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Old 10-20-2010, 08:48 AM   #11
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Thanks. Steve
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Old 10-21-2010, 10:07 PM   #12
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Does PWC during the cycle affect it? Should it be done? When?

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Old 10-21-2010, 10:18 PM   #13
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when using the raw shrimp method do you take the shells off or just toss them in? I heard a good suggestion about putting them in a mesh filter bag so the clean up after isn't so bad. What do you think?

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Old 10-21-2010, 11:00 PM   #14
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it doesn't matter..shells or not, there will be rotting flesh. the clean up is minimal. it's only a few days.
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Old 10-21-2010, 11:02 PM   #15
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So I pull what's left out after a few days?

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Old 10-22-2010, 05:46 AM   #16
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right...as soon as your test kits pick up ammonia.
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Old 10-22-2010, 09:15 AM   #17
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I've never done the shrimp method before, but I would think you would need to leave it in there until you had 0 ammonia & 0 nitrite. If you wait until you start to pick up ammonia, then take away the 'food source', your bacteria colony will starve, won't they?

When I did fishless cycle via ammonia dosing on a 225 I was told to keep the ammonia above 1ppm and below 4 ppm until it read 0 ppm the next day, then make sure to give it enough ammonia so the ammonia-eating bacteria made enough 'food' for the nitrite-eating bacteria, and keep dosing until there was no detectable ammonia or nitrite after 24 hours of dosing. It took 2 weeks to complete the cycle. I would think you would need to leave the shrimp in there the whole time, wouldn't you?
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Old 10-22-2010, 10:53 PM   #18
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no, the ammonia is the food. as soon as you see ammonia on the test kits, you can remove the shrimp.
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Old 10-23-2010, 01:22 AM   #19
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Yes, I understand that the ammonia is the food - why else would you pour ammonia into your tank in the other fishless method. What I was referring to is that one bacteria 'eat' ammonia and produce nitrite, and nitrite is the 'food' for the bacteria that turn that into nitrate. But something has to break down to create the ammonia.

What I am getting at is that you have to supply a constant level / supply of ammonia to sustain the bacteria through the entire cycling process. Fish provide this in an established tank. If you take out the fish, your bacteria will starve. If you let the ammonia in the tank rise to a detectable level, then remove the source that creates the ammonia, then you choke off your bacteria colony before it gets a strong, solid foothold. After all, to complete your cycle, you will go through a time period where you could add ammonia to raise the level to 1ppm and it would all be gone in 12 hours - but your Nitrite would still be spiking. You need to supply a constant supply of ammonia until ammonia and nitrite are both zero, not until ammonia appears.

At least, that is what makes sense to me. I've never done the shrimp method, so if I'm dead wrong, someone enlighten me.
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Old 10-23-2010, 01:35 AM   #20
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I would put the shrimp in and wait till all levels are zero and not remove the shrimp till the day before I was going to add livestock, the reason I say day before is that when you take the shrimp out it will often be fairly decomposed, it will "melt" as you are taking in out and will have a last surge of ammonia within 24 hours you should be able to put livestock into the tank. I would do one last test, as well as when I go to pick up some fish I would take a sample of the water to the LFS so they can tell you your water is good enough (some test kits are faulty so it never hurts to get the LFS to verify your results)
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