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Old 02-11-2007, 08:47 PM   #1
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Can too much ammonia in fishless cycling kill bacteria

I am just wondering what everyone thinks about putting more ammonia than recommended for fishless cycling. If I were to try a fishless cycle or try ro maintain bacteria colonies when a tank does not have any fish in it, how much ammonia can I put in. It would be easier to put more ammonia in, I could just put a ton of ammonia (20 PPM or something) and then probably only need to refill with ammonia each month or so. Let me know what everyone thinks. Also this technique would be building up such a huge bacteria colony that whatever amount of bioload I eventually put into the tank, it would be far less than than the maximum the bacteria could process and then the bacteria population would quickyl adjust to that present bioload.

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Old 02-11-2007, 11:38 PM   #2
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I don't think it could, no. Since the bacteria pretty much come from the breakdown of ammonia into nitrate.


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Old 02-12-2007, 01:58 PM   #3
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Actually, I think it can. High enough NH3 level will kill off everything .... it is a pretty good disinfectant.

AT 20 ppm, it might not kill off the NH3 eating bacteria, but the NO2 converting bacteria can't take that level of ammonia. There had been posts of cycles stalled due to that.
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Old 02-12-2007, 05:45 PM   #4
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Too much ammonia at one time CAN kill the bacteria that breakdown that compound. Although saying that, it does take a very high level to do so.

As for adding a lot so you don't have to keep adding it- it's better to add small doses over a larger period of time... one huge bomb of it at once will likely cause more problems than anything.
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Old 02-12-2007, 05:48 PM   #5
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If you're wanting to do this so you can worry less and have less "maintenance" to do, why not go the shrimp route?
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Old 02-12-2007, 05:58 PM   #6
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Pro natural here... go shrimps!!
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Old 02-12-2007, 06:14 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by MyCatsDrool
Pro natural here... go shrimps!!
Pro natural here too...
I second the shrimps route!
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:56 PM   #8
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By adding a single large dose of Ammonia, the bacteria colony would grow enough to handle the new food source and then die back when the food was gone. To maintain a biofilter there needs to be smaller amounts of ammonia added on a daily basis. If you wanted to go with the Ammonia route and not have to worry about daily dosing, you'd probably need to look into a liquid doser. Then you'd just have to refill the supply bottle periodically.

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