Emergency? Fish-in-cycle

  1. Boots8 Member Member

    I have a 10 Gallon tank with 5 Albino Cories in it, originally the tank was cycled, until things happened (pH drop, fish were sick.) Numerous of water changes... Now the tank basically reset.

    Few weeks ago I bought some Tetra Safe plus Start which has been kept under my bed, under a bucket which is half used. Just yesterday I used it (all HALF of the bottle.) The day before yesterday I had done a water change (Ammonia was 0.25) while everything else was 0? I then added 2 drops of Prime in the new water bucket & a dechlorinat0r (yes, I know Prime is already a dechlorinator.) After waiting 24 hr I added the bottle of SS. (Half of it, as that was all I got.)

    Today I tested my water... Amd I see that ammonia is at 0.50 ppm, pH at 6.0, Nitrite 0.50, Nitrate 0

    I don't know if the Safe Start is working or not? I'm worried about an ammonia spike and my Cories dying. I bought this product today as I was unable to find Safe Start: Amazon.com: Marineland ML90762-00 Bio-Spira, 3 38 oz: Pet Supplies (I don't know if this would be any help?)

    My Corys haven't been active just been laying at the bottom of the tank the bigger one swam for a bit, now is resting somewhere, yesterday last night when the lights and everything was off they were crazy active, today not so much?

    Any idea if this is working or not? This is my first time using SS which I haven't done before...
  2. Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    At a pH of 6 your bacteria are not going to be able to function so no, your tank won't cycle. Do you have a KH test or can you get your LPS to test it for you? How often do you do water changes?

  3. Boots8 Member Member

    I have the master test kit. I've never had pH problems in my life, I don't know why it just went so low. I believe this is what crashed my tank. pH randomly dropped.

    I did partial water changes (25-30%) once a week. This entire week has been non-stop numerous of water changes... After adding an Indian Almond Leaf & Driftwood, everything went bad?

    Just tested my pH upstairs (which is the water I use.) it's 6.0...

    Tested the water downstairs and it's a bit higher than 7.2 as it's a dark blue...

    Should I do a water change? 50% from the water downstairs ... Add prime (I'm not sure how many drops for 10 Gallon.) ? Then after 24 use the Marineland Bio-Spira until I get a new bottle of TSS?
  4. Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    I would try to find out why the pH is so different between the two floors. Does one run through different plumbing, a water treatment device perhaps? You don't want to switch sources too quickly, especially when the pH is very different. Do you have any professionals to test your water for more parameters than what the aquarium test kit can do? I personally would stick with the upstairs water for now but begin to add carbonates slowly to bring your pH and KH up.

  5. filtered_light Member Member

    I've read that adding driftwood can lower the pH of a tank, but I don't know for sure. But if the water you are using is 6ph that could also be the issue. What was the pH in the past? A sudden change can be bad, but a 6.0 ph that is/has been steady probably would be ok for cories. But a lot of pH test kits make it hard to determine if it is below 6.
  6. Boots8 Member Member

    pH in the past was the same as it was downstairs.. 7.2+ I am really unsure of why it has dropped upstairs. I also removed the wood.

    Stupidly, I panicked, and did a partial water change, I went down stairs and added the 7.2+ pH water / dechlorinated it. Added like a drop, or two of stress c + a drop of prime / and used Nutrafin Aqua plus.

    Woke up to 3 dead cories, only 2 alive.
    Tested pH, still at a 6.0 ... Ammonia .50 pm while Nitrite was a 0, and Nitrate is also a 0.

    I've tried doing a fishless cycle in a 2.5 G as well -- been using pinch of fish food, every 2 days -- I am unable to build nitrates even from that.
    I have no clue what to do / what is going on.

    Seems like every time I do a water change, it gets worse. Also, I don't have anyone/anything to test my regular water parameters... I've never been so stressed in my life.

    Edit: I also ordered Dr. Tims -- I don't know if that will help, it (hopefully) should be coming in today, but... I think it'd be useless since the pH is so slow.
  7. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    This is why you aren't supposed to test for 7 days after adding TSS+. Panicking makes you do things that you shouldn't when you're just reading the ammonium that feeds the bacteria in the bottle as ammonia. You have to add the TSS+ and forget about it for 7 days if you are prone to panicking.

  8. Boots8 Member Member

    I agree with this, I knew I shouldn't of touched it, but I did. Since the nitrite was 0.50 pm / ammonia 0.50 pm.. While 0 Nitrate at the time, so stupidly I decided to do a partial change... My pH is low as well, which doesn't help. I should've left it alone. It was obviously working too since the water went all milky, for a while as well when I added TSS.

    Edit: I have a 5 Gallon Betta tank, I just tested his water, and his ammonia is .50 ppm ... 0 Nitrate / 0 Nitrite. --? I don't know if I should move the 2 cories to his tank temporarily until I can fix the 10 G with Dr. Tim's -- but then again, wouldn't I just be putting them into ammonia water?

    I do partial water changes on my betta tank once a week, I haven't been touching my betta tank, I do not understand why I am getting only ammonia? But not.. Nitrate/Nitrites, despite me not touching his tank.

    This is horrible.
  9. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    TSS+ works as low as a pH of 6 so you are right at the border line but that doesn't mean it won't work. I would grab another bottle and do a large water change, add dechlorinator, wait the 24 hours and then dump the bottle of TSS+ straight in your filter behind the media. Then leave it alone for 7 days and test unless fish look particularly stressed or sick. You should be fine if you can just wait it out properly and not mess with it.
  10. Boots8 Member Member

    I ordered Dr. Tim's -- I have a 5 Gallon tank,
    I am unable to get TSS again -- since it is not available in Canada, only in U.S -- But, I do have Dr. Tim's coming in.

    Just tested the corie's current water, 0.50 ppm ammonia, 0 nitrite & 0 nitrate. Despite me doing a water change and all, 3 died. What should I do though? Do you think doing another water change will kill them? Or should I move them.. Or? I am unsure -- I am worried about them dying, since 3 died today.

    Also, I am unsure with Dr. Tim's / Isn't the tank not suppose to have fish for 24 hours, after adding it, then add them? Not sure.

  11. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    I haven't used Dr Tim's but normally you add the fish at the time you add the bottle so the fish produce the ammonia they need to eat and reproduce. If you don't add fish for 24 hours then they don't have a food source. Can you not order TSS+ on Amazon?
  12. Boots8 Member Member

    TSS would take till August something apparently for it to come in.
  13. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    Well that's a bummer :( I thought with Amazon Prime it came in 2 days regardless. In that case, I guess you have to use Dr. Tim's lol.

    You may be able to find someone living in the states who would send it to you in a 2 day mail package or just pay for the 2-3 day shipping on amazon. If not your cycle will eventually happen anyway. Just do 10-20% water changes daily until the cycle works itself out if the Dr Tim's doesn't work for you.
  14. Boots8 Member Member

    I'll try looking into it, if not, I will have to wait when I take a trip to the U.S -- So, do a partial water change right now? I don't have the Tim's yet, hopefully... The partial change won't hurt.

    Just re-tested my betta tank.. 0.50 ppm ammonia / 0 nitrite / 0.5 ppm nitrate. I wonder if moving them into the 5 G temporarily would be a bad idea or not.
  15. bcray3 Initiate Member

    If you have the room in the beta tank I'd move them until the water straightens out. I wouldnt add any of the 10 gal water into the beta water when moving the fish tho

    Maybe even do a water change for the beta and add that water into the 10 gal to boost along the process
  16. Boots8 Member Member

    I was thinking of doing that, moving the 2 cories in the 6.6 G Fluval, and going out to get some live plants, and put some drift wood in it. While doing 100% water change on the 10 Gallon, and then adding dr tims and doing a fishless cycle with dr tims, then moving them back.

    But I am unsure if it is a good idea, because the 0.50 ammonia in the betta tank is worrying me, 0.5 nitrates...
  17. Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    At a pH of 6 your bacteria won't be able to grow. Period. There's no point in even trying to cycle at this rate. What I would do now is (besides trying to find out why the pH dropped in one tap but not the other) start using the downstairs water. Do it slowly though! Act as though you're bringing your fish home from a strange place and acclimate them slowly to the new water. Cycle from there.

    And when you said you added "a drop" of Prime, how much did you add?
  18. filtered_light Member Member

    Your mileage may vary, but my betta chased my cories mercilessly and could not be kept in the same tank with them. So it might be too stressful for them in the betta tank, unless you can add a divider. Not sure I'd want to move them, since they are already stressed, but I'm a novice so my suggestions are not the most experienced.
  19. Boots8 Member Member

    Literally like a drop. 2 drops. Nothing more.
  20. Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    2 drops of Prime is only enough to dechlorinate 1 gallon of water.