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Old 07-29-2011, 11:38 PM   #1
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HELP!!! Fishless cycle

I started my fishless cycle about 3 weeks ago. It seemed as if everything was going along just fine. My nitrites were slowly growing and all seemed well. My nitrites reached 5ppm but my ammonia levels didn't go down. Everything stayed the same for several days, high nitrites and no ammonia level drop. Then the bottom fell out. I noticed a few days ago that my nitrite levels began dropping..... I tested for nitrates....none....Now here we are several days later and I have no nitrites, no nitrates, and my ammonia level is not doing anything.....What went wrong?? Now that I have no nitrites, will it be like virtually starting over??
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Old 07-29-2011, 11:44 PM   #2
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Hopefully Eco will find you to offer some advice, but do you have any seeding material or buffers?

You might already have a guide you're following, but here is Eco's and it's working really well for me so far. http://www.aquariumadvice.com/forums...ng-148283.html

Check your pH and post what it's at.
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Old 07-29-2011, 11:46 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flash081
Hopefully Eco will find you to offer some advice, but do you have any seeding material or buffers?

You might already have a guide you're following, but here is Eco's and it's working really well for me so far. http://www.aquariumadvice.com/forums...ng-148283.html
That guide is great and easy to use. It should get you on the right track in no time.
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:05 AM   #4
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Have you checked your pH? I wonder if you had a crash that stalled the cycle.
Edit: duh Flash081 already asked.
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:07 AM   #5
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Have you checked your pH? I wonder if you had a crash that stalled the cycle.
Edit: duh Flash081 already asked.

I hope it didn't crash.... =[
That was my initial thought too.
I have my fingers crossed for the OP!!
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:31 AM   #6
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First thing...what testing kit are you using? NitrItes that disappear turn into nitrAtes unless you have removed them through water changes. NitrItes aren't alive, they don't die, they only get converted or removed. My initial thought would be faulty test results as for the nitrAtes. If it's API...make sure you're following the instructions in the booklet, not just on the bottles.

If I had to guess, I'd bet it's a stall mixed with faulty test results. I'd personally do a large water change (~75%)...and add in a small pinch of ground up fish food to add nutrients and phosphates to the water. Obviously, try to get some accurate reading as well if possible. This will also help restore the natural pH and buffers to the water in case there is a pH issue
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:33 AM   #7
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If the nitrIte disappeared overnight and the ammo has stopped converting, a pH crash does sound like a likely culprit. Let us know what you find
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:29 AM   #8
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If the nitrIte disappeared overnight and the ammo has stopped converting, a pH crash does sound like a likely culprit. Let us know what you find
That's what I think also. A pwc may be in order if that's the case.
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Old 07-30-2011, 10:05 AM   #9
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Ok, I got up this morning and tested the water here is what I found:
Ph- 8.2
Ammonia- 4-5ppm
Nitrite- 0
Nitrate- not 0 but definitely not 5ppm

I am using the API test kit. The tank does have one plant. I was hoping to get some seed material from it. I have been keeping the water temp at around 82-85ish. Yesterday in did get some gravel from a and put that in the tank.
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:24 AM   #10
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Are you 100% sure you're doing the nitrAte test correctly? It's really common to mix up. Make sure you're shaking the #2 solution for a solid 30 seconds, and the entire solution for a full minute, let it sit 5 minutes and record your results then.

If the nitrItes had spiked and dropped...they'd have to turn into nitrAtes unless you removed them with water changes. The tank would have to be very heavily planted to cause a low reading like that.

I still vote for the large water change, small pinch of finely ground up fish food and re-dosing the ammonia.
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