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Old 11-17-2004, 02:16 AM   #1
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Adding first fish tomorrow, what to do if...

I have a qt tank cycled and awaiting its first fish which I'm getting tomorrow. I've heard that adding a fish can cause a mini-cycle. What do I do if my tank starts a mini cycle? Do I water change until my readings for Ammonia and Nitrite are zero? Do nothing unless fish looks distressed?

I'm hoping I don't have a mini-cycle but I do want to be prepared if I do.

Carolyn
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Old 11-17-2004, 09:08 AM   #2
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How'd you cycle your QT tank? Over what period of time? Trying to figure out how much nitrifying bacteria might have been created and its ability to prevent ammonia spikes from new fish. Not that I can do the figuring, but others at this site would be able to.

One fish tomorrow. What will it be, by the way?. And better yet, have you given good thought to what you ultimately want to be stocked with? Don't start with the yellow tang What size is your main where the fish might be going?

I started with 3 blue/green chromis hoping they'd be tame enough for the big tank and do some schooling.

With first fish, watch your testing levels often and be prepared for water changes. Got a place for pre-mixed water to age with a small heater and circulation pump? I keep a 32g trash can w/about 15g made up - when I'm being good.
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:13 AM   #3
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If you properly cycled the Qtank, then adding a few fish should not cause a cycle...that's the whole purpose of pre-cycling a tank with shrimp/ammonia - to avoid any spikes when live fish are added. If you can answer a few of austinsdad's questions, that'll tell us how well the tank was cycled.
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:11 AM   #4
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Tank was cycled with liverock for about a month. It's only a 2.5 gallon (all I had for a tank when I realized I needed to cycle a QT tank - will upgrade to a 10 soon.)

Anyhow Ammonia and Nitrites are zero. Nitrates -5ppm. I'm going to buy some Catalina water at Petco today because I used all my premixed water yesterday trying to stabilize my main nano tank parameters (that's a whole other story). I'll get that aerating as soon as possible.

Fish will be a okinawae goby - a small one at that (less than 1"). It's coming in on a group buy today. There are lots of pods in the tank, should I just let the goby eat them until they have depleted in quantity or should I feed him too? I don't want to have food spoiling which would kill the water parameters.

Carolyn
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:19 AM   #5
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Did you get ammonia and nitrate spikes at some point?
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:23 AM   #6
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Just from my own experiences and from what I have seen on the site it is common to get an ammonia spike in a qt. It depends on the tank size and the fish size. Like was mentioned keep change water available and if it does spike, do daily water changes.
IMO do not rely on the cycle to carry you through the qt period, especially if the need arised to treat with any kind of meds. Water changes are you best weapon.
Be sure to test daily, especially in the first week of qt and be ready to act.
Also syphon up any uneaten foods and I would suggest a small (10-15%) change every few days even if it doesn't spike.
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:25 AM   #7
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I meant nitrite, not trate.

Yeah, keep the water handy and clean up uneaten food.
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Old 11-17-2004, 11:28 AM   #8
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QT should be bare bottom, I would get the rock out of there (if it already isn't) and use a sponge filter instead.
Also a 2.5 may be hard to manage as a qt tank. If possible, you may want to get that 10 gallon.
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Old 11-17-2004, 01:31 PM   #9
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I'm betting you will indeed see a spike with a tank that tiny. I had a mini-cycle when I added two ocellaris to a cycled 20 gallon tank. It took water changes every 2-3 days for a couple of weeks before the tank stabilized. (It was a very small cycle--ammonia never went above .25.) I'd have a nice big bucket of aged SW ready and test every day until you've have nitrites at 0 for a week or so.
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Old 11-17-2004, 04:08 PM   #10
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IMO i would put the fish in there and let it ride, it wont spike enough to kill anything!!! Just test the water after a week and see where it is!!! You'll be fine, sometimes this site get's a lil'' overboared on caution!!! One lil'' fish wont hurt nothing!!!I cycled my 125gal. with 15 damels only lost 2 so......You have to add fish one day or you will only have a water tank
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