Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   am i cycling correctly? (

mjbn 07-29-2010 10:57 AM

am i cycling correctly?
So i've been cycling for maybe 2.5-3 weeks now. And here are my readings(im doing the shrimp method)

Ammonia about a 4.0
Nitrite im not very sure about because the purpleish color i get doesn't match any of the colors on the match carrd.. Any help? heres the best pics i could get of it.. What reading do you guys think it is? It's brighter than the colors on the card, but idk.. Confusing..:/
Nitate about 5.0

But what suggestions do you guys have? if i get tetra safestart, how do i dose it? and will it work this late into the process? Because i want to have my tank cycled by august 20 beceause my petsmart is having a $1 per fish sale and i wanna get the fish im trying to get before that sale ends so i need my tank cycled asap! Help please?

zof 07-29-2010 01:09 PM

Its probably more then what the test card can show. Have you ran the test a 2nd time just to make sure its not an erroneous reading?

With being this far along in the cycle process, showing both Nitrites and Nitrates I would say let it finish on its own, my guess is you don't have more then about 2-3 weeks left which will be in time for you to get the sale. The only worrying thing would be that ammonia is still so high give it a little more time and ammonia should get down to 0. Then you just have to wait for nitrites to get to 0 which in my experience went pretty quickly.

Your halfway there, a little patience you will have a fully cycled tank with out the aid of any chemicals, that who knows what they will do long term to your cycle.

mjbn 07-29-2010 02:41 PM

I have not done the subsequent test right after, but its been at that level for the past week and a half so i was just wondering cuz it was weird. haha and the thing about that is.. I need to have the 5.5 gallon (the one im talkig about in this thread) and a new 10 gallon cycled by then.. So you think i can cycle the 5.5 g then seed it in my 10 gallon? because my sisters moving out to college and taking my 5.5 with her while i upgraded to the 10 G. You think i can cycle the 5.5G then seed the 10 Gallon? In the 5.5 G rightnow, there are 4 fake objects( plants, caves), 2 of which i am keeping for my 10 gallon tank, and rightnow, im letting my 10G filter run in the 5.5G hoping that the bacteria will grow in the filter floss. I will also be taking half of the 5.5 G gravel and putting it in my 10G. I guess if i don't get the tanks cycled by aug 20, ill try the safestart and see how it goes from there? because i rightnow, if we buy the fish during the sale, we'll only spend about 25 dollars for all the fish we're getting plus some flakes and stuff. If we miss the sale we'll spend well over 35 dollars, and me being 15 and she being 18 without a job.... We cannot spend much money. So i really have to hit that deadline.

zof 07-29-2010 03:13 PM

$25 at $1 per fish?? how many fish and what kind where you looking to throw in these tanks? You can of course seed the 10, but make sure you don't pull to much from the 5 as it is pulling that much seed material will probably mean you will have 2 tanks with half the bacteria they need to be stocked that much.

And just because you cycle a tank doesn't mean when its over you can add all the fish at once, you should take it slowly and monitor your water conditions for at least a week to make sure there are no fluxes in ammonia or nitrites after you have added a few fish, then add a few more and work your way up to a full stocking. If you add too many fish at once you will start a mini cycle which means you will have to very carefully watch your water again and also do constant water changes until the mini cycle stops since you have fish in the tank.

You are running both the filters on this one tank right? If not you might as well go ahead and get them both stuffed with bacteria before you take all that stuff away from the 5 gallon. As for stocking goes, don't get all your fish at once, get maybe 1/3 of what you were planning while the sale is on and make sure they are doing ok before you get anymore, other wise all those other fish you want to buy might just die off anyways because you go through a huge mini cycle.

Just my 2 cents anywho don't know what others think

mjbn 07-29-2010 03:19 PM

Yeah i know what you mean.. I'm planning on having 10 fish at the most in my tank, and planning on adding my 2-3 guppies in first, then after a week or so of steady readings, id add half(3) of my neons, then after my other half(4) of neons. Because i know that neons like/need a more mature cycled tank, so im keeping them off until the whole cycling process is settled to put them in.

mjbn 07-29-2010 03:23 PM

oh and we're getting like $17 worth of fish, then flakes, and a pre-filter so the fish don't get sucked in the filter intake:O averages out around $25

zof 07-29-2010 06:29 PM

You might as well get the pre-filter now it makes a great place for the beneficial bacteria to live on. In fact I'm using my pre-filter from my 36g to seed my 20 gallon tank, that and a decent size piece of driftwood has made it so I only have a mini cycle going on in my 20 gallon with 3 fish.

mjbn 07-29-2010 08:15 PM

ahh i see.. I'll try to go back to petsmart and grab that soon. I just filled my 10G with a plant and a cave that was in the ongoing cycling 5.5 G. 10G has an ammonia reading of .5 ppm so far. I added shrimp and hoping that bacteria will grow soon!

mjbn 07-29-2010 08:18 PM

oh and an update on my 5.5 gallon tank. I messed up on the nitrate reading, i didn't wait long enough for the color to settle. Nitrate is actually at around 30.

Byron 07-29-2010 10:56 PM

I would not recommend that many fish in a 10g tank. The 7 neons on their own in a 10g will be more than enough. With live plants they will fare better. But not with the guppies as well.


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