Cycle stalled/not started - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 04-06-2018, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Cycle stalled/not started

Hi, names Dave and new to this so please bear with me, I'll try to keep this short.
I have:
110l juwel primo
Bioflow super (small) filter
Heater (26c monitored at both sides of tank)
Black gravel
Led lighting
API freshwater liquid test kit
Feeding schedule, once daily in the evening with enough for them to eat completely in 2-3 mins
Tap water parameters:
0 ammonia
0 nitrites
5 nitrates

I got my tank back on 15th Feb 2018 and filled it with water and gravel etc (treated with tetra aquasafe) and left it for 48 hours to run and get everything to settle.
Added 4 zebra danio on 17th Feb (I know it's not a fishless cycle!) along with a bottle of TSS. Followed the guidelines and left it for 2 weeks without a water change. Tested the water daily anyway and consistently got the following:
0.25 ammonia
0 nitrites
5 nitrates

After 2 weeks I completed my first water change and left it a day and retested, got the same results as above.

Since then I have monitored the water parameters daily and done weekly water changes of 25-30% and it's always showing: 0.25-0.5 ammonia
0 nitrites
5 nitrates

On 24th Mar 2018 I added the evolution aqua pure aquarium bomb and monitored… still got the results above

On 31 Mar 2018 I was given some old filter media from an established safe aquarium and placed it into my filter and then checked my water every day and still get:
0.25-0.5 ammonia
0 nitrites
5 nitrates
7.6 ph

I have tried feeding them less, feeding them every other day, less water changes, more cleaning, less cleaning etc...

I'm really starting to lose my mind and I'm seriously looking at taking the fish to my LFS and selling the tank. It's been over 6 weeks now and the cycle hasn't really done anything.
Can anyone please advise me on what I should try?
I have probably missed something but can fill in the blanks when people ask.

Thank you 🙂
Dave B is offline  
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post #2 of 3 Old 04-09-2018, 07:59 AM
jaysee's Avatar
Cycle stalled/not started

Unfortunately some people get it easier than others.

So how are the fish doing?

My suggestion at this Point would be to stop with the cycling products and just do water changes. Every other day, dosing with water conditioner on the off days to protect the fish till next water change.

Other thing is maybe you need a bigger filter?

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta

Last edited by jaysee; 04-09-2018 at 08:02 AM.
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post #3 of 3 Old 04-10-2018, 03:28 PM
low ammonia readings can be a false low. API kit on salt water is notorious for that. I had a marine tank read .25 ppm ammonia that ran for 5-8 years with that reading.

If you're using products to treat ammonia, some of those will still read ammonia even when the ammonia has been locked and made safe.

my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

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