Accidentally cycling my aquarium? Beginner needs help...

PaprikaFish

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Hello! This is my first post; apologies if I leave out any information on accident. I just got into the hobby, and this thread is about my first aquarium.

I very recently set up my aquarium on Sunday, July 5th. It is a 12 gallon column (dimensions are 12.5in x 12.5in x 19.5in) and is moderately to heavily planted. The plants I have in there are Dwarf sag, Italian Vallisneria, Water sprite, Java Fern (Windelov) and an unknown plant which I'm pretty sure is cardamine. All of the plants have shown new growth.
The substrate I'm using is eco-complete, and when setting up my aquarium, I used the liquid that came in the bag instead of rinsing it, b/c I've heard it contains beneficial bacteria. I was a little skeptical, but I used it anyways. I dosed Seachem Flourish and Excel. I made the mistake of using a full dose of Excel instead of starting out small and my Val promptly melted, although it is making a gradual comeback. I have also been doing Seachem Stability for BB.

Anyways, today (July 7th) I checked my water parameters using the API freshwater master test kit. They read as follows
Ammonia: 0-.25 ppm. I've heard that the vial liquid doesn't actually turn yellow when using the API kit, so I assume that it is 0 ppm.
Nitrite: .25 ppm
Nitrate: 5 ppm
pH: 7.5


These results were very surprising to me because I had made no attempt to cycle my aquarium at all. I had looked into the Silent Cycle, (utilizing fast growing stem plants as a means to consume ammonia, before it can turn into Nitrite or Nitrate.) and I was planning on doing this b/c I figured that a betta, some shrimp, and 2 snails wouldn't be a very heave bio-load for the plants.

However, the test results suggest that my aquarium is already on it's way to being done with fishless cycling in 2 DAYS. Am I correct in assuming this? Should I add ammonia to supplement the bacteria; or is the melting Val enough? Is a PWC called for, or can the plants handle these levels of Nitrite? If anyone can help or give me advice, it would be very much appreciated! :)
 
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PaprikaFish

PaprikaFish

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Ok, thank you so much! How much would you recommend I dose, and how often?
 

emilymg

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PaprikaFish said:
Hello! This is my first post; apologies if I leave out any information on accident. I just got into the hobby, and this thread is about my first aquarium.

I very recently set up my aquarium on Sunday, July 5th. It is a 12 gallon column (dimensions are 12.5in x 12.5in x 19.5in) and is moderately to heavily planted. The plants I have in there are Dwarf sag, Italian Vallisneria, Water sprite, Java Fern (Windelov) and an unknown plant which I'm pretty sure is cardamine. All of the plants have shown new growth.
The substrate I'm using is eco-complete, and when setting up my aquarium, I used the liquid that came in the bag instead of rinsing it, b/c I've heard it contains beneficial bacteria. I was a little skeptical, but I used it anyways. I dosed Seachem Flourish and Excel. I made the mistake of using a full dose of Excel instead of starting out small and my Val promptly melted, although it is making a gradual comeback. I have also been doing Seachem Stability for BB.

Anyways, today (July 7th) I checked my water parameters using the API freshwater master test kit. They read as follows
Ammonia: 0-.25 ppm. I've heard that the vial liquid doesn't actually turn yellow when using the API kit, so I assume that it is 0 ppm.
Nitrite: .25 ppm
Nitrate: 5 ppm
pH: 7.5


These results were very surprising to me because I had made no attempt to cycle my aquarium at all. I had looked into the Silent Cycle, (utilizing fast growing stem plants as a means to consume ammonia, before it can turn into Nitrite or Nitrate.) and I was planning on doing this b/c I figured that a betta, some shrimp, and 2 snails wouldn't be a very heave bio-load for the plants.

However, the test results suggest that my aquarium is already on it's way to being done with fishless cycling in 2 DAYS. Am I correct in assuming this? Should I add ammonia to supplement the bacteria; or is the melting Val enough? Is a PWC called for, or can the plants handle these levels of Nitrite? If anyone can help or give me advice, it would be very much appreciated! :)
I agree with the other posts about dosing ammonia, but I just wanted to add how impressed I am that this is your first tank! You already seem to know a lot about plants and all. My first tank was a complete fail lol.
 
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PaprikaFish

PaprikaFish

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Thanks everyone :)

I am definitely going to add ammonia, and hopefully the cycle will be done very soon
 

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