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shelbysfish

Fish IN cycle help

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Why not put your plants (and some rocks) in pots?

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Why not put your plants (and some rocks) in pots?

 

Hmm... this could also be an option..

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For those asking, here is a picture of how I have the rocks (this is just part of the tank). All the rocks are smoothed.

 

13293266_10206608725838992_290536719_n.j

 

 

 

I DO move them around to vacuum every water change with my Python... and I suck up a lot of poop. I wonder if it's not getting in the filter and maybe thats why I dont seem to have a cycle either? pH is 7.0, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 0, all again today. Just so strange...

 

In other words, do we think that the ammonia producing stuff isn't getting in the filter?

Edited by shelbysfish

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Why do you say you don't have a cycle?  Zero ammonia and zero nitrite in a tank with fish means the tank has cycled.  The only other possibility would be that your tests don't work.

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What do you have in your filter?

 

I have what came with it right now, it's a regular filter cartridge and also a sponge inside with it. 

 

What kind of filter?

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Why do you say you don't have a cycle?  Zero ammonia and zero nitrite in a tank with fish means the tank has cycled.  The only other possibility would be that your tests don't work.

 

Because it's been that way since day 1 and I dont have any nitrates, which mean that it would be cycled. :/

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What do you have in your filter?

 

I have what came with it right now, it's a regular filter cartridge and also a sponge inside with it. 

 

What kind of filter?

 

 

It came with my Tetra 29/30 gal tank kit. I will be adding another as they grow, but for now it's: 29 gallon contains the Whisper® 30

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Goldfish excrete ammonia from their gills, not so much their poop. So ammonia is getting into your filter.

If you use the API drop test kit, the nitrate test is conducted differently than the ammonia or nitrite test. Make sure to read the instructions for the nitrate test carefully.

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It seems you've not been doing the Fish In Cycle long enough for nitrates to start showing up.

Edited by LisaCGold

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What do you have in your filter?

 

I have what came with it right now, it's a regular filter cartridge and also a sponge inside with it. 

 

What kind of filter?

 

 

It came with my Tetra 29/30 gal tank kit. I will be adding another as they grow, but for now it's: 29 gallon contains the Whisper® 30

 

 

So we only have that one filter on the tank?

 

If so I would add the other one on there, its not enough filtration :(

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What do you have in your filter?

 

I have what came with it right now, it's a regular filter cartridge and also a sponge inside with it. 

 

What kind of filter?

 

 

It came with my Tetra 29/30 gal tank kit. I will be adding another as they grow, but for now it's: 29 gallon contains the Whisper® 30

 

 

So we only have that one filter on the tank?

 

If so I would add the other one on there, its not enough filtration :(

 

 

Yes for now as they are super tiny, but I will be adding another one on for sure! I've been keeping up with a lot of water changes as well.

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It seems you've not been doing the Fish In Cycle long enough for nitrates to start showing up.

 

Thank you for this! I have been following the instructions, so you think it's normal that no nitrates have showed up yet? That makes me feel slightly better. haha

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It seems you've not been doing the Fish In Cycle long enough for nitrates to start showing up.

 

Thank you for this! I have been following the instructions, so you think it's normal that no nitrates have showed up yet? That makes me feel slightly better. haha

I think three to four weeks before nitrates show up. Having enough bio media is also helpful.

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It seems you've not been doing the Fish In Cycle long enough for nitrates to start showing up.

 

Thank you for this! I have been following the instructions, so you think it's normal that no nitrates have showed up yet? That makes me feel slightly better. haha

I think three to four weeks before nitrates show up. Having enough bio media is also helpful.

 

 

Well that's a relief. :)

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Looks like we actually had out first tiny bit of ammonia show up today! Barely .25ppm, but still. So I did a water change and added Prime again!

Maybe this means we will finally start getting some nitrates. 

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Honestly if it's that low, I would add a dose of Prime and test again in 24 hours. If you change out the water as soon as it shows trace ammonia, you don't give the bacteria time to process it... Prime will easily detoxify that amount of ammonia.

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Honestly if it's that low, I would add a dose of Prime and test again in 24 hours. If you change out the water as soon as it shows trace ammonia, you don't give the bacteria time to process it... Prime will easily detoxify that amount of ammonia.

 

Interesting... I will try that today if it shows up!

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FYI - when we say that Prime detoxifies ammonia and nitrates, these substances still show up in the tests but they are much less harmful to the fish.

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FYI - when we say that Prime detoxifies ammonia and nitrates, these substances still show up in the tests but they are much less harmful to the fish.

 

Well sadly nothing showed up again today. Not that I WANT ammonia, but obviously I need ammonia and nitrites so that I will eventually have Nitrates show up. sigh. 

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Patience... This is going to take a good 4-6 weeks, sometimes longer. :peeka

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Please understand, you do not need measurable ammonia to grow your nitrifying population.  If you read any ammonia, it means your fish are producing more ammonia than your ammonia oxidizing bacteria/archaea can use.  Zero ammonia on a test means your tank is big enough, your water changes adequate, your feeding light enough, and/or your population of ammonia oxidizers large enough to keep the ammonia below the level your test can read.  This creates the ideal situation, a population of nitrifiers that can use all the ammonia that your fish produce and you don't remove with water changes.  

 

When I started my first 100 gallon pond, I put in 7 inch-long feeders, a filter, and some potted plants in pots on the pond shelf.  Then I tested the water for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate every day.  All were zero, then I dropped to testing twice a week, all remained zero, then weekly, still all zero.  After 3 months, when all the fish were 3 inches long, the parameters remained zero.  (A 3 inch fish does not have 3 times the volume/mass of a one inch fish.  It has 3 times the length, 3 times the height, and 3 times the width, so 3x3x3 = 27 times the total size, and roughly 27 times the ammonia production)

 

I was following the usual procedure for cycling a new pond -- severe understocking.  People building a pond meant to house 10 two-foot long koi, put in a couple of  goldfish-sized baby koi, wait three weeks (a usual cycling time for ponds) and then start adding a fish a week until they reach 10, without ever seeing ammonia or nitrite.  How do people know that ponds cycle in 3 weeks when they never show ammonia or nitrite?  Experience shows that after three weeks you can double the fish mass without seeing ammonia or nitrite.  Also, koi people often do not put plants in their ponds, so they get measurable nitrate after 3 weeks.

 

When I found a beautiful shubunkin at Walmart that I just had to add to my pond, I bought a 10 gallon tank and comparable filter for my Q tank.  I changed 3 gallons of water daily fed very lightly, and through the month of Q, never saw a trace of ammonia or nitrite.  The fish grew during this time and I increased the amount of food, but the nitrifiers had no trouble keeping up.

 

Both excess ammonia and excess nitrite inhibit the process of nitrification, so the lower you keep these, the faster the nitrifiers can do their work and the faster they will grow.  I'd love to tell you exactly how low you have to keep these to get the quickest cycling, but the relevant research papers all involve reaction kinetics.  The last time I looked at those was in Physical Chemistry 2 in 1968.  Even if I could remember what I learned then, the terms have probably all changed in the past half century. :D

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Please understand, you do not need measurable ammonia to grow your nitrifying population.  If you read any ammonia, it means your fish are producing more ammonia than your ammonia oxidizing bacteria/archaea can use.  Zero ammonia on a test means your tank is big enough, your water changes adequate, your feeding light enough, and/or your population of ammonia oxidizers large enough to keep the ammonia below the level your test can read.  This creates the ideal situation, a population of nitrifiers that can use all the ammonia that your fish produce and you don't remove with water changes.  

 

When I started my first 100 gallon pond, I put in 7 inch-long feeders, a filter, and some potted plants in pots on the pond shelf.  Then I tested the water for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate every day.  All were zero, then I dropped to testing twice a week, all remained zero, then weekly, still all zero.  After 3 months, when all the fish were 3 inches long, the parameters remained zero.  (A 3 inch fish does not have 3 times the volume/mass of a one inch fish.  It has 3 times the length, 3 times the height, and 3 times the width, so 3x3x3 = 27 times the total size, and roughly 27 times the ammonia production)

 

I was following the usual procedure for cycling a new pond -- severe understocking.  People building a pond meant to house 10 two-foot long koi, put in a couple of  goldfish-sized baby koi, wait three weeks (a usual cycling time for ponds) and then start adding a fish a week until they reach 10, without ever seeing ammonia or nitrite.  How do people know that ponds cycle in 3 weeks when they never show ammonia or nitrite?  Experience shows that after three weeks you can double the fish mass without seeing ammonia or nitrite.  Also, koi people often do not put plants in their ponds, so they get measurable nitrate after 3 weeks.

 

When I found a beautiful shubunkin at Walmart that I just had to add to my pond, I bought a 10 gallon tank and comparable filter for my Q tank.  I changed 3 gallons of water daily fed very lightly, and through the month of Q, never saw a trace of ammonia or nitrite.  The fish grew during this time and I increased the amount of food, but the nitrifiers had no trouble keeping up.

 

Both excess ammonia and excess nitrite inhibit the process of nitrification, so the lower you keep these, the faster the nitrifiers can do their work and the faster they will grow.  I'd love to tell you exactly how low you have to keep these to get the quickest cycling, but the relevant research papers all involve reaction kinetics.  The last time I looked at those was in Physical Chemistry 2 in 1968.  Even if I could remember what I learned then, the terms have probably all changed in the past half century. :D

 

Thank you for this!

 

I am curious how long it took for any nitrates to show up for you?

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You mean in the pond?  They never did.  Even without plants in the pond, the algae that coat the sides of the pond will take care of most, if not all, of the nitrate.  Furthermore, pond biofilters typically have anoxic pockets where denitrifiers can thrive in close proximity to the nitritfiers, where they get all the nitrate they can handle.  

 

I have one pond that has had consistent nitrate at 10 - 20 ppm, in spite of lots of plants in the filters (The rest of the ponds have zero to five ppm).  It also has full shade for most of the day, so it doesn't have a good carpet of algae.  This spring, I set up three downflow aquaponics grow beds and one small upflow bed around the sides of the pond that get the most light.  Plant growth still isn't great, but nitrates have dropped to 5 ppm.

 

I'll post some pictures of that when I get them uploaded.

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Alright update, another small Ammonia sighting! .25ppm! So I did as fantail said and dosed Prime appropriately. Will check again tomorrow. 

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Guys... this is freaking me out! I guess I got a cycle finally going! Another small ammonia sighting, so I dosed Prime again. I'll be doing a small water change tomorrow, lets see how it goes...

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