Cycling Tank, Need Advice

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Jazzmin

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Hello.
I have a 10 gallon. There are 3 guppies, 1 platy, and 2 snails. I realize (now that it's too late) that this is way too much of a biological load for a new filter. And so, I need some advice on how I should go about doing this.. I am using an aqua clear 20 HOB filter. I tested my water after doing a water change and ammonia is what I think to be 2ppm. I know it's a little high- the fish, however, seem to be doing fine. The Ph reading is 7.4. Looking for any advice on how I can cycle this tank with as little stress to the fish as possible. Thanks in advance!
 

BottomDweller

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Welcome to fishlore!

Do you have seachem prime? It will detoxify up to 1ppm ammonia or nitrite for up to 24 hours
Could you get a bottled bacteria? It will help speed up your cycle, Tetra safe start worked well for me.

Here's what I would do for now
1) Do a water change to get ammonia below 1ppm
2) Dose Prime
3) Dose a bottled bacteria
 
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Jazzmin

Jazzmin

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Thanks for the advice. Since I don't have any seachem prime, I looked it up online to see if Petsmart carries it. They don't, but they do have API Ammo Lock, which is suppose to detoxify ammonia. My concern is that if I use this product, it will not aid the nitrogen cycle since the bacteria will not have anything to feed off of. Is this correct? I mean, I definitely do not want to harm the fish, but I do need to start the cycle. I have bacteria supplement from the company TopFin and have added that to the tank. I will do another water change.
 

el337

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Hi, can you also test the nitrite and nitrates as well as everything out of the tap?

2ppm ammonia is very toxic to your fish so I agree to do a couple of large water changes to get the ammonia down close to 0. The ammo lock is fine to use but if you have nitrites, it won't protect your fish from those toxins.

Prime will detox the ammonia and nitrite but still make them available for the bacteria to process.

Can you also get your hands on Seachem Stability? It has the necessary nitrifying bacteria that will cycle your tank successfully. Unfortunately, TopFin doesn't.
 
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Jazzmin

Jazzmin

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I had already tested for those things as well and got the following results:
From the Tap:
PH- 7.4
Ammonia- 0
Nitrite- 0
Nitrate- 0

From Aquarium:
Nitrite- 0
Nitrate- 0

Is 1ppm ammonia ok for the cycling process of the tank or should it be lower? 0.25?
I also had another question come up while performing a water change earlier. Since I unplug the filter for this process, I need to put water back into it to prime it when I plug it back in. I was using dechlorinated tap water left over from filling up the tank. Is this harmful to the bacteria? Should I be using old tank water to prime it?
That is unfortunate about the Topfin bacteria supplement, since I just bought it, ill have to pick up the seachem stability Petsmart does have that.
 

el337

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Since you have fish in the tank, you don't want to allow the ammonia to rise that high without anything protecting your fish like Prime or the Ammo Lock. Fish are constantly producing ammonia so the bacteria will not starve.

I would do those water changes and get Prime (PetSmart or an LFS should carry it) to protect your fish.

You should use dechlorinated tap water to fill up your tank and filters. No need to use old tank water.
 
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