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Drumachine09
02-18-2007, 12:55 AM
I dont know if there is any difference in cycling a marine tank than cycling a FW one, but so far on my marine cycle, my ammonia is off the charts, on its scale it would be a 1.0 (this is just an estimate, as the scale only goes to .8) my nitates are 10, my nitrites are .1, and my ph is 8.3. Is this normal?

f1oored
02-18-2007, 01:47 AM
Are you using live rock to cycle? What all do you have in the tank now?

Fishguy2727
02-18-2007, 01:56 AM
Are you fishless cycling? If so, what are you using as your source for ammonia? Is there anything living being put through this?

Drumachine09
02-18-2007, 02:26 AM
Only substrate and a raw shrimp, like FW said to do.

Fishguy2727
02-18-2007, 03:07 AM
Pure ammonia is a much better way to fishless cycle. It is more precise and constant. Most likely that shrimp will stop giving off ammonia by the time it is actually cycled. Then all the nitrifying bacteria die off and you are uncycled again. I can't imagine doing it in a way so unpredictable as with shrimp. Honestly I would start over, you haven't lost much time and will work out much better for you (and more importantly your first fish).

Drumachine09
02-18-2007, 03:11 AM
Pure ammonia is a much better way to fishless cycle. It is more precise and constant. Most likely that shrimp will stop giving off ammonia by the time it is actually cycled. Then all the nitrifying bacteria die off and you are uncycled again. I can't imagine doing it in a way so unpredictable as with shrimp. Honestly I would start over, you haven't lost much time and will work out much better for you (and more importantly your first fish).

I can do that. But im a little sketchy on the details. How would i use amonnia to cycle the tank. How much do i add per day/week?

cocoa_pleco
02-18-2007, 04:26 AM
i just added a crapload of cycle to my salttank in my first saltwater, and waited a week.i think ill do that this time too


I just have to get the powerheads and coral now.

Tuesday ill get those surprisingly cheap powerheads for 5 bucks each, and some crushed coral.

Hell, for five bucks a powerhead, ill get one for each day of the week! lol

cocoa_pleco
02-18-2007, 04:28 AM
I think you put ammonia in till its 5ppm, then wait a while till it goes to 2.5ppm and add more. Im not sure.

Theres a sticky on fishless cycling on a thread though

Fishguy2727
02-18-2007, 03:15 PM
The most labor intensive part will be the first day. Add one drop, then test ammonia after a few minutes (time for the ammonia to be circulated and evenly distributed). Keep doing this until it brings the ammonia up to the middle to high end of the ammonia test kit range. Keep count of the number of drops. Then you can add this number of drops everyday to simulate the constant addition of ammonia that will come. In the beginning the ammonia will quickly shoot up off the chart, but eventually as the bacteria that will break down ammonia into nitrites start growing, the ammonia level will drop. Doing this the tank will be ready for up to that exact ammonia input daily. By bringing the ammonia to a certain level after it drops below that level, you will have problems later with how much to add because the nitrifying bacteria will be consuming it so fast. In order to keep the nitrifying bacteria alive and capable of the ammonia input you need to add the ammonia EVERY DAY until you add fish. Keep in mind that depending on how concentrated the ammonia is that you buy, you may have to dilute it before adding it, otherwise one drop could possibly bring ammonia off the chart (depending on tank size).

You can test ammonia a short time after you add it if you have the chance and see how fast it is consumed. You may find that if you add ammonia at 8a.m. every morning, when it is cycled ammonia may be consumed by 5p.m., allowing you to purchase and add fish after that tiem of day if you added ammonia that day. Safest would be to not add ammonia the day you plan to get fish. Remember that the tank is not cycled until the ammonia and nitrites have both spiked and gone back to 0.0. That means you will still have to test both until ammonia is 0, at which point you can stop testing ammonia except to see how fast it is consumed. Then keep testing nitrites until they are 0, then you are cycled. Keep track and let us know the trends you see. I would be very curious to see how fast ammonia goes back to 0 after you add it once the tank is cycled. I would also be curious as to whether there is any trace of nitrite at any point once the tank is cycled (as in: you add ammonia, it is consumed, but as the ammonia is broken down to nitrite the nitrite consuming bacteria consume it as fast as it is produced by the other bacteria). I hope this isn't too confusing, please let me know if it is so I can explain it better.