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Old 05-22-2012, 09:44 AM   #1
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Why Do We Cycle our Tanks?

I always cycle my tanks but what happens when tanks cycle? What would happen if you put fish in before they are fully cycled?
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Old 05-22-2012, 09:46 AM   #2
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The ammonia would build up and poison the fish because of a lack of BB.
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Old 05-22-2012, 10:05 AM   #3
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You would have a fish in cycle
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Old 05-22-2012, 10:28 AM   #4
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Like stated above, you cycle to build up the beneficial bacteria that consume ammonia. These bacteria then produce nitrites. This buildup then produces bacteria that consumes nitrites and produces nitrates. Then the nitrates are either consumed by algae or removed via water changes.

If you had a fish in the tank prior to cycling, it is called a fish in cycle. This will produce ammonia via fish waste...or via the corpse of the fish that was unable to survive the ammonia spike.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:44 PM   #5
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Does this happen in freshwater tanks as well, or is cycling only for salt?
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyRhoads
Does this happen in freshwater tanks as well, or is cycling only for salt?
All brackish fresh salt ponds you name it its got to cycle
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:51 PM   #7
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It's for both, you have to cycle both Fresh and Salt aquariums.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:34 PM   #8
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In my experience, I was once an extremely uneducated and unprepared aquarist who decided to get three glofish for a ten gallon freshwater tank. They were dead within hours because ammonia spiked so much. Don't worry, I know much better now! poor fish...

Basically we cycle our tanks so we can prevent ammonia and nitrite spikes and establish a biological filter, thus keeping our fish alive. If you add fish before you cycle the tank, you'll be doing a fish-in cycle, in which ammonia is produced via fish waste or corpse (as stated above). OR if you add them early you'll get what I've started referring to as the glofish result: all dead

So don't neglect your cycle!
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