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Old 10-23-2002, 04:48 PM   #1
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Cycle...of DEATH

Ok, so I am in the process of cycling a 55 gal long tank. I am at the end of the 2nd week and things were going fine. I had 10 neons (yeah, I know) 3 angels and 6 longfin zebra danios. Anyway, things were going great until... All of the sudden my danios started dying. There are visible lesions on the body that will actually bleed if the fish are taken out of the water. Slightly swollen abdomen. Other than that, no symptoms. I have lost 4 of the 6. I haven't seen any other fish attack them and all the other species are doing great. PLEASE HELP if you can!!! Tank is sitting at 79 F with a nearly neutral PH and Nitrites are high, but Nitrates are starting to show (i am using mature filter media in a Emperor 400 filter) Thanks!!!
Jason
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Old 10-24-2002, 02:25 PM   #2
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what is your ammonia reading? how high is high for the nitrites? i would suggest an immediate sizable water change--i would shoot for 1/3, but at the very least 25%--i can't believe your neons are still kicking! mature filter media can help the process , but it is by no means a fix all--it is still very important to keep your levels at an acceptable level for the fish in the tank to avoid damaging them or even killing them--and what size tank with what size bioload did the media come from? of course media from a 10 gallon is a good start , but not nearly sufficient for a 55 gallon with a moderate starting fish load..-and why would you cycle the tank with neons if you know better? how big are the angels? it's great that you are starting to see nitrate, but was nitrate present in your tap water? seeing nitrate develop means that your tank is entering the last phase of the initial cycle, but it does not mean that you can let it run it's course without controlling the nitrite parameters...sounds severe if your fish are actually bleeding...
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Old 10-28-2002, 09:53 AM   #3
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Update

The cycle of death seems to have ended...YAY! I truly believe that my Zebra Danios had some sort of problem before I got them. All of my Neons are happy and healthy as are the angels! I can't remember the exact levels of my Nitrites and Nitrates, I am at work, but I will try to get those posted, just fyi. You asked why i started with neons... Well, they sure are pretty, and I started the cycle before I read that you shouldn't cycle with neons. I think a big help was using the substrate from an established tank mixed with new gravel. As well as using the filter media from that tank. I havn't kept fish in 7 or 8 years and am really excited to start back up. I will post some pictures as soon as I can. Thanks for all the help, this is a fantastic site!
Jason
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Old 10-28-2002, 10:28 AM   #4
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Jason,

Kudos go out to you for getting your cycle under control.

Yes adding established gravel and putting an established filter on your tank made quick work of your cycle time. In fact if anyone can get just a few cups of gravel from an established tank to add to their new tank it will shorten the cycle process significantly.

In fact when i started up my 29 gal freshwater tank to take the fish from a friends 55 gal tank that they had to tear down due to a moving situation I had no real oppertuinty to cycle the tank so I got a small tupperware bowl full of their gravel and placed it in the tank at the same time I moved their fish. I was given 5 2-3" congo tetras and a nice 4"+ pleco and two kuli loaches. I am proud to say my tank did not have any issues with ammoinia levels from day 1 and I attribute the bactera laden gravel from their tank as the reason.

I personaly Love a school of neon tetras. I cant get any for my 29 now as I worry the giant congo tetras (in compairson to the small size of the neons) would harrasse and kill them.
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Old 10-28-2002, 06:57 PM   #5
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sounds like you are on the right track now, just keep an eye on them for awhile..
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