I was reading the long thread about the bacteria imbalance and I just wanted to post separately that I have found a product that I REALLY like, that controls nitrates as well as algae and other problems. It's called MicrobeLift. I used it in my 150 gallon tank (rainbows, parrot cichlids, catfish, botias) when I had to rinse some parts of my Emperor 400 filters (to change the impellers). Next day it wasnt particularly crystal clear, so I went to the LFS to get some Cycle etc., and the owner there recommended this product instead (which is new to me). It worked BEAUTIFULLY. My daughter used an ick cure for marine fish in her 200 gallon, made by the same company and she had her new fish cured and no losses.