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soFISHticated lady
10-21-2008, 10:13 PM
I dont know what to do. When I set up my first and only tank, I waited 24 hours for the temp to be right, and let the chlorine evaporate out of the water. then added two fish at a time a couple weeks apart. I never lost any fish, and I never even did any tests. when I did finally lose fish it was mostly from old age. I recently lost 4 new fish, after a bout with ich. ( thank you petco) this is 4 years later.

I would like to start a new tank, probably 10 or 15 gallons.

what are the benefits of fishless cycling?

what do you prefer? and why?

also, how long does fishless take?

and, would it go faster with a used filter from my current tank.

oh and my currant tank is 20 gallons, with 2 neon tetras(original from 4 years ago) and 9 platys and about a dozen platy fry :)

thank you all
Tara

smaug
10-21-2008, 10:24 PM
I stated using a fish,with a qualifier.I use media,some gravel and a percentage of water from an established tank.

Northernguy
10-21-2008, 10:53 PM
Fishless is cheaper!
Like I'm one to talk, I have always gone with fish. Mind you, I knew nothing about the fishless cycle until I joined this place wondering what the hell I was doing wrong.I also only ever lost one fish due to cycling!:c3:

Red
10-22-2008, 12:03 AM
I always do fish cycle but i have one goldfish i use to cycle tanks, that is because i am usually in a rush to get it done, but i would not advise this because i monitor my parameters twice a day in the start of the cycle.

Mvjnz
10-22-2008, 12:38 AM
I used fish, but if I was to do it again I would do fishless. Less stress on the fish and less water changes.

I only cycled my first tank, since then I have used the established filter in it to start the filters in the other tanks. You only really need to cycle one tank.

AABatteries
10-22-2008, 12:47 AM
I go fishless. Easier and cheaper, plus there isn't chance of the fish dying.

troy
10-22-2008, 12:53 AM
How is fishless cycling cheaper?

Mvjnz
10-22-2008, 01:04 AM
Depends on how many fish you kill in the process I guess. But if you get one fish and it survives the cycling then I can't imagine how fishless is cheaper with all the ammonia you have to buy.

I would agree that fishless is heaps easier tho, because with fish you need to do water changes pretty much every day, or if you're lucky every 2 days. And cycling takes longer because of all the water changes so you're looking at about 2 months of daily water changes.

Sasquatch
10-22-2008, 11:42 AM
I've done both and if given the choice, I'll go fishless every time.

The only problem with fishless cycling is finding the ammonia. Once that's done, there are lots of advantages.
- It's better for the fish: No stressed out, rapidly breathing, lethargic fish.
- It's faster: 2-3 weeks vs. 6-8. If you use media from your old tank, you can do it in 1 week!
- No fish you don't want: Danios are great fish, but not everyone wants some in their tanks and most other fish are too sensitive.
- No daily water changes: One or two big ones at the end to get the nitrates down and you're done. With fishy cycles you often end up doing small daily water changes to keep ammonia and nitrites down.
- More fish faster: On top of being faster to cycle the tank, once it's cycled you can add more fish at once. In fishy cycling you gradually build up the bioload over several months and each time you risk adding diseases.

That's my take on things, hope it helps.

Mvjnz
10-22-2008, 12:21 PM
I actually know a whole aquatic community where pretty much no one ever uses ammonia to cycle a tank. They just put plants and gravel in and leave it all running for about 4-5 weeks, and because of the plants and I guess snails, you get the necessary ammonia to cycle it, without ever adding anything.

But of course after it cycles that way you can only add 2-3 fish at a time. When adding ammonia you can control how much there is and so can safely add more fish at a time.

Btw, if you used established media from another tank, the new tank is instantly cycled and there's no need to wait a week.

Taurus
10-22-2008, 01:13 PM
I stated using a fish,with a qualifier.I use media,some gravel and a percentage of water from an established tank.

Ditto here.

Sir Tristen
10-22-2008, 03:16 PM
Depends on how many fish you kill in the process I guess. But if you get one fish and it survives the cycling then I can't imagine how fishless is cheaper with all the ammonia you have to buy.

I bought a large container of ammonia at a dollar store that would last through many tanks of cycling. It only takes a little bit. I'm doing fishless because of all the recommendations here. For more info on the fishless cycle, you could check out the sticky in the cycling subforum. It takes a while, as I'm still in the middle of my first cycle myself, but it's kind of an interesting chemistry experiment, and you know that you won't make your fish suffer from the cycle. And you don't get stuck with danios :c3:

terrapin24h
10-22-2008, 04:52 PM
I bought a large container of ammonia at a dollar store that would last through many tanks of cycling. It only takes a little bit. I'm doing fishless because of all the recommendations here. For more info on the fishless cycle, you could check out the sticky in the cycling subforum. It takes a while, as I'm still in the middle of my first cycle myself, but it's kind of an interesting chemistry experiment, and you know that you won't make your fish suffer from the cycle. And you don't get stuck with danios :c3:

Yeah, cycling a tank takes only mL of ammonia. I think I might have 40 drops(under 20 mL) into my 10 gal so far. Plus the bottle of ammonia i got cost less than the fish would to produce a similar amount of bacteria. Fishless cycling has the added benefit of giving you a tank's worth of bacteria at the end, where as fish cycling only yields the amount of bacteria for the number of fish that survived the process. Both take too long though imo :)

--chris--patiently wtg for my 10gal to cycle

soFISHticated lady
10-23-2008, 12:12 AM
thanks every one, so far the fishLESS cycling is winning out :)

I do have an established tank already, and didnt think it would be that quick if I used the filter or gravel to start.

so thats what I will do. much easier.

KEEP VOTING :)(Vampire)

bushwhacker
10-29-2008, 01:13 AM
cant see how fishless are winning when out of 15 posts in this thread only 5 have done fishless.. i've fishy cycled all my tanks usually with a used filter