Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion
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 08-26-2016, 12:37 AM   #1
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
Mini cycle question

So I tested my tank using ammonia and it cycled very quickly.

2 days ago I had a pH spike in my tank and lost a fish, but couldn't find it. Today I lost another. I tested and I had .25 ammonia today for the first time since adding fish again. I used seachem prime. I will do a significant water change tomorrow.

My question is this, how long will it take for the nitrifying bacteria colony to increase in size? I have 0 nitrites and around 20 ppm nitrates.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________

__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 01:04 AM   #2
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
pH spike? A rapid rise in pH is very abnormal and highly unlikely. Are you sure nothing was added such as baking soda? Do you have limestone or crushed coral in your tank? Did you recently do a water change?

To answer your question- probably not long with such a small amount of ammonia. If the ammonia doesn't rise it should be at 0 tomorrow, test before changing. Ammonia is food and when you have a good colony it doesn't take long for them to adjust.

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________

__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 02:03 AM   #3
Aquarium Advice Addict
Community Moderator
 
Autumnsky's Avatar



POTM Champion
Tank of the Month Award
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Northern Colorado, USA
Posts: 13,657
How many days/ weeks has the tank been running?
__________________
FW & SW
Favorite tank right now - 12G Edge nano fish

New to FW fish? First tank in a long time or EVER??? Need some info on keeping fish?
Start here - Aquarium Advice Article
https://www.aquariumadvice.com/guide...ater-aquarium/
Autumnsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 02:14 AM   #4
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
Well, the tank had been continuously running for 2 years, just without fish and in poor condition for the last year or so.

I've had pH spikes before. My city water is very poor for aquariums and I had actually forgotten that fact when I restarted the tank. About 2 days or so after a major water change I will have pH spike.

I learned to avoid this to go 50/50 spring water with tap water, but I didn't do that this time. I won't make that mistake again.

I just added driftwood which should help with the pH a little. I've used seachem regulator to bring it back closer to 7.0.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 03:44 AM   #5
Aquarium Advice Addict
Community Moderator
 
Autumnsky's Avatar



POTM Champion
Tank of the Month Award
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Northern Colorado, USA
Posts: 13,657
The tank needs ammonia to keep cycled, thats where the fish come in. The poo and when you feed them the waste from that turns into ammonia and so on in the nitrogen cycle

Guide to Starting a Freshwater Aquarium - Aquarium Advice

outside article here...
The Cycle of Life: The Nitrogen Cycle in Aquariums
__________________
FW & SW
Favorite tank right now - 12G Edge nano fish

New to FW fish? First tank in a long time or EVER??? Need some info on keeping fish?
Start here - Aquarium Advice Article
https://www.aquariumadvice.com/guide...ater-aquarium/
Autumnsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 08:28 AM   #6
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
I seeded the tank with ammonia and it converted to Nitrates in 24 hours. I must not have seeded it with enough however.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 09:08 AM   #7
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
What kind of change in pH are we talking?

It sounds like something is off gassing after it leaves the tap.

Have you tested the tap after letting a sample sit for 24 hours?

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 10:16 AM   #8
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
Additionally, trying to keep your water exactly 7 is difficult and usually needless. Stability at a pH that is not "perfect" is far better for the fish than a pH that changes often in attempts to get it at a desired level. Unless your pH is in the upper 8s I wouldn't worry about bringing it down.

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 10:19 AM   #9
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
Yes. The tap water spikes in pH after 24 hours or so. That's how I found the problem 2 years ago. I just forgot!


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 10:21 AM   #10
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
That's good news! I will monitor the pH on almost a daily basis and not try to adjust it. Right not its between 7.6 and 7.8 which is a little high for the fish I'm keeping but not too much (recommended range is 6-7.5).

Thank you for that info!


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 10:40 AM   #11
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
7.8 is more than ideal if it's kept stable. My angels live in 7.6, but the ideal is soft and acidic. My tap does the same thing, but is otherwise soft and has no minerals.

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2016, 04:06 PM   #12
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Andy Sager's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Lake Wales, Florida
Posts: 6,125
"Ideal" is subjective. For wild fish from areas with soft acidic water, 7.8 would be far from "ideal" however, if those same fish are tank raised specimens that were raised in hard alkaline water, 7.8 would be fine. So it's going to depend on what kinds of fish you are talking about. Considering that many fish available today are tank raised specimens but the information online about these fish describes wild specimens, it can get confusing. So you need to know what you are dealing with in order to make the "ideal" habitat for the fish.
__________________
Andy Sager is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 12:01 AM   #13
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
Ok, so I feel like I understand the pH thing. It's really only a concern if I add fish that are from a drastically different pH.

I just added some driftwood which hopefully will naturally lower the pH just a little.

As for the ammonia spike, I finally found the source. The fish that went missing after the pH spike did not survive and was hidden at the base of a plant in the back of the tank which is blocked by other decor. I got him out, and did a 40% water change. I've used seachem prime to keep the remaining living fish safe for now.

I'll check the ammonia every day and make more water changes as necessary.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 05:36 AM   #14
Aquarium Advice Addict
Community Moderator
 
Autumnsky's Avatar



POTM Champion
Tank of the Month Award
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Northern Colorado, USA
Posts: 13,657
Sad about the fish, but good to help understand what was happening.

Keep a close check over the water for awhile. Watch for any odd behavior and if seen check water right away.
__________________
FW & SW
Favorite tank right now - 12G Edge nano fish

New to FW fish? First tank in a long time or EVER??? Need some info on keeping fish?
Start here - Aquarium Advice Article
https://www.aquariumadvice.com/guide...ater-aquarium/
Autumnsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 08:36 AM   #15
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
Just keep your pH stable. Don't add neutral regulator because it will likely go down, then back up. It's better if it just remains up. Even if you were to bring fish from lower pH water you could slowly acclimate them and they'd be okay. The tank breed varieties available are very adaptable if you do it slowly.

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 02:44 PM   #16
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: NJ USA
Posts: 1,273
What fish are we talking about?
Many people wish they had a 7.6 to 7.8 pH level unless as Andy mentioned they are wild caught fish from very low pH waters.
All of my fish live and thrive in 7.0 to 8.0 pH. I would concentrate more on the cycling issue you mentioned and please let us know what fish you are keeping, tank size and filter.
Good luck!
__________________
gilpi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 04:37 PM   #17
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Geneva, IL
Posts: 108
I've posted before but I'll update here as well.

It's a 36 gallon now front with two aqeoun quietflow 30 filters. The tank is an existing tank that I'm recovering.

The fish I started with

3 honey Gourami's
1 red tailed black shark
A pair of blue Rams
2 king tiger plecos

Unfortunately after the pH spike I lost one of the honeys, which caused the ammonia spike and then one of blue Rams didn't make it.

I couldn't find the honey that didn't make it. I mistakenly assumed that the shark ate her remains. I won't make that mistaken assumption again. That's the source of the ammonia.

I cleaned with the vacuum tube and got all the remains out. So the ammonia should end up under control again.

I clearly didn't prime the tank with enough ammonia when I restarted it. Lesson learned for when I start my 70 gallon. I'm going to make sure that ammonia is dosed to nearly off the charts before feeling like I've had a good cycle.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
OwduaNM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2016, 05:17 PM   #18
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1,544
A decaying fish is a strong source of ammonia, so I wouldn't feel bad about it. These things happen occasionally and you may have to age your water or simply cut out as you have been doing.

Sent from my SCH-I435 using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________

__________________
enrgizerbunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cycle, mini, question

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
Wanted: Alternanthera reineckii Mini (Ar mini) or Pogostemon helferi (Downoi) pittbully13 Archive 0 04-17-2014 02:01 AM
Totally lost with my cycle (or mini cycle) help! Ezzie Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 19 05-01-2013 10:34 AM
Tank cycle or mini cycle DrRockzo Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 3 07-31-2012 10:50 AM
ahhhhhhhhh!!!!! im either experiencing a mini cycle or my cycle restarted!!! allaboutfish Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 0 05-11-2011 06:15 PM
Such a thing as Mini MTS? Ideas for mini tanks please JenNewbie Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 11 07-26-2004 10:30 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:04 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.