Why 0 Nitrites When Ammonia Is Not At 0 In Fishless Cycle

Ree C

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I am two weeks into a fishles cycle where I used an established sponge filter to jump start the cycle in a new 55. I am running 2 aquaclear 70's, plus the sponge. I add ammonia to 2PPM, and 48 hours later I am at 0, Nitrites ate ALSO at 0 at both 24 and 48 hours??? Nitrates are 60 PPM as expected. Why is ammonia cycling slower than nitrites? I had a nitrite spike at week 1, dark purple on the API, then it dropped, but the ammonia is still not dropping in 24 hours. This is my first fishless cycle, and I am so happy to not have fish involved, but I am confused by nitrites being ahead of the ammonia. Is this because I introduced established filter media?
 

mattgirl

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this is actually how it should work in a cycled tank. Once one has a nitrite spike that drops to zero you really should never see nitrites again unless there is a problem.

Using the established sponge filter you basically had an almost instant cycle. Just give it a bit more time and it should start processing the ammonia quickly.
 

Rob Shannon

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Ree C said:
I am two weeks into a fishles cycle where I used an established sponge filter to jump start the cycle in a new 55. I am running 2 aquaclear 70's, plus the sponge. I add ammonia to 2PPM, and 48 hours later I am at 0, Nitrites ate ALSO at 0 at both 24 and 48 hours??? Nitrates are 60 PPM as expected. Why is ammonia cycling slower than nitrites? I had a nitrite spike at week 1, dark purple on the API, then it dropped, but the ammonia is still not dropping in 24 hours. This is my first fishless cycle, and I am so happy to not have fish involved, but I am confused by nitrites being ahead of the ammonia. Is this because I introduced established filter media?
Are you adding ammonia until you get a reading of 2ppm or are you dosing to that amount based on calculation?
 
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