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Going in to Cycle week 3, Decreased Ammonia, Never Any Nitrites or Nitrates

This is a discussion on Going in to Cycle week 3, Decreased Ammonia, Never Any Nitrites or Nitrates within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by kstots First I'll start with an update. I got home from work this evening and checked my ammonia, nitrate, and nitrites. ...

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Going in to Cycle week 3, Decreased Ammonia, Never Any Nitrites or Nitrates
Old 08-29-2012, 10:57 AM   #11
 
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Originally Posted by kstots View Post
First I'll start with an update. I got home from work this evening and checked my ammonia, nitrate, and nitrites. Still the same readings ammonia .25, nitrties 0, nitrates 0. Last night before I went to bed, but after I wrote my post I did a 25% water change, but did not add the Quick Start. As a test I am going to add the Quick Start before I go to bed and see if there is any change in the water in the morning without doing any water change. My molly is back to hiding in the log, but he was actually quite active yesterday night after my post, which was good to see and his tail wasn't dropping so much.

As to the question about my well/water. The well is my private well and we do not have a softener. The only thing that we have is a basic whole house water filter that filters everything that comes in the house, no chemicals or anything, just your typical mechanical filter.

I have read that soft water is usually acidic and hard water is typically more basic, but mine is soft and basic. Which leads me to my next question, what is more important to the fish water softness or water pH, since my pH and softness don't follow the rule?

As I mentioned before, I have cycled a tank using similar water in the past. My old house is 1/4 mile away from my current home and has similar water in it's well (probably from the same ground source). We were able to have success with guppies. I remember when I first started that tank I was stumped with the parameters when i tested the water. I don't remember what I did if anything to work it out.

As for what I plan to stock my tank with this time, it is still up in the air, especially now. I am really open, I just went with the molly because I thought I had read they were hardy enough to survive cycling (which now I know different) and worked with several other community fish (plus I had a 7 year old that really loved the Mollies and I couldn't talk him into the zebra danios, which is what I was going to get). You live and learn with this I guess.

I have time to make a decision regarding stocking the tank. I would really just like to get this tank cycled without killing any more fish. Is it possible to cycle my tank with it's current water parameters and could they be the reason that it is taking so long for the tank to cycle?

I know, lots of questions, but I really appreaciate everyones help with figuring this out. Thanks again.
The water parameters in this case willnot prevent c ycling, but may well slow it. Using the bacterial supplement to seed the bacteria with only one fish should allow the cycling to occur however long it takes. I've never gone through this so I can't offer timelines.

On the softener, exactly what sort of filtration is it? I'm still curious on the low GH high KH. It is possible to have low GH and high pH and the reverse, but I am not sufficiently knowledgeable in chemistry to explain this.

Ironically, the guppy is rather tolerant of almost any water, though how "healthy" it actually is we cannot know. Decades of commercial inbreeding have weakened this fish immensely, and today they are very unhealthy but their apparent tolerance of soft water may be connected.

I do suggest live plants, some floaters would easily handle the ammonia.

Byron.
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:48 PM   #12
 
My whole house filter is not a softener, but basically a sediment filter. The water comes into my house where it goes through a water pressure tank after it comes through the tank it goes through a filter for which I change the filter cartridges every 3 mts or so. The cartridges are standard whole house pleated water filters, and you can find them at Walmart or Lowes. We can't even get the one's that filter out more than just sediment because it decreases our water pressure so much, so it is very basic. No aditives added ever. Basically what comes out of my tap is straight from the ground, pressurized, and filtered for sediment. I am not sure what the system was at the old house, but I do know that the water was similar, because you can tell when you shower in it. It feels like no other water I have ever tasted or been in, but you can tell it is different.

As for an update, my molly is still doing ok, though still doing more hiding than swimming, but I am seeing him out more often. I have seen one of the fry a couple times since last night, but I still don't have any idea how many are in my tank as I only ever see one at a time. My water is still holding steady at .25 ppm ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 0 nitrates and it is approximately cycle day 24. I guess I will just keep following the course and hoping for the best.

Do you have any suggestions on plants that will do well with the lighting I currently have. I have the marineland aquarium light. It says it has 42 white LEDs, 3 blue LEDs, with a PAR/LUX of 990. I am not really sure what that means, but I am sure it has something to do with how much light it gives off. Also, my current substrate is basic aquarium gravel, will that be adequate? I am not against plants, I just never had them in my aquariums before.

I appreciate all your guidance. Thanks again.
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Old 08-29-2012, 01:46 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kstots View Post
My whole house filter is not a softener, but basically a sediment filter. The water comes into my house where it goes through a water pressure tank after it comes through the tank it goes through a filter for which I change the filter cartridges every 3 mts or so. The cartridges are standard whole house pleated water filters, and you can find them at Walmart or Lowes. We can't even get the one's that filter out more than just sediment because it decreases our water pressure so much, so it is very basic. No aditives added ever. Basically what comes out of my tap is straight from the ground, pressurized, and filtered for sediment. I am not sure what the system was at the old house, but I do know that the water was similar, because you can tell when you shower in it. It feels like no other water I have ever tasted or been in, but you can tell it is different.

As for an update, my molly is still doing ok, though still doing more hiding than swimming, but I am seeing him out more often. I have seen one of the fry a couple times since last night, but I still don't have any idea how many are in my tank as I only ever see one at a time. My water is still holding steady at .25 ppm ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 0 nitrates and it is approximately cycle day 24. I guess I will just keep following the course and hoping for the best.

Do you have any suggestions on plants that will do well with the lighting I currently have. I have the marineland aquarium light. It says it has 42 white LEDs, 3 blue LEDs, with a PAR/LUX of 990. I am not really sure what that means, but I am sure it has something to do with how much light it gives off. Also, my current substrate is basic aquarium gravel, will that be adequate? I am not against plants, I just never had them in my aquariums before.

I appreciate all your guidance. Thanks again.
I'm not up on the LED lighting, so give it a try. Floating plants would be best; they grow fast so they use more ammonia, are close to the light source so better there, and being at the surface assimilate CO2 from the air so that improves growth too. Water Sprite is my favourite, but several of the stem plants can be left floating. Brazilian Pennywort is ideal for this, along with Cabomba, Hornwort, and some others. Something as basic as duckweed would also serve this purpose.
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Old 08-29-2012, 03:36 PM   #14
 
I will have to see what I can find at my local pet shop. Both the water sprite and pennywort look interesting to me.

I do have a question though. If I add these plants and they consume the ammonia and the nitrates, how will I know when the tank is cycled?

Truly, my head is spinning with this whole thing, but I want to do it right, so I will try my best to be patient.
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Old 08-29-2012, 04:24 PM   #15
 
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I will have to see what I can find at my local pet shop. Both the water sprite and pennywort look interesting to me.

I do have a question though. If I add these plants and they consume the ammonia and the nitrates, how will I know when the tank is cycled?

Truly, my head is spinning with this whole thing, but I want to do it right, so I will try my best to be patient.
You won't need to worry. Plants need a constant supply of nitrogen, and they get it mainly from ammonium (ammonia). The nitrifying bacteria will still colonize the surfaces, slowly (as they are anyway) and you will not have ammonia or nitrite above zero throughout. Nitrates will be low, sometimes zero but no higher than 10-20 ppm.
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:33 PM   #16
 
Looks like my last molly is on his way out. He is really not doing well and I'll be suprised if he makes it through the day. I also haven't seen my fry in a day or two. So it looks as though I will be moving to fishless cycling. Or at least readjusting my plan. As of today I still have the same test readings that I have had, Ammonia .25, Nitrites 0, Nitrates 0. I will keep feeding the tank with flake food until I decide what I want to do and start that this weekend.
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