Overfeeding fish

I bought fish and they were skinny but eating. I chose to overfeed the fish in order to save the fish. The fish (plural) survived and are doing very well. The sacrifice came at nitrates. My corals are not doing well because of the nitrates but my fish lived. Has anyone been in this predicament or had a similar experience? What’s more important? Fish or corals!

I don’t think I have had nitrates spike rapidly from over feeding, however I have had them rise quickly due to disturbing sand beds. Rapid changes in nutrients will effect different coral differently, even within the same species or genus, some are more tolerant than others.

With LPS you can typically see a reaction quickly, sometimes changes in parameters with SPS will not be noticed right away. It really depends. I watch my cabbage coral closely. Parameter swings will cause it to close polyps and “tighten up” Euphyllia species seem to be sensitive to salinity in my experience.

How quickly did you nutrients rise? Over days, weeks?
What are your levels?

So my nitrates are 25 ppm on at given day. That’s what I keep them at. My phosphate is around .25. On any given day. Salinity is 1.027. Everything else is “normal”. A life event happened and I didn’t pay attention to the tank for a month. I am trying to get back into it

When you overfeed fish your phosphates will rise due to uneaten food. Nitrates rise when you have added more fish and bacteria can’t handle the extra load. One fish should not make nitrate levels rise that high.

Phosphates are .25? That seems high. My phosphates are .03 and I keep very large fish and I have a lot of fish iny 180. My nitrates are around 10. I feed heavily. I love the fish as much as I love the corals. I also run a skimmer rated for a much large system, biopellet reactor and have a fuge! Do you have a sump? Are you using mechanical filtration? Sometimes a little added maintenance is all that is needed to solve a problem. Change socks more frequently. Jeep skimmer neck clean. Remove detritus from sump. Things like that.

I don’t think you necessarily have to pick one over the other. I would just increase your water changes for now until you can get to a more normal feeding schedule.