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Old 06-01-2005, 02:06 PM   #1
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When Do I know my cycling is done? When to add fish

OK....tested my water last nite and my PH is 8.2 and amm is barely .01...maybe more to zero(hard to tell on the small sensor)
My Nitrite is still high though....like 15, same with my Nitrate.
Oh and my salinity is 1.025 (although that is with a hydrometer....will soon get a refractometer)
Planning on doing a water change. Like 5 gals every other day for a few days...will bring it down?

The water is finally steady at about 80F and crystal clear...
When should I start adding a fish or 2.
I have quite a few snails and crabs, lots of life on the LR.
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Old 06-01-2005, 02:26 PM   #2
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Basic cycle, you should see ammonia spike and then fall, coinciding with a spike in nitrite. Nitrite should then drop and you should see a steady rise in nitrate. But, your cycle my bump ammonia and nitrite more than once, several small spikes as the cycle runs. You should not add any live animals until both ammonia and nitrite have read 0 for several days running. Then you'll need to do a water change to drop nitrate to an acceptable level. Remember, nitrite is not as toxic as ammonia, but its still pretty bad.

Doing small water changes during the cycle will lower the displayed number on your tests, but generally drags the cycle out longer. But with live rock, etc. small water changes can help keep your hitchhikers alive through the cycle.
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Old 06-01-2005, 02:34 PM   #3
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Quote:
Cycling is basically done...
indy:

Quote:
. You should not add any live animals until both ammonia and nitrite have read 0 for several days running.
Fully agree with indy. Your tank is not "basically done" cycling and you are NOT "ready for more life". If you Nitrites are still at 15, that is actually HIGH. you might have a long way to go still. I understand it is cool and all to get new things for the tank, but now is not the time to rush anything.

I see you have some inverts in there already. I would highly advise you do not add anything else to the tank until that ammo and nitrites hold at 0 for a week.
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Old 06-01-2005, 03:00 PM   #4
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ok...maybe so but I have already had my spike and this has been up and running for almost over 2 months.
I agree the Nits are high and hope water changes will lower this....
How can my PH and Ammo be 0 and my Nits still be that high?
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Old 06-01-2005, 03:54 PM   #5
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How can my PH and Ammo be 0 and my Nits still be that high?
Different bacteria breaks down ammonia into nitrites, and then nitrites into nitrates. All tanks go through different things while cycling.

Also, go pickup another test kit for nitrites, maybe the one you have is bad :P
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*15H marine*
-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
-2x Mushroom Leather // Metallic Green Star Polyps // Pulsing Xenia // Striped Xenia // Blue Mushroom
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Old 06-01-2005, 04:25 PM   #6
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Im planning on goin to the LFS and having them test it to get a 2nd look
The reason Im asking this if all the hickhikers that I have are doing good....went through a rough time about 2 weeks ago...but now the water is very very clear and other then my nits....things are looking up and all the critters seems happy....life on the recent LR (added 2 weeks ago) has had very little die off and looking good....
I dont have any issues waiting but I thought I read somewhere that as long as your ammo, PH, temp and salinty is good....and you have nitrites and nitrates...then adding a hardy fish is ok to help the load to equal out everything
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Old 06-01-2005, 04:51 PM   #7
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ammo, PH, temp and salinty is good....
Quote:
I read somewhere that as long as your ammo, PH, temp and salinty is good....and you have nitrites and nitrates...then adding a hardy fish is ok to help the load to equal out everything
Pretty common misonception really. Some people advocate using Damsels (which are about $3/each) to cycle a tank. Since you have LR, no need for the Damsels, the LR will cycle itself. At this point, you want to just leave things alone until those nitrites hit zero. If not, you might risk killing life that you are not even aware is in your tank to begin with. I have not stuck any new live rock in my tank for months, and I still find new things in there. If I pushed the limits when cycling, I could have killed those things off before they ever had a chance.

Also remember, a bucket of water on the floor would have stable ammo, ph, temp, and salinity. Those are the easiest things to keep in check in a marine tank

Since you added the new rock two weeks ago, wait it out another week and see how it is going. Things can go bad very quickly in saltwater, once things die in a new tank, it can cause a waterfall effect and nuke the tank. Nitrites could get high enough to kill some like, which causes decay, which causes more nitrites, which kills even more life and so on...

I had my tank going for 3 months before I had most of a cleanup crew, and over 4 months before I put fish in the tank. Seemed like it took forevever, but it really pays off.
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*26 freshwater*
2x Sunburst Platys (2M, 2F) // 3x Neon Tetras (?) // 2x Cherry Barbs (1M, 1F) // 2x YoYo Loaches (?) // 1x Bushy Nose Pleco (M) // 1x Clown Pleco (?) //

*15H marine*
-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
-2x Mushroom Leather // Metallic Green Star Polyps // Pulsing Xenia // Striped Xenia // Blue Mushroom
-Remora + Maxi-Jet 1200 // 2x Maxi-Jet 600 // Maxi-Jet 400 // Visi-Therm Deluxe 50 // Current USA Orbit 2x 40w PC
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