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Old 08-11-2011, 10:27 AM   #1
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Another cycling question..

Hi all,

A novice tank cycler here- First time doing a fishless cycle and just had a couple questions regarding my filter media. Its a 20 liter (about 5 gallon) tank with a small internal filter from Dennerle (a "nano eckfilter")- which is mostly intended for shrimp, but as I plan on only keeping a betta in the tank I figured the low current would be suitable.

For the first day (before cycling) I was keeping some Java Moss in the tank and the next day, a massive bacteria bloom. I took all the plants out to start cycling, leaving just a large piece of driftwood I'm trying to get to sink. I added my ammonia to reach about 3ppm, and so far its been my 3rd day of cycling and been fine. Anyways, the tank is about the color of tea (I'm guessing from the tannins from the driftwood) and a good amount of sludge has taken over the tank, almost a half inch layer covering all the driftwood. I noticed my filter was running a much slower current lately and took it apart in the tank just to have a peek inside and all the filter media is covered in brown sludge. Gave it a little shake in the tank to release some of the junk and its running slightly stronger now- but my question is should I just leave it as is until my take is done cycling? It seems to still be running fine- I'm not sure if its doing much of a job filtering anymore as its completely covered- but I don't know what to do!

Any help (or some reassurance ) would be greatly appreciated!

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Old 08-11-2011, 11:34 AM   #2
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Sludge? As in algae?

To rinse out your filter, just take a bucket, fill it with tank water and then rinse the filter in there. It will get all the gunk out but still keep your growing colony of bacteria alive.
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Old 08-11-2011, 01:33 PM   #3
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Not sure what the sludge could be. Did you soak the driftwood before putting it in the tank? Where did it come from? The color turning a tea color is normal for DW but I'm not sure about the brown sludge....
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