07-16-2013, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by NewFishFiend
I agree with all the above advice. I will talk you through cycling.
There are basically 2 ways to cycle. Fish-in and fishless. Most of us here prefer to fishless cycle as the cycling process is dangerous and cruel to fish. However, if that is the route you choose to go, then it can work.
To fish-in cycle you will set your tank up, condition your water, let the pump and heater run for about 24 hours and then get some hardy fish. I used tiger barbs when i fish-in cycled. For 10 gallons you would need about 6. You will also absolutely have to have the api master kit so you can test for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates. Do you understand the cycle?
Everyday you should be testing for ammonia, which fish excrete as waste. Ammonia will spike to usually 1-2. When you see this, keeping testing ammonia and start testing for nitrites. As ammonia drops you should see a nitrite spike. When nitrites spike begin testing for nitrates too. As nitrates rise, ammonia and nitrites will disappear. Your tank is fully cycled when ammonia and nitrites read 0 and nitrates are present. I suggest not doing any big water changes until you are cycled as you will just set the process back, and this is why we dont like to do fish in cycle. The high ammonia and nitrites are harmful to the fish and they may not survive. This whole process will take anywhere from 4-6 weeks.
To fishless cycle you will use an outside source of ammonia. You can use straight ammonia that u buy. You can use fish food and just put a little bit in everyday. As it begins to rot it will produce ammonia. U can put some raw shrimp in a pantyhose and place it in the tank. Any of these work but the raw shrimp i think is the fastest. You can take the shrimp out of the tank once you get 1-2 ammonia and see some nitrites. The process after that is the same as above. Once you have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 10 nitrates you are cycle and ready for fish.
I use AqAdvisor - Intelligent Freshwater Tropical Fish Aquarium Stocking Calculator and Aquarium Tank/Filter Advisor
to stock my tanks but you have to have an idea of what u want. We need to know the ph of your water and the gh at a minimum so we know what fish r best suited for your water. Hope this help!
Thanks for the information.
For a 10 gallon tank, how much food should I "feed" the tank each day to help build up the ammonia?
Also, where can I buy ammonia if I want to start by doing that? Petsmart only seems to sell stuff that removes ammonia.
Last edited by Juggernaut122; 07-16-2013 at 04:13 PM..