Badman's Tropical Fish Forum

November 24, 2017, 09:50:08 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or join our community.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Welcome to the forum! Whether you are an old pro or new to the hobby, feel welcome to share your knowledge and experience and to further educate yourself about this great pastime of ours.

PetSmart
News: Stay tuned for another contest starting soon. 
 
   forum   guidelines calendar Forum search help Join Login  
  Main Site site map Fish Profiles Fish Stats Articles tank log Species Gallery Photo Gallery  

Badman's Chat
Users in chat
Please upgrade your brower.
in   cm  L °F   °C   click for tank volume calculations
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Its about time for a new topic started in here. So.........  (Read 11550 times)
russ
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
Administrator
Obsessed Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
United States United States

Posts: 12,558


I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....


« on: July 31, 2011, 12:05:27 AM »

Lets debunk or validate this statement:

"Ammonia (NH3) is a toxic form and ammonium (NH4+) is a non-toxic form."


* BCA02.jpg (2.99 KB, 76x70 - viewed 536 times.)
Logged

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
Karen
Professor
Senior Staff
Obsessed Member
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
United States United States

Tanks: 450 pacu community, 70 tropical community, 125 tropical community 70 coldwater community, 30 shell dwelling cichlids
Posts: 10,143


I wish I was a fish!


« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2011, 06:33:34 AM »

More toxic/ less toxic?
Logged

Put me back out to sea to play with the fishies...I don't belong on land!  SmileyCentral.com" border="0
Netti
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Canada Canada

Posts: 2,296



« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2011, 08:02:14 AM »

Without trying to research it again I remember reading somewhere about toxic Ammonia being converted(?) into the Ammonium, but that this in higher amounts is also toxic. How it is being converted(?), I don't remember now! My guess is through the addition of some chemicals?  confused  Smiley
Logged

40 gallon long South Asian, 10 gallon Betta tank
Karen
Professor
Senior Staff
Obsessed Member
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
United States United States

Tanks: 450 pacu community, 70 tropical community, 125 tropical community 70 coldwater community, 30 shell dwelling cichlids
Posts: 10,143


I wish I was a fish!


« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2011, 08:11:03 AM »

No real need for fancy chemicals, it just picks up a radical Hydronium ion (H+) rather spontaneously in basic environments.  Any reaction that releases H+ ions will convert Ammonia to ammonium.

Bases are OH- so water can be the H+ donor super easy.  We have LOTS of HOH in our fish tanks.   Simply provide a basic pH and the reaction is spontaneous.
Logged

Put me back out to sea to play with the fishies...I don't belong on land!  SmileyCentral.com" border="0
russ
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
Administrator
Obsessed Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
United States United States

Posts: 12,558


I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....


« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2011, 05:43:01 PM »

$64.00 question...........

(I'll respectively ask Karen to hold off on her answer to this for at least a week because I know she knows the answer.)  Wink KISS001

OK, the question......more toxic/less toxic, but how? Wink


* BCA02.jpg (2.99 KB, 76x70 - viewed 535 times.)
Logged

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
Netti
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Canada Canada

Posts: 2,296



« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2011, 06:09:30 PM »

Hmm....are we allowed to research or do we have to guess (and how would you know if we researched, lol?) ?  happy
Logged

40 gallon long South Asian, 10 gallon Betta tank
russ
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
Administrator
Obsessed Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
United States United States

Posts: 12,558


I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....


« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2011, 06:23:06 PM »

Netti,

Research away. I already know the answer also happy
Logged

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
Netti
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Canada Canada

Posts: 2,296



« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2011, 06:56:35 PM »

OK, here goes my very amateurish answer:

Ammonia is more toxic than Ammonium


But: raising the PH (which can happen during WC) can cause Ammonium-ions to combine with Hydroxyl-ions which then form Ammonia and water. This leads to an increase of Ammonia in the water.
Conclusion: you don't want Ammonia or Ammonium in the water since the first is toxic and the second has the potential to turn into something toxic!  happy
Logged

40 gallon long South Asian, 10 gallon Betta tank
russ
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
Administrator
Obsessed Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
United States United States

Posts: 12,558


I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....


« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2011, 08:13:54 PM »

Netti,

Actually, there is no increase in the amount of ammonia in the water, but I know what you mean.

In thinking about the how, I was wondering how the fish reacts to these compounds. What makes them more or less toxic from a fish's physiology point?

Logged

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
Netti
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Canada Canada

Posts: 2,296



« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2011, 08:23:09 PM »

OH!!!! I guess...I.....am.........a..........little.................sloooooooow, lol!
Back to research!
Logged

40 gallon long South Asian, 10 gallon Betta tank
Netti
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Canada Canada

Posts: 2,296



« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2011, 12:36:22 PM »

What I found out is:
Ammonia causes damage to tissue in gills, liver, and kidneys, as well as brain and the nervous system. As damage continues the fish hemorrhage and die. Even continued low levels of Ammonia can lead to bacterial gill disease.
Ammonium in combination with persulfate, perchlorate or nitrate affect the fish's thyroid and reproductive function, and can cause developmental retardation.

I still stick with my initial answer that Ammonia is more toxic than Ammonium!

Karen, I just realized that what you wrote about the H+ ions I did not really understand until today, after I researched about this and actually had to do a little lol while reading this thread through again. Chemistry was not my strong suit in school, I guess you can see that lol!  Smiley
Logged

40 gallon long South Asian, 10 gallon Betta tank
Bman
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Tanks: 125g yet to be started =]
Posts: 95



« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2011, 05:17:54 PM »

I wish had anything to add to this discusion but just wanted to say it is an interesting read. Thought I should let you know you do have an audience.    happy

-Bman
Logged
Karen
Professor
Senior Staff
Obsessed Member
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
United States United States

Tanks: 450 pacu community, 70 tropical community, 125 tropical community 70 coldwater community, 30 shell dwelling cichlids
Posts: 10,143


I wish I was a fish!


« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2011, 06:26:40 AM »

Nice topic Russ.  I'm being a good fish... not helping.

Logged

Put me back out to sea to play with the fishies...I don't belong on land!  SmileyCentral.com" border="0
CrazyCatPeekin
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Tanks: 100G, 55G, 35G, 2x29G, 2x20G, 4x10G, 5G, 3G, 2x2.5G
Posts: 1,156



« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2011, 06:53:25 AM »

OK...so if I've got this right...this is what I have learned in the last weeks on the subject...in a nutshell...cause that's about how much I know!

Both ammonia (NH3) and ammonium (NH4) are present in your tank. I belive that they can freely exchange from one to the other based on the water chemistry. The higher your PH, the more prevalent ammonia will be.

Both are toxic when introduced into living cells. The difference is that NH3 can pass freely across the cell membrane and infect the cell. NH4 would have to be somehow pushed into the cell. The physiology of the fish does not naturally do this (it would be backwards evolution, yes?). This is why we say ammonium is less toxic. It really has more to do with the way the fish is built than with the actual chemistry of the molecule.

Is that right? More or less?
Logged

~Lissa
Karen
Professor
Senior Staff
Obsessed Member
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
United States United States

Tanks: 450 pacu community, 70 tropical community, 125 tropical community 70 coldwater community, 30 shell dwelling cichlids
Posts: 10,143


I wish I was a fish!


« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2011, 08:18:25 AM »

Both ammonia (NH3) and ammonium (NH4) are present in your tank. I belive that they can freely exchange from one to the other based on the water chemistry. The higher your PH, the more prevalent ammonia will be.

Correct.

Both are toxic when introduced into living cells. The difference is that NH3 can pass freely across the cell membrane and infect the cell. NH4 would have to be somehow pushed into the cell. The physiology of the fish does not naturally do this (it would be backwards evolution, yes?). This is why we say ammonium is less toxic. It really has more to do with the way the fish is built than with the actual chemistry of the molecule.

Is that right? More or less?


I am not going to say right or wrong here, I was asked to be quiet, and I will.  I am just going to add something to think about. Diffusion:  the passive movement of a substance from an area of low concentration to an area of high concentration.  This concept is now being taught in 7th grade science curriculum (I learned it in high school).  It is usually thought of as being done across a semi-permeable membrane (such as a cell membrane).  The idea that the membrane is semi-permeable means that some factor (usually the size of the molecule) allows some substances to cross while preventing others from doing so.   One version of "high concentration" that is often overlooked is that of electric potential.  The high concentration on one side of the membrane may actually be a lower number of any one particular molecule if it is a higher concentration of molecules with a particular charge to them.  I will try to draw a NON- ammonia example.

                            |    
  Na+ Ca+    Ca+    |   Ca+  Ca+
              Ca+         |  H+     H+
Ca+ K+    Na+       |    K+   Na+
                            | Na+    H+



On the Left:      
4 Ca+
2 Na+
1 K+
# of positively charged ions =7

On the Right:
2 Ca+
2Na+
1K+
3H+
# of positively charged ions = 8


I am grossly simplifying this by ignoring the fact that some of these ions actually carry +2 charge and I am ignoring all negatively charged ions completely.  Diffusion says... from High to low  Meaning that Ca+ should want to move from the Left to the right until there are 3 on each side.  However, when you consider electric potential, the Ca+ ions are actually more likely to go from Right to left to balance out the charges rather than the actual items containing the charge.  If the pH on the Left is more acidic than the right, the 2 remaining Ca+ ions on the right will jump to the left which is AGAINST the concentration gradient of Calcium but following the electric gradient (which is far more powerful).

None of this goofiness happens with molecules that aren't carrying a charge.  Those molecules follow the normal rules of concentration gradients.  Ammonia lacks a charge, ammonium has a charge.
Logged

Put me back out to sea to play with the fishies...I don't belong on land!  SmileyCentral.com" border="0
CrazyCatPeekin
Full Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Tanks: 100G, 55G, 35G, 2x29G, 2x20G, 4x10G, 5G, 3G, 2x2.5G
Posts: 1,156



« Reply #15 on: August 03, 2011, 08:35:57 AM »

OK...so like when you brine a turkey and the salt carries the flavor into the meat...I have to think about this some more. Unfortunately, I have to work too...I'll be back on this later when I've got some time.
Logged

~Lissa
russ
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
Administrator
Obsessed Member

Offline Offline

Gender: Male
United States United States

Posts: 12,558


I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....


« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2011, 01:04:45 PM »

Karen!!!!! No fair...tricky tricky tricky, but absolutely bingo! 100% correcto-mundo. The key word is diffusion. Ammonia molecules can diffuse across the gills almost as easily as a water molecule. Ammonium, not so easy, but fish have the ability to 'pump' it out of their system.  happy
Logged

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
Karen
Professor
Senior Staff
Obsessed Member
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
United States United States

Tanks: 450 pacu community, 70 tropical community, 125 tropical community 70 coldwater community, 30 shell dwelling cichlids
Posts: 10,143


I wish I was a fish!


« Reply #17 on: August 05, 2011, 05:34:26 AM »

Ammonia can be pumped out too!

However ammonia MUST be pumped out using a protein carrier via active transport, or it can be removed in nephronic type structures.  It is worth noting however, that in fish more than 90% of the ammonia transfer is taking place in the gills, not the kidneys.  To call these ammonia removal structures "kidneys" is bordering on insulting to the word 'kidney'.  They aren't very good at ammonia removal as that isn't where the animal has evolved to rid its system of ammonia.

Ammonium can be pumped along electrical gradients requiring no ATP, passive diffusion.


That difference is HUGE.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2011, 05:44:12 AM by Karen » Logged

Put me back out to sea to play with the fishies...I don't belong on land!  SmileyCentral.com" border="0
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Badman's Recommended Links
1 Post
1 Topic
Last post by Badman
in Sites We Support
on 5/2/07 12:00 PM

 

Navigation
Badman's

Main Site Navigation

Complete Map

 

 

 

Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
Page created in 0.437 seconds with 18 queries.