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Old 03-15-2010, 12:32 PM   #1
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So im new...

This is from my intro post just to give you some backround

I have a 14G hexagon tall tank with a light and a filter. This is the light that came with it Amazon.com: Penn-Plax - Aquarium- FL8 8Watt 12 Aquarilux Flurbul: Kitchen & Dining I purchased a light timer and have it set 1/2 light for 3 hours, on for 10, 1/2 for 3 hours, and off for 8. I also purchased a heater and thermometer. So I went to my LFS and talked to the guy there and I told him I was just starting out and what I needed to get. He gave me some salt, a bag of LS, some LR (6lbs), a salinity guage, a bottle of Live nitrifying bacteria for SW, and a bottle that removes nitrate, nitrite, ammonia, chlorine and chloramines. He told me to mix the salt and water (1/2 cup per gallon obv.), test the salinity and start the filter. Then he said add the LR, but not the LS. Then add the additives I noted. Let it cycle for 3 days and then add the LS. So today is day 4, and I added the LS yesterday. I also bought a test kit but its the strips, which I found out are frowned upon for being not so accurate after I bought them, which was awesome. I will test everything tomorrow and post them. So for now Im just letting it cycle. Heres a pic of it today.



BTW my goals are to get a protein skimmer and have a FOWLR tank with mostly inverts and some hardy fish. Eventually down the road I want to get seahorses, which I know are very sensitive and very hard to take care of, but I think my tank should be okay, I just need to build my knowledge.

So heres my questions..
How much longer do you think it should cycle?
When should I add a CUC? How many of what?
Am I doing anything wrong?
Any suggestions on helping my setup without changing the tank size?
Is my lighting okay for what I want?

Thanks in advance!

Update : 3/15

I did the tests today that I said I was going to do above. Heres the results
These are kind of appoximate because its the strips..

Salinity - 1.022
Ammonia - .3 ppm
Nitrate - 20 ppm
Nitrite - 3.0 ppm
Alkalinity - 300+
pH - 8.0
Temp - 76F

Heres a pic of the tester



So how can I get my Nitrite down? Water change or let it cycle out?
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Old 03-15-2010, 01:14 PM   #2
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Let the cycle ride. After the ammonia and then nitrite peaks, then both return to zero, your cycle is complete. Nitrites are a normal part of the sequence. I wouldn't change the water until after the cycle is complete.
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Old 03-15-2010, 01:41 PM   #3
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Ok where to start. I personally think your LFS is not on the level. Read this for how to cycle the tank. Take the bottle so call live nitrifying bacteria back.

Cycle your salt tank

Also liquid test strips are way more accurate that strips. Also only worry about Ammonia, nitrites and nitrates during the cycle. all you other water test will be bouncing all around during the cycle. Also for a tank that small I would skip the skimmer. Weekly PWC`s will accomplish the same thing in that size tank. Save your noney to buy a RO/DI unit. Take your tap water conditioner back also Read this

http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/jan2004/chem.htm
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Old 03-15-2010, 01:48 PM   #4
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Also, if you are planning to put seahorses in this tank, then you are most likely going to have to make it a species only tank. Meaning you can only put seahorses in there. The reason being that they are extremely slow, and extremely delicate. You need to make sure that they get food without having the other fish around them eating it all before it gets to the seahorse. You also would not want any inverts that could grab at the seahorse while it is attached to a rock because when they aren't swimming around, they are anchored to rocks or other things with their tails. Keeping a seahorse is pretty advanced, but can be done as long as you know every little detail about them.

But first is first, let your tank cycle and follow the advice given above because it couldn't be any better.
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Old 03-15-2010, 04:51 PM   #5
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Cool, thanks for the input. So do you think my tank has started to cycle with the nitrite being high right now? Or is that nothing to where its going to be during the cycle? If I havent started it yet, im thinking of doing the raw shrimp method today.
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Old 03-15-2010, 05:31 PM   #6
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Well your ammonia is up, so yes, i would say your cycle has started. Just keep testing your water every day. Once you begin to see Ammonia and Nitrite levels drop, then you will know your tanks cycle is coming to a close. Once your Ammonia and Nitrite levels hit zero, it's best to do a 40-50% water change in order to drop the level of Nitrates considerably. Just like austinsdad said in his first post,
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:19 PM   #7
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ok so do you think its too late for the shrimp idea? Or is it a good idea?
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:21 PM   #8
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Also I meant liquid test kits and not strips. Sorry.

Also here is my build to my seahores tank a few yrs back.

Melosu58`s seahorse diary
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:36 PM   #9
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after reading your post, it seems that you have a very light ammonia load for your tank. Be aware that your tank will only cycle to the ammonia load that is in there. This means that you have to add your animals very slowly so that the bateria load can catch up to the animal load that is in your tank.
I hope that makes sense. ;
Your cycle is done when your ammonia and nitrite reads return to 0 after raising and you only have a nitrate reading.
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:51 PM   #10
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Thats a nice write up on your SH set up Melosu

lol and yea that makes sense thincat, but does that exclude a CUC and/or hardy animals? Bc I really wanna get a star when my cycle is done.

I think im just ganna add the raw shrimp today to kick up my nitrite. Good idea?
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