Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Saltwater and Reef > Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
Old 02-21-2009, 11:51 PM   #1
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Bayport, New York
Posts: 41
Exclamation Ammonia

I have a theoretical question. From what I've read, Fish produce Ammonia through respiration and via detrius. The point of cycling a Tank is to build up adequate levels of Bacteria to 1. Breakdown Ammonia to Nitrite and 2. To breakdown Nitrite to Nitrate (And sometimes 3. to Breakdown Nitrate anearobically to Nitrous, but not part of the traditional cycle). If this is the case, Why does it take so long to build up Ammonia levels? I have a 90 gallon tank w about 90 lbs of cured live rock from established tanks. I have had the tank running over 5 weeks and fish in it for 4 weeks. My 3X week readings have been consistently 0Ammonia, 0 Nitrite 0Nitrate. Brought my water to my local Aquarium store for them to test and the results were confirmed. If the Fish are alive and respiring, why haven't I seen Ammonia yet? I understand why I may not have seen the nitrite and nitrate yet (The Bacteria maybe either 1. don't have enough substrate to breakdown yet OR 2. The Bacterial colonies are not yet established). You would think that your Ammonia levels would start to rise shortly after the addition of fish regardlesss of the state of your Biological filter since Ammonia is a byproduct of their respiration and waste. Any thoughts?

ronin33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 12:39 AM   #2
Aquarium Advice FINatic
buddha_red's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Pasadena Texas 77504
Posts: 560
Send a message via ICQ to buddha_red
if the rock was well cured and you had no die off its possible you still have the bacteria established on the rock. In that case you wouldn't see any ammonia or nitrites. It's usually not likely but i have heard it happening.

"Only mistakes happen fast in aquariums"
"The solution to pollution is dulution"
buddha_red is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 08:20 AM   #3
Sliced Bread
neilanh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 8,482
Like shane said, it's possible you already had the bacteria present, or at least enough of it to quickly react to the bioload and you'd never see it.

Also, how many fish? If it's a small amount of fish, they're not creating a large load anyway.
In the DC Metro Area? Check out GWAPA and WAMAS
neilanh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 08:42 AM   #4
Aquarium Advice Activist
Copepod's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hills of Northern KY
Posts: 192
Neilanh is so right...I cured my LR in a tub in the house for 3 weeks and then put it in my tank along with the sand, with plugs from my old DSB to seed, and if I hadn't checked the time I did, I would still be waiting for the spike. It only lasted a couple of hours and then the ammonia and nitrites were gone.
I wish I could walk my fish ....
Copepod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 08:57 AM   #5
Aquarium Advice Freak
sooju's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Pleasantville, NY
Posts: 257
I'm confused. From your "my tanks" info, it looks like you are trying to cycle a tank with a tang, lionfish, clown, and a clean up crew already in it? If the cured rock was indeed enough to prevent a cycle then you're very lucky. I doubt your inhabitants would have made it. Maybe the clown. As to whether 3 fish in a 90 gallon would be enough to get a cycle going I'm not sure.
sooju is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 10:16 AM   #6
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Bristow, VA
Posts: 13
Send a message via AIM to brineyone
That's a really expensive cycle!!
brineyone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2009, 03:10 PM   #7
Community Admin
melosu58's Avatar

Tank of the Month Award
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37,891
Do me a favor and read this article so you can understand why it`s best not to cycle with fish. As others have said if your LR is already cured then it was taking care of the ammonia as it was being produced. Again read this.


melosu58 is offline   Reply With Quote


Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ammonia Blackadder Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 7 05-23-2006 10:03 AM
ammonia in QT dax29 Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 3 03-29-2005 10:44 AM
Found Ammonia for you fishless ammonia cyclers at Ace TomK2 Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 11 03-22-2005 04:06 PM
cant get ammonia down Dayna Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started 5 04-13-2004 10:56 PM
ammonia krap101 Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 12 03-09-2004 05:38 PM

» Photo Contest Winners

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:13 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.