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Old 04-19-2004, 04:09 PM   #1
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Another cycle question

ammonia is <.25, nitrites are 0 from .5 three days ago and nitrates are at 5. I've been cycling a 29 gal for just about 17 days. I've got 32 lbs of live rock that has gone from looking drab to full of color. Can the cycle possibly be done already? I'm hesitant to say ammonia is at zero because it's just a shade between 0 and .25 Why would the nitrite drop to 0?

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Old 04-19-2004, 04:37 PM   #2
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well it is a little curious that your reading amonia. did you use the shrimp method? is the shrimp still in there?

Nitrites really should go to 0. Amonia is removed from your tank by being converted to nitrites. Then nitrites are converted to nitrates. THe nitrates are the hardest to remove, when they are removed they are converted to gases which escape through natural gas exchange at the water surface.

If you used a shrimp and the shrimp is still in there, it could be possible that the shrimp is just producing more ammonia that the tank can handle. If nitrites had risen previously but have now fallen to 0 and nitrates are starting to come up I would say your cycle is over. Remove the shrimp do a partial water change (about 5 gallons) and get yourself a fish You need something in there to produce ammonia to keep the bacteria alive so you might actually want to just leave the shrimp in there keep producing amonia until you have your fish and they have gone through you QT period. (check out our articles on Quarantines)

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Old 04-19-2004, 05:29 PM   #3
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No shrimp, but my live rock did give off some slime during the curing thats still hanging around. Thanks for the advice
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Old 04-19-2004, 05:44 PM   #4
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I think you're done..

Sounds like your cycle is complete. Now, as always, you want to try to remove anything that is dead so that doesn't cause a sudden burst of ammonia. Even then, however, you have established bateria to deal with naturally occuring ammonia (waste)

You're good to begin SLOWLY adding whatever you wish to the tank. Check Nitrates and find out how often you need to do partial water changes to keep them under control.

If you're really lucky and you don't get nitrate accumulation, you probably should do routine partial water changes anyway.
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