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zkessler 06-06-2013 11:32 AM

Cycling question!
 
Hello all,

My tank has been cycling for about 4 weeks now. Up until 5/4/13 it was only on the ammonia phase. I did a 50% water change on the 4th because of really high ammonia levels, and waited 2 hours and tested the water again. The ammonia had dropped to 3.0 and nitrites finally appeared at 0.25ppm. Needless to say I was happy to finally see nitrites. On the 5th I tested the water again prior to a water change to find ammonia at 6.0 and 0ppm nitrites. Can anyone help with this problem? I'm new to the whole water chemistry thing and have a basic understanding of the cycling process just not the best trouble shooter.

wake49 06-06-2013 11:54 AM

Is this a freshwater or saltwater tank?

zkessler 06-06-2013 11:55 AM

Freshwater, African cichlids.

AbbeysDad 06-06-2013 12:58 PM

It can take 6-8 weeks to cycle a new tank...sometimes even longer, especially w/o a bacteria seed.

Be patient, stay on top of water changes to keep the ammonia on the low side as ammonia is toxic not only to fish, but in excess even to the bacteria/archae that convert (oxidize) it to nitrites and nitrites to nitrates.


Quote:

Originally Posted by zkessler (Post 2258162)
Hello all,

My tank has been cycling for about 4 weeks now. Up until 5/4/13 it was only on the ammonia phase. I did a 50% water change on the 4th because of really high ammonia levels, and waited 2 hours and tested the water again. The ammonia had dropped to 3.0 and nitrites finally appeared at 0.25ppm. Needless to say I was happy to finally see nitrites. On the 5th I tested the water again prior to a water change to find ammonia at 6.0 and 0ppm nitrites. Can anyone help with this problem? I'm new to the whole water chemistry thing and have a basic understanding of the cycling process just not the best trouble shooter.


zkessler 06-06-2013 01:02 PM

I was wondering why nitrites appeared and then disappeared? Just wanted to make sure I didn't do anything to make it happen.

AbbeysDad 06-06-2013 02:45 PM

Hard to say...coulda been a testing error. What are your nitrates?.... and if you have nitrates, have you tested your source (tap) water?

There is most often an ammonia spike...and later a nitrite spike as it takes awhile to develop the appropriate colonies. As I mentioned, we just need to be patient and do the water changes to control the levels and keep them down.

Nowadays, if you don't have media from a healthy, established tank, it makes good sense to use one of the bottled supplements to help speed things along.

Quote:

Originally Posted by zkessler (Post 2259202)
I was wondering why nitrites appeared and then disappeared? Just wanted to make sure I didn't do anything to make it happen.


zkessler 06-12-2013 01:14 AM

so it happened again. I check my water and 0.25 ppm nitrites were present. I did a 25% water change, waited 2 hours, and checked it again to find the ammonia levels went down as well as the nitrites. Now they are non existent (0ppm). Next time I get nitrite Levels should I just not change the water for awhile??
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1077 06-12-2013 06:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zkessler (Post 2301842)
so it happened again. I check my water and 0.25 ppm nitrites were present. I did a 25% water change, waited 2 hours, and checked it again to find the ammonia levels went down as well as the nitrites. Now they are non existent (0ppm). Next time I get nitrite Levels should I just not change the water for awhile??
Posted via Mobile Device


Nitrites are just as lethal as ammonia. So if fish are present,,then water changes are the order of the day(maybe twice daily depending on number's of fish and amount of food being offered.)
Is wise to feed sparingly with fish in cycling.Feed the fish tiny amount once each day, or every other day.
Can feed more often once the biological filter has matured.
Need to keep ammonia AND nitrites as close to zero as possible so less food and more water changes(50) % would be my plan.

zkessler 06-12-2013 08:34 AM

Ok, so despite the nitrite level being 0 they ate still building in the tank? It's been over a month and I have not seen a decrease in the ammonia level yet.
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1077 06-12-2013 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zkessler (Post 2302778)
Ok, so despite the nitrite level being 0 they ate still building in the tank? It's been over a month and I have not seen a decrease in the ammonia level yet.
Posted via Mobile Device


Any nitrAtes?
If not,,you just need to keep up on water changes so fish aren't killed, and have patience.


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