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Old 08-06-2005, 04:04 AM   #1
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Seeding my cycle

as i posted earlier i have a new 120 gal tanks. I am ready to start cycling it. i have been reading several posts on seeding my cycle and i have a few questions if anyone can help.which would be better taking gravel from my 30 gal tank that has been running for several years place it in mesh and put it in the filter unit of my new tank or should i take the new sponge and charcoal bag from my filter and put it on my old tank for a couple weeks to let the bact grow. once this is done what should i do next to complete the cycle. i have read people use pure ammonia or should i pop a couple of goldfish in the tank. i need to have this finished by the end of august will i have time with such a large tank.

thanks for all your help so far guys you have been great.
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Old 08-06-2005, 05:02 AM   #2
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you might want to borrow some of the estabilshed filters filter media.. and put some of the new stuff over in it for about 10 days.. you can use fish food/ shrimp from the seafood department of the grosery/ or pure ammonia.. using goldfish is not a good option unless you want to keep those goldfish in your tank when the cycle is over, wich I doubt, so I would suggest that you dont do that..
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Old 08-06-2005, 10:50 AM   #3
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Goldfish is not a good option. The feeders bring diseases. Unless you plan to keep the fish as the stocking, don't cycle with it. I'd recommend either pure ammonia or bio-Spira. You could replace the new carbon in your 30 gal and put the old in the 120. That will help jumpstart the cycle, but you'll still have to put ammonia in the tank. I don't like the shrimp/fish food idea because it takes a few days before it starts to decay and makes a big mess. You'll need quite a bit of Bio-Spira, but it is the fastest method that I know of. You can add fish instantly. HTH
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Old 08-06-2005, 12:47 PM   #4
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thanks again guys i will get some bio-spira
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Old 08-06-2005, 12:51 PM   #5
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Unfortunately, bio-spira doesn't always work...sometimes all the bacteria inside has died off. they'll refund your cash, but not the lost fish that died from ammonia poisoning.

personally, I would do both options you presented: I'd stick the new filter sponge in the existing tank for 2-3 weeks. don't bother with the charcoal bag...carbon is spent in 7days, so while it would transfer bacteria, the carbon would be useless (and frankly I never use carbon except to remove medications...which I've had to do once).

after 2-3 weeks, move the sponge to the new tank, and several handfuls of gravel...and any large decoractions or rocks can be moved too to help seed. at that point, you could start stocking the tank, VERY slowly...a few fish per week...and monitor ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. chances are good you'll only see nitrate increase, but you have to play it cautious and expect ammo or nitrite, and do water changes accordingly.
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Old 08-06-2005, 02:13 PM   #6
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I agree, this method should work fine for you. However, keep testing your water and stock slowly, as malkore said. The last time I started a tank this way it was a 55 gallon. I kept an eye on perams and noticed a small nitrite spike on the second day, but by day 3 nitrites were gone and there was a little nitrate. I would guess that your tank would take longer to cycle since it is so huge, but I don't have experience with a tank that large so I can't say for sure. Anyway, good luck, post pics , and keep testing your water.
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Old 08-06-2005, 09:18 PM   #7
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Get media from the old tank (or run your new stuff in it for a while) and guesstimate the bioload it can support. For example, if you take 1/2 to 1/3 the media from a fully stocked and cycled 30 gal tank, it probably has enough goodies on it to take care of a close to full load in a 10 gallon tank. The colonie size (and filtering capacity) can about double in a day given media to live on and nutrients (ammonia, nitrites).

So, move some media over to the 120 and add a few fish immeadiately. Wait a few days, add some more, etc.
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