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hideandseek
02-21-2009, 06:02 PM
So my tank has been cycling for about 3-4 weeks now, but my ammonia does not show any signs of going away. Before I started the cycle I looked online for how many fish to put in to start the cycle. Live Aquaria said for a 55 gallon aquarium to put in about 10" of fish to start the cycle. Well, I went to the LFS and bought about 9" of fish and put them in with a molly from my 10 gallon tank for a total of about 11". I knew this was higher than 10", but I figured it wouldn't make a significant difference. I also put the sponge filter from my whisper 10 in with my filtration for my 55gal in order to help cultivate bacteria.

Well, since then I have gotten rid of 5" of fish because I had to return my tiger barbs to the store (Another story, go to the barb section if you want to know) and put a female sword into the 55 gal from my 10 gal in place of the five tiger barbs. So now there are only 6 fish in the tank, 1 sailfin molly, 1 female sword, 3 julii corydoras and one sailfin molly fry who is about .5" for a total of about 8".

So I have also been testing for ammonia regularly and it seems to be constantly at about 1.5-2ppm. I do a 50% water change, the next day its back to 2 ppm, I dose with AMMO-Lock, the next day it is again back to 2 ppm. It seems like no matter what I do it stays at 2 ppm. It doesn't seem to me that there are too many fish in there. And also it seems weird that its not dropping off by now, especially after having the established sponge filter in there for like 2 weeks.

Am I doing anything wrong? Does this sound normal?

PostalPenguin
02-21-2009, 06:20 PM
Ammo-Lock will not change your ammonia readings, it simply changes the ammonia into its less toxic form. However, the test kit doesn't distinguish between the two so ammo-lock really wont change the readings much. Did you remember to dechlorinate the water? What are your nitrite levels?

hideandseek
02-21-2009, 09:12 PM
I am using a python to do water changes and I dechlorinate after its done filling. I also have well water so really I shouldn't have too much chlorine, but I dechlorinate anyway.

I don't know what my nitrite levels are, I'm going out tonight so I'll pick up a test kit.

If the ammonia is detoxifyed, will bacteria still convert it to nitrites?

escamosa
02-21-2009, 10:07 PM
Don't panic about your tank hideandseek, cycling can take anything up to 2 months to finish using fish, you can try adding a bacteria booster such as stress zyme to help speed things along a bit.
Other things that can help you is to add lot's of live plants they help to absorb some of the ammonia.
Turn your heat up to around 81 or 82 F ( 29- 30 C) this is safe for fish and add an air stone to give the bacteria more oxygen to help it grow.
Keep up the water changes, everthing seems fine to me at this stage of a cycle.
If you test your water for nitrites i think you might find that they would be starting to build up a bit aswell.
Be patient.thumbs2:

hideandseek
02-22-2009, 03:33 AM
Nitrites were 0. So another thing that doesn't make sense. I did get some stress zyme so I'll give that a try.

Oh and on top of everything so far, my fish don't even seem to be stressed at all from 2.0 ppm of Ammonia. It's probably because of the AMMO-lock but still...

Lady Hobbs
02-22-2009, 07:59 AM
What is the temp of the tank? The cooler the water, the longer to cycle. You can raise the temps to around 82. Do NO cleaning and do not overfeed. The rotting food will also give an ammonia spike. You should have been seeing nitrites by now, I'd think, but it does take longer with fish.

hideandseek
02-22-2009, 05:06 PM
The temp is 78 degrees F.

Lady Hobbs, maybe cleaning is part of the problem. Not only have I done 3 30% - 50% water changes since I started, but I also had to clean the glass yesterday. (When I say "had to" its because my dad made me because the glass was getting a little cloudy. I tried to explain to him that it was probably bacteria growing on the glass, but he wouldn't listen and did one of those "If you don't do it and I have to, then there's going to be trouble" speeches. He also won't let me turn the heater up past 78 degrees.)

I'll try to make sure he stays away from it during the week while I am away at school.

hideandseek
02-24-2009, 06:20 PM
So my ammonia is still going up, and my nitirites are still 0. Wtf is wrong? My tank has been running for 4 weeks and I still have no bacteria?

I mean maybe if I had just started it with all new filter media and stuff, but I pulled the established sponge filter out of my 10 gallon and put it in the filter of the new tank and used stress zyme. It seems to me like there must be something not letting my bacteria grow.

I'm going to try the sponge filter again as well as a net full of gravel underneath the filter intake.

escamosa
02-24-2009, 07:56 PM
The temp is 78 degrees F.

Lady Hobbs, maybe cleaning is part of the problem. Not only have I done 3 30% - 50% water changes since I started, but I also had to clean the glass yesterday. (When I say "had to" its because my dad made me because the glass was getting a little cloudy. I tried to explain to him that it was probably bacteria growing on the glass, but he wouldn't listen and did one of those "If you don't do it and I have to, then there's going to be trouble" speeches. He also won't let me turn the heater up past 78 degrees.)

I'll try to make sure he stays away from it during the week while I am away at school.

I think your best bet would be to get your dad to read this thread and maybe some other bits and peices on the forum to try and make him understand.thumbs2:

hideandseek
02-26-2009, 05:08 AM
He's getting better, however my tank is getting worse. What would cause NO bacteria growth?

Sharon
02-26-2009, 10:34 AM
If the tank has been running that long with fish, you must have some bacteria...unless you're not dechlorinating the water, OR you are cleaning the filter media. Maybe your test kit is faulty. Which one are you using?

hideandseek
02-26-2009, 02:51 PM
I'm using the API Ammonia and Nitrite test kits.

Sharon
02-26-2009, 02:54 PM
That's a good kit....check expiry date....and make sure you are doing tests correctly. I know you probably are, but I can't think of anything else.:ssmile:

Northernguy
02-26-2009, 03:09 PM
When I cycled with fish i was doing daily water changes for what seemed like months.I ended up adding Tetra Safe Start and the whole cycle came around.No more ammonia or nitrites just nitrates.
If you can get it I say try it!

hideandseek
02-27-2009, 05:03 PM
I've tried stress zyme, but it didn't work. It just seems really weird that I have had ammonia over 1 ppm for about 3 weeks now and still have no nitrites and no fish have died yet. (Knock on wood)

Also, I had a couple rocks in there I found in the desert when I was out in Vegas, would these cause any cycling problems or are the conditions they would alter things like pH, hardness and alkalinity? My dad called me a couple days ago and said he was taking them out and isolating them in order to test them for this. I tested them about a week after I put them in and the pH hadn't changed so I assumed they were fine.

hideandseek
03-01-2009, 05:46 PM
thumbs2: :19: thumbs2:
I HAVE NITRITES!!!! And my ammonia is going down!

Pterophyllum
03-07-2009, 03:25 AM
From my experience I have always had live plants, aqua clear, cycle aquarium salt, flourish, and accu clear with me.

So I put pretty much ALL of those in when I do a water change, and I just used reverse osmosis water to fill up the tank after i drained out the tap water for testing of leakage..

So you should've just gone with reverse osmosis water.

But, since your using tap water I believe. Have you been using conditioner? or do you have any gravel?

If you do, you MUST put in some live plants, it can help. Even though people say it will absorb some nitrites or nitrates I believe, it will absorb some ammonia, and heavy metals that are found in the tap water. No matter how good you condition the water, there will still be a little bit of heavy metals inside of the water.

I'm pretty sure that tap water may or may not have iron in the water either.. and if iron is rich in the water, I suggest that you get some sword plants. Mainly amazon swords :)

They are really good at absorbing the iron and that is what makes the leaves turn green.

Pterophyllum
03-07-2009, 04:32 PM
thumbs2: :19: thumbs2:
I HAVE NITRITES!!!! And my ammonia is going down!

Oh wonderful!!

Now, your on a good road to begin raising fishes :)

Just be sure if you have any problems, you can ALWAYS ask on AC forums :) I'm always on now xD

Good luck!