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Old 02-02-2004, 07:29 PM   #1
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smelly cycle...blech

Just started a 40 gallon saltwater aquarium. I just put a shrimp in there two days ago. Unfortunately, something so obvious that it had be unexpected came up. My tank smells like rotting food! (suprising, I know). I was just wondering if the years of experiences and countless new tanks compiled in this site could offer me any technique to keep my entire room from smelling this way. It's a trivial request I know, and I'm aware of all the obious solutions (keep the lid shut, air freshners, etc.). Just wondering if there were any sort of easy trick that could help. Thanks.
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Old 02-02-2004, 08:11 PM   #2
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Re: smelly cycle...blech

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Originally Posted by Mephistopheles
Just wondering if there were any sort of easy trick that could help. Thanks.
Carbon

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Old 02-03-2004, 02:01 AM   #3
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yea...i am not a big fan of the shrimp method, i prefer cured live rock to ease the cycle, then fish. Why not get rid of the shrimp and get some cured live rock from a lfs? i cycled in less than 10 days that way, plus you can get into the interesting invertebretes and all...

agreed. use any mechanical filter that has a carbon media or cartridge, the more gph the faster it will smell / look better
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Old 02-03-2004, 11:02 AM   #4
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Without an ammonia source the tank does not effectively cycle. You either need to use a raw seafood item or uncured live rock to get a strong bacterial population for a new tank. Simpley adding cured live rock will not usually be sufficient.

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Old 02-03-2004, 11:55 AM   #5
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i would say there is plenty of ammonia in there if it stinks...lol

i did not imply no fish, i simply meant live rock and then slowly stock (as usual, damsels or the like) - and there are other options beyond seafood & uncured rock - how about the strong biological population provided by good cured lr or sand??? my opinion would be to start with cured lr if you can dish out the $$, it will keep the peaks and duration of cycle at a minimum
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Old 02-03-2004, 12:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by srgetz
i would say there is plenty of ammonia in there if it stinks...lol
After only two days, chances are very minimal if at all.

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i did not imply no fish, i simply meant live rock and then slowly stock (as usual, damsels or the like) - and there are other options beyond seafood & uncured rock -
I did mean no fish. With the introduction of an already dead ammonia source to fuel nitrosomonas bacteria, there is no need for living animals to provide the needed ammonia for the cycle. Adding fish to a newly established tank even with cured LR will still mean the fish will suffer through at least low levels of NH3 and high levels of NO2 which are equally as harmful to the fish's health.

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how about the strong biological population provided by good cured lr or sand??? my opinion would be to start with cured lr if you can dish out the $$, it will keep the peaks and duration of cycle at a minimum
Agreed the cured LR will greatly help with the cycle but it by no means suggest it will allow the tank to "become" cycled just by it's addition. LS IMO, is bunk. Unless it had fauna or comes from an established system is basically just wet sand in a bag. A little patience and possibley putting up with an unpleasant odor for a short time will ensure a strong biological filter is established prior to adding animal life. 8)

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Old 02-03-2004, 01:13 PM   #7
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"A little patience and possibly putting up with an unpleasant odor for a short time will ensure a strong biological filter is established prior to adding animal life"

how can we know what his biological filter media is and if it will ever be strong or established? he may have nothing but an inch of sand for all we know, not where id put stock

im just advising and encouraging to get good cured lr (or cure it yourself if you feel like looking at rotting shrimp for 6weeks) as it was a huge help for me as a sw novice, and btw i followed "the conscientious marine aquarist" with success as i endured a minimal cycle with 0's in 10 days - so i can speak to cycling using hardy stock if and only if lots of cured lr (~lb/g +) are in, there is lively circulation 10-20 ga/hr preferably, and the ammonia / nitrites are 0. see below...

again my advice - cured live rock is very very good in a new tank, highly advisable, trust me, and if you don't pick up "the conscientious marine aquarist" and trust Robert Fenner



http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=16644
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Old 02-03-2004, 04:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
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how can we know what his biological filter media is and if it will ever be strong or established? he may have nothing but an inch of sand for all we know, not where id put stock
I won't get into the sand depth issue with you but to be clear I am not arguing with you about the LR, quite the contrary. I whole heartedly agree with you. LR (or even base) is one of the best additions you can make to the tank. My concern is the needless addition of fish to further the production of NH3 and NO2 consuming bacteria. Even if the fish is "hardy", it is not necessary and can be accomplished without live animals.

In any event I think we've hijacked this thread a little more than is polite considering Mephistopheles's topic header. If you wish to further debate the topic please begin a new thread.

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Old 02-03-2004, 11:11 PM   #9
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I certainly do appreciate the discourse, so don't worry about that. thanks for the input. My budget is reaching it's brink (I have a $40 fish credit and enough for food and things but not much more) on this tank, so I'll see what I can do about the live rock. I would love to get some. The smell is a bit better today so we'll see how she goes. Thanks again for your help.
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Old 02-05-2004, 12:14 AM   #10
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Mephistopheles, Where the heck is Merton? I've been in this great hobby for a little over 1 year and would be happy to share my experience with you and maybe save you some money and aggravation in the long run.

If you would like please feel free to send me an email or PM.
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