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Old 06-09-2012, 01:11 AM   #1
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My tank IS cycled( I guess, please help)

I finally got nitrite and nitrate liquid tests along with my ammonia.

My readings were ammonia 0.25ppm Nitrite 0 ppm and Nitrate 60-80 ppm.

I just did a 50% water change 2 days ago, and fed yesterday. The presence of Nitrate means it has cycled, correct? Is the ammonia just from feeding, and should I expect to find that a day or two after feedings? Why are my Nitrates between 60 and 80 so close to a 50% water change? Should I do another one now? At what ppm of Nitrate should I do a water change?
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Old 06-09-2012, 01:21 AM   #2
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If you've got ammonia you're not cycled.... but you are close. Have you tested your tap water to see what it comes out as?

Your numerical goals are: ammonia 0, nitrites 0, and nitrates below 20. When trates get above 20 it is time for a pwc.
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Old 06-09-2012, 01:25 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyRhoads
I finally got nitrite and nitrate liquid tests along with my ammonia.

My readings were ammonia 0.25ppm Nitrite 0 ppm and Nitrate 60-80 ppm.

I just did a 50% water change 2 days ago, and fed yesterday. The presence of Nitrate means it has cycled, correct? Is the ammonia just from feeding, and should I expect to find that a day or two after feedings? Why are my Nitrates between 60 and 80 so close to a 50% water change? Should I do another one now? At what ppm of Nitrate should I do a water change?
If your tank is cycled you shouldn't see ammonia. And your nitrAtes shouldn't be that high however you do want some nitrAtes but not 20ppm. To have 0.25 ammonia reading in your tank after a 50% water change 2 days ago tells me you may be overstocked? Over feeding? Or not cycled... And yes I would perform another water change.


What size tank? What's your stock? Filtration?

Hopefully more experienced members will chime in.

Also you can check your tap water and see what readings you get as far as ammonia etc... At least you can rule out the tap water.
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Old 06-09-2012, 02:07 AM   #4
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Tap water? I buy natural seawater from the LFS. The ammonia is tricky to me. 0 is yellow on the card and 0.25 is green on the card. It looks yellow with a tint of green, so I don't know perhaps it is 0. So once cycled the ammonia should be eaten by the bacteria before they can even show up on a test? What would having nitrates between 60-80 after a change indicate? Ammonia would mean overstocked/over feeding but not nitrates, right?

I have a 25 gal acrylic.
HOB penguing carbon filter
55W hood lighting
20 lbs live sand
12 lbs live rock
10lbs base rock
1 small dwarf lionfish
1 small snowflake moray
10 hermits,4 snails, 1 turbo snail
1 sea slug
1 unknown crab
button polpy colony on LR
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Old 06-09-2012, 02:12 AM   #5
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Oh wow!! I'm so sorry. Whew... Saltwater section. Man I'm tired. Thought it was a freshwater tank. Lemme get my bearings. Be right back.
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Old 06-09-2012, 02:52 AM   #6
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Lol no worries. I'll be anxiously waiting some feedback
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Old 06-09-2012, 05:32 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyRhoads
Tap water? I buy natural seawater from the LFS. The ammonia is tricky to me. 0 is yellow on the card and 0.25 is green on the card. It looks yellow with a tint of green, so I don't know perhaps it is 0. So once cycled the ammonia should be eaten by the bacteria before they can even show up on a test? What would having nitrates between 60-80 after a change indicate? Ammonia would mean overstocked/over feeding but not nitrates, right?

I have a 25 gal acrylic.
HOB penguing carbon filter
55W hood lighting
20 lbs live sand
12 lbs live rock
10lbs base rock
1 small dwarf lionfish
1 small snowflake moray
10 hermits,4 snails, 1 turbo snail
1 sea slug
1 unknown crab
button polpy colony on LR
That's a decent bioload for such a small tank. One reason you are testing such a high level of trates is bc your filtration is doing its job. That is a high level of trates but it's prob bc of your bioload. How often do you feed? Do you have a skimmer? How often are you doing water changes?
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Old 06-09-2012, 05:52 PM   #8
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Well that's good to hear my biofilter is established and doing its' job. I feed every other day, or every third day. I do not have a skimmer. I do a 25% water change every week, or every other week, depending on how things are looking. (like ammonia). I just got the nitrate and nitrite tests so those will paly a part now too.

I'm not going to buy a skimmer right now. Since I have to get a bigger tank eventually i'm thinking of using this current tank as a refugium/ sump for the bigger one i'm going to get down the road, at which time i'll mess with protein skimmers, heaters and such.
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Old 06-09-2012, 08:12 PM   #9
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It seems like you are doing what you can, the only thing I would recommend is maybe a skimmer. It will help with keeping everything down where it should be. I know you plan to upgrade so a skimmer isn't in the plans for now, but for that size of a tank they are fairly affordable. My Lfs has a rio nano skimmer for 35, and they work great. Something that will definitely help with the long term health of your entire tank. Good job on the water changes too. Keep up the great work
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Old 06-09-2012, 08:23 PM   #10
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Thank you for all the answers! I thought about a cheap temporary skimmer but the guy at the LFS says there aren't many options for cheap with the way my acryclic tank is built. The top has edges that go in pretty far and only one area for a HOB filter.
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