Cycling with old media. WARNING Long Winded!!

Goldie&Yami

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Myth or effective? I just started up my 36 gallon bow. It's been up for about 2 or 3 days but I haven't started the cycling yet because I have too many questions. Plus with the problems I had with my 20 gallon yrs ago tbh it scares the begeezus out of me! My 20 gallon is still running with 2 HOBs, several sponges, 2 bags of biomax, 3 giant lava rocks, and a terracotta pot. I was just gonna transfer 1 of my HOBs temporarily to start my cycle. But 1 of my HOBs spits out so much water and surface disruption I didn't notice that the other kicked off. I don't know how long it's been off or why(I haven't tried to restart it yet). But it's possible it's been a few days to a week. When I do a water change later tonight after all my brats go to bed I'll test it to see what happened and if it still works. Because it kicked off my sponges were half dry. My biomax bag was still submerged in water although. So onto my questions.
Is the media in that HOB still good? If not can I use anything else without throwing my 20 into a minI cycle?
Also I have 9 corys ready to move to my 36(5 green 4 albino) can I transfer them immediately after I add old media?
Or is instant cycling not really a thing?
I need some thoughts, opinions, and advice on the whole topic!
Thanks guys!
 

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Tez

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Goldie&Yami said:
Myth or effective?
It's affective as I went from a 22 gallon to a 60 and the lot went over besides my water except for an inch from the bottom because of waste and then topped up. Put the lot on and I had 3 weeks of good water readings and a minI cycle of 3wks..in my opinion it helps regarding the cycle besides.
 

david1978

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Perfectly fine. Whats still moist will still be alive. Bacteria can go roughly a month before they go dormant. Dormant not dead. At around 2 months it starts dying off. Some studies still found live dormant bacteria at the 3 month mark.
 
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Goldie&Yami

Goldie&Yami

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Tez said:
It's affective as I went from a 22 gallon to a 60 and the lot went over besides my water except for an inch from the bottom because of waste and then topped up. Put the lot on and I had 3 weeks of good water readings and a minI cycle of 3wks..in my opinion it helps regarding the cycle besides.
So do I wait to transfer my Corys?
 

vampireshrimpfan

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Corys are quiet sensitive. I would carefully move them.

Or if you feel unsafe wait a little longer
 
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Goldie&Yami

Goldie&Yami

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david1978 said:
Perfectly fine. Whats still moist will still be alive. Bacteria can go roughly a month before they go dormant. Dormant not dead. At around 2 months it starts dying off. Some studies still found live dormant bacteria at the 3 month mark.
Right now I have put the sponges in one of my plastics floating containers and pushed it under the water stream of my other HOB in an attempt to add more BB. Do you think that will help?
 

Tez

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Goldie&Yami said:
So do I wait to transfer my Corys?
Well it's up to you, as I had to move over 30 odd fish as I hadn't got the room for the other tank but in those 3wks of cycling my fish went through ammonia 0.25, nitrite 2ppm and one odd day of 40ppm and it dropped back to 5.
What I did though to help them was get an air brick, pumped in more oxygen off the main filter pump besides the filter throwing through oxygen and 6 buckets daily was removed and after 3 weeks all my readings went fine and have been since.
 

david1978

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Not unless you add bio load to feed the bacteria. Your bacteria in your tank and filter is completely bio load dependent. It will only grow as large as needed no matter how much frow or media you add. The good news is the bacteria self replicate every 17-24 hours so it grows rapidly to the tanks needs.
 
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Goldie&Yami

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Tez said:
Well it's up to you, as I had to move over 30 odd fish as I hadn't got the room for the other tank but in those 3wks of cycling my fish went through ammonia 0.25, nitrite 2ppm and one odd day of 40ppm and it dropped back to 5.
What I did though to help them was get an air brick, pumped in more oxygen off the main filter pump besides the filter throwing through oxygen and 6 buckets daily was removed and after 3 weeks all my readings went fine and have been since.
david1978 said:
Not unless you add bio load to feed the bacteria. Your bacteria in your tank and filter is completely bio load dependent. It will only grow as large as needed no matter how much frow or media you add. The good news is the bacteria self replicate every 17-24 hours so it grows rapidly to the tanks needs.
So basically what I was thinking if I add the media I need to add fish too, to continue my bio load to BB ratio.
I've had these fish for several yrs I would be very upset if I accidentally killed or endangered them by moving them too soon.
So with the growth rate in mind if I move fish from 20 to my 36 I need to add new fish to my 20 immediately to keep the bacteria in my 20 from lowering?
 

david1978

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You really don't need to add fish right away. You have a few weeks till the bacteria would start goung dormant. Alternatively you could feed the tank just like you did when it had fish and it would break down into a food source for the bacteria. A piece of fish or shrimp in a media bag would work too.
 

Tez

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Goldie&Yami said:
So basically what I was thinking if I add the media I need to add fish too, to continue my bio load to BB ratio.
I've had these fish for several yrs I would be very upset if I accidentally killed or endangered them by moving them too soon.
So with the growth rate in mind if I move fish from 20 to my 36 I need to add new fish to my 20 immediately to keep the bacteria in my 20 from lowering?
Leave your fish where they are as my fish went through a lot and I would just add about 6 strong fish to help your cycle.
 
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Goldie&Yami

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vampireshrimpfan said:
Corys are quiet sensitive. I would carefully move them.
david1978 said:
You really don't need to add fish right away. You have a few weeks till the bacteria would start goung dormant. Alternatively you could feed the tank just like you did when it had fish and it would break down into a food source for the bacteria. A piece of fish or shrimp in a media bag would work too.
Tez said:
Leave your fish where they are as my fish went through a lot and I would just add about 6 strong fish to help your cycle.
Piece of fish or shrimp in a bag? Are going frozen dead fishy friends again? Lol.

What do you mean by careful?

Dang I was afraid of that. I don't have a way to get more fish right now with most places closed or locked down...
 

Tez

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Goldie&Yami said:
What do you mean by careful?
Cory don't have scales like other fish for protection and if you have an ammonia spike it could possible burn them.
 

david1978

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Goldie&Yami said:
Piece of fish or shrimp in a bag? Are going frozen dead fishy friends again? Lol.

What do you mean by careful?

Dang I was afraid of that. I don't have a way to get more fish right now with most places closed or locked down...
Yea dead fish friends. Those fish are food not friends. Lol. Even an inch square piece of white fish should be enough.
 

Mikezyg

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david1978 said:
Perfectly fine. Whats still moist will still be alive. Bacteria can go roughly a month before they go dormant. Dormant not dead. At around 2 months it starts dying off. Some studies still found live dormant bacteria at the 3 month mark.
No offense, but that’s not true! The bacteria are aerobic! Meaning they require oxygen! Wet or not, if they lose oxygen they will die off! That’s a fact.
You can destroy a large amount of bacteria in your tank just by turning off an air stone or by changing the amount of air/oxygen the tank receives. You’ll get an ammonia spike from the dead bacteria. If air is returned though, you can restore the bacteria much faster than having to go through a full cycle, just because of the reproducing of the resulting bacteria that have survived in the tank.
But leaving a filter off with no flow and no oxygen in the water that remains in the pads etc will most definitely kill the bacteria.
 

david1978

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Mikezyg said:
No offense, but that’s not true! The bacteria are aerobic! Meaning they require oxygen! Wet or not, if they lose oxygen they will die off! That’s a fact.
You can destroy a large amount of bacteria in your tank just by turning off an air stone or by changing the amount of air/oxygen the tank receives. You’ll get an ammonia spike from the dead bacteria. If air is returned though, you can restore the bacteria much faster than having to go through a full cycle, just because of the reproducing of the resulting bacteria that have survived in the tank.
But leaving a filter off with no flow and no oxygen in the water that remains in the pads etc will most definitely kill the bacteria.
If that was the case every bottle of bacteria starter would be dead, every filter sponge that's shipped would be dead and every power outage would crash a tank.
 

Mikezyg

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Those are dormant and require oxygen to start them up!!
It’s not an instant fix.
 
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Goldie&Yami

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Well here is a controversy. I hear a lot back and forth on whether bottled bacteria even works because too many think it can't survive the shelf life of being trapped in a bottle.
 

Tez

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Goldie&YamI here's how to speed up your cycle besides the advice given :)

Read the nitrogen cycle article
 

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