Will My Fish Die If I Don’t Do The Nitrogen Cycle?

gilbertsmom

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I’ve read the site’s description of it but I’m still not entirely sure what it is/how to do it? I don’t think I have the time to do it anyway
 

penguin02

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What do you mean by "do the nitrogen cycle"? Cycling your tank is a necessary component of keeping your fish healthy. They might not DIE (there's lots of stories of people keeping bettas alive for years in tiny cups) but they won't THRIVE. You shouldn't be keeping fish if you don't want to provide the best life possible for them.
 
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gilbertsmom

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penguin02 said:
What do you mean by "do the nitrogen cycle"? Cycling your tank is a necessary component of keeping your fish healthy. They might not DIE (there's lots of stories of people keeping bettas alive for years in tiny cups) but they won't THRIVE. You shouldn't be keeping fish if you don't want to provide the best life possible for them.
I’m not sure what the cycle is & the site’s description doesn’t help me understand
 

JLeeM

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Long story short, yes your fish will more than likely eventually die from living in a non cycled tank. Read the information again when you have plenty of time to read, study, and understand the literature. Once you grasp it, it's super easy. There's plenty of people on here to help you with it too.
 

penguin02

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Dalmation Molly Laying On Bottom Of Tank

Here is my very first post on the forum, back when I had my 6g (was a disaster ) Read the long post about the nitrogen cycle near the bottom. That was my wake up call that I needed a bigger tank, and now 1.5 years later I'm a happy fishkeeper!
 
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gilbertsmom

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penguin02 said:
Dalmation Molly Laying On Bottom Of Tank

Here is my very first post on the forum, back when I had my 6g (was a disaster ) Read the long post about the nitrogen cycle near the bottom. That was my wake up call that I needed a bigger tank, and now 1.5 years later I'm a happy fishkeeper!
I’m just really confused about everything because my tank is 10 gallons. I don’t have a testing kit & my mother won’t buy me one so I’m not sure what to do
 

GuppyGuy007

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So,
Three main components of your fish tank are ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates.
Ammonia- Very Dangerous
Nitrite- Not as dangerous, but still dangerous
Nitrate- Safe up to 30 PPM.
Basically what will happen is eventually the Ammonia will turn into nitrites, and eventually the nitrites to nitrates. This is just an extremely simplified version of it. Read up on it for more details.

If you have a fish store near you, most will test your water for you. You are really better off with your own test kit. If it is properly cycled, it will have 0 Ammonia, 0 nitrites, and some nitrates.
 

penguin02

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I used to be in the same situation as you, and there are ways to work around it (ex. most stores will test your water for you) Cycling is a necessary step whether your parents will pay for a test kit or not, and if there's one thing this hobby taught me it's that I need to find ways to make money on my own to support my interests. Why not ask to do some extra chores around the house for a few bucks here and there? Fishkeeping is expensive, ESPECIALLY for teens who don't have jobs.
 
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gilbertsmom

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penguin02 said:
I used to be in the same situation as you, and there are ways to work around it (ex. most stores will test your water for you) Cycling is a necessary step whether your parents will pay for a test kit or not, and if there's one thing this hobby taught me it's that I need to find ways to make money on my own to support my interests. Why not ask to do some extra chores around the house for a few bucks here and there? Fishkeeping is expensive, ESPECIALLY for teens who don't have jobs.
My mom won’t give me money for chores as she’s a single mother who doesn’t bring in too much money. But I’m kind of stuck on what to do because currently, my fish is in a 1/2 gallon tank & I’ve set up a 10 gallon tank for him, I’m just not quite sure how to transition him to the 10 gallon. I’ve put water conditioner in & there’s a filter, so I don’t know how to cycle it
 

AquaticJ

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Let me try to simplify it for you. The fish poops, that poop breaks down into ammonia. The first kind of bacteria lives off of ammonia, so they eat the ammonia. When that bacteria poops, that breaks down into nitrite (thats where you are). The second kind of bacteria lives off of nitrite, so they eat it. When they poop, it breaks down into nitrates, which you take out with water changes. The bacteria doesn't actually poop like a fish, but that's an easier way to think about it lol!
 

Why me

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If she won’t buy you one. Here’s my advice. Let your take run for at least a week and a half. When you see cloudy water the next day or so. You’ll know the bacteria is sorting itself out. And when the second week comes. Put a fish you want and is compatible with size. For the lowest cost
 

Lorekeeper

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From someone who maintained a reef before they were legally allowed to have a job (talk about expensive!), look for ways to earn cash around the house, and around town, if you're allowed.

I used to mow lawns, do chores around the house, and do dirty work at my LFS for some in-store credit. You never know what opportunities you may have till you look!
 

Mike1995

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gilbertsmom said:
My mom won’t give me money for chores as she’s a single mother who doesn’t bring in too much money. But I’m kind of stuck on what to do because currently, my fish is in a 1/2 gallon tank & I’ve set up a 10 gallon tank for him, I’m just not quite sure how to transition him to the 10 gallon. I’ve put water conditioner in & there’s a filter, so I don’t know how to cycle it
it's pretty much a matter of waiting. it may take a month or two to cycle.
 
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gilbertsmom

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Mike1995 said:
it's pretty much a matter of waiting. it may take a month or two to cycle.
Is it possible for it to naturally cycle without me putting my fish in it?
 

AquaticJ

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You can also just take water samples to the fish stores and theyll test it for free. You need an ammonia source for it to cycle, which doesn't technically have to be a fish.
 

Mike1995

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gilbertsmom said:
Is it possible for it to naturally cycle without me putting my fish in it?
yes. An uncycled tank is actually bad for fish as ammonia, nitrites and high level of nitrates are existing and no bacteria to consume it.
 
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gilbertsmom

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AquaticJ said:
You can also just take water samples to the fish stores and theyll test it for free. You need an ammonia source for it to cycle, which doesn't technically have to be a fish.
What else could be an ammonia source?
 

mattgirl

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Most folks don't recommend this but If you are willing to do the work you can cycle your tank without anything other than a dechlorinator for your tap water and fish in there to produce the ammonia.

You have to be willing to keep up on the water changes though. Since you don't have a test kit to see what is happening with your water then you just have to assume the water needs to be changed at least every other day for the first 6 weeks and then do it. It takes a lot of commitment to do this but if you are willing to do it your fish should be fine.

Cycling a tank just means allowing it to grow the bacteria it needs to keep it healthy. That bacteria grows on all the surfaces in the tank but the majority of it grows on and lives in your filter.

Fish poop...That poop turn into ammonia...in time that ammonia forms nitrites and then those nitrites form nitrates. Simply put. That is what a cycle is.
 
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