whats the difference

Discussion in 'Aquarium Water' started by bryce1217, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. bryce1217Valued MemberMember

    i was wondering what the difference between a fishless cycle and a cylce that includes your fish. i know that if you do a cycle with fish you only need to add a few. which one is better. thanks!

  2. YeoyWell Known MemberMember

    A fishless cycle is much safer for your fish, takes longer but is worth it. With a fish cycle, quite often (especially if you are new to cycling) many fish can die and it can cause monster frustration too. Start with fishless, in my opinion.

  3. Matt BWell Known MemberMember

    I think most would answer that a fishless cycle is preferable. The difference is the ammonia source, in fishless you use pure ammonia, fish food, or shrimp to act as the ammonia source, fish in cycling is using the fish as the source. Which, on top of causing any number of ailments in the fish, is also rather uncomfortable I would imagine.
  4. bryce1217Valued MemberMember

    oh so how long would you let the tank cycle fishless. i hate the idea of dead fish.
  5. Matt BWell Known MemberMember

  6. bryce1217Valued MemberMember

    i have a ten gallon but if i do two filters i would oonly have one filter cartridge that already been broken in. what would i do with the other filter?
  7. Matt BWell Known MemberMember

    Can you fit a bag of bio media in the filter somwhere? You really don't need a ton of media to seed a new tank as long as you stock very slowly. I would leave the cartridge in as to not upset the 10g's cycle and try to get some extra media somewhere else in the filter to be seeded.
  8. YeoyWell Known MemberMember

    Are you bringing over a filter from an established tank?
  9. bryce1217Valued MemberMember

    no im using either one or two new filters. i havent decided yet. thanks for your help!
  10. LyleBWell Known MemberMember

    I tried a fishless cycle last summer for the first time. I had no readily available, cycled media to use, so it took two months to cycle on it's own, keeping the ammonia level between 3 and 4. Longer than I anticipated.

    I am now cycling a 29 gal. I used a bag of biomax from the second filter that had been running on the cycled 10 gal tank. I immediately started having the ammonia converted within two days, some Nitrates were forming, but the Nitrites were staying at 5+ (off the chart). That went on for several weeks. The Nitrite converting bacteria were being stubborn. Today was the first day that my Nitrites went to zero, and that was after two days of no ammonia being added. My 29 has been cycling now for 23 days, so just over three weeks. I'm pretty sure I'm getting close to a completed cycle - next few days should tell. In my case, using the seeded filter media hopefully cut the cycle time to less than half.

    I assume that if I had had a more mature tank to steal the media from, things would have gone faster, and probably more evenly. I'm blaming the slow Nitrite bacteria build-up on the fact that the 10 gal is still a fairly new tank, so not fully established itself. I didn't want to risk taking more filter media out of it, since it is fairly heavily stocked - by plan.

    I always used fish-in cycling, but I'm pretty much sold on fishless now. Not only is it safer and less stressful for the fish, but if you miss a day or two attending to the tank, it's no big deal - no harm done to anything. Requires patience, but is worth it.

    Good luck, however you decide to proceed.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2012
  11. bryce1217Valued MemberMember


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