Help on starting the cycle for 30g tank
hey i have a 30 g tank here and i need some help starting the cycle. I started my first 15g tank with the stuff that you get in the bottle. Everything worked out well. Now with my 30 g tank i want to cycle it without purchasing bacteria. I know i can put "starter" fish in there but i dont want to be killing fish. I know i can also put pure ammonia in there to start the cycle. And i know i can also start it with fish food in there but it isnt a good idea because it can promote algae. my question is, can i put my NEW filter on the OLD tank and run it to get the bacteria in it, then put the NEW filter on the NEW tank to start the cycle? Also, is a filter required to run if i start the cycle with pure ammonia or fish food?
Safest & Quickest way: Take some materials from your old filter either rinse them out in the new tank OR stuff them in the filter of the new tank and replace what you took out of the old tank with new stuff (don't take out ALL filter media, just like 1 pad will be sufficient).
AND DONE, tank cycled & safe as you're adding all needed bacteria this way, no ammonia or bottles of whatever needed any more :-)
To answer your first of two questions, yes, you can set up the new filter on an established tank, let it run for several weeks, and then transfer the filter to the new tank (without rinsing or cleaning it). Bacteria will have colonized the media. However, ammonia must be present in the new tank to feed the bacteria or they will die off. A few fish in the new tank, added when the filter is added, will work. The important thing is that the bacteria must be sufficient to handle the levelof ammonia produced by the fish. If it is, there will be no stress on the fish.
Yes to your second question, just in practical terms. If you use pure ammonia or fish food in the new tank, the bacteria will colonize surfaces, and it might as well include the filter media to get it started. With a new tank, the filter and heater should always be connected from the start. I never cycle new tanks like this because they are always planted, so I suggest you read the sticky on fishless cycling for information. Click on the sticky "Important Topics" at the head of this forum section and part way down you will find cycling topics.
Plants do the cycling immediately, if you intend on having live plants. I can explain that if you do.
hey thank you very much but i just realized that my new filter is now running on my old tank. It has been on there for about a day and a half now. Is this ok? should i take it off soon and run it on the new tank? Thanks
EDIT: oh ok thanks for that info byron. I was actually hoping to put plants in there but im not sure what kind of plants would work in a 30 g. and now my mom just said to me that she wants to put that filter on the new tank now and put the fish in there with it. I dont think this is safe. Would it be?
ohhhhhh ok that make COMPLETE sense now. my tank actually has too much ammonia and nitrates/nitrites in it. when the bacteria forms in the new filter wouldnt it eat the extra nitrates/nitrites and ammonia? I also am thinking of starting to run my old filter on the new tank. would this be a good idea?
EDIT: and also if it is a bad idea to run the old filter on the new tank what can i do in order to cycle my new tank.
When you say your tank has too much ammonia and nitrite, do you mean the existing tank? If it has been running several weeks or longer and the fish are OK, then I would assume the bacteria in that tank are at a level sufficient to handle the ammonia and nitrite produced by those fish. That will continue provided you don't do something to upset the balance (add too many new fish at once, overfeed, leave dead fish in the tank, use chemicals that affect it, etc).
yes i do mean the existing tank. I have actually learned that i have been overfeeding them and that is what is causing all of the extra ammonia. Im barely feeding them any now and the levels should drop. I wanna start the cycle in the new tank with the old filter but like you said, you need ammonia to keep it going. to do this, should i buy pure ammonia from the pet store (im not really sure where to get it) or should i drop a few fish granules in there once a day?
If you take the whole old filter on to the new tank and sowith give your old tank a brand new filter, then your old tank will go through SOME cycling now which depending on mulm & bacteria built up in the gravel could be more or less significant.
The easiest is really to simply use some of the established filter media for the new filter/ tank like I said further up top.
i would really like to do that because it would be easiest but the media from the old filter doesnt fit in the new filter:-D hahaha and that would be a problem......right?
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