Hello, I'm cycling my tank at the moment.
Currently my parameters are: Ammonia: .25 ppm Nitrite: 5 ppm Nitrate: 20 ppm
What should I do now? Do I keep feeding ammonia? Water change? Leave it alone? Lol. Any feedback would be appreciated; thank you!
Knowing how long you have been cycleing would be useful. Also what are you using as a bacterial supplement and what is your pH? When was the last time you dosed ammonia and when was the last water change? How long has your nitrite been at 5? What size of tank is it?
What I would probably do is a large water change, as once nitrites are at 5 or higher they tend to stall your cycle. You want both your nitrite and ammonia to be in the 0-0.25 range before dosing ammonia again.
Hello! I am 2 weeks into my cycle. No bacterial additives. pH is at 7.4. I've dosed the tank with ammonia 4 times so far. I did a 20% water change today. Nitrite has been at 5 for two days. Should I do a bigger water change? Stalling is what I'm trying to avoid, but at the same time I don't want to tamper too much as I have a tendency to do. so all feedback is appreciated! I will give that guide a read!
If you take out ammonia then the cycle can take way longer than it needs to. Don't let nitrate get over 40 and make sure you can cycle 2ppm of ammonia in 24 hours.
I've had a tank with over 100ppm of nitrate and my cycle was fine, you just need to lower the levels slowly. This was also when I first got into fish keeping so I had no clue that a high nitrate level was bad either.
Yeah, I've read not to let it drop to 0, because you will starve nitrifying bacteria. At the same time, I don't want high levels of nitrite to stall my cycle, and I was wondering when it was acceptable to stop dosing ammonia
If you are only two weeks into your cycle I would say you are right on track. I would do a large water change to bring those nitrites down below 1. Then I would wait 24 hours and see if you could get the nitrites down to 0 with beneficial bacteria. In my experience it is no problem for your tank to have 0 ammonia for a few days while you wait for the nitrite eating bacteria to catch up. If you keep dosing ammonia while waiting for the nitrite eating bacteria to multiply you will keep getting the nitrite spike that stalls the cycle.
My advice is: large water change, wait 24-48 hours to see both the ammonia and nitrite at 0-0.25 and then dose ammonia. At that time I would only dose to 1 for the ammonia.
Since you are not using a bacterial supplement like Stability you need to be prepared to wait for the bacteria to colonize naturally. My cycle took about 6 weeks to get established. But by doing it properly I have had no issues while stocking my tank.