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Cycle Wont start!!!

This is a discussion on Cycle Wont start!!! within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by tiny I have one larger size plant, dont know what it is, it has large leaves then a moss ball. just ...

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Old 10-08-2009, 07:57 PM   #11
 
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Originally Posted by tiny View Post
I have one larger size plant, dont know what it is, it has large leaves then a moss ball. just got them sunday. Still nothing has changed still at 1 ppm. Also I have not changed the media, I have a emperor 400 with mixed media in it. Might buy more plants this weekend...
More plants will be good from several aspects, but no more fish until you're sure the tank is cycled. I still don't think you're ging to see any issues, but... . Agree with leaving the filter alone, it will be fine for a few weeks before you need rinse it. And don't overfeed as someone mentioned. Maybe take a samle of tank water to the store when you go, ask them to test the ammonia and nitrite, most will without charging; just for comparison.

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Old 10-08-2009, 08:58 PM   #12
 
I have been reading up on this problem and some people say Activated Carbon and Ammonia-Neutralizing Crystal mix will mess up the cycle. Im using a emperor 400 with two cartridges and then two media holders full of the mixed media. Could this be causing the issue?
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Old 10-09-2009, 03:43 AM   #13
 
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Carbon cartridges won't hurt anything . The blue rite-size E cartridges should as mentioned be left alone for three weeks. This is where the good bacteria is developing
Products like ammolock and zeolite may alter test results and could starve the bacteria which need ammonia to survive. I would remove the cartridges containing either of the ammonia reducers and carbon and fill em with biological media such as ceramic rings,noodles,beads,whatever you wish to call em. I like Eheim substrat-pro and is what I have in two of the Emperor's I run. Others contain ceramic media in mesh bags.
Feed the fish once each day a tiny amount, or every other day and remove the ammonia reducing products. If you aren't overfeeding, ammonia levels shouldn't be a problem with the few fish you have.
Usually ammonia reducing products such as those mentioned ,,are used in tanks that have very soft water with ph levels of 6.0 or below. At 6.0 or less, the bacteria needed to consume ammonia cannot reproduce.

Last edited by 1077; 10-09-2009 at 03:54 AM..
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Old 10-09-2009, 03:39 PM   #14
 
Thank you so much!!! I was looking into this problem way to much, when the solution is so simple. I'm a water treatment major in college and thats water treatment 101. Thank you again for bring this to light for me.
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Old 10-17-2009, 11:53 PM   #15
 
Update and help?

so I have a new problem now maybe? So I have four plants and a moss ball now, and new biological media in my filter. So the ammonia levels have dropped over the week from 1ppm to 0ppm. Normally this is good but the nitrite and nitrate are at zero also and never rose above zero. Is the cycle done or did it stall on me again?
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:17 AM   #16
 
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may have stalled or could be complete, dont quote me on it being complete quite yet you will know for sure in about another two weeks if you start to get a good amount of nitrItes then your still cycleing if your getting just nitrAtes then your cycle is done. im pretty sure that when your cycle is over you will get readings for nitrAte and thats it but unitill then your tank still hasnt finished the cycle.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:17 AM   #17
 
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so I have a new problem now maybe? So I have four plants and a moss ball now, and new biological media in my filter. So the ammonia levels have dropped over the week from 1ppm to 0ppm. Normally this is good but the nitrite and nitrate are at zero also and never rose above zero. Is the cycle done or did it stall on me again?
Its hard to say for sure. It is possible that the added plants helped in seeding the tank. The ammonia dropped to zero from 1 ppm, without a water change? Has there ever been a reading for nitrate?
The tank could be cycled, but keep doing your daily testing to make sure.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:58 AM   #18
 
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Plants cycle tanks automatically
If only that were true.

Plants can use ammonia (NH3++) as a source of nitrogen, they dont automatically produce a massive colony of bacteria. A bad selection of words you used there i believe.

If your getting a reading of ammonia the plants aren't affecting the cycle, my tank took 5 weeks to get an ammonia reading, it just takes time.

Keep up with the water changes, as long as there is ammonia, detectable or not, there is something there for the bacteria to convert, so the bacteria will multiply.

Now that you have a reading of 0 leave the tank for a few weeks, your going through a silent cycle where ammonia and nitrite remain undetectable, but are still there, the bacteria will grow although you cannot actively measure ammonia or nitrite, then add a few more fish , and then wait a week between new additions so the bacterial colony can catch up, it normally does this within 20 minutes anyway providing that the new additions produce the same or less amount of ammonia that the current stock do.

Also do not add anymore plants or they'll be riddled with algae, ammonia+light+plants=algae
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Old 10-18-2009, 02:08 PM   #19
 
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Originally Posted by Jack Middleton View Post
If only that were true.

Plants can use ammonia (NH3++) as a source of nitrogen, they dont automatically produce a massive colony of bacteria. A bad selection of words you used there i believe.

If your getting a reading of ammonia the plants aren't affecting the cycle, my tank took 5 weeks to get an ammonia reading, it just takes time.

Keep up with the water changes, as long as there is ammonia, detectable or not, there is something there for the bacteria to convert, so the bacteria will multiply.

Now that you have a reading of 0 leave the tank for a few weeks, your going through a silent cycle where ammonia and nitrite remain undetectable, but are still there, the bacteria will grow although you cannot actively measure ammonia or nitrite, then add a few more fish , and then wait a week between new additions so the bacterial colony can catch up, it normally does this within 20 minutes anyway providing that the new additions produce the same or less amount of ammonia that the current stock do.

Also do not add anymore plants or they'll be riddled with algae, ammonia+light+plants=algae
My statement is absolutely true. In 15+ years I have set up new tanks, more than I can remember as I sometimes move them or change them, have always had them well-planted (only planted aquaria) and fish go in the first day and I have never had ammonia or nitrite readings above zero, and nitrates always rise to 5-10ppm during the firs couple of days and stay there.

The plants consume more ammonium/ammonia than the nitrosomonas bacteria can, with the result that in a well-palnted tank the nitrification bacteria are at very low numbers. My tanks also run at pH 6.0 and from my research it is my understanding that the growth of nitrosomonas bacteria is inhibited at a pH of 6.5 and at 6.0 is is basically none existant. In my 115g tank with 140 fish I would have no live fish were it not for the plants. And when I last set up this tank, in early July, I used old gravel that had been washed in tap water (killing the bacteria) and then stored for months, a new filter with new media bought that week, and moved all the plants from my existing 90g over plus the 95 fish the same day after filling it with water. Ammonia and nitrite read zero, and not one fish loss. Only stress to fish was that of being netted from one tank to the other. I set up my 90g the same way the next day, then the 70g. And since 1995 I have been doing the same with the same results.

I didn't know at the time why this worked, but since reading Diana Walstad this year I now know it is the plants. She states that she has always set up tanks with plants and fish the same day with no detactable cycling occurring.

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Old 10-18-2009, 02:43 PM   #20
 
This is for Byron, you have given some of the best advice. What is your advice for whats going on. Should I wait until I stock my tank or stock it?
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