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How do you cycle?

This is a discussion on How do you cycle? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> plant it first use old media add fish one week later boom...

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View Poll Results: If you have established tanks, do you cycle a new tank by....
transferring media? 16 84.21%
using TSS (or some other such product)? 0 0%
Other - please specify 3 15.79%
Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-10-2013, 09:28 AM   #11
 
plant it first use old media add fish one week later boom
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Old 08-10-2013, 07:09 PM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thekoimaiden View Post
It's media and plants for me. If I know ahead of hand, I'll just put a filter (often times a sponge filter) in an established tank and let that gather BB and junk for a month. But plants. Plants all the way. Floaters and stems galore.
Me, too. ^.^

A lot of people also start their first cycle fish-less using ammonia, or even fish food. . .


Your poll is broken *pokes poll* Hmmmm. . .?

Last edited by Chesh; 08-10-2013 at 07:47 PM..
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:12 PM   #13
JDM
 
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First choice, no cycle, lots of plants and fish right away. It cycles along the way anyway but the plants negate the need for it.

Second choice, fishless using fish food.

I don't really see the benefit in using existing established media so having an established tank is of no consequence.

Jeff.
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:59 PM   #14
 
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The poll is not broken - it shows exactly what it needed to, for the specific purpose it was intended for First cycles are not applicable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JDM View Post
First choice, no cycle, lots of plants and fish right away. It cycles along the way anyway but the plants negate the need for it.

Second choice, fishless using fish food.

I don't really see the benefit in using existing established media so having an established tank is of no consequence.

Jeff.
The benefit of using established media is an instant cycle.
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Last edited by jaysee; 08-11-2013 at 12:18 AM..
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Old 08-11-2013, 09:11 AM   #15
 
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True! My bad! New cycles are off- topic!

^.^

Still going with 'media + plants ' on how to cycle a new tank. What's your method, Jaysee? How are you going to do the 125?

The poll is still broken, tho - it won't let me vote. Links me to the profiles. I'll get our computer guru on it. . .
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Old 08-11-2013, 09:34 AM   #16
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysee View Post

The benefit of using established media is an instant cycle.
Doing this the right way will mean an instantly cycled tank, it's cloning. Since it's instantly cycled would cloning even be considered cycling? From the start there's no ammonia or nitrite, and it runs no different from an established tank.
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Old 08-11-2013, 10:28 AM   #17
 
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I transfer media. I agree with tolak, it's not really cycling to skip the cycling process. One of the things I like about transferring media is that it gives me an instantly mature tank. The whole "waiting for the tank to mature" issue is a non-issue, so I can add sensitive fish to a brand new tank.

I know everyone but me loves plants, but the nice thing about media is that you don't have to worry about the bacteria dying. I know I know, no one has plants die on them.... Too, not everyone keeps live plants. Transferring media is something that ANYONE can do.

Transferring media is how I cycled the new 125 (and every tank I've had except the first) but that was a bit different. I moved an entire canister filter over to the tank. It was not an instant cycle though, because the filter had been sitting (full of water and dirty media) for 4 months. Took a little time for the bacteria to get back on track.
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Old 08-11-2013, 11:16 AM   #18
 
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Originally Posted by jaysee View Post
I know everyone but me loves plants, but the nice thing about media is that you don't have to worry about the bacteria dying. I know I know, no one has plants die on them.... Too, not everyone keeps live plants. Transferring media is something that ANYONE can do.
Its true. I agree with you and Tolak - transferring bacteria (however you get it from point a to b) is the only way to instantly cycle a tank.

I like to use plants as a kind of 'insurance.' A backup juuuuust in case. . . I learned during my first (and only) didn't-know-better fish-in cycle that plants can do a world of good in dropping the toxin levels dramatically, but if they aren't healthy and thriving, they only add to the problem. . .

And people do have plants die on them all the time! At this point I'm transferring plants and media from established tanks, so I know they'll do well in my new setups - and the plants themselves carry bacteria with them, too ^.^

I've seen a lot of people start tanks only using plants to remove toxins until the bacteria develops. I've seen this method work, too (usually in smaller, lightly stocked setups, like betta tanks). But too often I've seen it fail, and a newly stocked and planted tank dropped into a full-on cycle. . . this has happened to some of our planting gurus around here, people who know their stuff - so I think this is something that shouldn't be done by someone new to plants.

I've read about there being competition between plants and bacteria for the same food source, but I've never seen anything in my tanks that show this is true. . . I'm sure some sort of a balance is created, but plants 'sleep' at night, too. . . when my power failed for 5 days last summer (no light no photosynthesis from plants) my tank was stable throughout. So the bacteria IS in there, in spite of the green. . .

lol, sorry! Fun subject. I love to hear what people think about this one - looks like your poll (before it broke *pokes*) is showing that most of us are in agreement so far. . .

. . can't wait for that 125, J! I'd put the canister for IT on the another tank for a month or so, then just move it over to the new setup. . . 's gonna be awesome-sauce!
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Old 08-11-2013, 11:20 AM   #19
 
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Count me in with no plants, nearly all tanks have no substrate. Substrate is a maintenance issue, and just one more variable in a tank. Less variables, less potential for issues. Lights for plants would just kill the electric bill, I've already got 2 circuits running to the fishroom.
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Old 08-11-2013, 11:35 AM   #20
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chesh View Post

. . can't wait for that 125, J! I'd put the canister for IT on the another tank for a month or so, then just move it over to the new setup. . . 's gonna be awesome-sauce!
The canister(s) for the new 125 had previously been running for 3 years before I unplugged them. They're definitely established and the one that's on the tank now is clearing any ammonia I add.
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