Does Java Moss Absorb Nitrates?

Does Java Moss Absorb Nitrates? Yes. Plant work as a natural filter that reduces chemical substances such as Ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites.

Java moss plants consume a good amount of Nitrates found in the water and extend their growth. It makes the water suitable for fish.

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Does Java Moss Absorb Nitrates
Does Java Moss Absorb Nitrates

The nitrogen cycle is activated when aquarium fish start producing waste products. The substance reacts to the water and starts making Ammonia, and in the end, it converts to nitrate. Solid materials in waste products contain various kinds of chemicals.

When the waste product dissolves in the water, it spreads in the entire tank making the environment lethal for the fish. Once the nitrate levels grow exponentially, plant-based life and marine life will be at risk.

Overfeeding is one of the primary reasons why the nitrate level grows and makes water intolerable. Thus, you should control the food supply and ensure that no wastage or overfeeding occurs in the aquarium to reduce the Ammonia and nitrate level in the tank.

Where Does Nitrate Come from Java Moss Tank?

Nitrate develops in the aquarium when nitrite oxidation occurs in the tank. It is produced when the nitrogen cycle ends and converts the substance into nitrate.

The nitrogen cycle is an active process that can occur for several reasons, including residues, plant decaying processes, dirty filters, over-feeding, and overstocking.

As the material starts deteriorating in water, the nitrite level increases, and water becomes unhealthy for fish.

Moreover, tap water use in the aquarium may also contain some amount of nitrate. In the United States, the nitrate level in drinking water ranges between 30 to 4- parts per million (ppm).

It is advisable to taste the water before using the tap water in an aquarium. High nitrate levels in water could affect the fish immediately.

Treating water before using it will save marine life. In the condition where baseline nitrate is above ten ppm, you should not use this water and find other sources that would offer no, or minimum nitrate contained in water.

How Nitrate Effect on Fish?

A low Nitrate level may not harm the fish. It only affects when the nitrate contain reaches 100 ppm. The condition becomes lethal for fish if you do not treat the water in time.

Fish will develop stress in it, and they will become more susceptible to various kinds of disease. Direct impact can be seen when they inhabit their ability to reproduce.

Growing nitrate level in an aquarium is harmful to fry and young fish. It will make the water unbearable to them and reduce their growth. Additionally, increased nitrate levels in the fish Tank decrease oxygen levels. Fish will have difficulty breathing and may stress out.

How does Java Moss Reduce Nitrates?

All types of aquarium plants use nitrate for their growth. It is a vital ingredient that extends plant growth and helps them to flourish rapidly. Java moss is considered the best plant to control Nitrate levels in the tank due to its fast growth.

Java moss consumes nitrate and uses it to grow, keeping the aquarium water at a moderated level. The easiest nitrate plant finds ammonium in the water and some broken-down substance by bacteria that eventually gets converted to nitrite.

Java moss will be a better option if you want to control the nitrate level naturally in water. Ensure that you replace the water every week and consider a few other things, such as cleaning the filter and removing the waste product trap at the bottom of the tank to control the nitrate level in the tank.

How to keep Nitrate Levels Down on Java Moss Tank?

Java moss is one of the aquatic plants that use nitrate to develop food for their survival. The Java moss plant’s rapid growth allows them to consume a high amount of nitrate found in water and release oxygen in dissolved form, which is beneficial for the fish.

Planting java moss in the aquarium will keep chemicals in control and create a natural habitat for the fish. Also, java moss cleans the water quickly and provides a suitable environment for the fish.

Actions you can take to control the Nitrate levels in the aquarium.

Water Changes

Run the regular water changes process to keep the nitrate level in control. Water changes allow the removal of the dissolved nitrate and Ammonia from the aquarium. Overall, the nitrate level in the aquarium will get reduce.

In case you use tap water, check the water content using digital devices. There are plenty of devices available in the market that helps you to taste the water’s chemical compound.

Generally, tap water contains nitrate. Pouring the tap water directly into the aquarium may increase nitrate levels quickly.

Instead of tap water, use the Deionized water or reverse osmosis water to moderate the nitrate level during the water change. RO water is soft and may not have essential minerals.

You may have to add the minerals through supplements and provide necessary minerals to the fish. Another safer way is to mixed the tap water with DI or RO water to neutralize the effect.

Vacuum Gravel

Residue generally gets trapped at the bottom of the tank. When the nitrate level increases, most of them will be coming from the waste substances trapped in the sand or gravel.

Use the Vacuum to clean the gravel and sand and pull the waste product outside. As the days pass, the waste product starts producing Ammonia and dissolves in the water.

Increased ammonia level activates the nitrate cycle, and water becomes lethal for the fish. If the water becomes too dirty, it is better to clean the entire tank, remove sand, and give it a clean wash.

Freshwater will have fewer nitrates contain and create a suitable healthy environment for the fish.

Stop Overfeeding

Overfeeding is another reason why you experience rice in Ammonia and nitrate in water. Too much food makes fish produce an excess amount of waste product. Fish can eat anytime whenever you feed them.

Fish will not have any control over their appetite. Balance meal is vital for the fish to stay healthy and control their habitat. Overfeeding would increase the nitrate level and cause health issues in the fish.

Instead of feeding the fish randomly, set the time in a day to provide a small portion of the food. Feed the fish two to three times a day to have adequate nutrition to live a healthy life.

Filter Maintenance

Filter attracts all kinds of substances while processing water from it. It trapped the waste product inside and pushed the water out. Over time these filter gets jammed with too much of waste product. Additionally, bacteria and algae take place inside the filter.

As time passes, it starts producing Ammonia, and your filter will become a source of nitrate producer in the tank. Regular maintenance and cleaning keep the filter in ideal condition.

What Causes High Nitrates in Java Moss Aquarium?

There will be several reasons why java moss may not performing what it should do when nitrate level goes up. One of the common reasons would be the dying java moss plant. When water level becomes lethal, it affects plant life.

Algae growth is one factor that blocks the java moss plant surface and makes it difficult for the plant to produce food.

When the photosynthesis process is blocked, the java moss plant in an aquarium will become active—the growth of the plan slowdowns. As a consequence, the java moss plant would not be able to use nitrate to produce food.

Additionally, residues may cover the java moss plant, making it difficult for the UV rays to reach the plant.

When the plant is trapped under the thick surface of the residue, the plant will not produce sufficient food for survival. Cleaning the tank is the only way to recover the aqua life and recover the plant.

Does Java Moss Absorb Ammonia in Aquarium?

Yes. Java moss absorbs the excess amount of Ammonia found in an aquarium and uses it for photosynthesis. Plant release oxygen in the water and make the nitrate cycle work efficiently.

Java moss also controls the water condition and cuts down the aggressive growth of the algae in an aquarium. The water stays clean and pleasant for the fish to live a healthy life.

How much nitrate do Java Moss plants absorb?

Depending on the size of the java moss plant and water condition in an aquarium, the absorption of nitrate is varied. The plant uses nitrate for producing food for its survival.

If you put the UV lights on for the whole day, the process of food production in java moss will reach a maximum level, which gives you nitrate-free water in the aquarium.

High Nitrates Symptoms for Java Moss

Fish will start developing a high level of stress when the Nitrates level goes up in an aquarium. Generally, the fish will build anxiety as the level reaches 100 ppm.

If the high level of nitrates persists for several days, it will start affecting the health of the fish. The aquarium fish will be susceptible to disease. Their ability to reproduce will decrease over time.

Growing nitrate levels in an aquarium are harmful to the fry. Young fish will have trouble living in an aquarium. It will negatively affect their growth and cause them to develop serious health issues early in their lives. Elevated nitrate would affect the oxygen levels and further stress the fish.

What is the best nitrate remover in the tank?

Nitrate levels should be controlled to offer a suitable condition for fish to survive and grow.

Following are some of the tips to manage the nitrate level in the tank.

  • Water changes every seven days will keep the nitrate level in control.
  • Place the live plant in an aquarium. The plant consumes nitrate and Ammonia and prevents them from reaches at harsh conditions.
  • Reduce the number of fish in the tank. Too many fish in a small aquarium tank would affect aqua life.
  • Use nitrate removal filter. These filters are designed to manage the growth of the nitrate in the tank.
  • Avoid overfeeding in the tank. When to affect the source, it automatically affects the nitrate condition in the tank.


Java moss can decrease the nitrate level and offer excellent conditions for the fish to live a happy life. The plant proliferates when the habitat is suitable and gets sufficient UV rays that help them produce the food efficiently and use the nitrate in the process.

Java Moss is also known as a beginner plant. Use the plant to keep the aquarium life in a healthy state.

By Uswatta Liyanage

Hello. I'm Uswatta Liyanage from Galle, Sri Lanka. I am the founder of this website. Since my childhood I'm an aqua plant lover and I have professionally learned more about aqua plants. So I created this site for share my knowledge and experience with all of you. Now you can refer my site and feel free to contact me if any inquiry.