Confusion

Karma23

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Hey I have been cycling my 10 gallon for the past three weeks. I seeded it with filter media from my established turtle tank. Now I have made a big error I believe as my Nitrite is at 0 and my ammonia is at 0. All the while I have been testing my nitrite hoping it would go up to spike. The highest it ever approached was .50. Was that the spike? I confused NO2 with NO3 so I think my tank is cycled? Can anybody verify?
 

midthought

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Can you test for nitrate? And is there anything in the tank that takes in nitrate, like live plants? What have you been using as a source of ammonia for the duration of the cycling?

If ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate are ALL zero, then your tank hasn't even begun cycling. It's just fresh water. If your ammonia and nitrite are zero and your nitrate is reading as something (10ppm+) then your tank is probably cycled. Your nitrate readings would be lower if you had live plants or something that took in extra nitrates though. If there's no inhabitants in the tank, you can test by adding a source of ammonia (like pure ammonia) and then checking again in a day or two. If you're back to reading 0, 0, 20ppm, you're cycled.
 
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Karma23

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I have been using pure ammonia that i got of EBay it doesnt sud up when I shake. Besides a hike in Ammonia which went off the chart Nitrite hasn't really spiked shall we say the highest it reached was .50. The NO3 at the moment is at +40ppm. Ammonia is at 0 and so is nitrite at 0. Does this mean I should just do a 80% water change and can get my fish?

EDIT- No real plants although I did use filter media from a established tank which houses a Sideneck turtle.
 

midthought

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That sounds cycled to me. To play it on the safe side, you might want to keep it stable -- that is, make sure that the ammonia is going in and getting processed in 24 hours -- for a couple days before adding fish. And be sure that you don't add too many fish at once to the tank or you'll wind up with a minicycle anyway as the bacteria catch up to the extra ammonia. Good luck with everything.
 
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