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Old 04-13-2011, 09:18 PM   #81
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Would adding and removing stuff from my tank during the cycle mess up anything, cos im going to be removing some plants and adding some rocks to my tank.

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Old 04-13-2011, 09:19 PM   #82
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Not really. There's enough good bacteria in the filter and gravel to let you do pretty much whatever you want decoration wise.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:35 PM   #83
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Would adding and removing stuff from my tank during the cycle mess up anything, cos im going to be removing some plants and adding some rocks to my tank.
Just don't go crazy. There is some bacteria on the surface of everything in your tank. But Homedog's dead on, the vast majority is in the filter and substrate.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:46 PM   #84
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If you're gonna do it though, now is the time since you're early in your cycle and not much bacteria has colonized yet.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:17 PM   #85
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maybe im impatient but after 3 days my ammo lvls still hasnt come down at all, still 4ppm!! thats normal right?? cos i read an earlier post today that after 3-4days the guy already producing nitrAtes.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:20 PM   #86
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maybe im impatient but after 3 days my ammo lvls still hasnt come down at all, still 4ppm!! thats normal right?? cos i read an earlier post today that after 3-4days the guy already producing nitrAtes.
That guy was probably using media from a cycled tank. Your on the right track, just be patient.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:21 PM   #87
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maybe im impatient but after 3 days my ammo lvls still hasnt come down at all, still 4ppm!! thats normal right?? cos i read an earlier post today that after 3-4days the guy already producing nitrAtes.
Took me 7 days before they budged at all, and I had some good seeding material. The OP I think you're talking about had a ton of seeding material and was actually cycling their tank much earlier than they even realized...long story Just be patient. Only check the ammo every couple days to keep your sanity. Don't waste your test solution looking for nitrItes and nitrAtes yet.
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Old 04-14-2011, 09:17 AM   #88
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Hi again

Okay, so I have a question for you guys. And this is basically due to the fact that I did not have a baseline for my nitrates.

I tested the tank again last night, ammonia was down to .25. I dosed it with 2 tbsp of ammonia to bring it back up; didnt' get a chance to test after, but wanted to make sure there was enough to keep the bacteria alive. I'm guessing it's around 2.0. I'll dose it up to 4 tonight.

I checked the nitrItes and they were still at 5.0+

My first question is... I checked the NitrAtes after 5 minutes and registered at 5ppm . But I left the tube on the counter overnight and this morning it appeared to be close to 80. Would the shade get darker overnight? Is there a chance that the 5 was accurate? Or would the 80 after sitting overnight be accurate?

My second question is... Eco, statedto do a 50% pwc once the nitrites and nitrates spike. Since the nitrates are off the chart and I'm not sure where the nitrates sit at... since I didn't do a baseline reading when setting up the tank. Should I do one now? Or should I wait and confirm that the nitrates are indeed at the 80ppm mark? Since the tank seems to be cycling so well, I don't want to screw something up And it does state with high readings, it could stall my cycle...

Is it just me, or is the 20-40 and 40-80 real close in shades as far as the Nitrates go? I have a real hard time differentiating between the two...

Thanks again, you guys/gals are great

Mog

Another word of advice for those newbies reading... when you first set up your tank. Take reading for PH, Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates. I was following the guide that said to wait until your ammonia drops to take Nitrite readings, but by then, they were already spiking, which had me wondering if there were maybe nitrites in the tap water, or in some of the old substrate I used, etc... I wish I would have taken all 4 readings initally and then there would be no wondering.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:33 AM   #89
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Originally Posted by Mog
Hi again

Okay, so I have a question for you guys. And this is basically due to the fact that I did not have a baseline for my nitrates.

I tested the tank again last night, ammonia was down to .25. I dosed it with 2 tbsp of ammonia to bring it back up; didnt' get a chance to test after, but wanted to make sure there was enough to keep the bacteria alive. I'm guessing it's around 2.0. I'll dose it up to 4 tonight.

I checked the nitrItes and they were still at 5.0+

My first question is... I checked the NitrAtes after 5 minutes and registered at 5ppm . But I left the tube on the counter overnight and this morning it appeared to be close to 80. Would the shade get darker overnight? Is there a chance that the 5 was accurate? Or would the 80 after sitting overnight be accurate?

My second question is... Eco, statedto do a 50% pwc once the nitrites and nitrates spike. Since the nitrates are off the chart and I'm not sure where the nitrates sit at... since I didn't do a baseline reading when setting up the tank. Should I do one now? Or should I wait and confirm that the nitrates are indeed at the 80ppm mark? Since the tank seems to be cycling so well, I don't want to screw something up And it does state with high readings, it could stall my cycle...

Is it just me, or is the 20-40 and 40-80 real close in shades as far as the Nitrates go? I have a real hard time differentiating between the two...

Thanks again, you guys/gals are great

Mog

Another word of advice for those newbies reading... when you first set up your tank. Take reading for PH, Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates. I was following the guide that said to wait until your ammonia drops to take Nitrite readings, but by then, they were already spiking, which had me wondering if there were maybe nitrites in the tap water, or in some of the old substrate I used, etc... I wish I would have taken all 4 readings initally and then there would be no wondering.
Hi Mog. As long as you did the nitrAte test correctly (shook the #2 bottle long enough, then shook the whole thing for a minute, etc...) then the result after 5 minutes should be he correct one. I do believe they get much darker if they sit that long.

The purpose of the 50% pwc is to bring levels down to a readable range so you can monitor them, and also to restore nutrients in the water that the bacteria have used during the conversion. If your nitrAtes are at 5 and things are moving along rapidly... I wouldn't worry about a pwc at this point. I'd go ahead and wait until you really see the numbers jump or if you start to see the conversion slowing down.

And yeah, a journal is a great thing to keep. My wife thought it was funny because it looked like a science fair project with me recording data in a notebook with test tubes lined up across the bathroom sink. Even though some people think fishless cycling is boring, I used to get SO excited to run in there and test the numbers to see what had changed, haha.
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:20 AM   #90
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Thanks for the reply Eco.

I shook for 30 seconds and one minute. I even used a stop watch to make sure I did it exact So I would say the 5 is the actual reading then.

My concern is that my nitrAtes were at 20 the day before... and now reading at 5ppm. So is it possible that they spiked along with the nitrItes and since I wasn't testing that early into the cycle and missed it?

I'll check again tonight and see where they stand.

I have been keeping a journal since... LOL But the first thread said to go read a book and test in a week and your ammonia might be going down at that point. And if it is, to test for nitrItes. I was just bored... or should I say impatient and decided to test early and see if there were any nitrite readings... image my surprise when it was 5+

I'll keep testing and see what the results are. Hopefully the nitrites will be gone overnight, soon

Mog
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:25 AM   #91
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Thanks for the reply Eco.

I shook for 30 seconds and one minute. I even used a stop watch to make sure I did it exact So I would say the 5 is the actual reading then.

My concern is that my nitrAtes were at 20 the day before... and now reading at 5ppm. So is it possible that they spiked along with the nitrItes and since I wasn't testing that early into the cycle and missed it?

I'll check again tonight and see where they stand.

I have been keeping a journal since... LOL But the first thread said to go read a book and test in a week and your ammonia might be going down at that point. And if it is, to test for nitrItes. I was just bored... or should I say impatient and decided to test early and see if there were any nitrite readings... image my surprise when it was 5+

I'll keep testing and see what the results are. Hopefully the nitrites will be gone overnight, soon

Mog
It seems like things are moving along great for you. The nitrAtes are the end result of the process,so they don't "spike" and then drop like the nitrItes do. They just continually rise during the process. If they were at 20 and have gone down to 5, it must have been do to an inaccurate test, a pwc or if you have a ton of live plants, they will consume the nitrAtes.
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:35 PM   #92
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Hey everybody, this thread was approved as an article for this site, and can now be found in the articles section of the website as well as here.

I hope everybody continues to send people with questions on fishless cycling to these sites and maybe save a few fish along the way, Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:58 PM   #93
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WOW! Nice guide! I can only imagine how your hands must have felt after typing that. LOL
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Old 04-14-2011, 05:21 PM   #94
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Carpel thumbel... Hehehe.
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Old 04-15-2011, 11:46 AM   #95
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Eco, I have a question for you.

I lost the thread, so couldn't post there... but since this is partially related to cycling a tank, thought it would be okay to ask here.

I saw in a thread where you mention that the process to do a pwc with a Python is different... in that you add the conditioner to the tank first and for the full amount of the tank, not for the amount of water that you are replacing.

Why is this? I would think that if you're doing the mid and end of cycle water changes (and subsequent), you would only add enough to treat the water that you are replacing. Especially if you're doing a 50% on a 75g tank. I'm using Amquel plus and Novaqua plus and want to make sure I won't interrupt or stall my cycle

On a related note, do you recommend Prime over the Kordon products?

Also, when using a python for large pwc's, how do you regulate the temp of the water? I'm a little concerned about adding too cold or too warm water to the existing water in the tank, which I would think would be a problem when it's stocked.

Thanks again

Mog
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Old 04-15-2011, 12:23 PM   #96
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Quote:
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Eco, I have a question for you.

I lost the thread, so couldn't post there... but since this is partially related to cycling a tank, thought it would be okay to ask here.

I saw in a thread where you mention that the process to do a pwc with a Python is different... in that you add the conditioner to the tank first and for the full amount of the tank, not for the amount of water that you are replacing.

Why is this? I would think that if you're doing the mid and end of cycle water changes (and subsequent), you would only add enough to treat the water that you are replacing. Especially if you're doing a 50% on a 75g tank. I'm using Amquel plus and Novaqua plus and want to make sure I won't interrupt or stall my cycle

On a related note, do you recommend Prime over the Kordon products?

Also, when using a python for large pwc's, how do you regulate the temp of the water? I'm a little concerned about adding too cold or too warm water to the existing water in the tank, which I would think would be a problem when it's stocked.

Thanks again

Mog
With a Python you're adding tap water directly to the tank as opposed to being able to treat individual buckets. The rule of thumb is to add for the total volume of the tank so there is a significant enough amount of dechlor to neutralize the chlorine / chloramines before it has time to damage the bacteria or fish (once they're in there).

Personally I turn off my filter so none of the chlorine can get sucked up into the filter pads before it's neutralized. I drain the tank, add Prime directly to the tank, swish it around real good, then slowly add the water back in.

I've pretty much always used Prime, and everyone here recommends it, so that's what I'd suggest...but I'm not really familiar with the others to tell you if they're good or not.

As for regulating temp, you've just gotta do your best. Some people use thermometers, but I never have. I feel the temp of the water coming from the drain of the Python, run to the tank and stick my hand in, run back to the drain, etc... until they feel as close as possible to me. The first time I used my Python I had a total brain lapse and forgot to even match temps at all (too excited about my new toy to think clearly I guess), and my cycle still completed in 20 days, so if it's not exact it shouldn't hurt anything. I'd be more worried about the temp matching once you have fish. Good luck!
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Old 04-15-2011, 12:35 PM   #97
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Funny my 5 gallon SW tank cycle stalled. I'm getting dry rock (to give more space for the bacteria to live on) and established filter media. (props to idreaminsaltwater and everyone else who helped me in my thread)
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:46 PM   #98
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Question for you Eco that I didn't see referenced in your guide.

I have 2 pieces of African root wood that are clean, plus I washed them and will soak them overnight before putting them in (with java fern attached) when I fill my tank and start my fishless cycle.

My question is, will the tannins leaching from them affect my cycle in anyway?
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:55 PM   #99
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Hi,

Hope everyone is having a great Friday night!

Dear Mr. Cycle Guru,

I'm confused and unsure as to what I should do now. It's now been a week since I began cycling my tank. I took my readings last night and had 0 ammonia, 5.0+ Nitrites and 5.0 ppm Nitrates.

I dosed the ammonia up to 4/5.0 last night. Now... 24 hours later, 0 ammonia! But... my nitrites are still off the chart and nitrates are 5.0 for the 3rd night in a row.

I'm going to dose the ammonia again to keep the bacteria fed But not sure what else to do... Nitrites haven't dropped and the nitrates haven't gone up... do I just keep dosing ammonia until the nitrites drop? Do I do a pwc?

Okay, back to tending to my daughter... pulling a tick the size of a pea out of a 2 year olds scalp is not fun But she handled it like a trooper

Mog
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Old 04-15-2011, 10:13 PM   #100
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Question for you Eco that I didn't see referenced in your guide.

I have 2 pieces of African root wood that are clean, plus I washed them and will soak them overnight before putting them in (with java fern attached) when I fill my tank and start my fishless cycle.

My question is, will the tannins leaching from them affect my cycle in anyway?
Honestly, I have 0 experience whatsoever with tannins. What I do know I've learned on this site about how they leach out of the wood and lower pH. From what I understand, having good buffering to your water will prevent major pH changes from the leeching tannins. Problem is that the bacteria eats up a lot of buffers during the cycling progress, and could potentially make the water more susceptible to drops in pH. I honestly don't have a true answer, but if it was my tank I'd maybe throw in an extra pwc during the cycle to keep the buffering capacity of the water up. Especially keep a close watch on the pH at the end of your cycle, as that is when I had a pretty major pH crash right on the last day. Good luck.
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