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Old 01-20-2021, 09:43 PM   #1
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Fish in cycle for 1 month

So, it's been 1 month since I added my goldfish (I added my fish before the cycle finished) and I've been doing regular 25% water changes, at least once a week. I just made a water change cause the ammonia levels were at 1 ppm. One hour has passed and ammonia is still at 1 . Don't know what else to do. Every time I make a water change I add Tetra aquasafe to remove Chlorine and make the water safe for her and vacuum the gravel. I thought I was doing fine cause ammonia dropped to .5 a week ago but now it's up again.

Info:
20 galon tank
Oranga goldfish
Nitrate: 10
Nitrite: 0
Hardness: 75
Chlorine: 0
Alkalinity: 40
P.H: 7.5
Ammonia: 1.0

I added a 30+ filter some weeks ago (with the old bacteria media).
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Old 01-21-2021, 04:38 AM   #2
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Goldfish make a ton of waste and will produce a lot of ammonia. Goldfish need a decent size tank and good filtration, generally 30 gallons for a single goldfish and a filter rated for double that.

Even if you have the correct size tank and filter, you are starting off on a fish in cycle fully stocked on day 1. 1 small fish per 10g is recommended to start a fish in cycle, so lets say 10% of a fully stocked tank. A fully stocked tank might take 2 or 3 months to cycle for the bioload.

25% weekly water changes isnt going to be enough to safely do a fish in cycle. You should be doing enough water changes to keep ammonia + nitrite combined below 0.5ppm. If it gets to 0.5ppm combined do 25% change, if it gets to 1ppm combined then a 50% change or 2 x 25% changes. You might need to be doing this daily until your cycle establishes and can keep your water parameters safe on their own.

The test kit isnt that accurate. Lets say your ammonia is really 1.2ppm. You won't really be able to tell a difference between that and 1ppm. You do a 25% change and it comes down to 0.9ppm, again you wont be able to tell the difference between that and 1ppm. It appears as your water change had no effect.

The fact that you are only doing small infrequent water changes and ammonia isnt going off the charts and you are seeing some nitrate shows your cycle is establishing. I think you are on track, but need to be doing more water changes to maintain safe water until the cycle fully establishes.
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Old 01-21-2021, 04:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aiken Drum View Post
Goldfish make a ton of waste and will produce a lot of ammonia. Goldfish need a decent size tank and good filtration, generally 30 gallons for a single goldfish and a filter rated for double that.

Even if you have the correct size tank and filter, you are starting off on a fish in cycle fully stocked on day 1. 1 small fish per 10g is recommended to start a fish in cycle, so lets say 10% of a fully stocked tank. A fully stocked tank might take 2 or 3 months to cycle for the bioload.

25% weekly water changes isnt going to be enough to safely do a fish in cycle. You should be doing enough water changes to keep ammonia + nitrite combined below 0.5ppm. If it gets to 0.5ppm combined do 25% change, if it gets to 1ppm combined then a 50% change or 2 x 25% changes. You might need to be doing this daily until your cycle establishes and can keep your water parameters safe on their own.

The test kit isnt that accurate. Lets say your ammonia is really 1.2ppm. You won't really be able to tell a difference between that and 1ppm. You do a 25% change and it comes down to 0.9ppm, again you wont be able to tell the difference between that and 1ppm. It appears as your water change had no effect.

The fact that you are only doing small infrequent water changes and ammonia isnt going off the charts and you are seeing some nitrate shows your cycle is establishing. I think you are on track, but need to be doing more water changes to maintain safe water until the cycle fully establishes.
How frequently should I do water changes? I'am doing them once a week. Should I keep adding bacteria on each water change?
-Thanks for the advice!
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Old 01-21-2021, 05:04 PM   #4
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You should be doing enough water changes to keep ammonia + nitrite combined below 0.5ppm. That might be daily. Test everyday, if you need to do a water change to get back below that combined target, do so. Do a weekly water change regardless. When your system is cycled and those parameters are staying at 0 without water changes, you can cut back on them to simply control nitrate. Typically keep nitrate below 40ppm.

Adding bacteria after every change? It won't hurt, might not do anything. These products are hit and miss. You certainly dont need to do this once cycled, but it might speed up your cycle if you keep adding it while cycling. If you have already bought some, then may as well use it up.
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