15 days of cycle still see no nitrites? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 19 Old 01-15-2015, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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15 days of cycle still see no nitrites?

hello people I'm new to fish keeping i have a 10 gallon freshwater tank with 3 neon tetras and 2 black phantom tetras i have 30gal fluval hob filter and gravel in tank no live plants my water test was a 7.6ph 1.0ppm ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate i do a 25% water change every 2 days light vacuum just for top surface food feed once a day lightly
ammonia has gone as high as 2.0ppm i do water changes to keep it 1.0 or lower just not sure how long until the 2nd stage begins? i keep tank a 75 degrees which is as high as the heater will allow any input would be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 19 Old 01-15-2015, 04:12 PM
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Hi Zach441:

Every cycle is different, so it's hard to predict accurately when you could expect to see nitrites. In my experience with cycling, it's been anywhere from a few days to more than three weeks before nitrites showed up. I've even had cycles in which I never saw any nitrites at all; I went from the ammonia spike to nitrates.

The water changes, while important to protect your fish during the cycle, could be slowing things down a bit. That said, you should probably keep doing them. You might also consider using an ammonia neutralizer like Seachem Prime; that too might slow things down but would also protect the fish from the existing ammonia (and the nitrite, when it finally shows up).

Have you given any thought to trying one of the beneficial bacteria products like Tetra SafeStart or Seachem Stability? Many people (myself included) have had mixed results with them, but at least some folks have found that the products help with fish-in cycling. Tetra SafeStart, in particular, seems to be building a record of some success.

At any rate, sometimes the only thing you can do is practice patience (and water changes) and let nature take its course. :)

-Yorg

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Originally Posted by Zach441 View Post
hello people I'm new to fish keeping i have a 10 gallon freshwater tank with 3 neon tetras and 2 black phantom tetras i have 30gal fluval hob filter and gravel in tank no live plants my water test was a 7.6ph 1.0ppm ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate i do a 25% water change every 2 days light vacuum just for top surface food feed once a day lightly
ammonia has gone as high as 2.0ppm i do water changes to keep it 1.0 or lower just not sure how long until the 2nd stage begins? i keep tank a 75 degrees which is as high as the heater will allow any input would be greatly appreciated.
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post #3 of 19 Old 01-15-2015, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for a quick reply yes i did use tetra safe start is it okay to add it again during the cycle?
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post #4 of 19 Old 01-15-2015, 06:44 PM
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I'm sure it would be fine. The product doesn't seem to have anything harmful in it, just the bacteria and whatever medium they use to sustain them. If you do add some more SafeStart, you may want to hold off on water changes for a couple of days so that the bacteria can get established on surfaces (like your media, substrate, and so on), assuming your ammonia doesn't keep rising. If it does, then you should certainly continue water changes or else add an ammonia neutralizer.

-Yorg

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Thank you for a quick reply yes i did use tetra safe start is it okay to add it again during the cycle?
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post #5 of 19 Old 01-16-2015, 05:30 AM
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thats alot of water changes and heavy filtration!!! It seems like your micro mannaging that small tank.... You need to take a step back in my opinion, You are just doing the filters job for it so it can't build up much benificial bacteria. There is such a thing as too much love haha
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post #6 of 19 Old 01-17-2015, 03:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice ill let ya know how i make out
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post #7 of 19 Old 01-19-2015, 08:06 AM
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I agree with Yorg's assessment -- mostly.

There's not much bacteria in the water column; changing water (to keep ammonia under control) doesn't slow the cycle noticeably.

Neither does adding Prime. Prime merely locks the ammonia in a harmless molecule which can still be oxidized by the cycling bacteria. Any ammonia not oxidized is released slowly back into the tank as this molecule breaks down over the next 24 to 48 hours. That's why Seachem recommends dosing Prime every other day. In my opinion, every day is safer. And it doesn't measurably effect the cycle.

By the way, the API ammonia test reads all ammonia in the tank, whether free or locked up by Prime.

Tetra Safestart is being used successfully more and more often. As long as it hasn't been overheated or frozen, it usually works well -- according to the many members I've contacted on the forum.

Dump in all the TSS you have. You shouldn't have to dose it again -- ever.

Welcome to the forum.

Last edited by Hallyx; 01-19-2015 at 08:19 AM.
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post #8 of 19 Old 01-20-2015, 04:33 AM
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Ok so its reasonable to assume that a 30 gallon filter will turn a ten gallon tank over six or so times in an hour. It is also reasonable to assume that adding chemicals would have a "negitive" effect on benificial bacteria. In my opinion adding prime for any reason other than conditioning city water is unessary. If you add anything to help the cycle out add seachem stability (liquid benificial bacteria). There are a few asian companies that put out bacteria seed balls that work better but good luck reading the packaging.
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post #9 of 19 Old 01-20-2015, 10:49 AM
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What negative effect are you assuming chemicals would have on the bacteria?

Many conditioners handle chlorine/chloramine effective. Prime is among few conditioners that detoxify ammonia as well. This becomes important as a safety feature when fish-in cycling.

I've received much more positive feedback on TSS than on Stability. Maybe because Stability doesn't contain autotrophic nitrifying bacteria.
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post #10 of 19 Old 01-21-2015, 05:21 AM
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negitive effects = stunting growth/killing off some (can't see this but its happening)
Aerobic bacteria: breaks down the ammonia (this grows first in the heavy oxygen enviroment)
Aneorobic bacteria: simply put completes the rest of the nitrogen cycle (only grows in low to no oxygen, aka in media or under other bacteria)
So giving this logic ya not gonna get aneorobic bacteria with seachem products (or others). I would say aneorobic bacteria needs to be grown not added with chemicals (which is why people say to hang old filter media in the tank)
My point is your filter needs to grow out like the rest of your tank (time for aneorobic bacteria to establish on smooth plastic....aka a few months)
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