My Friend’s Fish-in Cycle

rainlemongrass

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This post is sort of for a friend. I can’t remember exactly what I did to cycle my own 2 tanks and because I was originally going with LFS advice, I ended up doing them fish in since I got the fish much before I should have and my small tank was a disaster. It killed 40% of my guppies and I was told that was part of the process. Then I changed my plan for the second and it cycled in 2-3 weeks and I didn’t loose a single fish. A few fish did get a little ick so I treated it, still without a single loss.

My friend is kind of doing the same now so I figured I’d give him an extra set of hands with keeping things relatively under control.

He has a 29 gallon tank that got set up over a week ago. I’m not sure of all his equipment but I’m pretty sure he got the top fin starter kit that has the filter, heater, light that go with that tank. I told him to get prime and 8oz of the aquarium bacteria and I gave him filter media from one of my tanks.

A few days later he got a pair of flying foxes and now he’s got his sights set on some glowing electric green tetra. I’ve been testing his water and ph is at 7 and Amm, NO2- and NO3 are still at 0ppm. Can someone refresh my memory as to how long until nitrites should register? And when is he ok to add the tetra? Even with zero nitrites, should he be doing 50% water changes every day? I’ve searched a bit on here but there is SOOO much info and google I’m not sure of what to trust.

Help?
 
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TexasDomer

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I haven't heard good things about that, but it won't hurt the cycle.

Nitrites can take a while to show up, or you may never seem them because the bacteria that consume them seem to be faster growing than the ammonia consuming bacteria.

I would not add any more fish until the tank is completely cycled. I would advise him to rehome the flying floxes though - I think they do better kept singly, and a 29 gal is too small for one - they're active and get a decent size. After he rehomes them, he can do a fishless cycle or continue the fish-in cycle with the tetra if he won't do a fishless cycle.

For a fish-in cycle, I would advise him to do a water change anytime ammonia or nitrites go above 0.5 ppm, and dose Prime on the days when he doesn't do a water change but ammonia and/or nitrites are still present.
 
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rainlemongrass

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I haven't heard good things about that, but it won't hurt the cycle.

Nitrites can take a while to show up, or you may never seem them because the bacteria that consume them seem to be faster growing than the ammonia consuming bacteria.

I would not add any more fish until the tank is completely cycled. I would advise him to rehome the flying floxes though - I think they do better kept singly, and a 29 gal is too small for one - they're active and get a decent size. After he rehomes them, he can do a fishless cycle or continue the fish-in cycle with the tetra if he won't do a fishless cycle.

For a fish-in cycle, I would advise him to do a water change anytime ammonia or nitrites go above 0.5 ppm, and dose Prime on the days when he doesn't do a water change but ammonia and/or nitrites are still present.
Ok, good to know. He’s not going to do a fishless cycle I don’t think. I’ll pass all of these points on to him. How much prime would you dose on non-change days? The bottle label amount for 29gallons I assume, so 3mls? You’ve been so helpful with all my questions! Thanks again!
 

TexasDomer

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You could do 1-2x the dose for the volume of the tank. Prime can safely be dosed up to 5x the normal dose, but if it's not necessary to use that much, I wouldn't.

Happy to help!
 
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