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Old 05-14-2004, 05:08 PM   #1
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cycling a salt water tank

Good afternoon! I'm hoping someone can help me with a salt water question. I have a completely cycled, disease free 55 gallon fw tank. My mother is starting a salt water tank and it is currently in the middle of cycling. She has a clown and the ammonia level is very high. I was wondering if I could give her a plant or ornament out of my tank to help hers cycle faster. I know that you can exchange fw to fw but didn't know if you could do the same between fw and sw tanks. Please let me know ASAP because I'd like to help her and the little clown out.

Jim
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:15 PM   #2
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I was wondering if I could give her a plant or ornament out of my tank to help hers cycle faster.
I'm not sure about moving the plant; however, you may be able to do some water changes to reduce the ammonia. This, IIRC, will extend the cycle, but may save the clown.

The best option, IMO, would be to return the clown to the LFS until the tank is fully cycled, but that may not be a viable option in your situation.

Good luck!
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:17 PM   #3
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If she is still cycling, she should probably take the clown back to the lfs until the cycle is done. If the ammonia is very high, it may either kill or at the very least extremely stress him. Clowns are hearty fish, but high levels of ammonia are not good for any fish.
She could facilitate the cycle by purchasing some "cured" live rock from the lfs. This would be the best way to go.
Some claim that saltwater bio spira (spelling) helps jump start a cycle, but there is confliction reports on that.
HTH
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:19 PM   #4
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Water changes may give a temporary fix, but the tank still needs to cycle and water changes slow that down. IMO
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:26 PM   #5
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I know all about doing the water changes...and she's doing that. But, I thought that I could help jump start the nitrate levels by giving her some of my good bacteria from my tank. I just wasn't sure if the bacteria are the same in each type of tank. She's tested her tank and it looks to be cycling. The ammonia level is down but the nitrite level is up and she does have a nitrate reading. So far, no loss of life but I wanted to kick that ammonia by giving her some ammonia/nitrite eating bacteria.
She won't return the fish to the lfs. She knew that she was taking the risk of losing the fish but hopes that it can withstand the ammonia levels.
Basically, I just want to know if I can transfer some of my bacteria to her tank effectively.

Thanks!
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:46 PM   #6
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Not 100% sure, but I have heard that the bacteria from fw is different from sw, so it probably will not help. Maybe an advisor can kick in here.
Might try the bio spira, maybe it will help. Thats what it is suppose to be for, instant cycling. That is the theory anyway.
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Old 05-14-2004, 08:57 PM   #7
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No shortcuts..

Attempting to shortcut the natural cycle of the tank is rarely a good idea. There's only patience and providing a good environment for the bacteria to colonate.

Rescue the clown....although I would weigh the stress of the "rescue" against the stress of letting him live through the cycle.
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Old 05-14-2004, 10:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by newlywed
Basically, I just want to know if I can transfer some of my bacteria to her tank effectively.

Thanks!
The bacterial families are basically the same but the environments in which they develope are very opposite. The hypersaline and pH shifts would kill them alsmost instantly.

Cheers
Steve
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