07-22-2014, 05:36 PM
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Because in a fish-in cycle, the ammonia is being produced by the fish. You shouldn't have a tank stocked so high that you a producing 4ppm of ammonia a day, but we do it this way to be safe simply because it's hard to predict how much ammonia a fish will produce, even though we know that they have high or low bioloads. In a fish-in cycle, the ammonia is still being processed the same way and once the tank is cycled, you don't want to see any ammonia at all ever. Once your levels begin dropping to 0, it dosen't mean you are harming your cycle, the nitrifying bacteria is just processing the ammonia. Starving a cycle would take a couple days so when your ammonia hits 0, you shouldn't worry. You have already fed the bacteria for the day. You don't eat all day long, do you? Same concept with the nitrogen cycle. The bacteria need to eat every day but don't need to eat all day long.