New Set Up - Stats so far ?!

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Lincoln Six Echo

Aquarium Advice Newbie
Sep 3, 2009
Kitchener, ON
We got a 14 gallons biocube last weekend. We did the set up on Sunday.
Currently there is only sand & live rocks (14pounds). No fish or living creatures ...

The stats I have so far are below.

The results so far have been far less dramatic than what I was expecting. I thought that Ammonia would raise substantially in the first few days?

Anyways, let me know what you make of the stats below - or is it too early to tell ?


What kind of live rocks did you buy? Did you get them fully cured from a local source? if so, you shouldn't expect to see a whole lot of anything, pretty much just what you're seeing.

if you got uncured rock, or you had it shipped, then it just needs a few days and you'll start to see a real ammonia spike.

By the way, Welcome to AA!
Thanks for the reply! :)

The rocks were cured. They were in a tank for a few weeks (or more?) at the fish store.

If there is no spike of anything as the rocks were cured ... how do we know they're "working"? I'm pretty sure they are since none of of measurements were ever really off (eg: good salt level) ... but what would we see in terms of measurements if the bacteria on the live rocks was dead ?
Well if they were in water that long then they might be cured already. As mentioned above you might not see much in ammonia and nitrite spikes. Keep testing though to be sure. Welcome to AA.
I agree, you will typically see the ammonia spike after a few days. You are possibly seeing ammonia for the die-off in either the "live" sand or some critters on the rock or a little of both.
You will know when the cycle is complete when there are 0 ammonia and nitrItes and your nitrAtes should pop up some.
It is interesting that you see the nitrAtes before nitrItes...possibly you have the tests mixed up or the bacteria is converting the ammonia to nitrAtes with little nitrItes....
Hey welcome. This may seem kind of stupid but what software are you using to record your data it looks really cool? I was thinking Excel but I didn't know, just curious lol.
Attached are the new stats after about 1 week (live rocks and live sand inly in the aquarium... no living creatures yet). Other than the PH which is getting a bit on the high-side and alkalinity which dropped (some of the drop is probably explained by a different 'tester'), values have been consistent over the past few days.

Any thoughts?

There is some algae starting to appear on the glass and live rocks/sand. It's not critical, but it's getting bigger every day. There is no creatures in the aquarium. Once I add the 'clean up crew', I guess these will start disappear? Should I do anything in the mean time to control it?


Raise to the 82f range.

If you want to know for sure, dose with 100% ammonia to .5-1ppm and see if it comes down. Hard to tell if your in the midst of the cycle or not. One thing for sure is that if that rock was 100% cured then the bacteria is slowly dieing off since there would be no ammonia source. That may be the small readings you are getting and the lack of any appreciable nitrate bump.

Just a thought
What could explain the bacteria 'slowly dying off' ... if all the measurements (namely salt) are within the acceptable range?

Anyway to 'save' them ?

Anyhow, the measurements have gone down ... but I guess that's cuz I added some (RO) water as the level was getting a bit low for the filter. We'll see tomorrow ...

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