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Old 09-13-2021, 02:25 PM   #1
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Fishless cycle: ammonia not dropping after 4 weeks... help!

I've been cycling a small 5 gallon saltwater tank for about a month now, and the ammonia levels didn't move a single bit.

They've been at 2ppm for the whole time, and i recently did a small water change.

I've also been adding seachem stability daily for more than a week.

Also, I asked for help on an aquarium site and they told me to leave a shrimp in the tank for a week, so I did. Magic is, the ammonia levels were still the same after the rotting parade.

Maybe it's just my test strips that suck (yes i made the mistake of buying strips, don't judge me).


Nitrite: <1

Nitrate: 10

Ph: 8.0

Temp: 25 C (77F)

Salinity: 1.025


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Old 09-13-2021, 03:44 PM   #2
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Did you overdose ammonia to start with? Iíd do a wc if it has been a month. Also invest in a real kit. Api even works fine for the basic tests.
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Old 09-14-2021, 01:31 AM   #3
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Great. So we are using the shrimp method to cycle the tank. The best and easiest method IMO.
So, how much sand and rock is in the system?
With the shrimp rotting in the tank, it will be providing a constant supply of ammonia as it decomposes. This is what makes it easy, no need to re dose ammonia into the system when the levels drop.
Also, stop adding anything to the tank. There isn't a need to ever dose anything into your system unless you can prove it is needed, and IMO only if water changes are unable to resupply said level. Since it is stability, it could also be holding back the process you are trying to have happen.
So, just leave the shrimp in there to rot. Leave it. Walk away for a couple weeks. Come back and see where your levels are. It really isn't about your ammonia, we know that is there. We want to see your nitrIte and nitrate levels being consumed in a 24 hour period. And if there is a shrimp still in the tank rotting, you want to see all of them reading 0 at the same time. Basically.
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