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Old 03-12-2004, 11:51 AM   #1
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To shrimp or not to shrimp?

I've been cycling my tank for about 3.5 weeks. My ammonias have spiked to 0.5 mg/L after one week and now have dropped to close to zero. My nitrites have held steady at 2.5-3.0 and my nitrates have been consistently around 10-15. My two cycling shrimp are still in there. Should I take them out or let them stay??? I'm thinking that maybe the nitrites are not dropping because of the shrimp. Just getting a little impatient! Thanks for the help.
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Old 03-12-2004, 10:30 PM   #2
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I would actually give it more time. Given this is a rather large tank and no LR, you will need to be sure the bio filter is as strong as possible. I am guessing the wet/dry employs bio balls which is fine for this type of set up but just needs more time.

Until the nitrites show signs of easing off themselves, I would leave the shrimp.

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Old 03-12-2004, 11:22 PM   #3
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You haven't been cycling to long. Don't sweat it.
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Old 03-13-2004, 01:58 AM   #4
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How long do you guys think it should take for a wet/dry with bioballs and biobale in the overflows? See my other post on "Now I'm really confused!" Should I add another dose of nitrifying bacteria to help speed up the process?
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Old 03-13-2004, 02:52 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnkristie
Should I add another dose of nitrifying bacteria to help speed up the process?
Never rely on this stuff, it only adds false hope. Most if not all are just exspensive water in a fancy bottle

The spike in your nitrites should mean that the ammonia consuming bacteria has kicked in completely. Keep in mind that even though the tank has been set up 3½ weeks, your ammonia has only recently spiked. Once down and the nitrites rise that's where the waiting will usually come in. Ammonia can generally take a few day or more to rise and up to 2 weeks to subside depending on the source. The nitrite stage is typically the longest and can last anywhere from 2-4 weeks.

As I said, I think you should wait a bit longer before removing the shrimp. Once the ammonia is zero and the nitrites fall steadily without water changes, then remove the shrimp and wait until the NH3 and NO2 are zero. Do a large water change once they are to reduce any high levels of nitrate and replensih the chemistry. You should then be good to go.

Have you got the QT up and running yet? Wouldn't hurt to get that started so when the tank is ready, your first fish won't be that far behind

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Old 03-13-2004, 12:03 PM   #6
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As mentoined in my other post, why would my nitrates have dropped from 20 to 0 at this point?
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Old 03-13-2004, 12:48 PM   #7
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As mentoined in my other post, why would my nitrates have dropped from 20 to 0 at this point?
Quote:
At three weeks into it my nitrites stabilized between 2.0 - 2.5 and now my nitrates have started to fall from 20 down to almost zero. I thought that as the tank matured the nitrites would slowly fall and the nitrates would start to rise. What is the deal??!!
Sorry, I think I misread this last night.

If I understand correctly this time, all the levels have reached zero including the nitrates? Or do you still have readings on the others. Please give specific numbers from the test kits. "almost zero" is a bit misleading.

That is kind of odd to suddenly have zero nitrates. Denitrifying bacteria could not possibley have formed in such a short time. I would honestly suggest having your readings verified by the LFS. Things are not adding up.

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Old 03-13-2004, 03:43 PM   #8
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This week my kits read NH3 0.0, NO2 2.0, NO3 0.0 Last week my readings were NH3 0.0, NO2 2.0, and NO3 15.
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Old 03-14-2004, 01:05 AM   #9
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I would think the NO3 reading was either false or could be the result of the bacterial starter you used. An easy way to confirm that would be test some newly mixed SW and then add some biostarter and test again. Even money says you get a reading the second time around.

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Old 03-14-2004, 01:10 AM   #10
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Thanks Steve, I'll give it a try.
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