SUPER slow fishless cycle... Any thoughts?? - Page 3

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PizzaStina
Member
Well, I did a 75% water change on Wednesday night. My ammonia reading after doing that change was still about 1ppm (probably due to my tap water having .5 in it to begin with.) It's now Saturday evening and it's still not zero, but looks like about .25...

I'm a little concerned about how long it's taking still to process 1ppm of ammonia. I am really hoping it will be zero by tomorrow or Monday - I'm not totally comfortable getting all the fish in there til its zero even with Prime. Should I be concerned about how slow its still going?!
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
Well, I did a 75% water change on Wednesday night. My ammonia reading after doing that change was still about 1ppm (probably due to my tap water having .5 in it to begin with.) It's now Saturday evening and it's still not zero, but looks like about .25...

I'm a little concerned about how long it's taking still to process 1ppm of ammonia. I am really hoping it will be zero by tomorrow or Monday - I'm not totally comfortable getting all the fish in there til its zero even with Prime. Should I be concerned about how slow its still going?!
This is a slow one for sure. Are your nitrates going up since the last water change?
 
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PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
This is a slow one for sure. Are your nitrates going up since the last water change?
It's hard to say to be honest. Pre-water change it was pretty dark orange, almost red and post water change it got down to what looks like 10ppm? I tested it now and it looks about the same, but it's super hard for me to tell the difference between the 10 and 20 on the nitrate test so it could be a touch higher....
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
It's hard to say to be honest. Pre-water change it was pretty dark orange, almost red and post water change it got down to what looks like 10ppm? I tested it now and it looks about the same, but it's super hard for me to tell the difference between the 10 and 20 on the nitrate test so it could be a touch higher....
We know you have both ammonia and nitrite eating bacteria. If you didn't you wouldn't be seeing nitrates. You now have a filter that should be able to easily handle whatever bio-load you have in this tank. You have the patience of a saint to have stuck this fishless cycle out for this long.

If it were me I would have to go ahead and put some fish in this tank. What kind of fish are you planning on putting in there? Since they are almost bullet proof I would be very tempted to put a couple of feeder goldfish in there. Ask if you can return then to the store once you are sure the cycle is stable or you may decide you love them and can eventually upgrade their tank.

I am probably reaching for straws here but I am beginning to think something about the chemistry of your water is preventing the fishless cycle completing. We have done everythng I can think of to complete the cycle. In my humble opinion it is time to switch gears and add fish.
 
  • Thread Starter
PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
We know you have both ammonia and nitrite eating bacteria. If you didn't you wouldn't be seeing nitrates. You now have a filter that should be able to easily handle whatever bio-load you have in this tank. You have the patience of a saint to have stuck this fishless cycle out for this long.

If it were me I would have to go ahead and put some fish in this tank. What kind of fish are you planning on putting in there? Since they are almost bullet proof I would be very tempted to put a couple of feeder goldfish in there. Ask if you can return then to the store once you are sure the cycle is stable or you may decide you love them and can eventually upgrade their tank.

I am probably reaching for straws here but I am beginning to think something about the chemistry of your water is preventing the fishless cycle completing. We have done everythng I can think of to complete the cycle. In my humble opinion it is time to switch gears and add fish.

I was hoping to get a small school of 5 GloFish tetras, from an independent and reputable store this time though (no PetCo) since I have a blacklight set up in the tank for them.

I'm a little nervous since those died so quick on me last time but at least I know this time that there must be some BB in my filter processing the ammonia and nitrite which absolutely wasn't the case the first time - even though it seems to be eating the ammonia real slow...

I'm open to a school of guppies too since I hear they're also pretty hardy but I would love to have those cool glowy guys. I'm just gonna see when this thing goes to a full 0 ammonia and put them in along with Prime and Stability and monitor it close for a while I guess ....
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
I was hoping to get a small school of 5 GloFish tetras, from an independent and reputable store this time though (no PetCo) since I have a blacklight set up in the tank for them.

I'm a little nervous since those died so quick on me last time but at least I know this time that there must be some BB in my filter processing the ammonia and nitrite which absolutely wasn't the case the first time - even though it seems to be eating the ammonia real slow...

I'm open to a school of guppies too since I hear they're also pretty hardy but I would love to have those cool glowy guys. I'm just gonna see when this thing goes to a full 0 ammonia and put them in along with Prime and Stability and monitor it close for a while I guess ....
Some folks claim guppies aren't as healthy as they once were? Since you want to stock glo-tetras you should go ahead and get what you have been working so hard for.

How did you acclimate the first fish you got? Do you know if the store you got the first ones from had just gotten in a shipment of them? It is very possible you had nothing to do with losing the first ones. The stress of going from tank to tank may have been too stressful.

I would check with the folks you are getting the fish from. Find out if they quarantine before selling. If they don't you may want to wait to buy them until the fish have been in their tank for a few days so you will know they have had a little while to get over the stress of getting to the store. Maybe have the store hold them for you. If they are going to die right away it will be on them not you.
 
  • Thread Starter
PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
Some folks claim guppies aren't as healthy as they once were? Since you want to stock glo-tetras you should go ahead and get what you have been working so hard for.

How did you acclimate the first fish you got? Do you know if the store you got the first ones from had just gotten in a shipment of them? It is very possible you had nothing to do with losing the first ones. The stress of going from tank to tank may have been too stressful.

I would check with the folks you are getting the fish from. Find out if they quarantine before selling. If they don't you may want to wait to buy them until the fish have been in their tank for a few days so you will know they have had a little while to get over the stress of getting to the store. Maybe have the store hold them for you. If they are going to die right away it will be on them not you.
This sounds like good advice. I may even give the store I'm planning to go to ahead of time and ask this. At this point, my tank didn't hit zero this morning so I have to feed it a little ammonia again and wait til next weekend because I'm too busy during the week. Gonna make sure it hits zero by Saturday and go...

I got my first batch of fish from PetCo and who knows how theyve been treated there. The store I want to go to instead has some great reviews so I'm thinking they treat the fish better
 
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PizzaStina
Member
What do we think about maybe adding a bag of Fluval Ammonia Remover to my filter?

I'm kind of concerned about my tap water having close to .5ppm ammonia in it with the cycle not being super fast yet.... I thought about doing another big water change this week with distilled water, but from what I'm reading, it sounds kind of complicated to make sure you add the right minerals in it and I also don't want to deal with pH swings or inconsistencies that could mess things up... But I found Fluval Ammonia Remover and am thinking maybe that will help get that ammonia from any water changes down?! It would basically just be adding a bit of chemical filtration...
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
What do we think about maybe adding a bag of Fluval Ammonia Remover to my filter?

I'm kind of concerned about my tap water having close to .5ppm ammonia in it with the cycle not being super fast yet.... I thought about doing another big water change this week with distilled water, but from what I'm reading, it sounds kind of complicated to make sure you add the right minerals in it and I also don't want to deal with pH swings or inconsistencies that could mess things up... But I found Fluval Ammonia Remover and am thinking maybe that will help get that ammonia from any water changes down?! It would basically just be adding a bit of chemical filtration...
Sorry I missed this yesterday. That might not be a bad idea. Of course we don't want to pull all of the ammonia out. I've not read up on this product so don't know how well it works.

Instead of distilled water maybe you could use spring water or any kind of drinking water. It should have basically the same minerals as our tap water.
 
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PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
Sorry I missed this yesterday. That might not be a bad idea. Of course we don't want to pull all of the ammonia out. I've not read up on this product so don't know how well it works.

Instead of distilled water maybe you could use spring water or any kind of drinking water. It should have basically the same minerals as our tap water.
I really want to get fish today or tomorrow but I'm still reading at about maybe .25 ammonia (a drop from close to 1ppm since another water change on Tuesday.) So I put a bag of the Fluval ammonia remover in the filter just to see if it will remove that little remaining bit. Basically I'm thinking just use it to get it all the way down and then remove it, because once the fish go in I don't want ammonia to be getting completely removed all the time and to disrupt the nitrogen cycle. Hoping this'll do the trick...
 
mattgirl
Member
Prime is going to detox the ammonia in your tap water so you probably want to just stick with the water you are using. If you have .5 ammonia in your tap water and do a 50% water change the ammonia in the tank will only be .25 Although I prefer seeing 0 ammonia I don't think what you are seeing should keep you from going ahead and getting your fish.

There are so many folks reporting they never see a true 0 reading with their API test. that may be the case with yours.
 
  • Thread Starter
PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
Prime is going to detox the ammonia in your tap water so you probably want to just stick with the water you are using. If you have .5 ammonia in your tap water and do a 50% water change the ammonia in the tank will only be .25 Although I prefer seeing 0 ammonia I don't think what you are seeing should keep you from going ahead and getting your fish.

There are so many folks reporting they never see a true 0 reading with their API test. that may be the case with yours.
The thing is... I did a 50% water change again on Tuesday and afterwards, my ammonia reading actually looked slightly higher than it was before, somewhere between .5 and 1ppm :/ So that kind of concerns me... but I'm going to just go for it and use Prime tomorrow, I think, and take out the ammonia remover...
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
The thing is... I did a 50% water change again on Tuesday and afterwards, my ammonia reading actually looked slightly higher than it was before, somewhere between .5 and 1ppm :/ So that kind of concerns me... but I'm going to just go for it and use Prime tomorrow, I think, and take out the ammonia remover...
This is a very strange one. I can't imagine where the ammonia is coming from. Do you have anything in the tank that could be causing it? leftover food? melting plants? If the ammonia in your source water is .5 I can't see the water change causing it to go up higher than the level in the tap water.
 
  • Thread Starter
PizzaStina
Member
mattgirl said:
This is a very strange one. I can't imagine where the ammonia is coming from. Do you have anything in the tank that could be causing it? leftover food? melting plants? If the ammonia in your source water is .5 I can't see the water change causing it to go up higher than the level in the tap water.
Well, I was ghostfeeding the tank for a week or two earlier, but by now you'd think thats all been broken down and I have vacuumed the gravel a couple of times... it's possible because its so hard to tell the difference between lower ammonia readings that the water change essentially just made it stay the same as it was prior? (I was reading around .5 before the change). And I know theres .5 in the tap from testing it.... All of my plants in the tank are fake.
 
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PizzaStina
Member
I'm very happy to say my 5 GloFish Tetras and 1 nerite snail have survived the first 24 hours!

I've had the blue light off since getting them, and today at noon fed them some flakes which they all came up to and ate.

However they are kind of super still most of the time, not schooling and tending to mostly just float in one spot for long periods of time. Two of them are currently hiding towards the bottom/back. They all look healthy otherwise, though. One of the fish - a red one - is much bigger than the other four (at the store all their red ones looks fully grown)... I wonder if that has anything to do with how they're behaving or is this just normal still-spooked-by-a-new-enviornment behavior?...
 
mattgirl
Member
PizzaStina said:
I'm very happy to say my 5 GloFish Tetras and 1 nerite snail have survived the first 24 hours!

I've had the blue light off since getting them, and today at noon fed them some flakes which they all came up to and ate.

However they are kind of super still most of the time, not schooling and tending to mostly just float in one spot for long periods of time. Two of them are currently hiding towards the bottom/back. They all look healthy otherwise, though. One of the fish - a red one - is much bigger than the other four (at the store all their red ones looks fully grown)... I wonder if that has anything to do with how they're behaving or is this just normal still-spooked-by-a-new-enviornment behavior?...
This is great news. It is possible they are still getting used to their new surroundings.
 

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