florida (survived the recent Discus death scenario - but saved five so now I'm trying to make them happy to be alive)

Oops. I forgot to ask, has anyone ever experienced these sort of false positives with the API ammonia test?