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Old 03-05-2005, 08:43 PM   #1
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New 180 Litre Tank (High Amonia & Nitrites)

Hi All,

I am new to AA and to marine aquarium keeping.

I have spoken to a number of LFS and had varying repsonses.

My tank is a week old. I was told it was ok to use damsels in the tank initially in order to get it through a cycle. I have 5 damsels in the tank at the moment and have had them in for 3 days. I have no LR and LS.

My questions are around the first cycle and what readings I should be seeing from the testing.

pH is currently at 8.2 and has been stable since I started.

Amonia is at 1.0 and only gone up in the past day. (was at 0)

Nitrites are at 0.35 and only gone up in the past day. (was at 0)

Is it common to see both amonia and nitrites rise at the same time?

Also, what are dangerous levels for the fish?

Also, when should I do my first water change? How much?

Thanks for the help!

Cheers

Brett
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Old 03-05-2005, 11:37 PM   #2
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Whatcha gonna do eventually? Fish only Reef? Live rock ambitions? If you're cycling with fish, you'll have to put only cured rock in later. Uncured will cause another cyle. There's an article at this site on cycling with shrimp you should check out.

Welcome to AA also.
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Old 03-05-2005, 11:51 PM   #3
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Yeah, you're going to catch a lot of flak for cycling with fish, it's considered pretty barbaric since it's basically making them live in a sewer. Fishless cycling with shrimp is MUCH better.
BTW the ammonia and nitrites rising just means that your cycle is beginning. When it turns to nitrates you're almost to the end, then when everything goes back to zero you're all good. Hope this helps!
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Old 03-06-2005, 05:24 AM   #4
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Thanks for the responses.

I agree about the cycling with fish being inhumane, but unfortunatley only came across this website after I had bought the fish.

I knew that the rise in Amonia and Nitrite are the begining of the cycle, but wasn't sure that they would rise at the same time.

Any idea for the first water change?

Thanks again for the help!
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Old 03-06-2005, 07:44 AM   #5
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It is not too late to return the fish and get some raw shrimp to continue with. Water change as necessary to keep the ammonia down for your fish. If changing to the fishless method you dont want to change any water until the cycle completes. That is when both ammonia and nitrites hit zero. This water change should be a large one to help reduce nitrates.
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Old 03-06-2005, 09:48 PM   #6
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As the ammonia levels rise you should see them peek after a week or maybe a little longer. After about a week you can start to test for nitrite. As the ammonia levels begin their decline the nitrite levels should begin to rise.

An exceprt from the article I mentioned at this site.

Does sound kinda strange that both going up after only 7 days. Didja test ammonia in the first 6 days? Hoping you didn't miss it and they're declining already. Still, sounds kinda qwik.
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Old 03-07-2005, 07:23 AM   #7
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Thanks austinsdad.

I did read through your document, but was a bit baffled by the increase in nitrites during this period. 8O

I did test for both during the first six days. Tested about every second day (perhaps more). Both were reading 0.


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Old 03-17-2005, 06:58 AM   #8
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Hi All,

Well I am 3 weeks in now and still seeing some strange test results:

Ammonia: 1.5
Nitrites: 1.0

Both haven't changed much in the three weeks.

I have started testing for Nitrates, and have found that stays at around 30.

Is it normal for these levels to stay the same?
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Old 03-17-2005, 07:04 AM   #9
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Old 03-17-2005, 07:05 AM   #10
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it will settle give it time, if you wanted a speedier proccess LR and Ls would havehelped out alot! You may want to think about taking out he damsels eventually. they are PUkNS!
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