Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 07-21-2003, 01:30 PM   #1
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Posts: 16
Why is this? (Cycling Diary)

Hey All

Me once again...

Im on day freakin 23 now with my fishless cycle. This is taking wayyyy too long...

Ok, this is what happened so far. In the beginning I struggled to get ammonia levels to the proper 5ppm, and therefor added way to much ammonia in the process. I discovered this by reading on the Hagen site that you should hold the test vial AGAINST the white background on the testcharts. Ok, after this my ammonia was FAAAR off the charts.

I then did a 90% water change to get rid of the extra ammonia. To know how much to add, I did the following calculation...

My ammonia is "industrial strength" which I bought from a guy that manufactures liquid soaps. Yes, its PURE ammonia, at 85% strength. No additives.

Now if my tank holds 252 litres of water divided by 1 million to know how much ml is one millionth.

252 / 1000000 = 0.000252 litres

0.000252 litres * 1000 = 0.252 ml

I need to add 5 parts per million ammonia, so I must add...

0.252 * 5 = 1.26 ml

Kewl! Now my ammonia is only 85% strength, so...

(1.26 / 85) * 100 = 1.48 ml (to convert the 85% to 100%)

I then took into account that the ammonia might be a bit old (not confirmed) and the bottle have been opened a few times, so I decided on 2.5ml ammonia to add per day. Maybe this was too much.. but anyway...

This is how my reading went from just before this up to now

Day 11 - AM: 5++ (This is where I realised my readings were to high and did the 90% water change. Added 2.5ml ammonia.)
Day 12 - AM: 1 NI: 5++ NA: 45 (Added 2.5ml Ammonia)
Day 13 - AM: 0 NI: 5++ NA: 100++ (Realised its no use testing for nitrates until both ammonia and nitrites is 0. Added 2.5ml Ammonia)
Day 14 - AM: 0 NI: 5++ (Added 2.5ml Ammonia)
Day 15 - AM: 0 NI: 5++ (Added 2.5ml Ammonia)
Day 16 - AM: 1.4 NI: 5++ (Wow! Why the sudden Ammonia? I decided to reduce ammonia to 2ml. Added 2ml ammonia)
Day 17 - AM: 1.4 NI: 5++ (Added 2ml ammonia)
Day 18 - NOT TESTED (Added 2ml ammonia)
Day 19 - AM: 2.4 NI: 5++ (This cannot be happening! Added 2ml Ammonia + filter squeezings from established tanks. Also added more bio-balls and chemical filtration to the canister filter. Did not take anything out of the filter or replace anything, only added!)
Day 20 - AM: 2.4 NI: 5++ (Decided to bring ammonia down to 1.5ml and added that much ammonia)
Day 21 - AM: 2.3 (Added 1.5ml ammonia)
Day 22 - NOT TESTED - HUNG OVER FORM SAT NIGHT! HEHE - Added 1.5ml ammonia though!)
Day 23 - AM: 2.3 NI: 0!!

Can it be? Tested nitrites twice to confirm! I suppose this is good, but can it happen that fast? Just before I tested this, earlier today, I went out on my lunchbreak to get a bottle of CYCLE bacteria to speed up the process. I did not add it to the tank before testing though, I only added it afterwards as to only have an effect on 2moro's readings. I added 40ml of that as recommended on the bottle.

Am I doing something wrong people? Why is ammonia back? Will it go away?

Thanks!

HappyLoner

PS: I know this is one HUGE post, but I think that others might learn from my mistakes here...
__________________

__________________
HappyLoner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 03:05 PM   #2
AA Team Emeritus
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,256
Send a message via ICQ to fishfreek Send a message via AIM to fishfreek Send a message via MSN to fishfreek Send a message via Yahoo to fishfreek
Why do you keep adding ammonia?

I have never used this liquid ammonia method of cycleing but in theory once you have an established ammonia level you then let your bactera go to work and it coverts it to nitrite and then to nitrate and your ready to go.
__________________

__________________
Remember dont tap the glass, your fish will think you're an idiot -Anonymous mother

Check out our articles area. 30+ Aquatic articles for your enjoyment
Are you in or around the Shenandoah Valley area? If so click here to join our regional forum.
fishfreek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 03:17 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Mesa, AZ
Posts: 582
Hmm... I'm just a newbie too, but my understanding was that you continue to add ammonia (a very small amount) to feed the bacteria until a day or so before you're ready to add your fish.

Am I wrong? If so, I'm making the same mistake...
__________________
Madame_X is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 03:52 PM   #4
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Posts: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madame_X
Hmm... I'm just a newbie too, but my understanding was that you continue to add ammonia (a very small amount) to feed the bacteria until a day or so before you're ready to add your fish.

Am I wrong? If so, I'm making the same mistake...
No, you are 100% right.

The bacteria transforming ammonia into nitrites establishes themselves first, and produce nitrites from ammonia in the tank. Only then will the bacteria that forms nitrates from the nitrites establish themselves, but while that happen, the first bunch of bacteria still needs to be "fed" or they will die off.

My problem is here HOW MUCH ammonia to add to feed them. Have I added too much? Therefor ammonia appearing again?
__________________
HappyLoner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 04:45 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: IL
Posts: 53
ya i think adding that much amm. will create a huge ammonia eating colony. not that that's bad, but u wanna add fish i'm assuming : )
i would not add any amm. and wait for the amm. to hit 0, then add fish : )
just don't let the amm. level sit at 0 for very long, because your bacteria will be dieing
__________________
Spy_90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 05:36 PM   #6
AA Team Emeritus
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,256
Send a message via ICQ to fishfreek Send a message via AIM to fishfreek Send a message via MSN to fishfreek Send a message via Yahoo to fishfreek
Quote:
i would not add any amm. and wait for the amm. to hit 0, then add fish : )
Ya that is what I was getting at.
Thanks.
__________________
Remember dont tap the glass, your fish will think you're an idiot -Anonymous mother

Check out our articles area. 30+ Aquatic articles for your enjoyment
Are you in or around the Shenandoah Valley area? If so click here to join our regional forum.
fishfreek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 11:12 PM   #7
AA Team Emeritus
 
TankGirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Richmond VA
Posts: 8,974
Keep adding ammonia until you get nitrAtes, and THAT is how you know you have reached the end of your cycle. Once you are adding the proper amount of ammonia and you are reading ZERO nitrItes and registering some nitrAtes, then you will not be able to read ammonia when you test for it the next day after adding it. Am I confusing? Let's say you add ammonia one morning like normal, and the next day you test the water, and if you have completed your cycle you will have zero ammonia, zero nitrites and trace or higher nitrates, even though you added ammonia the day before. This means your bacteria are consuming the ammonia and producing nitrites, and the second type of bacteria is consuming the nitrites and producing nitrates. Then you do a water change to reduce the nitrates and you add your fish. The ammonia should be zero anyway, if your bacterial colony is established.
TankGirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-21-2003, 11:19 PM   #8
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NY
Posts: 4,536
To add to Tankgirl's post:

Keep in mind the cycle has 2 basic stages; from ammonia to nitrite, and from nitrite to nitrate. Ammonia and nitrites are deadly to fish; if you have either you shouldn't have fish in there.

As for why the nitrites have disappeared, and the ammonia is still registering, dunno. Its possible the bacteria colony died, although I don't see that anything has happened to cause that. Maybe the test kit went bad for some strange reason? I'd have all the parameters double checked by new tests or a lfs just to be sure. Oh! And Cycle? Will muck up your nitrate readings. I started a fishless cycle with it and couldn't figure out why I was getting nitrates first thing. I tested the Cycle itself; over 80 ppm nitrate straight from the bottle...I threw it out.
__________________
Allivymar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-22-2003, 02:06 AM   #9
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Posts: 16
I had nitrates from day 12 and stopped measuring it on day 14 when it went off the charts. I will get that back down once ammonia and nitrites are 0.

I also thought some bacteria has died off for some unknown reason, therefor i added the cycle bacteria.

Test kit gone bad? possible? maybe, but it only expires in like 2006! Hagen Testkit. As far as I know, they're quite good?!
__________________

__________________
HappyLoner is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cycling

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
My 38 Gallon Diary! MrMalta Show Off/Photography 35 11-19-2008 07:30 AM
Diary of my 125G src Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 4 07-28-2006 12:58 AM
Diary of a teardown... TankGirl Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 42 12-25-2005 11:09 AM
diary of a 10g nodoubt471 Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started 5 10-01-2004 09:33 AM
Biospira Diary SixFootDaisy Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 40 08-22-2003 05:49 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:02 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×