Need Help with Cycling!

  1. t

    taylor9424 New Member Member

    Hey everyone!
    I have a 10 gallon tank that I set up about 2 weeks ago. I used Tetra SafeStart and added 3 female platies (of course 1 platy already dropped 6 fry). I also used some filter media from an established tank.
    I have the API Master Test Kit and my readings are currently:
    Ammonia: 0.50
    Nitrite: 0
    Nitrate: Between 0.0 and 5.0 (hard to tell)

    My question is- Should I do a water change due to the ammonia? I thought you weren't supposed to do a water change after TSS, but I am seeing conflicting ideas on it. Yesterday my ammonia was at 0.25, so it doubled overnight.

    Also, I will probably move the fry to a breeder box in an established tank because they're so sensitive.

    Any help is appreciated! Thanks!
     
  2. h

    hopeful fish Well Known Member Member

    It all depends on how long ago you added the TSS. If you added it when you set up the tank 2 weeks ago, then it has run its course, failed, and you will need to do a water change and redose.

    If you added the TSS less than 2 weeks ago, let it keep going. If the ammonia reaches 2.0, do a water change no matter how long ago you added it.

    Moving the fry is a good idea--nobody wants dead babies!!!

    Hope this helps! :)
     
  3. OP
    OP
    t

    taylor9424 New Member Member

    Thanks! I added the TSS about 4-5 days ago I would say. I also have Prime on hand. Would adding that screw up the cycling process?
     
  4. h

    hopeful fish Well Known Member Member

    Don't use Prime with TSS. TSS is very finicky when it comes to water conditioners. Did you wait at least 24 hours from your last water change before adding the TSS? If you didn't, it likely won't work.

    If it has only been 4-5 days, you can let it be. If the ammonia continues to rise above 2PPM, you can step in with a few water changes and a re-dose of the TSS.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    t

    taylor9424 New Member Member

    Yes, I waited 24 hours after putting in water conditioners. If I end up doing a water change in a few days, should I still use conditioner?
     
  6. Adam55

    Adam55 Well Known Member Member

    You always have to use conditioner when you add water to the tank (unless you have well water and know exactly what is in it), but the idea is to not do a water change yet. Let the TSS work.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    t

    taylor9424 New Member Member

    Got it! I was worried about the platies but I'll just keep a close eye on it. I moved the fry to an established tank so hopefully all will go according to plan!
     
  8. OP
    OP
    t

    taylor9424 New Member Member

    I wanted to give an update. I just tested my water again and it reads:
    Ammonia: 0.25
    Nitrite: 0
    Nitrate: Between 0.0 and 5.0

    Does this mean that my ammonia has already spiked and is going back down? If so, that's pretty awesome!
     
  9. jdhef

    jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    So it would appear
     
  10. h

    hopeful fish Well Known Member Member

    If you haven't done a water change, it looks that way! Yay! I once had a tank cycle in just 5 days with TSS and light stocking, so you might be on the same path...
     
  11. f

    fishguy1955 New Member Member

    The easiest way to quick start a filter in a tank with some cycling fish in it is to take several nice ripe sponges from known healthy tanks and give them a good wringing out over the newly installed sponges with the new filter running full out. It will suck up a large dose of living bacteria and your cycle will be jump started. Don't worry about clouding the water doing this as it will settle and does contain millions of beneficial bacteria.