Water changes

  1. weljer61 Initiate Member

    Im about 9 days into my Nitrogen cycle, the ammonia and nitrites have leveled off and I have a nitrate reading a around 5. I have been putting fish food in every 12 hours and am noticing alot of fish food on the bottom that is starting to get hairy. Is this normal? Should I get a gravel vaccum? When should I start doing water changes? Do you think it is ok to start adding fish.

    I do have 3 ghost shrimp in there that have done perfectly fine throughout the cycle.
     
  2. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    9 days is too quick IMO to have a cycle completed with fish foods...it takes weeks..what were your highest readings for ammonia/nitrites? .is this the 38g you are talking about? what are your ammonia, nitrites, reading right now? have you tested your tap water for any of those including nitrates?
    I would vac some of the wasted food as it can cause a major algae issue ..id put a small piece of raw shrimp in and leave it be for awhile longer...
     

  3. Lucy Moderator Moderator Member

    Oh, yeah, do a light vacuum for sure. If you have too much you'll never get it all out with out tearing down the tank.
    Believe me, I know. Ewwwww. lol
    9 days does seem pretty quick. :;dk
     

  4. weljer61 Initiate Member

    Ok ill get a vacuum and get some of that out. How about water changes when should I start doing them?
     

  5. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    cycling with fish/inverts, you should be doing them daily ...ammonia/nitrites are toxic to both and isnt fun for them to go through :(
     
  6. flyin-lowe Well Known Member Member

    Since you have ghost shrimp in your tank I have heard to do water changes when the ammonia reaches .50. The problem with this as I have learned is that it takes forever to cycle the tank because if you let the ammonia get high enough to really start feeding bacteria your fish will die. When you keep it low enough to keep the fish alive it takes a long time. I was doing a fish in cycle and was 5 weeks into it and still did not yet have nitrite or nitrate readings. I finally gave in today and got some TSS. I hope it works out.