10 Gallon Tank Fast cycling?

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starflite

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So I started cycling my new 10 gallon freshwater tank on the 24th. Fishless cycle, no bacteria products or substrate/filter seeding, feeding every 12 hours with flake food. Temp is between 82F-86F depending on if I have the light on, time of day, etc.

Water was very cloudy (whitish) on the 2nd day after I set it up. BB bloom, right? Currently water has cleared up nicely by itself. I haven't done any water changes.

Ammonia has been between .25 ppm and .50 ppm every day. I tested Nitrites today, and the reading is greater than 5.0 ppm o__o
Have not tested Nitrates at all yet, I figured it was a bit early, but now I'm curious so I may test them before I go to sleep tonight xD

So my question... is it normal to have a cycle like this where ammonia doesn't appear to spike at all, and the nitrites develop into such a high concentration in only 4 days? I'm guessing the temperature has a lot to do with the rapid growth. Here I was expecting at least another week for the nitrites, and a much larger ammonia spike with the amount of flake food I'm throwing in there every day. Thoughts?

thanks guys


EDITEDITEDIT: Before anyone asks, I'm using the API freshwater liquid test kit, so it could be my tests are off, but I seriously doubt it =/
 
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Lucy

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Looks like it's progressing quickly!
Have you tested your tap water for comparrison?
 
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starflite

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I haven't tested the water I use yet, it's the filtered stuff that comes out of my fridge, and then I let it sit for 24 hours before I filled up the tank. I didn't think there was any chance of having ammonia/etc in the water anyway, (at least I hope not lol) but maybe I'll test it tomorrow just in case.

I need to check the pH tomorrow, but other than that I guess it's just going pretty fast? I'm so excited, haha
 

flyin-lowe

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Test your tap water and post those results. The other thing I have read is that the nitrate test somehow measures the nitrites to calculate the nitrate level. (I don't remember how it works) The point is I was told that when you are still in the nitrite phase of the cycle your nitrate test won't bee 100% accurate. It is also important that you shake the #2 nitrate bottle very good as per the directions. There are crystals in it that you have to break up and distribute, so you need to bang it on your hand or leg or something for at least a minute to get an accurate reading.
Ive never heard of a "fresh" cycle with food going that fast, so if it is congrats to you.
 
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starflite

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I tested again yesterday, same readings as before. I'm sure the nitrate bottle was mixed well both times, I'm surprised I didn't break the bottle when I shook it and smacked it on the table xD
Now I'm getting a growth of green algae all over the tank. Is this also normal?
 

Prince Powder

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Green algae is not a normal part of the cycling process. Generally algae is caused by exposure to sunlight or leaving your tank lights on for too long. The fact that you are using fish food to cycle also means that there is an excess of nutrients in the tank which will feed the algae and keep it growing. Since you're doing a fishless cycle I would recommend doing a complete tank blackout until your cycle is complete. If your tank is located somewhere where it is being exposed to sunlight I would recommend moving it to a different location otherwise you will have a constant algae problem. Once you're set with fish make sure that you leave your lights on for no longer than 12 hours a day to help minimize algae growth.
 
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starflite

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I leave my tank lights on a lot, so that's probably it. It shouldn't be a problem to turn off the lights and stick a trash bag over the whole thing for the short time it's exposed to indirect sunlight during the morning. Thanks
 
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