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Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 23
  1. Default Cycle boosters, insta-cycle, Stress Zyme+ etc. etc.


    0 Not allowed!
    I have been reading around about these suppliments/additives this morning and I'm somewhat puzzled.

    Basically the short of it, as you can imagine, is

    LFS: Use lots of it, here, take 3 expensive bottles of it. Throw some expensive fish in to it, but you can't bring them back if they die as your a newbie and you probably killed them, but do come back for more cycle booster and more fish next week.
    Experts: Pointless, does nothing.

    First let me make it clear, I'm not trying to start an argument and I'm not saying they work. It's just that the arguments provided for why "they simply can't work" seem somewhat odd.

    Consider the argument that says, "Bacteria die if a filter is removed from water within 12 hours.", often accompanied with, "The bacteria need water flow, ammonia/nitrite and oxygen to survive", resulting in, "How can they possibly survive in a bottle for months on a shelf?"

    Now. These same protagonists will claim that they cycle a tank with nothing but dechlorinated water and ammonia.

    I'm not a biologist or a chemist okay, but bacteria do not just self assemble out of water and ammonia. So they must come from somewhere.

    "They are naturally occuring"

    Great. Where? They apparently can't live outside of water, without oxygen or anywhere near chorline. So where do they come from? Unless you happen to be sponge bob and you live at the bottom of a river/lake/stream your living room is certainly not underwater and anything that came out of your tap is chlorinated and thus any in that would die. They can't be airborne unless they are managing to attach to floating particles of water vapour. So I'm kinda lost as to the source and having a fish that came out of a cycled tank might actually be beneficial as it's skin is far more likely to contain bacteria than your living room air.

    So, dropping the cynicism for a moment, here's what I propose.

    They, like a number of microbes are sporial bacteria and when removed from their environment shutdown into a dormant state. The living conditions that allow them to bud and flourish are so common on our planet that they are abundant in all water and even airborne is minute quantities.

    Tangent: I did a home experiment at university. Take a sealable rectangular container, measure it's volume. Exactly half fill it with tomato soup (because it's irradiated sterile at the factory before canning) and instantly seal it. Leave it at room temperature for 2 weeks and then count the microbial cultures growing on it. Then you can work out the number of microbial spores that were free floating in your kitchen per m3 of air. The number was fairly scary, I got 14 in the tub and that worked out at hundreds of spores per cubic meter. Of course, these were most likely one or two different species of fungus that happens to like tomato soup. There were, the course told us, probably 100s of times more bacteria, fungi and other microbes in that air that didn't like soup.

    Then of course they tell us about chicken and how salmonella et. al. remain dormant and sporial even in roasted chicken and will pretty immediately come back to live and begin doubling when the chicken falls below 55*C.


    Now this got me to thinking about other microbiology I have experience of, beer making. It's sort of like a cycle, but it would be more like taking ammonia rich water and dumping a dense source of bacteria into it. With beer it is of course sugar rich water and the sugar fungus, aka yeast. The yeast have of course been dried and are not alive*. *They are a little bit weird in that the yeast in the dried state would fail every "is it alive" test. Professional yeast are bred, provided with nutrient rich water and oxygenated until they reach a peak in budding state, they are then rapidly dried leaving them in a dormant state, but stuffed full of oxygen and food reserves. Dump them into beer wort at 20*C and within a few hours they start to bud, within a day they will have completely infected the 5-10 gallons of beer so much that it will be churning and pumping out litres of C02 every hour. Soon they consume all the oxygen, the rest in the fermenter forced out by the heavier CO2 in the "head space". With no oxygen left, they start to produce the whole point of the infection, alcohol (and CO2).

    Beer makers often use aquarium bubblers or airstones and pumps to aerate the wort before inoculating. Higher oxygen = more yeast before they transition to the alcohol making stage.

    When the alcohol leaves rise, it's like fish swimming in their own ammonia, the fungus wither and drop to the bottom of the fermenter into the "trub" with all the rest of the rubbish like proteins etc. The yeast go back to being "dead" and can be harvested, purified, and reused in another batch.... like reusing a filter sponge or bio media. Interestingly though, certain things, like really high alcohol levels or other infection of unwanted bacteria can cause the yeast to actually die and decay. This produces a horrid smell and a bad taste to the beer, but it is fairly uncommon.

    So I'm thinking, maybe these ammonia/nitrite eating bacteria which we effectively want to inoculate our tanks with also have a dormant state.

    Lets say you just fill the tank with pure dechorlinated water and add a trace of ammonia. You might have trapped a few hundred bacteria from the air, but they will a. be dormant and b. won't really do anything until there are hundreds of millions of them. Even if they bud(double) every 4 hours, you would still have to wait for weeks until you have a sizable enough culture.

    Again, not saying these things do or don't work, but surely the concept of a "preserved" or "dormant" state of bacteria is sound, assuming the bacteria can go to a dormant state.

    Consider growing a culture of these guys in a small tank and feeding them just the right amount of oxygen and ammonia so they flourish to the point the water is cloudy, then as quickly as is chemically possible without killing them, you remove all the ammonia and oxygen and seal them in a bottle.

    That would mean you only have to oxygenate and ammonia(te?) the water and wait for them to come out of a dormant state and for those that survive to start budding. You could get millions of them into a teaspoon.

    I know this makes some very obvious assumptions about the bacteria, but I was just bored, pondering these things.

    For what it's worth I added Nutrafin Cycle to my tank 5 days before I added ammonia and 2 days after that there is no water change, suggesting that that particular cycle booster either needs ammonia from the get go (as the instructions suggested to add fish immediately) or it does nothing.

    But... is the actual concept flawed?

  2. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    From what I understand about Tetra SafeStart (and I'd imagine the others would be bottled the same), it's bottled with extremely concentrated bacteria and they're encapsulated with what they need to survive. Bacteria will die off, but they account for that by making it really concentrated to begin with. Those who have used it exactly as directed have had great results. Those who have trouble following directions, not so much. And Tetra SafeStart is the only bacterial booster that I've researched that actually contains the correct bacteria, therefore the only one that can instantly cycle a tank. Others may hide the symptoms of the cycle over the course of 1-2 months, while others can even damage the cycle.

  3. #3

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Although I can not remember if I used tetra safe start, but I have tried a few of these products in the past. While I did not find them to instantly cycle a tank, they did help to speed up the cycle.
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]

  4. #4

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    First off, unless refrigerated, no booster can have the real bacteria that a tank's filter media contains. Bottom line - all off-the-self boosters are worthless - period. There are technical papers on this topic and so far, no one has made any booster that works; that said, maybe someone will but the the tetra booster does not work. People who have 'success' would have had such success with or without the booster; it really makes no difference. But then, companies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars on meds that, after many people die, have been withdraw because ... drum roll please ... they do NOT work at all! Sorry, but people have died thanks to false positives being used as proof that something that is worthless has value.

    Next, water is filled with an unbelievable large number of virus's, and bacteria spores and any chemical treatment will do zero harm to these inert forms of potential life. Yes, the needed waste consuming bacteria will arise from such water once the chlorates are neutralized and food is availible. Very elementary, Watson.

    Finally, following a fishless cycling method in this sites “Beginner Section” is exactly how one can cycle a filter – without getting active media from someone else, there are simply no shortcuts or faster methods.
    Last edited by Cermet; 03-30-2013 at 01:31 PM.

  5. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Cermet View Post
    First off, unless refrigerated, no booster can have the real bacteria that a tank's filter media contains. Bottom line - all off-the-self boosters are worthless - period.
    Absolutely false. The Tetra SafeStart is the same product as the refrigerated bio-spira that was used years ago, except they made it more concentrated (to account for die-off) and put in on shelves because of the added costs of needing refrigeration in stores and the additional room that said refrigerator would take up.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Glen Arm. MD
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    2,635

    Awards Showcase

    Happy Christmas - MuckyFish thanks for advising on vegetables for my kribs! so here is a discus - ScottishFish You help a lot - PhillipOrigami For the bank account, and thx for the rep - Cliff beautiful discus! - Crispy 
    I know this doesn't help but it's all I can do! - chrisfraser05 for all the wise advice you've given me - fishmommie Congrats on 2000th post! - andreahp Merry Christmas! - fishmommie Merry Christmas - Cliff 
    Thanks for the rep :-) - ~firefly~ appreciate it. - fishmommie Thanks for the birthday wishes - mommy1 ٩(̾●̮̮̃̾•̃̾)۶ - korith For all the good advice you give. - ~firefly~ 
    Thanks for the rep the other day - Cliff thanks for the rep points.  appreciate it - fishmommie happy friday! - mojosodope Merry Christmas! - ~firefly~ Thanks for the rep! - steeler1 

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Absoultly true what I posted because there is a peer reviewed paper that says this. Please show proof of what you are saying and use a peer reviewed source. I have posted my source a few weeks ago for others.

  7. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Cermet View Post
    Absoultly true what I posted because there is a peer reviewed paper that says this. Please show proof of what you are saying and use a peer reviewed source. I have posted my source a few weeks ago for others.
    And I'm supposed to search through your posts to find it?

    If bacteria NEED refrigeration, then explain to me how biological-based drinking water treatment plants can have their filters shut down for months at a time with very little change in performance after going back online? The treatment plant where I do my research has been shut down for two months now and will possibly be shut down for several more if the rain doesn't pick up. They're shut down longer than usual this year because the reservoir that they get most of their water from was drained for repairs, but it's not uncommon for them to be shut down for a couple months each year during the dry season. If what you claim is true, then all the bacteria would be dead by the time they started back up again and they'd have to go a couple months cycling their filters (but that's not the case).

  8. #8

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Let's all keep the OP's question in mind when posting in this thread
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]

  9. #9

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I am not going to enter into a debate and can only go by experience. I have used a few bac boosters. I like Seachem's Stability but if not able to get that, I will buy the Tetra SafeStart. Both do what they are supposed to do. Two others I used was Stress Zyme and Cyle, neither of what I found useful other than Stress Zyme making my tank slimy.

    NO bac boosters cycle a tank. Period. Ammonia from the fish cycle the tank but some boosters help the fish to survive and detoxify the ammonia and nitrites so that they can do so.

  10. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I did find one patent held (or at least was held) by Tetra claiming to be for "creating a suspension of live bacteria with a long shelf life", it was quite detailed, I didn't read it all, lots of stuff about keeping them alive by enzymes breaking down other compounds to release nutrients slowly over the life and keeping them in a very oxygen sparse fluid.

    However, because someone patents something doesn't mean it works.

    I also found a lab tech's email to a customer, which in it's very broken English described the reason they ask you to keep adding the product every week, every water change and with new fish. Basically it amounted to their formula having multiple strains of bacteria, some favouring high ammonia or nitrite and others low levels. If the levels were high, the low level feeders would go dormant and the high level strain become domiant and vice versa, however, the "lag" period between the switch over, when an ammonia spike occurs (like adding new stock) could be negated by adding regular does of the "so called" live bacteria from the bottle. It also mentioned that their bacteria are not as resilient as "opportunistic bacteria", ie. naturally occurring strains and thus need topping up. Could be total hogwash and maybe that lab tech wants a job in marketing.

    Another thing I picked up is that Stress Zyme+ isn't for nitifying bacteria at all. It's meant to break down waste and rotten food that produce ammonia (by other bacteria) but in a way that lowers the ammonia release or buffers it. In doing so it creates large populations of "nice to have" bacteria and through "domiant succession" (apparently) then starves other more nasty bacteria. Question might be does it also starve the bacteria we do want in the process.

    Still, if chlorine kills these bacteria and they can't be dormant or airborne, where do they come from when you do a fishless cycle?

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