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Old 05-10-2011, 07:12 PM   #1
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really high ammo while cycling ...

I am cycling a 10 gallon FO using one cooked cocktail shrimp. It has been one week since adding the shrimp and ammo is off the chart over 8. Should I just let it go and work itself out or should I do a PWC to get it down some? My plan is just to let it go but thought I would check here. (I do have about 2 lbs Gulf rock that I picked up on the beach a month ago, not sure if that really affects anything.)

I have fishless cycled tanks with liquid ammonia where I am able to control the amount going in and the resulting levels, but this is my first time with shrimp where it just does its own thing and I am along for the ride.
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:24 PM   #2
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thats whats supposed to happen, the shrimp is supposed to decompose into ammonia, then barteria begins to build that will break the ammonia down into nitrite and then finally the less harmful nitrate
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:30 PM   #3
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I recommend 1.5 to 2lbs of live rock per gallon and I think you should be patient and just wait it out, you're tank is go'n through it's cycle. Good luck
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:15 PM   #4
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I understand that is what it is supposed to do...I just thought 8 on the API test was really high. I don't want to kill off the bacteria I am trying to grow! I will wait it out and test again next week. Hopefully by then I will be seeing some nitrites.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:21 PM   #5
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Levels over 8ppm of ammonia will kill off your bacteria, if you have any remaining as of now. Do a water change and try to get it down to 4ppm. Adding rock that you find on/near the beach is a bad idea since you don't know what pollutants and/or hitchhikers are in/on it.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:24 PM   #6
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i would understand if there was any bacteria to kill off but in the ammonia stages what bacteria is there to kill? i've always read leave it the more you chaneg the water the slower the whole process will be.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:27 PM   #7
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If you have too much ammonia for the cycle to begin it will never happen...the ammonia won't go away w/o a water change or ammo neutralizer. Until then, the bacteria will never grow.
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Old 05-11-2011, 02:04 PM   #8
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Did a PWC last night and ammo is around 3 today. Much happier with that. Will not wait a week to test this time so I can keep the params in line and not kill my bacteria. Also gives me more practice mixing water, and a basic chemistry lesson for my 6 year old who had a ball helping me test and mix. The kids can't wait for "Nemo" (okay, me too) so it is a good lesson in patience for all of us
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Old 05-11-2011, 11:16 PM   #9
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If what the bacteria lives on is ammonia higj levels wont kill it... Doesnt make any sense. Its like saying dogs eat dog food but they cant live with too much in their bowl. The bacteria will live theough 8ppm ammonia without a prob it is just a strong cycle many have had their levels higher than that and had no issue. In fact mine went above 20ppm and i cycled in less than three weeks.
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Old 05-11-2011, 11:33 PM   #10
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At one point or another, the high ammonia levels will become toxic to the bacteria themselves. This is why there are recommended limits to the amount of pure ammonia/shrimp or whatever is used to cycle that are added. You can't go dumping a gallon of ammonia into a tank and wait for it to cycle, it just won't happen.... As simple as I can make it. Maybe one of the experts will chime in?
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