Weird Parameters for Tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-25-2013, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
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Weird Parameters for Tank

So I set up my tank about a week or so ago. I know my tap water has naturally occurring levels of ammonia in it, about .3 mg/L. There are no fish currently

My levels read:

.25-.5 ppm ammonia
.25-.5 ppm nitrite
1-5 ppm nitrate (hard to tell color)

So my tank is going through somewhat of a cycle, I guess. I was planning on bringing in fish tomorrow. I was informed that because of my already established tank, I can put in some substrate, decor, and filter media for an "insta-cycle". I just wanted to be sure this would be okay. I also use Prime conditioner, which I know renders ammonia harmless for about 24 hours.

38g
heated 80 F
filtered, marineland penguin 350
artificial decor

Thanks!

-Neil
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-25-2013, 07:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil D View Post
So I set up my tank about a week or so ago. I know my tap water has naturally occurring levels of ammonia in it, about .3 mg/L. There are no fish currently

My levels read:

.25-.5 ppm ammonia
.25-.5 ppm nitrite
1-5 ppm nitrate (hard to tell color)

So my tank is going through somewhat of a cycle, I guess. I was planning on bringing in fish tomorrow. I was informed that because of my already established tank, I can put in some substrate, decor, and filter media for an "insta-cycle". I just wanted to be sure this would be okay. I also use Prime conditioner, which I know renders ammonia harmless for about 24 hours.

38g
heated 80 F
filtered, marineland penguin 350
artificial decor

Thanks!
Your tank is not already established, that takes months. Once you see the nitrites drop to zero it is time to start thinking about fish as the cycle will be working fully at that point. With your ammonia loaded tap water at least you don't need to add an ammonia source and the tank will cycle all on its own. If you haven't already put substrate etc in, do it now anyway but hold off on the fish or you will need to add prime every day or two to keep the fish from suffering from ammonia and nitrite poisoning. Even with your tap water ammonia the tank should read zero ammonia after a few hours of a water change and if you add prime with the water change this will not affect the fish.

Jeff.


Total years fish keeping experience: 7 months, can't start counting in years for a while yet.

The shotgun approach to a planted tank with an LED fixture

Small scale nitrogen cycle with a jar, water and fish food; no substrate, filter etc
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post #3 of 7 Old 05-25-2013, 08:27 PM Thread Starter
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I do prime with every change. It's in the middle (or starting) the cycle. I will seed the tank when I add the fish...Just asking if this will work...

-Neil
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post #4 of 7 Old 05-26-2013, 05:54 AM
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You might go ahead with seeding the tank now. That will speed up the cycle, but it's not instant. Also, adding any substrate and decorations that you intend to use now will be beneficial as, eventually, they will be the areas containing the most beneficial bacteria.

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post #5 of 7 Old 05-26-2013, 07:48 AM Thread Starter
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My concern was the bacteria dying from lack of ammonia. Do you believe this would be an issue? (I know my water already has ammonia in it, but still wondering.)

-Neil
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-26-2013, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Neil D View Post
My concern was the bacteria dying from lack of ammonia. Do you believe this would be an issue? (I know my water already has ammonia in it, but still wondering.)
No, not a concern. It goes dormant but doesn't die off . If your water is riding around 0.3 ppm that's lots anyway.

"Seeding" is really just placing material with an established nitrogen oxidizing biofilm which serves to start working immediately. It's less about seeding and more about dealing with ammonia right away while the rest of the tank establishes its biofilm surfaces. If you never plan on removing the "seeding" material, then it is actually seeding. If you do remove it, it was just a temporary ammonia/nitrite oxidizer.

Jeff.


Total years fish keeping experience: 7 months, can't start counting in years for a while yet.

The shotgun approach to a planted tank with an LED fixture

Small scale nitrogen cycle with a jar, water and fish food; no substrate, filter etc
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-26-2013, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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I don't plan on removing it. Yes I will add some of the filter media to the tank now. Thanks! :)

-Neil
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ammonia , cycle , nitrogen , nitrogen cycle

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