55 Gallon Tank Seeding cycle from a 10 gallon

Jahnikar
Member
Since my boyfriend has repeatedly made it clear that he's not happy that I'm the ONLY one in the house that has fish even though he has the biggest tank (men, sheesh ), I've decided to undertake the project of getting his cleaned up and cycled. It's a 55 gallon that was a saltwater tank years ago, but has been sitting empty for at least 2 years. It's a filthy, scuzzy mess that's gonna take a ton of vinegar and elbow grease (I'll be posting before and after pics, it's so bad).

Anywho, I'm wondering if I can seed it with media from my 10 gallon, which has been established for a little less than a year now. The last time I tried to seed, I apparently didn't use enough media since the cycle failed completely. How much media should I put into my 10 to get it seeded, and how long should I leave it in there? Would I be better off waiting for the media to seed before I fill the 55 gallon and then do the setup all at once? Or should I fill the 55, start a fishless cycle now, and then add the seeded media once it's ready in the midst of that cycle? Did that even make sense?
 
  • Moderator
ryanr
Moderator
Member
Hi,
Seeding a 55G from a 10 could be difficult. You would want all the media from the 10 and then some more

I would fill the 55, and start a fishless cycle using pure ammonia. I would consider adding some of the media (maybe 25%) from the 10 to help get the bb colony started, but removing 25% from a 10G could cause a mini-cycle in the 10G.

Do you use any sponges on the 10G, like water polishing pads? If so, you could also use some of these to seed the 55.
 
kinezumi89
Member
I agree it would be very difficult. If anything, stocking VERY slowly may help. If the bioload in the 55 was comparable to what is in the 10 gallon now, that may help. But you would need to really cram the filter housing in the 10 gallon with media, to make sure there was enough for both the 10 and the 55.
 
Lunas
Member
what type of filter does the 10 gallon use if it has one of those floss carts it could be time to change it and put the old one in the 55. With as much gravel as you can it would still probably have a minI cycle.
 
Aquarist
Member
Good morning,

Check out the link below on Seeding. I think it's very helpful:
https://www.fishlore.com/aquariumfi...-cycling-with-established-filter-media.66727/

Best wishes for your new set up! I'll be looking forward to seeing before and after photos

Adding some filter media from the 10 gallon tank will help but as others have mentioned, there probably isn't enough established filter media for an instant cycle, however, any that you add will help to reduce the amount of time that it takes to cycle.

Ken
 
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Jahnikar
Member
Thanks for all the advice! I had a feeling that seeding from the 10 would be a semi-futile attempt. But if it speeds up the cycling (even just a little bit) and makes the boyfriend happy quicker, I'm okay with that As far as the bioload, the 55 is going to be completely different. I believe he wants to do a cichlid tank and the biggest fish in my 10 gallon are the panda corys lol.

Would it be possible to stick another filter cartridge (the 10 has an Aqua-Tech 5-15 filter) somewhere in the water column, like between the filter intake and the glass, and if so would it develop a bacteria colony? Or would it be such a small colony that it wouldn't help at all?
 
Lunas
Member
How long has the filter cart been in the 5-15(I have the same one) if it has been in there a while just have him put that in his filter it should fit in there with room to spare to seed his tank it won't instantly do it but it should speed it up considerably all he will need to do is dose ammonia to 1-3ppm for about 2 weeks with the heater set to 82.

Personally putting a prefilter sponge on the 10 letting it run for a while to cycle the sponge then putting the sponge on his filter. It would be better than just tossing another cart in your tank. The main issue is going to be his tank is going to have so much higher bioload than yours does his concentration of bacteria will be different from yours...

Honestly if he is this impatient he should just get a bottle of tetra safe start and do a fish in with tss + your old filter cart in one of his filters. The big bottle or 2 medium bottles should do. 2-3 of the friendlier fish he can do. Then after the 2 week cycle time he can add some more then wait a few days-weeks add 1-2 more repeat till fully stocked he will just need to monitor his ammonia levels.
 
  • Thread Starter
Jahnikar
Member
My filter cartridge has been in the tank for about a year, I've never changed it (I don't keep the carbon in it). Biggest problem with using my cartridge, is I can pretty well guarantee a mini-cycle. I don't currently have any extra media in place and I just switched from gravel to sand about a month ago.

While he may be impatient, I am not I'd prefer to have the cycling time to save up some money, research and shop around for the exact fish we want, rather than jumping in right away.
 
Lunas
Member
Jahnikar said:
My filter cartridge has been in the tank for about a year, I've never changed it (I don't keep the carbon in it). Biggest problem with using my cartridge, is I can pretty well guarantee a mini-cycle. I don't currently have any extra media in place and I just switched from gravel to sand about a month ago.

While he may be impatient, I am not I'd prefer to have the cycling time to save up some money, research and shop around for the exact fish we want, rather than jumping in right away.
oh so you cut the back off the cart and dump out the carbon?
Just did that for the first time last night to add medicine to my tank.

What did you do with your old gravel if it was still wet you could have given all of that to him and that might have been enough.

I Suppose you could hang one so your outflow hits it and is diffused but I would recommend doing that with the clean one you want to cycle to swap out for your old one.

Oh tip for you about 20 or so biomax ceramic rings can be stacked in the frame for the biomesh in that filter I put them in a plastic mesh bag and stacked them in there when I pulled the biomesh out to seed my fluval 106 canister filter. I am planning on running it for my 5 gallon betta tank or 10 gallon after I sanitize it and move them over. I need to make a diffuser for the output so my betta don't get blown around by the flow of it. I hope the biomax rings provide enough surface area for it.
 

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