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This is a discussion on New Aquarium Questions within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Originally Posted by Byron But no fish yet... just making sure you understand that. The cycle must first be established, and you are doing ...

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New Aquarium Questions
Old 02-03-2012, 07:39 PM   #11
 
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But no fish yet... just making sure you understand that. The cycle must first be established, and you are doing a fishless cycle with the fish food, so follow that through. Fish can only be added--and few of them--when the initial cycle is completed.
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I've never done fishless cycling because I have live plants and that eliminates "cycling" per say. But if I were, I would do a water change every week just to freshen up the water. Tap water with dechlorinator is fine, if that is or will be the normal source water for the aquarium. Don't touch the substrate, just siphon out maybe 1/3 of the tank from the top and replace.

Byron.
Please forgive my ignorance....but wouldn't a water change during the cycling period affect the cycling period? Would it affect the numbers I'm getting for the ammonia and nitrites?

Jim
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Old 02-03-2012, 08:00 PM   #12
 
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Please forgive my ignorance....but wouldn't a water change during the cycling period affect the cycling period? Would it affect the numbers I'm getting for the ammonia and nitrites?

Jim
Possibly. Ammonia and nitrite are in the water column, so removing some of that would presumably remove some ammonia/nitrite. This has been raised by other members here and elsewhere. Usually in the context of fish in the cycling aquarium, and in that situation the health of the fish is of more importance than possibly delaying the cycling. But you do raise a good point. As I said, I've never used this method; I'm just not too keen on having a tank of stale water with fermenting organics sitting there.
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:17 PM   #13
 
So this is interesting.......

My numbers after 30 days of fishless cycling with dried fish food.

Ammonia......... 0ppm
PH..........7.6
Nitrite......5.0
Nitrate.....160ppm



What do you suppose is going on with the tank? I have had to do weekly 25% water changes.....the water was very cloudy and had an odor. Right now it's crystal clear with no odor at all.....the numbers still concern me.....am I headed in the right direction with this? I also added a small air pump with a 6" bubble wand for aeration.
Thank you for all of your input, suggestions, critiques, and comments.

Jim

Last edited by jimmyvea; 02-27-2012 at 05:20 PM.. Reason: more pertinent info
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:06 PM   #14
 
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If you're still adding fish food daily, this is probably on track. Assuming the API test kit, for nitrate, you are shaking Regent #2 for 2 minutes before adding the drops?
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:04 PM   #15
 
Yes...I've been following the directions very closely.....After 56 days this is what I have.....
Ammonia....0ppm
PH.........7.6
Nitrite......0ppm
Nitrate....0ppm

So......any thoughts? Is it ready for fish? Been a long 8 weeks! Some people have told me to cycle it with fish....nope. Didn't want to harm any fish. Should I do a 25% water change today and add 2 fish tomorrow? Thanks for all the comments and thoughts.
Jim

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Old 03-13-2012, 01:32 PM   #16
 
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Please forgive my ignorance....but wouldn't a water change during the cycling period affect the cycling period? Would it affect the numbers I'm getting for the ammonia and nitrites?

Jim
This was one of my questions exactly. I asked a rep at my LFS, and he said to never do a water change. If you were to, due to cycling with fish, to only change 10% of the water. He said you basically are stalling the cycling process.
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:34 PM   #17
 
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
I've never done fishless cycling because I have live plants and that eliminates "cycling" per say. But if I were, I would do a water change every week just to freshen up the water. Tap water with dechlorinator is fine, if that is or will be the normal source water for the aquarium. Don't touch the substrate, just siphon out maybe 1/3 of the tank from the top and replace.

Byron.
So if I were to throw live plants in my 125 gal, I wouldnt have to necessarily cycle it?
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:43 PM   #18
 
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So if I were to throw live plants in my 125 gal, I wouldnt have to necessarily cycle it?
Not if you have enough of them. You would need to let the plants establish themselves to soak up the ammonia and nitrite. You would need A LOT of plants. This would also raise the capacity of fish in the tank (you could over stock with not too much maintenance). Try it out.

I'm cycling a tank with plants and fish in it right now. I have a 29 gallon with 11 neon tetras, 7 black widow tetras, 6 bronze corys and 2 lyretail mollies. I have 2 ferns, 2 corkscrew vals, 2 sword plants, 1 hornwort, 1 cabomba and 3 mondo grass plants. I need more plants so I am still having to do water changes AT LEAST every other day.

Byron goes beast though and puts mass plants in his tank. I need more $$ for that :/ I need more plants otherwise I wouldn't have to change the water as much. It works well (if you have A LOT of plants).

Last edited by Termato; 03-13-2012 at 01:45 PM..
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:51 PM   #19
 
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Not if you have enough of them. You would need to let the plants establish themselves to soak up the ammonia and nitrite. You would need A LOT of plants. This would also raise the capacity of fish in the tank (you could over stock with not too much maintenance). Try it out.

I'm cycling a tank with plants and fish in it right now. I have a 29 gallon with 11 neon tetras, 7 black widow tetras, 6 bronze corys and 2 lyretail mollies. I have 2 ferns, 2 corkscrew vals, 2 sword plants, 1 hornwort, 1 cabomba and 3 mondo grass plants. I need more plants so I am still having to do water changes AT LEAST every other day.

Byron goes beast though and puts mass plants in his tank. I need more $$ for that :/ I need more plants otherwise I wouldn't have to change the water as much. It works well (if you have A LOT of plants).
Ok I appreciate it. I think I am going to end up doing the fish cycle way. I wonder how many fish I will need to help the cycling process for a 125 gal?
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:58 PM   #20
 
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Ok I appreciate it. I think I am going to end up doing the fish cycle way. I wonder how many fish I will need to help the cycling process for a 125 gal?
A lot of people use Gold Fish...I would get something cheap that is tough. 2-3....5 max. You don't need many fish. Once the cycle starts....it makes them stress more so you wont need many.

This is from the guide to cycling thread:

Fish recommended for the "fish-in" cycle are usually hardy species but aren't always fish that you want to keep in your tank on a long-term basis so you have to deal with the hassle of removing them once the cycle is complete. Second, water changes must be performed on a regular basis (sometimes daily or even more often) in order to keep ammonia and nitrite levels low so that the fish you're using to cycle don't die. Finally, and most importantly, cycling with fish can be stressful or even deadly to the fish you're using to cycle.

When using this method, you should only choose hardy species (zebra danios are a popular choice) in small numbers.

It's usually best to wait a bit just to make sure there aren't any straggling ammonia or nitrite spikes but after some time you can begin adding more fish to the tank, a few fish every week or two until the tank is stocked. The most important part of the "fish-in" cycle are the ammonia and nitrite tests and the water changes that are needed whenever these readings rear their ugly heads.

Read more: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...#ixzz1p1apU7w6

I would get like 4-5 Danios...just so their comfortable. Just let them live there while it cycles, if their strong fish then you could always add more danios after the cycle to make a nice small background school.
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