This product has been proven to work but be careful. Just because you use Biospira won't mean you can add a full bioload of fish right afterwards like the bottle claims. Add fish slowly and test your water to be sure it is safe.
Also, BioSpira MUST BE REFRIGERATED or it will die and not work. If it is on the LFS shelf at room temp it likely will not work. Also, it needs to be as fresh as possible. Only look for the newest and most recent dates you can find. Yes it has live bacteria but these bacteria need oxygen to live. Over time they will die without it and will not cycle as fast as a new bottle would.
Overall I don't know the value of using it short of POSSIBLY shortening your cycle time so you can add fish sooner. I have known a lot of people who have tried it and have had to cycle their tanks anyway and at $15 per 30 gallons, it can be expensive to use in a 90 gallon just to have it not work.
If someone really wants to make a good article get some and test it. See how long it takes to reduce ammonia to nitrites and nitrites to nitrates in a clean, brand new tank adding the recommend pure ammonia to the tank with just the biospira and a simple filter. I for one would really like to see the results of a truely scientific test of new, old, refrigerated and room temperature samples.
I used it to cycle my second tank, added a full load and it worked perfectly. The company says it's safe at room temp for six months, but longest shelf life is refrigerated. From their faq's:
Q: Does BIO-SpiraÂ® need to be refrigerated?
A: BIO-SpiraÂ® is an active bacteria culture. Refrigeration provides the optimal long-term storage. If BIO-SpiraÂ® is left out of the refrigerator at room-temperature, it will still perform at optimal conditions. However, it is best to return BIO-SpiraÂ® to refrigeration when possible. Use the following as a guide:
a. Long Term Storage (1 year): 50Â°F (10Â°C)
b. Mid Term Storage (6 months): 39Â°F-87Â°F (4Â°C-31Â°C)
They also recommend adding the full load within 24 hours so the bacteria has something to work with. If you only add a few fish, the excess bacteria die off. Also, I don't believe there was an expiration date on mine.
Here's the faq link: http://www.marineland.com/cus_faq.asp
I LOVE BioSpira. BUT, I don't know that it allows a tank to be instantly cycled. It does claim to make the water "fish-safe" overnight, and that is what it did. I had a small ammonia reading the first night I set up my tank, added BioSpira that evening and the ammonia was 0 in the morning, but nitrites do appear at that point (it is supposed to be nitrifying bacteria so I assumed that was was it was supposed to do) and within days the tank was cycled. I just did water changes.
I added to a tank that went into a mini-cycle, and again overnight the ammonia was gone.
There are no expiration dates on it which is why like you said, always always always buy it from a reputable LFS with a high turnover and refrigeration.
I just thought I'd mention the here in the UK (and rest of Europe)
there is a similar product called Bactinetes(tm). This is produced by SÃ¶ll, a German company.
info for bactinettes(tm) and their other products can be found at
http://www.soelltec.de/ (available in three languages, French, German and English)
never used it ....paitence is cheaper :roll:
I've sold it to many a customer and used it myself.
In my case it was because I had an ammoina spike caused by
a dead fish that went unnoticed for ages.
I had ammonia at 5ppm and no2 at 8ppm (no3 50ppm).
I added one dose of bactinettes and within 24hrs
ammonia and no2 were zero and the no3 was down to 10ppm.
Bactinettes really does work and a decent lfs will offer a money back gaurentee, because soll offer that to them.
Would this be good for my situation?
I have a 30g planted with 3 otto cats and 2 guppies.
I first started my tank up on 19 March and added just the 2 guppies but didn't buy a test kit until 3 weeks ago, so was not sure it it has cycled or not.
My first set of test results said nitrite 0, amonia 0, nitrates 0 so it looks like my tank had not cycled. I have been testing every other day for 3 weeks now and have not been doing any water changes and still have the same results as above. I'm frustrated and can't understand why the cycle is not kicking in.
Maybe using BioSpira would get things going?
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