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Old 10-23-2021, 01:07 PM   #21
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Cool. Is that a snapshot of your configuration?

Do you change light times for different seasons? Curious about the timing there as light ramps up later in the day than it would naturally (for here anyways lol). I assume you did that to limit light hours while being able to keep the light on in the evenings?

That’s a light I’ll be checking into for sure. My plants are ok with the cheapo light that came with my tank, so I’m sure that will do just as well and give the lighting effects that I’m looking for

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Old 10-23-2021, 01:49 PM   #22
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There is nothing complex about the light setting. 8 hours off, 6 hours on, low light in the morning which you can still clearly see everything, a few hours ramping up, a few hours ramping back down. On afternoon/evening when im home.

The fish dont care that the light is on when the sun is down.

Some people set lights with 2 x 4 hour light periods with some dark in between. It limits algae growth apparently.
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Old 10-29-2021, 09:13 AM   #23
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OK .... so the Cycling definitely has hit a new phase

Thanks for the advice on the lighting -- that was a relatively easy fix using a full spectrum adjustable LED light bar with a timer. I scrapped the Marineland/integrated lighting altogether and the atmosphere in the tank is much better controlled.

Now back to the chemistry in the tank. I was lulled into a false sense of securityóas a novice is apt to beówith the low/stable ammonia levels. Now the Nitrites have spiked up to 8ppm. I have been re-reading the Nitrogen Cycle posts and clearly this is a natural progression in the Cycle. It would appear that the beneficial bacteria has grown to a level to consume the Ammonia levels but the bacteria needed to convert the Nitrites to Nitrates are not sufficiently grown yet.

I have continued with 2x/week 40% water changes and have been dosing the tank with Fritz Complete in hopes of avoiding Nitrite poisoning. The fish are all active and eating, but as I understand it -- nitrite poisoning occurs over time, so I am on the lookout for signs of stress in the population. In the meanwhile, I will cut down of the feeding (frozen bloodworms, algae wafers and tetra flakes). My concern is the water changes as I try to work through the Nitrite spike. I read somewhere that water changes can slow down the growth/production of Nitrite-eating bacteria. Is there any validity to this? Or is it a matter of degree and perhaps the aggressive (40%) water changes should be scaled back? Again, the fish are doing well as far as I can tell.

As you can see from the current picture posted, I keep the aeration robust and while I don't test O2 levels, all indications are that the water column is well oxygenated.

Update on Fish population:

2 Red Velvet Oscars
7 Diamond Tetras
1 Pleco Catfish
3 Green Cory
2 Zebra Cory
1 Pink Cory
2 Mystery Snails
2 Nerite Snails

Water temp - 79F/26C
Ph 7.4
Ammonia 0.1
Nitrite 8PPM
Nitrate 60 PPM
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Old 10-29-2021, 09:30 AM   #24
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My go to recommendation for water changes during a fish in cycle is ammonia + nitrite combined no higher than 0.5ppm. If you are seeing 8ppm nitrite thats way too much and you arent doing enough water changes.

Will getting nitrite down slow down your cycle? Possibly, all ive seen is speculation that it does. However the health and wellbeing of the fish shouldnt be sacrificed to speed up the cycle process a little. 0.25/0.5ppm nitrite is enough to move your cycle along.

As you say, nitrite is a long term thing, so you might not see any issues for a while but 8ppm nitrite will be causing long term health issues.
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Old 10-29-2021, 09:50 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aiken Drum View Post
My go to recommendation for water changes during a fish in cycle is ammonia + nitrite combined no higher than 0.5ppm. If you are seeing 8ppm nitrite thats way too much and you arent doing enough water changes.

Will getting nitrite down slow down your cycle? Possibly, all ive seen is speculation that it does. However the health and wellbeing of the fish shouldnt be sacrificed to speed up the cycle process a little. 0.25/0.5ppm nitrite is enough to move your cycle along.

As you say, nitrite is a long term thing, so you might not see any issues for a while but 8ppm nitrite will be causing long term health issues.
All useful advice -- I would add that this spike was sudden. When I last checked the Nitrite (and everything else) on Monday, the level was .5. I have not added any new fish in that time. In any case, I will increase my water changes and see what happens over the next few days.

Thanks as always.
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Old 10-29-2021, 09:55 AM   #26
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All useful advice -- I would add that this spike was sudden. When I last checked the Nitrite (and everything else) on Monday, the level was .5. I have not added any new fish in that time. In any case, I will increase my water changes and see what happens over the next few days.

Thanks as always.
For info. 1ppm ammonia converts to 2.7ppm nitrite and them 3.6ppm nitrate.

So it doesnt take a lot of ammonia to produce big nitrite numbers if nitrite isnt going to nitrate.
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Old 10-29-2021, 12:06 PM   #27
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As far as water changes effecting the cycle. Common sense says that of course it’s possible. If you remove the food/resources for the bacteria to grow, obviously they won’t!

But in all reality I think you’d have to be doing majorly excessive water changes, trying to keep all readings at 0 to have any substantial effect on the cycle.

The goal when trying to cycle a tank isn’t to mantain pristine water conditions, you’re trying to keep the fish within their comfort zone while keeping pollutants in the tank to allow the bacteria to thrive

Glad to hear that better lighting has spruced it up a bit. What did you end up going with for a light?

I would be doing more water changes as your levels are getting a bit excessive
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Old 10-29-2021, 12:55 PM   #28
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As far as water changes effecting the cycle. Common sense says that of course itís possible. If you remove the food/resources for the bacteria to grow, obviously they wonít!

But in all reality I think youíd have to be doing majorly excessive water changes, trying to keep all readings at 0 to have any substantial effect on the cycle.

The goal when trying to cycle a tank isnít to mantain pristine water conditions, youíre trying to keep the fish within their comfort zone while keeping pollutants in the tank to allow the bacteria to thrive

Glad to hear that better lighting has spruced it up a bit. What did you end up going with for a light?

I would be doing more water changes as your levels are getting a bit excessive
I went with a Nicrew.

NICREW ClassicLED Plus Planted Aquarium Light, Full Spectrum LED Fish Tank Light for Freshwater Plants
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