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Lady Hobbs
03-05-2007, 09:42 PM
Oh My Gawd. I have nitrites 23 hours after starting a cycle!!!!!!!

All brand new substrate (unseeded) and all new water. Just using my icky filter media and I added 5 T. of Stress Zyme.........which I feel isn't all that hot.

At 4 pm last night, I started with 5 T of ammonia (about 5. on ammonia test)but this morning it was only registering at 3. so I added more. That was 10 hours ago and already ammonia reading is back to 3. so I thought I would test nitrites "just for fun."

I about fell over to see these nitrites already. So......thought I would test my tap water. My tank has nitrites! None in the tap.

:19: :19: :19:

Chrona
03-05-2007, 09:52 PM
GG, if only Lauren B was so lucky to have tap water so conducive to bacterial growth ;)

Lady Hobbs
03-05-2007, 10:11 PM
This is my first go-round at using ammonia myself. Heck, you have to guess at it because the test kit for ammonia goes from 4. - 8. and since you want it at 5., it's just guess work really. And I certainly didn't think it had to be added more than once a day. Prolly doesn't.

I put in a piece of driftwood I've used for some time this morning and I have suspicions that wood, being porous as it is, probably holds a good amount of bacteria. Old hard stones certainly can't carry what a chunk of wood does. I also have to wonder if a cycle isn't faster with sand????????

Who the heck knows but I was really planning at at least 4 days to show any nitrites at all.

Severus
03-05-2007, 10:34 PM
Thats good to hear. Congrats! lol. Hopefully you will have a quick cycle and your fish can get back into their tank

Chrona
03-05-2007, 10:34 PM
The thing is, I'd rather have a normal cycle. That way I wouldn't keep second guessing my results, lol.

AquaQueen
03-05-2007, 10:39 PM
Hobbs you are one lucky duck everything seem's to work out well for you. I will be testing my water later on tonight and I will share the results with ya. Good Luck!

Lady Hobbs
03-05-2007, 10:51 PM
AND I HAVE NITRATES! Not a ton but about 7.

LOLOL Damn I am good! I didn't even get a chance to put the used gravel or poop in there. LOL

Chrona
03-05-2007, 10:52 PM
wtf? lol

Non-priming power filters, tanks cycling in 48 hours. I swear your house sits on some wierd anomaly.

Lauren B.
03-05-2007, 10:57 PM
GG, if only Lauren B was so lucky to have tap water so conducive to bacterial growth ;)

Amen!

Hobbs, I guarantee that your tank will be cycled and well inhabited before my even gets close! Congrats though!

Lauren B.
03-05-2007, 11:00 PM
AND I HAVE NITRATES! Not a ton but about 7.


I told you you'd be closer to the finish line than me! I've been cycling for...what?...over 3 weeks and your nitrates are already higher than mine!

Lady, you better buy some lottery tickets with that luck of yours!! :thumb:

Chrona
03-05-2007, 11:02 PM
Sorry Hobbs, I bought lottery tickets today, so you won't be able to win.

cocoa_pleco
03-05-2007, 11:47 PM
ive had 10 hour cycling with seeded gravel, filter, etc.

Lady Hobbs
03-06-2007, 01:38 AM
I told you you'd be closer to the finish line than me! I've been cycling for...what?...over 3 weeks and your nitrates are already higher than mine!

Lady, you better buy some lottery tickets with that luck of yours!! :thumb:



Gee, the Mega Million is 325 Million right now, too. I would throw this 55 out if I won that money and get me a 500 gallon.....2 of them. But then, I just might need a house to put them in?????

This is how my first go at cycling went.

Cleaned the hell out of the tank constantly until I found out that's a big no-no. Finally got it to cycle and a week later changed the gravel color......there I go again. Then another cycle was completed and I decided to move my tank. There I go again. Finally.......got it done again, moved to where I wanted it, everything was all honkey-dorey and I had to add fungal meds.

:wink2: :wink2: :wink2: D***** tank finally got a decent cycle after about 3 months. In the meantime, I had fish in the tank so did 3000 water changes to keep them alive.

I swear my fish were scratching their heads with their little fins screaming...........here we go again. I think in all this time, I lost maybe 5 fish..........all gourami's.

Turn your temps up to 82 and aerate the heck out of that tank.

Chrona
03-06-2007, 01:43 AM
lol, well, my first tank probably never cycled. Each time the tank got cloudy, I drained everything, washed the gravel, filter everything, and refilled with new water. It's a miracle the goldfish lived as long as they did.

cocoa_pleco
03-06-2007, 02:00 AM
lol, well, my first tank probably never cycled. Each time the tank got cloudy, I drained everything, washed the gravel, filter everything, and refilled with new water. It's a miracle the goldfish lived as long as they did.


same. I had like a 8 gallon with 4 big goldfish, 2 plecos, 3 corys, 4 tetras, 1 ghost shrimp, a loach, and a otto cat. My first tank. I learnt a lesson 10 years ago from that incident

AquaQueen
03-06-2007, 02:13 AM
lol, well, my first tank probably never cycled. Each time the tank got cloudy, I drained everything, washed the gravel, filter everything, and refilled with new water. It's a miracle the goldfish lived as long as they did.

I think we all...well most of us have done that....lol I did for a year before I even heard of cycling a tank and I still have one fish from when we started...love him alot too:1luvu:

Lauren B.
03-06-2007, 02:52 AM
Hobbs had definitely exercised the right to change her mind when it comes to her aquarium!

I suppose I should consider myself lucky then (or maybe I'm just rather brilliant!)....I came here first and read the e-book and asked questions before even buying my first tank.

My cycling isn't going anywhere close to being as outlined (you guys would have fun trying to explain the yo-yo-ing nitrites and the stagnant nitrates). I guess I should just count my blessings that I even know about cycling, and when I finally do get my fish I hope I can rest assured they will be happy and healthy.

All your big stories of failure give me hope! :thumb:

Chrona
03-06-2007, 02:56 AM
Yep, I try to take pride in the fact that, whatever screw up I make, someone out there has screwed up worse.

Btw, STILL not cycled? wtfzors

cocoa_pleco
03-06-2007, 02:57 AM
you are lucky you knew about cycling. I knew squat about my first tank. Within 5 minutes of water in it, i had 3 goldfish

cocoa_pleco
03-06-2007, 02:57 AM
Yep, I try to take pride in the fact that, whatever screw up I make, someone out there has screwed up worse.

Btw, STILL not cycled? wtfzors

NOT cycled yet? i wouldve hung myself by now. Can you get seeded gravel from a lfs?

Chrona
03-06-2007, 03:04 AM
No I was talking to Lauren. She used Biospira and I guess it's still cycling, although it's much faster than before.

cocoa_pleco
03-06-2007, 03:17 AM
No I was talking to Lauren. She used Biospira and I guess it's still cycling, although it's much faster than before.


thats who i was talkin to, lauren.
How did you get 1000 posts already chrona? lol

Chrona
03-06-2007, 03:36 AM
How did you get 2200? :P

cocoa_pleco
03-06-2007, 03:46 AM
Ummmm... how about spamming alot? like



ditto:1: :1: :1: :1: lol

*Sarah*
03-06-2007, 03:59 AM
That's awesome Hobbs! Mine's been cycling for about 3 weeks or so, but because of the plants eating up the ammonia, it's taking a lot longer than it's supposed to. It's ok though, I'm not in a hurry.

Lauren B.
03-06-2007, 05:43 AM
These are my readings. I welcome any opinions.

Ammonia - .50 (before adding in 2 drops of ammonia in the morning, the reading is .25)

PH - finally got a stable reading at 6.6 after 4 doses of Proper ph

Nitrites - .50 (it seemed to spike slightly to 1.0 about 4 days ago. After adding in the first dose of Proper ph, it immediately plummeted to 0. It's been reading a steady .50 the last 3 days...no rises, no falls)

Nitrates - 5.0 (it's been stuck at this number for 3 days and doesn't rise at all)

I take reading in the morning, and then again about 12 hours later. I'm so anxious to see a change, and I'm afraid I'll miss something important, so it seems I'm constantly testing.

Lauren B.
03-06-2007, 05:47 AM
Maybe this is why there are no other Texans or Southerners on this forum. Our water (or something) here is so screwed that your cycling ends up all f**ked up! No one south or west of the Mason-Dixon is able to keep a decent tank!

Lauren B.
03-06-2007, 06:02 AM
same. I had like a 8 gallon with 4 big goldfish, 2 plecos, 3 corys, 4 tetras, 1 ghost shrimp, a loach, and a otto cat.

Cocoa went with the less popular "twelve inches of fish per gallon" rule!

Cichlid_Man
03-06-2007, 10:57 AM
I would have stopped the ammonia by now if I saw nitrites and nitrates.
That's the way I did my tank and had no problems here in Virginia.
Nothing wrong with southern water :-)

Water is fine....Cycling just takes a bit, that's all.
Your numbers should stabilize after a few days.

Also, Stress Zyme is a good product. Not the best, but it works.
I would discontinue the ammonia and start "feeding your tank" flake food as if there were fish it in. You will see your nitrites drop off to zero and your ammonia also, and your nitrates will sit about 5 or 10.

Chrona
03-06-2007, 12:45 PM
I would have stopped the ammonia by now if I saw nitrites and nitrates.
That's the way I did my tank and had no problems here in Virginia.
Nothing wrong with southern water :-)

Water is fine....Cycling just takes a bit, that's all.
Your numbers should stabilize after a few days.

Also, Stress Zyme is a good product. Not the best, but it works.
I would discontinue the ammonia and start "feeding your tank" flake food as if there were fish it in. You will see your nitrites drop off to zero and your ammonia also, and your nitrates will sit about 5 or 10.

But if you stop adding ammonia, the bacteria that converts ammonia to nitrites will die off. Fish food takes a while to decompose into ammonia, and it brings all kinds of other stuff into the tank, such as phosphates. The fishless cycle is supposed to stabilize the bacterial population so that it has exactly enough bacteria to neutralize 2.5 ppm of ammonia, which would be the equivalent of a tank full of fish, so if there are still nitrites and ammonia, then it means the bacteria population still isn't there yet.

Lady Hobbs
03-06-2007, 01:06 PM
Sorry Hobbs, I bought lottery tickets today, so you won't be able to win.

I buy them everyday! That means I should be winning a lot more than you! haha

You are talking about the lottery here, right? Man, I wish that was real money!

Lady Hobbs
03-06-2007, 02:10 PM
Ammonia - .50 (before adding in 2 drops of ammonia in the morning, the reading is .25)

PH - finally got a stable reading at 6.6 after 4 doses of Proper ph

Nitrites - .50 (it seemed to spike slightly to 1.0 about 4 days ago. After adding in the first dose of Proper ph, it immediately plummeted to 0. It's been reading a steady .50 the last 3 days...no rises, no falls)

Nitrates - 5.0 (it's been stuck at this number for 3 days and doesn't rise at all)

Well, this is why we call it a forum as we have different ideas on things and it's good to consider all of them. Mine views differ however.

When you cycle, your ammonia reading should be at 5. until you see nitrites......cutting back to 3. when you start to see nitrites. And done cyclying when both are at 0.

This is what we all read and think should happen but in reality, everyones tank is different. We all have different water, different temps, different substracts and decorations and any little thing can change the way our cycle goes.

Adding other chemicals now is not necessary (other than dechlorinator or bacteria boosters) and you're wasting time and money worrying about them. You mentioned your nitrites going to zero after adding Proper pH. This tells me that possibly adding this stuff may possibly be giving your a false reading or is skewing with your cycle.

You'll have to do a large water change before you can add any fish and will lose it all then, anyway. These things will not need to be addressed until a couple hours before you add fish.

I would crank up the heat as high as it will go and aerate that tank. It needs air and heat to make bacteria grow faster.

Adding food is a way to go but it takes a long time for food to rot and make ammonia and not only that, it makes a bloody mess out of your tank. A few drops of pure ammonia will get you right now what food would get you in two weeks of rotting. However, it would be good plant fertilizer.

I also wonder how much gravel is in your tank. Less gravel is less storage area for the bacteria to grow. Easier to keep clean, yes, but nonetheless, less storage area. (My tanks all have 3 inches of gravel except for my sand tank.)

Didn't you add your plants during your cycle? If so, you upset the process messing in the gravel. ( I can't remember when you added the plants.) And, have you been using fertilizers?

You may want to leave the tank alone for a couple days and do nothing and see what kind of reading you get. It's possible you are feeding it more ammonia than the bacteria is able to eat up fast enough. The bacteria that eats up that ammonia grows faster than the bacteria that eats up the nitrites and those can appear to just stall at times.

Do not get discouraged. I will tell you right now that a small tank is the pits for cycling.

Just to show you how odd things can get when doing a cycle is when I cycled my 55 gallon. I had run out of space and added more fish to cycle this tank that I will even admit out loud! I waited and waited and my ammonia reading never once got over .25. Everything was brand new in the tank, too, and by all rights, I should have had an ammonia spike from hell. It never happened!

I changed a small amount of water, went to FL for 9 days, and returned to a finished tank. I have very hard water, a pH of 7.6 and this tank had no aeration other than the filter going.

We try to advise others what to do in these situations but in all honesty, we can only offer suggestions because your tank will do what your tank will do in it's own time. 3 weeks is about right, however, for a fully cycled tank and actually you are about on the money.

My suggestion would be to leave it alone for two days and see what kind of readings you actually have and let everything catch up. If you still have messed up readings, continue with the ammonia.

You are about done. I can feel it. LOL

Lauren B.
03-06-2007, 08:54 PM
Hobbs, thanks for taking all that time to give me this info. I really appreciate your help.

I suppose I will just sit back, do my 2 ammonia drops a day and deal with the waiting time. I'm just getting a little impatient because I waited to long to see my reading change, and after that everything was supposed to be fast. Now I'm just ending up waiting....again for the second time.

I've been doing everything you outlined...no moving of the gravel (only minimal movement when I tried my flexible bubble wand, and that was in an ornament, not underneath the gravel), and nothing else (fake plants, intake/filter, heater) has not been touched at all My temp is 86, and I have two airstones (one round and large) in a 6 gallon tank which one will have to be removed before putting fish in because there are somany surface bubbles. I added in BioSpira last week, and that was the first time I saw things happening as it should (since then however, I've had no luck). My gravel is at an acceptable level...1 1/2 to 2 inches in a 11 inch tall tank (any more would look like a ridiculous amount of gravel). Again, fake plants, so no flora additives there.

I honestly have done everything as best I can, by the book, and for the most part have spared no expense.

Okay, I will just shutup and sit back and wait. Perhaps for my birthday next month, my tank will be cycled and I can finallly add fish in it for a happy birthday!

Lady Hobbs
03-06-2007, 09:20 PM
In the meantime here at Hobbs:

ammonia 4.
nitrites 1.
nitrates 10.

I got my Python today for filling/emptying a tank and what's the first thing I do? Screw the brass adaptor so bloody tight onto my faucet I can't get it off. :(

Also got my bubblers and Laterite for planting. Plants are due tomorrow! And I will plant them where...............??????? LOL sheesh......don't say it out loud. This is a family forum.

niqolas619
03-06-2007, 11:53 PM
I got my Python today for filling/emptying a tank and what's the first thing I do? Screw the brass adaptor so bloody tight onto my faucet I can't get it off.


That is one major problem I have with the python syphoning system. I don't know why they didn't put notches (like on a nut) on the brass fitting so you could use a wrench to attach and detach it easier. I guess they were either cutting corners or didn't want people to snap off their faucet by gorilla torquing the fitting. Either way, it is a major pain to deal with as is.

Lady Hobbs
03-07-2007, 03:36 AM
I did get a notice in the package that says Python has brass fittings now that attach to the faucet rather than the plastic ones they previously had. Sure works great as I can't get it off. LOL

Plants should be coming in a day or two. This should be interesting since it's 0 outside. I have a nasty feeling they will all be frozen!

Chrona
03-07-2007, 03:42 AM
Where are you getting them from?

cocoa_pleco
03-07-2007, 03:43 AM
ive seen pythons at petsmart

Faith_at_Large
03-07-2007, 07:39 PM
Yesterday I added a little over one mililitre of Ammonia (store type with water as first ingredient) for the first time and today I did a test for all my basic parameters, pH, Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates. I read 8.2 on my pH which is higher than my home tank, 4.9 on my Ammonia (Hagen/Nutrifin Mini Master Test Kit), 3.3 or top of range for my Nitrites, and 110 or top of range for Nitrates. This tank is filled with water from the same City system as my home tank so the baseline parameters should not be that different. The reagents test in mg/L not ppm. Also this tank was previously used and had all of its original equipment and gravel (new filter cartridge); however, the tank had not been used for many months.

I am not sure if I should leave it be and test again tomorrow, or continue to add ammonia to it each day. My guess is that the 1 ml dosage for this brand of Ammonia, works for my ten gallon tank and I should probably continue to dose until the Ammonia spikes higher or until the Ammonia and Nitrites start reducing.

Lady Hobbs
03-07-2007, 08:29 PM
Bring ammonia levels up to 5. everyday until you start to see nitrites. When you see readings for nitrites, reduce ammonia to 3. daily. Keep this up until you have readings of 0 ammonia and 0 nitrites. You will then have very high nitrates. Do a large water change and you're good to go. You can add your fish when your temps are correct.

Lady Hobbs
03-07-2007, 08:34 PM
Where are you getting them from?

I ordered my Laterite, Python and bubbles from Pet Solutions. I am LOVING THIS PYTHON. Couldn't think it thru yesterday but today it all come to me and it is awesome. I will not miss slopping buckets of water, water running down my arms, towels on the floor, etc.

It can't take more than 10 minutes to clean and fill a tank!

hungryhound
03-07-2007, 08:54 PM
I ordered my Laterite, Python and bubbles from Pet Solutions. I am LOVING THIS PYTHON. Couldn't think it thru yesterday but today it all come to me and it is awesome. I will not miss slopping buckets of water, water running down my arms, towels on the floor, etc.

It can't take more than 10 minutes to clean and fill a tank!

Man I envy you. It took me 40 minutes to do my last water change.

I would buy one but I am in a rental and it does not look like it will fit the fixtures in my townhouse.

Do you think that I can blackmail my landlord into changing my fixture in exchagne for me spilling less fish water on his carpets :p

Severus
03-08-2007, 05:22 AM
A Python is one of the best investments you will ever make!

Lady Hobbs
03-08-2007, 05:48 AM
I practiced in my kitchen sink and it sucked the water out so fast it scared me! Certainly much faster than I can fill it with pails of water. LOL

I do wish it come with an attachment at the vac end. It wouldn't take much to suck up a fish at the speed it goes. I'm sure they must sell attachments of some kind so will look for one.

Lady Hobbs
03-08-2007, 05:52 AM
Man I envy you. It took me 40 minutes to do my last water change.

I would buy one but I am in a rental and it does not look like it will fit the fixtures in my townhouse.

Do you think that I can blackmail my landlord into changing my fixture in exchagne for me spilling less fish water on his carpets :p

I live in an apartment but my fixtures are just like I had in my house. The kitchen and bathroom sinks both have the little "strainers" that screw into your faucet. I just took those out and hooked with the Phython. There is attachments to hook up to a faucet that has inside or outside threads at the faucet.

I can't believe it took me a year and a half to buy one of these things.

jeffs99dime
03-08-2007, 03:11 PM
I live in an apartment but my fixtures are just like I had in my house. The kitchen and bathroom sinks both have the little "strainers" that screw into your faucet. I just took those out and hooked with the Phython. There is attachments to hook up to a faucet that has inside or outside threads at the faucet.

I can't believe it took me a year and a half to buy one of these things.

hobbs. just be careful to make sure the brass fitting from the python doesn't cross-thread into your faucet. just a tip.

Lady Hobbs
03-08-2007, 03:17 PM
Can't get it out! My son will probably come over one of these days and just turn it with his little fingers and there it will be. I am somehow on the puny side.

My nitrites are stuck just as I knew they would be. I am adding just enough ammonia to my tank everyday to keep the bacteria colony alive but each time I check, ammonia is back to 0. Nitrites 1. and Nitrates 10. I keep telling my fish I am hurrying but they are no longer listening.

No plants yet and tracking number still not worth beans! UPS certainly has better tracking than the postal system.

Severus
03-08-2007, 04:13 PM
Can't get it out! My son will probably come over one of these days and just turn it with his little fingers and there it will be. I am somehow on the puny side.

That happened to me awhile back. I found that you dont need to put that adapter in very tight at all. Once you feel a little "snugness" it is good. I had to use a rubber bottle opener to get mine out.

reybie
03-08-2007, 04:30 PM
Same here, I had to use one of those wide rubber wristbad thingies and then used a wide-mouth plier for a little help in turning.

Incredulous_Ed
03-08-2007, 07:22 PM
Cool hobbs!