Do nitrates mean the end of a cycle?

  1. fishingman001 Well Known Member Member

    My nitrates are at ~6. Doesn't the presence of nitrates mean it's the end of the cycle or near the end?

    ph ~6.4
    ammonia less than .25
    nitrite less than .25

    My nitrites and ammonia have been slowly dropping.
  2. harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    When ammonia and nitrite levels start to drop, it can signal that you're nearing the end of your cycle. Tap water can have nitrate present so by itself your nitrate reading isn't indicative of your progress (you can test your tap water to find out). But it sounds like you're well on your way to being done. :)
  3. iloveengl Well Known Member Member

    It looks like you are almost there! Woohoo!!! :;hf
  4. fishingman001 Well Known Member Member

    thanks. i tested my water and I do have nitrates.

    the funny thing is, this tank seems to be cycling faster than the tetra safestart one.
  5. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    how are you cycling it?
  6. flyin-lowe Well Known Member Member

    What are the highest your ammonia and nitrite levels have been. If you are only at .25 for ammonia and it has never gotten higher then that I would guess you are in the beginning of the cycle. If your levels are at .25 it might take a while to get the bacteria established. Especially if you have nitrates in your water already. How many nitrates do you show in your tap water. What test kit are you using and what method of cycling are you using?
  7. fishingman001 Well Known Member Member

    I am cycling it with fish food. I am using an API master test kit. the ammonia has been up to 4 and the nitrites have been up to ~3.

    the nitrate reading in my tap was a little more than 5
  8. harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    Cool, since you're cycling with fish food, no reason to control ammonia/nitrite through water changes as I suggested earlier. I was assuming you had fish in there. ;)

    If your ammonia and nitrite readings have peaked and declined, you're probably getting close to the end.
  9. fishingman001 Well Known Member Member

    no fish in the tank yet. i cycled with fish when i add TSS though.
  10. flyin-lowe Well Known Member Member

    When did you start this process. About two weeks in to my cycle I went three days in a row with zero ammonia and zero nitrites. I new it was two quick to be cycled and like many suggested the ammonia started going back up. If you have had levels up to 4 and now they are down to less then .50 I would say you are getting close. That is if it has gone down on its own and not from water changes.
  11. fishingman001 Well Known Member Member

    my tank has been cycling for about 2 1/2 weeks so far with only 1 25% water change so far. i am still going to monitor it and i am not going to add fish unless i am 100% sure it is cycled.