Hi, I'm Spencer.
I'm new to aquariums for the most part. Last summer I volunteered to take a little 12 gallon tank from my Biology teacher who couldn't take care of the fish over the summer. I quickly fell in love with the aquarium, however within the last month I've learned through research that fish are not the effortless, low-maintenance pet that I once thought they were. With research I've also realized that the stock of fish that I initially received wasn't exactly ideal. Nonetheless, I'm learning quickly and am exploring the hobby further with a 36 gallon that I received for Christmas.
Currently I am fishless cycling my 36 gallon tank. I am not sure why fishless cycling gets a rep for being tedious and boring. I find it really neat testing the water, and it gives me a sense of accomplishment to know that I can control the quality of my tank all by myself.
That said, I do have a question about my cycling. I'm wondering if it's possible for my tank to be cycling so fast. Following the "The (almost) Complete Guide and FAQ to Fishless Cycling" here on this website, I started my cycle on the 31st of December. Today (January 6th), I tested my water and not only had the ammonia levels dropped (from 4ppm to 1ppm), but I saw nitrites (5ppm) and even nitrates (5ppm)!! I write down every time I test and what the parameters are, and though I'd tested ammonia several times before, today was the first time I tested the nitrites and nitrates. And there was no gap in between the drops and spikes that I'd read there would be.
Is this normal for the cycle to go so fast? Is it healthy? I'll admit, I was excited, because I suppose seeing these levels so quickly means my tank is getting that much closer to being a home for some new fish.
Can't wait to get more involved in the forum!