new tank need cycle help
I just got this tank for my birthday and I set it up yesterday. Its not been quite 24 hours yet. Here's the stats:
>10 gal tank
>treated water with Jungle brand ACE (Amonia, Chloramine, & Eliminator) **I use this to treat my hermit crab water so I figure it was ok for fish**
>filter that came with the aquarium set up kit **will have to do for now as I'm on the broke side of finances** Has a "bio filter" and then you put another filter back to back with that one in the back section of the filter. Its blue and I think it is a carbon type filter thing.
>Hood with light
>Thermometer inside suction cup kind and stuck on the outside of the tank kind.
>I added a bit of salt for starters as recomended on the back of the box for freshwater set up. API (again used for my hermies :D)
>Gravel well rinsed untill water ran clear
>Hidie log with cloth flowers on it
>Live plant bulbs (not yet begun to sprout since I only put them in yesterday, will have to see if they will make or not)
Ok, question is this. I did a check today with the Jungle brand quick dip 5 strips to check my levels. They were of course all out of wack! lol. I'm not surprised I was expecting this since its only the next day. I decided not to wait on the bio filter thing and added exactly 2 cups full of my bettas water that he is in right now. (this set up is going to house my betta and a couple of other fish that I havent gotten yet. I'm waiting on the tank to become inhabitable before I add fish) My thinking on this was that the water would contain the bacteria from him and maybe give a kick start to this process. I am not a patient person I want to get fish in there as soon as its safe. :) I'm so excited about this, even my husband is looking foward to having fish. I was wondering though if there is anything else I can do to maybe give it a boost as to speed things along? Is there any suggestions? Have any of you used or heard anything about something called Start Zyme? Would it be a good thing to buy and use or should I just wait since I added some of my bettas water? I dont want to mess anything up. So please help, your comments and advice are appreciated and welcome.
Dip strips may or may not be the right choice. They expire. Probably not if they're new as they say a certain time from opening. The liquid ones seem to be more accurate (but more work).
Adding water from the betta's tank won't do a whole lot. Adding gravel or decorations will. If the betta is all you have right now, go ahead and just move him over. Move over decorations, gravel, filter, whatever you can.
The one thing you MUST have is a source of nutrients for the bacteria. Might as well be the betta.
If you want to add something to the tank, add Bio Spira. Much of anything else isn't going to work (I have never seen Cycle or Start Zyme get good reviews). If you have another established tank, mulm will also kick things in gear.
In SoCal? Check out SCAPE!
wow I must be a total moron. lol. What is Bio Spira and Mulum? I'm assuming these can be purchased at the pet shop. Right? I'm showing how aquarium ignorant I am right now. lol. **blush**
Bio spira is a simple, all natural way to get the tank to cycle faster as it adds needed bacteria. It is kept cold.
I suggest you read the "4 weeks into cycle thread". Bio-spira is a waste. The bacteria you need is already present. You just need to cultivate it properly. Several experts will claim that Bio-spira and other such gimmicks do not work and can cause your tank to be less foregiving once it has cycled. If it was to work at all, you would want to use it after the tank has been populated and ammonia levels are rising. Many people dump this expesive garbage in their tanks at day one not knowing that all of the bacteria they are dumping in will die because there is nothing in the tank to support them.
Also, if you are eliminating Ammonia, your tank will NEVER cycle.
When people post on forums, they expect to get a variety of answers. If we all thought the same, there would be no point in having a forum at all. I have seen bio-spira used by people who have had aquariums for 30 years and they claim the product works. I have not used it yet myself as I've been lucky enough to have used filters to start off with plus used gravel and other media's. But if there is a product that is said to jump start that bacteria, why not use it? I have used myself Stress Zyme because I could not get the bio-spira where I live and whether it worked or not remains to be seen. Maybe it did and maybe it didn't but it certainly caused no harm.
If a product is "all natural", I'm not afraid to give it a whirl. It's the medications to UP pH and DOWN pH and all that hoopla that concerns me the most and I won't won't use either.
Cycling is a pain in the neck, for sure, but what may work for one doesn't always work for another. I believe hardness in the water supply makes a big difference as well as using softened or RO water. How much fish are fed is another and if you are keeping a high temp in your tank as well as aerating the water. And, as you also stated the pH.
Having lower pH will help but if it takes chemicals to maneuver the pH down, that in itself can add even more stress on the fish who are already dealing with high ammonia. It did take me a while longer to cycle as I wanted to save my fish.........and cleaned too much! I also think using throw-away fish makes another difference. If you don't care for these fish and are only using them as cycling fish, let that ammonia rise as much as you want. But if you have fish you wish to save, then keeping the ammonia in-check is necessary for them to sustain life.
I have 9 black skirt tetra's that have cycled 3 tanks and are still with me today and I changed water daily during high ammonia and nitrite spikes.
I didn't see you in the Introduction thread so will take the opportunity to Welcome you to AC Community forums here. This is a nice forum and hope you will stick around and enjoy all it has to offer. Welcome aboard!
Last edited by hobbs; 10-02-2006 at 09:40 PM.
Thanks I have three danio in there now and my betta. I suppose it will be a long pain in the neck process b/c I dont want to hurt my betta. I went ahead and put him in b/c he was in a bowl and I suppose the tank wouldnt be any worse than what he was already in. :) I did post in the introductions.....I think it was entitled with something to do with my fish Pedro. Maybe not. lol. :P
How's Pedro doing? That long post of mine was directed to the poster right above my post. Not to you. LOL You must have thought I had lost it.
Originally Posted by mariposa
You have already gotten some good information so far....keep things as they are and make sure you have a test kit to check water parameters and then you will know how to proceed. As stated...cycling with fish may take longer since you have to do water changes to keep things from getting too bad...and you can add items like biospira, which although I have never tried, I have heard only good about, your best bet is to use bacterial rich decor, filter media or filter mulm (squeezings) from an established aquarium.