11-26-2008, 01:42 PM
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Hmm...I'd argue that the math in that post is over-simplified and cannot account for the growth rates of the bacterial colonies. For example, say you've got 1 ppm of ammonia in your water. Your bacteria at this same point in time are capable of consuming 0.25 ppm of ammonia per day. Using that guy's math, even after one day the bacteria colony will only have doubled in size, increasing their ammonia processing rate to 0.5 ppm/day. However...that's just an estimate. What if, for other factors we aren't accounting for, the population could explode to eight times its current size? Such a population explosion would be hamstrung by your ammonia ceiling. But you don't really see that, because your test kits only give you the snapshot, as that article says. I don't see any good reason why bacterial growth rates wouldn't be hindered by artificially low ammonia levels brought about by water changes during the cycling process. But, it's all really a moot point anyway. What difference does it make if your cycle takes a few days longer if it means saving your fish from ammonia exposure? And, if you're cycling fishless, why would you bother to do water changes at all during the cycle?