Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Cycling problems 30 gal w/ fish (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/beginner-freshwater-aquarium/cycling-problems-30-gal-w-fish-30070/)

Jerryed 10-04-2009 02:12 PM

Cycling problems 30 gal w/ fish
 
Hello,

First Post (YAY)

I have a 30 gal freshwater tank that is about 6 weeks old. I was planing to do a fishless cycle but ended up getting 2 giant danios about 2 weeks in. Due to the nature of the of the danios I ended up adding 2 more 2 weeks later so they could school. all went well wtih them then. later a common pleco (i know monster in the making) joined the bunch. Here is my current issue. I figure the cycle never really completed/finished due to premature additions of fish. I am having a hard time keeping the nitrIte under control. equipment list below with test results:

30 gal freshwater tank (36x16x12)
1 penguin 150 biowheel hob filter
1 tetra whisper 40 filter for backup
1 air pump with bubble wall

plants:
1 staghorn java fern (doing well so far)

Current levels
ammonia 0
nitrIte ~1ppm
nitrAte ~20
(using api freshwater master kit)

Currently doing 2x daily water changes 25-50% depending on the above levels

Cant seem to get nitrIte do drop no matter how much water i change out or how often. I was also inspecing my biowheel and im not really seeing anything growing on it yet as I would expect after this timeframe.

Any advice is appriciated.

p.s. none of the fish are over 2" in size with an average size of about 1.5"

Twistersmom 10-04-2009 02:37 PM

Hello and welcome to the forum!

Sounds like you really did your homework on setting this tank up! I would continue with the water changes to help keep the nitrites low. With water changes and patients, I think you are almost there.
I see your ammonia has already dropped to zero, the nitrite stage of cycling takes a little longer. My guess is within the next couple weeks, maybe even sooner, you will have a cycled tank.

The 150 filter is only rated for up to 30 gallons, over filtration is better. Are you running both filters? If so, that is good.

You may also want to consider using Prime as your water conditioner. It will help detoxify the nitrites.

Another thought, adding a sponge to the filters will also help with bacteria growth. Only wash them off in old dechlorinated tank water. Same with the filter media, only replace when falling apart, just clean them off some on water change days in the removed tank water. The filter and media is where most of the bacteria you need grows.

redlessi 10-04-2009 02:37 PM

Hi and Welcome to the forum!! What kind of water conditioner do you have? Do you have Prime, if not get some as it will neutralize the nitrite so you dont do harm to the fish. Continue to do daily water changes until you see it drop. You really should consider rehoming the pleco, they are poop machines and grow too big for this size tank. I would not do anything with the filters until the tank has fully cycled (or were you just looking). Hopefully someone will come along with more answers. Good Luck

Twistermom it looks like we were typing at the same time!!!

JouteiMike 10-04-2009 02:42 PM

I agree that the cycle never really finished due to adding too many fish, too soon. It is a common mistake to make but I wouldn't worry too much, hang in there. Be patient, sometimes it can take a lot longer than usual to cycle a tank due to many factors. Let me ask a few questions,

Have you tested your tap water you use to refill the tank?
What are the parameters of it?
Do you have other tanks that are established?

Continue with the water changes; however, try not to disturb the tank too much. Vacuuming the gravel and cleaning the filters could inhibit a complete cycle.

In the future you will need a bigger tank to accommodate the pleco and the danios, and the danios being a schooling fish, you should still get at least a few more.

Twistersmom 10-04-2009 02:43 PM

Great advice from relessi! Great minds think alike! lol.

Jerryed 10-04-2009 03:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JouteiMike (Post 252645)
I agree that the cycle never really finished due to adding too many fish, too soon. It is a common mistake to make but I wouldn't worry too much, hang in there. Be patient, sometimes it can take a lot longer than usual to cycle a tank due to many factors. Let me ask a few questions,

Have you tested your tap water you use to refill the tank?
What are the parameters of it?
Do you have other tanks that are established?

Continue with the water changes; however, try not to disturb the tank too much. Vacuuming the gravel and cleaning the filters could inhibit a complete cycle.

In the future you will need a bigger tank to accommodate the pleco and the danios, and the danios being a schooling fish, you should still get at least a few more.


Well for the pleco a 150gal acrylic tank is in my plan for the next few months (for future oscar pair) so he will be fine.

I am using both filters in concert so lots of filtration going on. 2x filter pads installed in the pengiun and 1 in the whisper. Tap water tests null for ammonia, null nitrAtes, and nitrItes are less than 0.25 ppm. My lfs didnt have prime so using Start Right, unfortunatley this only helps with cholrine and chloromine.

I have been forced to vacuum the gravel a couple of times per week due to to the output of the pleco and the smalleer danios seem to be poop machines.

Feeding schedule is 2x daily with the smallest ammount of food i can pinch. Feeding beta flakes (due to size and the smaller danios have trouble with bigger flakes) and is helping bring out what little color the danios have. the plec is getting about 1/3 of a algae wafer a day. I havent had any algea problem in the tank so just using as a supliment to his diet.

Im hesitant to add more giant d's to the tank due to the fact their favorite tag target currently is the pleco. he can take care of himself but he did injure one ot the larger danios. no blood just got him on the forhead and left a bit of skin hanging. not serious as far as i can tell and the fish is ignoring it and playing as usual.

nex aditions will probably be a school of 6 or so neons or cardinal tetras. that will be at least a month out though :)


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