Cycling A 10g With A 2.5

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iamaskim

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Hello!
I need some advice! I have a 2.5g tank with my betta in it, API test kit readings are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and about 2 nitrates
I bought a 10 gallon tank, it’s been set up with new gravel/ filter etc
Can I use filter and gravel from the 2.5 to cycle the 10 gallon tank, and if so how much of it?
If I’m doing fishless cycle, should I add ammonia daily as I put in the media?
Thank you!
 
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BottomDweller

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Are you planning to move the betta to the 10?

If so just move the betta and 2.5g filter over to the 10 at the same time as the betta. They need to be moved at the same time because the betta needs a cycled filter and the bacteria in the filter need an ammonia source such as a fish. After a few weeks or months the 2.5 filter can be removed. If having 2 filter creates too much flow for the betta you can move all of the media from the 2.5 filter into the 10 filter and just run the 10 filter.

If not then move some of the filter media from the 2.5 filter over to the 10 filter and add around 2ppm ammonia. The tank should cycle pretty quickly. Test the water daily and add more ammonia if it drops. Once the tank is cycled it will be able to convert 2ppm ammonia into 0ppm ammonia, 0ppm nitrite and some nitrate within 24 hours. Keep an eye on the 2.5 betta tank after removing the filter media as it may go through a minI cycle.
 
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mattgirl

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A cycle isn't dependent on the amount of water in a tank. It is dependent on the bio-load of the tank. In this case there is enough bacteria (the cycle) to process the bio-load of your Betta no matter how much water he is in. If you are upgrading his tank move everything (gravel, deco, filter, water and fish) over to the 10 gallon tank. You will just be moving the cycle from one tank to another.

If you plan of keeping the small tank up and running you can go ahead and move everything but the water and filter housing over to the 10 gallon. Once done put in new gravel and deco. Feed the small tank ammonia to keep the bacteria still in there alive. Keep the original filter on the small tank but move the media in it over to the filter on the 10 gallon. Some bacteria will be on the walls of both filter housing and the walls of the tank. By adding ammonia the bacteria will grow on the new media and it will be ready for another fish in a few days if that is the plan.
 
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iamaskim

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Wow you guys are awesome!
Thank you for responding
I got my betta about 4m ago when someone left him behind and he came in the 2.5g, after much learning his water is cycled and he looks good, (I had no knowledge about anything fish before) but I hate to watch him be in that tiny tank so I’ve been slowly buying stuff to upgrade and been reading TONS about cycling a new tank, still I’m freaking out bc I don’t wanna make him sick.
So yea he’s going into the bigger one and I’m putting away the smaller one. I had already put all the stuff in the new tank and put water and conditioned it. Should I empty it or just put his stuff on top?

So y’all telling me if I grab all his stuff and just put it in the new one I can put him in there as well??
 
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mattgirl

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iamaskim said:
Wow you guys are awesome!
Thank you for responding
I got my betta about 4m ago when someone left him behind and he came in the 2.5g, after much learning his water is cycled and he looks good, (I had no knowledge about anything fish before) but I hate to watch him be in that tiny tank so I’ve been slowly buying stuff to upgrade and been reading TONS about cycling a new tank, still I’m freaking out bc I don’t wanna make him sick.
So yea he’s going into the bigger one and I’m putting away the smaller one. I had already put all the stuff in the new tank and put water and conditioned it. Should I empty it or just put his stuff on top?

So y’all telling me if I grab all his stuff and just put it in the new one I can put him in there as well??
Yes, just make sure the water in the bigger tank is as close as you can get it to the temp of the tank he is in right now. You can just put his stuff on top if you want to. I would remove some of the water from the 10 gallon and move EVERYTHING from the 2.5 over to the 10. That includes the water. There is no bacteria in the water but it is the water he is used to so by using it he will just feel like he had a bigger than normal water change.

I did want to point out that you really don't cycle water. You cycle the tank. The majority of the bacteria (the cycle) lives on the filter media but it also grows on every surface in the tank.
 
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iamaskim

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mattgirl said:
I did want to point out that you really don't cycle water. You cycle the tank. The majority of the bacteria (the cycle) lives on the filter media but it also grows on every surface in the tank.
Got it!

Thank you so much! I’m so excited for him lol
I will probably do it later tonight hehe
 
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iamaskim

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Ok that did not go well, he’s in a corner on his moss ball hammock, his fins are thinning out, almost like ischemic
His temp is 80, ph was 7.4 I added some ph reducer it is 7.2 now, his ammonia was 0.5 I did 50% water change and now it is 0.25
Nitrate and nitrites are 0
What could’ve possible made his fins like that, he’s weak and takes a breath every couple of minutes
He was swimming fine, then about an hour in he got like this lethargic and shrunken and transparent, it was very fast
Was like that all night, idk what else to do
 
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mattgirl

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Oh my goodness. I really didn't expect this.

Your PH is fine. Please don't add anything to change it. Stable is much more important than a specific number.

I thought he might be a bit timid at first going from so little space to so much more but that is all I thought might happen.

What, if anything did you add to the 10 gallon water when you were thinking of doing a fishless cycle?

Get a bottle of Prime. It is first and foremost a very concentrated water conditioner but has the added benefit of detoxing low amounts of ammonia.

For now you want to keep the lights off to give him time to get used to his new surroundings. He should be less stressed with the lights off. Make sure he has lots of places he can go to hide. He will love lots of plants. If you don't have real ones for him make sure the silk or plastic ones for him have no sharp edges that will tear his fins. If you can run pantyhose across them without it grabbing they should be safe for him.
 
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iamaskim

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He was not shy at all, he was even checking out the water filter, he likes to do roller coaster
He’s a weirdo like that

I put API tap water conditioner which is what I would use to treat his water during water changes
I put some TEtra safestart yesterday
And I thru in some amguard this morning
The tank and filter I bought used, I washed it with plain water and has new filter mediA, I put everything from his tank to the new, he has silk plants I submerged in clean water for about 2 days (changed the water twice)
The gravel is new from petco and I rinsed it very very well no debris at all
He had a big center piece ceramic bought at petco too but I took it out last night
The temperature I don’t know 100% but it felt cold so I put warmer water when I did the water change when I saw ammonia 0.5... then I got the new thermometer and it was too hot, so I put the fan on the tank, it has 2 thermometers in it now and it’s been 80 all night
Imma put his light out, I made him a little corner, I’ll post pics

C1B2F8CA-0475-42B4-BDA5-94AE341AF836.jpeg0BBEE812-DDE0-4D53-B37E-E3F6A27A6033.jpegACFA601D-3ADD-42EE-8DA2-78D02857A744.jpeg610A5CB4-407E-4746-B320-0BBE3596D23E.jpegFB1C33AB-C1B4-4ACA-9CFE-B2407BA43116.jpeg0AAA2BD2-406D-47B3-A1D2-8D1A51F00826.jpeg
 
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mattgirl

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Hopefully he will settle in pretty quickly in that big beautiful new home. I don't think I would be adding anything other than your water conditioner when doing the water changes. In my humble opinion the fewer products added to the water the better it is for our water pets. Instead if adding the Amguard just do water changes if there is an ammonia reading.

Some of the products that claI'm to lock up ammonia actually lock it up thus starve the bacteria we are trying to grow. The reason I recommend Prime is because it detoxes ammonia temporarily but it is still available to feed the bacteria. The very best thing you can do for this beautiful little guy is keep his water as low in ammonia as possible. The cycle you moved over here should catch up quickly so hopefully the ammonia will get down to and stay at zero fairly soon.
 
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iamaskim

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Thank you! I’m going to try it out!
 
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mattgirl

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Please keep me updated. I really do care.
 
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iamaskim

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My baby is better today he actually came out when I approached his tank this morning did a little lap and went back to his moss bed, his fins look less pale and I even tried to feed him one moist pellet, he actually tried to eat one and regurgitated half of it, but that’s something!
I’m gonna do a water test later to see how the water is doing, but he looks more active and better color!
My poor baby! The things his human puts him through!
I managed to take a pic when he came out, he will do a circle around the area he is in every couple of hours, which is way more activity since the first night.

mattgirl thank you for caring and for the feedback! 7B8A157C-D721-4370-8BF8-7FFC1B449141.jpeg
 
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mattgirl

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I know it was upsetting to see him lose his colors. Fish can and do temporarily lose some of their color when stressed. This was a big change for him and I am sure he didn't know what was going to happen next.

I am very happy to hear that he is getting back to his normal color now and is starting to interact with you and his new surroundings.

It concerned me the first time I saw my long finned black skirt tetras lose most of their color. Instead of their normal black they almost looked like white skirts. Now that they are used to me they seldom lose colors.
 
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Noroomforshoe

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I am glad your fish is well!, I just wanted to mention, I guess I saw him in the 2 gallon. Well, if you reduced the amount of gravel to 25% of what you had there, or even just leave enough to cover the bottom of the tank, your tank will be easier to maintain. There will not be as many places for detritous to become trapped and rot.
 
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iamaskim

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Noroomforshoe said:
I am glad your fish is well!, I just wanted to mention, I guess I saw him in the 2 gallon. Well, if you reduced the amount of gravel to 25% of what you had there, or even just leave enough to cover the bottom of the tank, your tank will be easier to maintain. There will not be as many places for detritous to become trapped and rot.
Thanks for the tip!
I actually had no idea what’s acceptable or not, I read some saying Bettas can be in tanks with no gravel, but then they also said they can live in 1 gallon tanks :/
Others said 1- 2lb per gallon, so I did that, but less would make it easier to clean. I think since I added the old gravel to the new I’m gonna let it seed the new gravel and then I’ll take some out
 
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Noroomforshoe

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Any fish can live in a bare bottom tank. And it makes it easier to keep the water clean. It is great for breading or raising fry, generally not neccassary. Most people want gravel so the tank looks better. And that's fine. But their is only so much that the gravel vacuum can do. I have ben keeping very little gravel in my tank for a long time, and I think it is much easier this way.
 
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