Hello everyone I am a beginner and I need your help! :)
20 gallon tank.
1 week in its cycle.
Future fish: Neon Tetras, Glofish & otos
The tank is full of artificial plants and corals, decorations and one living plant. I have also used tetra safe start, stress zyme, stress coat and neutral regulator. The filter is a Aqueon quietflow 30 which is for 45 gallon tanks. I am also using a fluval aquarium heater of 150 watts. An air pump has also been added for oxygen in the water. I have been testing the water for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, hardness, chlorine, alkalinity, and of course the pH. this test kit is thesame one used by the petsmart. I get positive readings for everything when I first look at the strips-- exept that when I look at it the next day the test strips indicate that the nitrate level is at 40, and the nitrite level is at 3.0 which falls in the stress line in the scale.:err:
I am very patient with this thing and the only reason I am is because I really really dont want to go through any loss of fish in the biggining. it makes me sad.:BIGweepy:
I am wondering if the effect of the atmosphere has something to do with the changes overnight in the testing strips? I have tried to learn as much as I can about these fish and I want them to be happy and Ill wait as long as possible to add the fish.
Welcome to the wonderful world of fish. :D
Okay, let me get started. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it sounds like you're testing with strips, reading them, them leaving them out over night? If that's the case, the change in color on your strip overnight is simply because its not doing it's job any longer and yes, the air getting to it all night changes the color.
Also, I would like to add that test strips are VERY inaccurate and if you plan to keep your fish happy and healthy in the long run you should invest in a Master test kit. You can find those at Petsmart as well as most other pet stores and it will cost you around 35 dollars, but it's well worth it. (Especially during the cycling process because it is very accurate.)
As for your cycling process, it takes time. Usually a lot longer than a week if you are starting fresh with no help from an already cycled tank. When I cycled my first tank it took nearly a month and a half to get the levels just right and stable enough to support life.
Here is a step by step method for fishless cycling:
I originally wrote out a method very similar to the one in link below but I felt this one was much easier to follow and also provided more information.
Hope this helped!
its too bad that the test strips arent accurate because I spent 25 dollars on them and they said those are thesame ones they use to test their aquariums in the shop...I wonder what is a master test kit?
and again I am very thankful for you helping me its all for the sake of the little fishes and their health
Welcome to TFK, leogtr. A master test kit looks like this:
Freshwater Master Test Kit - API
There are a number of places to buy them online which are cheaper than retail. If it was me I'd return the strips for credit, telling the store that they aren't accurate. The worst they can say is no.
As for the help, any time. That's what this forum is all about. :D I remember when I first started posting here. I do believe Aunt Kymmie was one of the first people to respond to me too.
If you have any further questions on anything don't hesitate to ask. It takes a while to learn the basics but once you have them down, you'll do great and provide your fish a happy healthy life.
Keep us updated on your cycling endeavors.
I also wanted to give you the link to TFK's sticky as far as cycing an aquarium. This is a great article.
sorry I just have so many questions:neutral:
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