Cycling with API test kit - Page 2

ITsJake

I want to start with corys. Can I do 4 or would that be too much to start with?
 

Dunk2

I just tested the water with the right kit this time lol. I have .25ppm ammonia and 5ppm nitrates.
Tap water test showed 0ppm nitrates
As I said in the other thread about this tank, the nitrate level still isn’t making sense to me.

I haven’t read anything in either thread that would explain why nitrates are so low given the amount of ammonia that’s been dosed to this tank.
 

ITsJake

Maybe my plants are absorbing the ammonia
 

Dunk2

Maybe my plants are absorbing the ammonia
I think I asked this at some point, but can you post a picture of your tank?

Plants will consume nitrates, but I have no idea the extent to which your tank is planted.
 

ITsJake

Here you go
 

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Dunk2

Here you go
Thanks.

Just my opinion, but the amount of nitrates that should have been produced by this tank would not have been lowered to 5 ppm by your plants.
 

Bwood22

Thanks.

Just my opinion, but the amount of nitrates that should have been produced by this tank would not have been lowered to 5 ppm by your plants.
I thought the water change dropped the nitrates.
He just did a big water change recently.
 

Dunk2

I thought the water change dropped the nitrates.
He just did a big water change recently.
If I’m being honest, I’ve had a problem following both threads. A water change was talked about, but was it done? If so, how much?

I saw a 60% change mentioned. . . IMO, a 60% change wouldn’t have brought nitrates down to 5 ppm given the amount of ammonia dosed to this tank.
 

ITsJake

Yeah I did a 60% change 2 days ago. Well I did buy a new API Test Kit today bc the one I was using was set to expire in January. The new one I just purchased is set to expire in 2026. So maybe the kit I was using previously, although not technically expired, was giving the wrong readings?
 

Bwood22

If I’m being honest, I’ve had a problem following both threads. A water change was talked about, but was it done? If so, how much?

I saw a 60% change mentioned. . . IMO, a 60% change wouldn’t have brought nitrates down to 5 ppm given the amount of ammonia dosed to this tank.
Id like to look over the other thread....ive only seen this one.

Can you link it?
 

Bwood22

Wow....alot of "info" being shared over on that thread.

Ok...so after reviewing both threads there are a few things worth noting.

The puzzling nitrate levels.
The "stalled" ammonia.
The color blindness.

Perhaps the numbers being shared might be a bit "off".

MidWestAquarium if you don't mind id like you to post pictures of your test results from now on until we resolve this.
I also want you to continue on the path that we discussed earlier, lets see what that 1ppm of ammonia does in 24 hours.

I also want to be sure that you are dosing what you say that you are dosing.
 

mattgirl

The nitrates that should be in this tank with as much ammonia that has been added since this cycle started is not adding up. Are you 100% sure you are running the nitrate test correctly. Are you shaking bottle #2 really really well. You need to be sure the sediment that has settled to the bottom is broken loose so it mixes well.

If you are doing this then I am going to recommend you put about 1/2ml of tank water and 4 1/2mls tap water in the test tube and run the test on this mixture. If the nitrates are as high as they should be in this tank the water in the test tube should turn red.
 

ITsJake

After dosing 1ppm ammonia yesterday I ran another test today. Ammonia is at .25 and nitrate is at 10ppm. Since I deal with partial colorblindness I always show my wife to confirm. I think I can consider myself cycled at this point
 

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Bwood22

After dosing 1ppm ammonia yesterday I ran another test today. Ammonia is at .25 and nitrate is at 10ppm. Since I deal with partial colorblindness I always show my wife to confirm. I think I can consider myself cycled at this point
I'm satisfied that your tank is cycled to at least handle 1ppm of ammonia in 24 hours.

Are you sure that you don't want to try 2ppm?

I mean, here's the reality of it...

You're going to add a small school of corys, then a pair of rams.

Later on maybe a few of something else small.

Since you aren't adding everything at once and the fish you are adding don't have a heavy bioload...your bacteria is going to fluctuate anyway.

I think that you will be fine to add the fish in small batches but i also wouldn't think it a bad idea to run another round of a bit more ammonia just to play it safe.
 

ITsJake

Agreed. Okay I’ll add 2ppm ammonia today and test again tomorrow. If it falls back to .25 then I’ll assume all is well
Thanks again for all your help with this. It’s nice having your assistance with my first go at this
 

Bwood22

Agreed. Okay I’ll add 2ppm ammonia today and test again tomorrow. If it falls back to .25 then I’ll assume all is well
Thanks again for all your help with this. It’s nice having your assistance with my first go at this
If everything checks out tomorrow just do another big water change then dose Prime for the entire volume of the tank and you should be alright.
 

Fish99

What is being used for a filter? Maybe it simply can't keep up with the amonia?
I do find it odd there is never any nitrite although it seems its not tested for much? Maybe it was missed?
Anyway my guess is the tank is cycled but the filter can't keep up with the ammonia.
What do you all think?
 

Bwood22

What is being used for a filter? Maybe it simply can't keep up with the amonia?
I do find it odd there is never any nitrite although it seems its not tested for much? Maybe it was missed?
Anyway my guess is the tank is cycled but the filter can't keep up with the ammonia.
What do you all think?
I thought that too. But when he stocks the tank up, the fish aren't going to be producing 2-4ppm ammonia per day so It's a moot point if you think about it.
 

JuDom

I thought that too. But when he stocks the tank up, the fish aren't going to be producing 2-4ppm ammonia per day so It's a moot point if you think about it.
I agree. I think that the progressive addition of fish + the tank having more time to build up bacteria + his obvious level of care for this tank..it’s a go IMO MidWest. Go get them cories! :D

And please post pictures! :)
 

ITsJake

Well I was going back and forth with bwood and we agreed to dose 2ppm ammonia yesterday. Here are my results 24 hours later. I should probably do a water change but idk how much before the corys. I’ll post my nitrate test shortly
 

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Bwood22

Well I was going back and forth with bwood and we agreed to dose 2ppm ammonia yesterday. Here are my results 24 hours later. I should probably do a water change but idk how much before the corys. I’ll post my nitrate test shortly
Bro....your ammonia is perfect.....post your nitrate then change all of your water....then go get fish.

Actually, post your nitrite and nitrate.
 

ITsJake

Here’s the nitrite and nitrate results. Nitrate looks to be at 20? How much water should I change out?
 

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JuDom

Nitrite present but barely, Nitrate still a wee high, I’d say closer to 40ppm.
Change out all the water or as much as you can. Fill er back up and get some fishes. :D *clapping*
 

Fish99

Here’s the nitrite and nitrate results. Nitrate looks to be at 20? How much water should I change out?
Do not change anything until your nitrite is gone. You need it for the bacteria to get going. Then when it's blue change out about 50% to lower the nitrate.
If you change now you will only slow the part of the cycle that gets rid of the nitrite you have now and more importantly you will have in the future.
You NEED it to be able to gid rid of the ammonia and nitrite on it's own. Water changes is for nitrate.
It is not cycled until this happens.
 

ITsJake

I retested my nitrite and this is the result
I wasn’t seeing nitrite for a long time so it was odd that I suddenly had some. I might have not done the right amount of drops the first time but I made sure I did 5 this time to be sure
 

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Bwood22

The fish you are going to put in that tank aren't going to even produce 1ppm of ammonia per day.....much less 2ppm.

Change out all as much water as you can and dose the entire tank with Prime and go get your fish.

That amount of nitrite is so negligible that it doesn't matter.
We tell people that are fish-in cycling to do their best to keep their nitrite that low.

You're clear to get your first batch of fish.
 

JuDom

Do not change anything until your nitrite is gone. You need it for the bacteria to get going. Then when it's blue change out about 50% to lower the nitrate.
If you change now you will only slow the part of the cycle that gets rid of the nitrite you have now and more importantly you will have in the future.
You NEED it to be able to gid rid of the ammonia and nitrite on it's own. Water changes is for nitrate.
It is not cycled until this happens.
He has already seen the nitrite rise and fall. That has since been established.
The fish you are going to put in that tank aren't going to even produce 1ppm of ammonia per day.....much less 2ppm.

Change out all as much water as you can and dose the entire tank with Prime and go get your fish.

That amount of nitrite is so negligible that it doesn't matter.
We tell people that are fish-in cycling to do their best to keep their nitrite that low.

You're clear to get your first batch of fish.
I could not agree more. *high five*
 

ITsJake

Merry Christmas to me for being this patient! My last question is just a matter of how to introduce my tank to new fish.

I’ve decided that I want 4 corys, 2 Bolivian rams and 4 dwarf gouramis. I’m going to start with 4 corys and then maybe a week later I can add the 2 rams?
 

Bwood22

Merry Christmas to me for being this patient! My last question is just a matter of how to introduce my tank to new fish.

I’ve decided that I want 4 corys, 2 Bolivian rams and 4 dwarf gouramis. I’m going to start with 4 corys and then maybe a week later I can add the 2 rams?
Do it!
 

Fish99

He has already seen the nitrite rise and fall. That has since been established.
My point is it should not rise after the fall. Of course with all the water changes and different amounts of ammonia every day who knows for sure what's going on.
If it has gone down on it's own he should be good with a small number of fish, I'll give you that.
I would keep a very close eye on that nitrite though and I wouldn't put fish in it until the nitrite was gone on it's own but that just me I guess.
I still question the filter, do we even know what it is?
 

Bwood22

It will take a few more hours.....literally hours for that nitrite to disappear.

When finished my last fishless cycle I could convert 1.5ppm ammonia in 24 hours but not quite 2ppm.

Our fish don't produce that much, especially small fish.

I put 15 African cichlids in my tank and I've never seen a glimpse of nitrite since.

He'll be fine....so will a few corys and rams.
 

JuDom

It will take a few more hours.....literally hours for that nitrite to disappear.

When finished my last fishless cycle I could convert 1.5ppm ammonia in 24 hours but not quite 2ppm.

Our fish don't produce that much, especially small fish.

I put 15 African cichlids in my tank and I've never seen a glimpse of nitrite since.

He'll be fine....so will a few corys and rams.
I was just about to comment that depending on the time of testing, the nitrite could be in the process of conversion. Good point, BWood. As usual.

I’m so excited to see these cories and rams! Midwest, go get them tomorrow!! :D
 

Fish99

It will take a few more hours.....literally hours for that nitrite to disappear.
Hopefully so, then get the fish if it does I think. It sure would be easy to check it again before getting fish. What do you think if it doesn't go away in a few hours?
The after cycle fish time is the best. :)
 

Bwood22

Hopefully so, then get the fish if it does I think. It sure would be easy to check it again before getting fish. What do you think if it doesn't go away in a few hours?
The after cycle fish time is the best. :)
1ppm of ammonia = 2.7ppm nitrite

2.7/24 hours is roughly 0.1125ppm nitrite reduction per hour...maybe a tad less since it wasn't all gone yet.

His test showed 0.25ppm

So it would have been gone in less than 3 hours and his fish aren't going to produce enough ammonia to over produce that amount of nitrite anyways.

And really....its not even that much because the ammonia isnt all converting instantly either....that's just how it averages out.
 

JuDom

Merry Christmas to me for being this patient! My last question is just a matter of how to introduce my tank to new fish.

I’ve decided that I want 4 corys, 2 Bolivian rams and 4 dwarf gouramis. I’m going to start with 4 corys and then maybe a week later I can add the 2 rams?
I usually space it out a tad further but that’s my personal method.
I do two weeks in between batches just to be safe. Do you plan on QT before introduction to the main tank?
For me, that depends on where I source the fish and the state that they come to me in.
 

ITsJake

Thanks again you two for all your help
 

ITsJake

Just wanted to give an update! I bought 4 corys and 2 Rams. They were all very small to start so plenty of growing to do!
 

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Bwood22

Did you get a male/female pair of rams?
 

ITsJake

Did you get a male/female pair of rams?
I just messaged you about this
 

JuDom

Just wanted to give an update! I bought 4 corys and 2 Rams. They were all very small to start so plenty of growing to do!
I bet it feels so good to finally have some fish in there! They look great :)
 

ITsJake

It really does! They are so little so I can’t wait to see them grow before me!
 

JuDom

It really does! They are so little so I can’t wait to see them grow before me!
Yes! What an exciting time.
Good thing you had BWood to guide you and me to cheer you both on :hilarious:
It’s been a pleasure being a part of your journey! I wish you the best of luck moving forward :)
 

ITsJake

Thank you! I’m happy to be in this hobby now
 

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