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Old 09-27-2009, 11:01 PM   #1
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Question ammonia or stress zyme for cycling??

ok so i know that the cycling process says to add ammonia to your tank to get the cycle going. well iv asked a load of different pet store people and they say use stress zyme because ammonia is bad and stress zyme will work better....so should i use ammonia or stress zyme??
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:02 PM   #2
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you have to use ammonia... You can choose to also add stress zyme
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:23 AM   #3
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Just make sure you use the right ammonia with NO surfactants. We could only find this place at a specialty hardware store in the janitorial cleaning area.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:57 AM   #4
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Boy am I glad I just read this!!! I was within 15 minutes of putting ammonia with surfactants in it into my tank!!! WOW, talk about timing! I guess I will be going to the hardware store tomorrow!!!
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:14 AM   #5
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Yeah, we knew about it & made that mistake - just because the bottle says 'pure ammonia', does not mean that what's in the bottle is purely ammonia. After cleaning the sand half a dozen times to get it ready for the tank, got to clean several dozen more to get rid of the surfactant, and then repeatedly thanked the nice men at Ace for carrying the right stuff! Apparently, surfactant is related to soap, which sticks to the surface (if you use the stuff, you'll see it) and can prevent fish from breathing properly.
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:38 AM   #6
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Don't use ammonia if you already have a fish in there!
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Old 09-28-2009, 02:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EscVelocity View Post
Don't use ammonia if you already have a fish in there!
Great point, forgot about that!!! I think if you add fish without cycling first (which is bad), the best thing is to add extra food, which is also an alternative to using ammonia. Had a professor who always frozen shrimp.

Best investment - a freshwater testing kit!
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Old 09-28-2009, 09:19 AM   #8
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no i dont have fish yet, im setting up the aquarium this weekend and i was reading up about the no fish cycling and this is my very first aquarium in my life so i dont exactly know what to do....and my boyfriend who has done aquariums and works at an aquarium store said to use stress zyme because ammonia is really bad.
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Old 09-28-2009, 09:47 AM   #9
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Well, ammonia is really bad, if you have fish. but your question is like saying "which is better to add to a car, gasoline or oil?"

Ammonia is the food for the bacteria that you are going to need in your tank. Stress zyme, might contain that bacteria. Better would be to take a used filter home from your boyfriend's store, or bring in one of yours to sit in a tank for a while. you will still need some food for the bacteria.

I got my ammonia from a dollar store. Shake the bottle, no bubbles? good stuff.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:25 PM   #10
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the bacteria in a bottle can be snake oil... If you have it use it in addition to the ammonia.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:53 PM   #11
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I've heard that the Stress Zyme stuff, though it helps, isn't really the most effective to use. Others have recommended BioSpira, which I've only seen in the refrigerated section. Unfortunately not many places carry it. If you have an LFS you trust, getting gravel or driftwood can give you a huge jump start & most places will surrender a little gravel for free.
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hbeth82 View Post
I've heard that the Stress Zyme stuff, though it helps, isn't really the most effective to use. Others have recommended BioSpira, which I've only seen in the refrigerated section. Unfortunately not many places carry it. If you have an LFS you trust, getting gravel or driftwood can give you a huge jump start & most places will surrender a little gravel for free.
That was one of the things I read up on. The stuff that is kept chilled is better. The main thing was that the bacteria needs oxygen and the supply in a sealed bottle is limited.

The best bet is to (like you said) use something, especially filter media, from an established tank. It helps jump start the whole process. I think the 20g I set up cycled inside of 2 weeks cause of using some gravel, a filter, and a decoration from another tank. Hopefully it will hold true with using the filter in the new bedroom tank I set up.
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:54 PM   #13
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ok so ill go with the ammmonia
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Old 09-28-2009, 02:11 PM   #14
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it was either ace or true value hardware had it.... I looked at wal-mart and home depot and the ones there had soap in them.

I went to their web pages (ace and true value), and found out have both of them closer to me than the home depot. You might want to do teh same so you are not driving all over the place.

Only add a few drops at a time. I added maybe a tablespoon to a 20g tank it it was at 16ppm. It is better to add it gradually.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:25 PM   #15
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Good thread in my signature about fishless cycling. Please read.
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Old 09-28-2009, 03:30 PM   #16
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i read that thread, and its helped. ill just stick with ammonia and hope for the best. or if i find the biospira while im out getting accessories ill look at that too.
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Old 09-29-2009, 10:49 AM   #17
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ok so i have also been told to start my tank that i could just put some fish food in my tank (no fish in tank, just the substrate, decor, and water) and the food will give off ammonia and start the tank cycle....is this true? (trying to save a little money)
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Old 09-29-2009, 11:28 AM   #18
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Yes its true you can do that, but the pure ammonia is really the way to go.

OR

get a large uncooked shrimp, put it in a ziplock bag and punch holes in the bag. lots of them. The shrimp will decay and produce ammonia, thus starting the cycle.
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Old 09-29-2009, 11:34 AM   #19
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so let me make sure im understanding u lol...go to the grocery store (seafood area) get some shrimp, go home put them in a plastic baggy with holes in it, stick it in my tank, and let it sit for how long? lol thats a strange way
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Old 09-29-2009, 11:35 AM   #20
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its common in saltwater, sorry didnt realize this was fresh
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