I've been cycling for about 16 days now and after all levels spiked my ammonia is at 0 and nitrites are at 0.1 for the last 4 days. My question is my nitrates were at 50-80ppm last week and now are at 5ppm. why would they drop? I cleaned my canister filter 3 days ago cause I noticed the flow was down. I guess die off from the LR
and "dust" from the sand plugged it up a bit. Would cleaning it cause the drop? Another thing I noticed is that green "slimy" looking algae is growing in abundance. I think its hair algae, Would it cause the nitrates to fall? I know that plant life feeds on nitrates.
Finally, after my cycle is done and I've done a major water change, how long should I wait to add a cleaning crew?
Thanks again all!