I have my old tank set up. Cycling questions now..
I have my 10 gallon old tank back up and running. Its been dry for about over a month. Filled it with water, have the filter pump going. I want to do this the correct way. Reading and finding info on the net is very aggravating cuz I read different things. I am aware that this will take roughly more then a month to complete the cycle. So what do I do each week? Do I add things? can I do this with out having any fish in there? do I have to have fish in there? if so what are good fish to start off with?
On a side note, my other tank has now completed its cycle process and the water clarity is AMAZING and its so nice to see it! ha
old floss to cycle tank
Good luck with your 10-gallon. I let one go down a year ago and haven't brought it back up. If I did, I would add a few fish and use an old floss from the cycled tank to get the uncycled one started. I wouldn't put in a heavy fish load, but enough to keep the bacteria active in the old filter, and I would check the ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate daily (I got obsessed with this when I started my 55-gallon 4 years ago!). If the levels get too high, I would do a partial water change as needed. Use hardy fish as adding a lot of new water can make the pH go all over the place in a short time.
I tried a "fishless cycle" using ammonia when I got my first tank and I thought it was a lot of work when I could have borrowed an old floss from someone with a clean established tank and accomplished the same thing much more easily. My ammonia was through the roof and I was changing water like crazy for days. It takes time for bacteria to colonize on the gravel and tank, so that is why I wouldn't rely just on the old floss to colonize the tank and take care of a heavy fish load in the beginning.
whats a floss?
the floss would be some of you filter media from your cycled tank (the part the bacteria grow on). If you could spare some of the media from your other tank that would be a lot easier than trying to start a cycle from ground zero
Alright. Bringing this back up. Tank has been running for 2 weeks with no fish. I just put two black tetras or whatever those 'starter fish' are called. Here are my test results.
pH: between 7.8-8.0
Obviously this is the first stage of cycling.....what should I do or expect next?
Now that you have added fish, keep checking your water daily.
First you are going to start getting ammonia readings. Be prepared for lots of water changes. When doing a fish cycle, I try to keep ammonia under .25 ppm.
Some time after ammonia readings, you are going to start getting nitrite reading. I also try to keep nitrites under .25 ppm.
You will first see ammonia starting to lower, maybe a week later, nitrites will start to lower. When ammonia and nitrites stay at zero, your tank is cycled. The process can take anywhere from 3 weeks to 2 months.
When the tank is cycled you can slowly start adding more fish.
In addition to the advice from previous posters, I find that using a product like "Cycle" does help get the bacteria going. In setting up several tanks, I have only used it once on the first day when I added the first fish to each new tank, and never had problems. And don't be in a hurry to add more fish, do it gradually if during the first few weeks--most say it takes 8 weeks to cycle a new tank.
Awesome! Thanks for the info. One more questiont hough..
I have two tetras in there I feel they are bored. Can I add 2 more? Also there is only a rock in there. No fake plants or anything. can I add something else while cycling to add like..coverage for them or protection?
Yers, two tetras will look lonely, but they'll soon have company so don't worry. But you're correct about the cover, tetras don't like feeling exposed.They should have plants, are you intending to add some plants? Some floating fern (Ceratopteris species) would work fine, it grows very fast and in doing so is working to stabalize the water so a double benefit.
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