Cycling not progressing

brandon429

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https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/ammonia-test-kit-question-new-tank.589278/

stated api=.5 again

find me api cycling threads that state readings other than .25 and .5~


handy thread because that reading is compared to another test kit, very different readings on titration kits... this frames the nature of zero point testing very well.

we get to see one sample, two different ammonia testers outcome

*if he stated one or the other test kit without the comparison kit, most reading posters accept the single stated reading as accurate and begin to mentally imagine why the bacteria are missing. we work from the angle that based on the description so far, life rock, the bacteria are already there (they're painted on for that brand of rock)

now all we need to know is has someone kept it underwater 30 days. if so, done. before we even see pics :)

*both those testers can be used at the same time for our adjusted cycle measure above***

even though they differ on bottom end readings, they don't differ on the ability to indicate a change over time...
 
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Brunetj

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so cool. its not a ton of live rock, still in the buildup works but yes that's a powerful scrub of ammonia. your live sand counts


hey why not a test, so easy here. You will not harm your live rock by dosing some liquid ammonia, those worms w live through an oxi test

get dr tims liquid ammonia don't use fish feed.

you aren't dosing to the 2 ppm levels*we're modifying directions to make all test kits work correctly.
2ppm is fine if someone is using seneye, but for titration tests this trick is better.


you are dosing to the first increment your test kit can register above its current showing. a partial amnt of liquid ammonia, only enough to move the color slightly greener.

then retest in 24/post results.
this test is the scientifically accepted closing test to mark a cycle complete.
2 ppm is an arbitrary selection, if we based every reef here using dry rock on 1 ppm final test, they'd all still run the same number of instant fish should that method be selected

The motion within 24 hours is what proves or disproves cycle complete, not what the enduring base color the test reads thereafter. getting to 2 ppm is not required

we're dosing to the first increment that test kit w register above it then stopping.

This method makes every ammonia tester used on the market work correctly, it even accounts for testing errors from some of the above mentioned stuff. its how to calibrate a titration kit for indicating ammonia helpfully in our tanks. the trick is measuring change, not what a holding pattern seems to indicate.

cycles never ever stall, they only revert to unassisted cycling timelines if we didn't add any bottle bac or ammonia at the start. this is how most tanks were cycled in the 70s onward if they were using the common plastic décor...fill and wait works. by the millions of tanks

you got to skip your cycle by buying rocks that never lost bacteria when you moved them home.

if the sand was wet when you got it, that had bac too. wet=contaminated with filtration bac.
Yea the sand was wet too so it looks like I’m in a pretty good position right now
 

brandon429

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agreed, and that completes the cycle assessment. whether or not you oxidize test it above wont change the fact its cycled off the known description history alone and being wet for more than 30 days total (fanworms probably take about 3-6 mos to plate onto dry lr systems if a seed source arrives in the tank)

this is why the presence of fanworms proves bacteria being there, unless medications are involved. if you had been dosing large amnts of feed or ammonia, the right move is to reset the tank water and begin with corals and clean up crew...not fish, they have a quarantine/fallow protocol req nowadays for best chance at life. but the tank could support fish if that was needed, such as you changing a current reef into this new tank.
 

Tyler Bullock

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Just a heads up, i'm not a big fan of the API test kits. They've been known to show ammonia even if there isn't any present. For cycling an aquarium they're fine, but once you get the tank up and running you may want to look into a different source for testing. Salifert and red sea make some great test kits. Also the Hannah Checkers are some of my favorites :)
100% this, I was cycling my 90 this past month and no matter what it showed ammonia was at .25-.5. I got a seachem ammonia tester for my QT and put it in my 90 first and there was no ammonia.......API tricked me real good.
 

High ICP

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I stand corrected. My LFS said the live rock was cured. Lesson learned from speaking to a new guy I guess
‘Cured’ means different things to different people

So does ‘cycled’

When someone says “my tank is cycled” after two weeks or a month, I have to just walk away from those posts.

When you are scraping coralline off the glass as a chore, that’s cycled.
 
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brandon429

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I read your writing as maturation vs cycling above. what to you defines a completed cycle?

I think immature tanks are fully cycled under one month all the time...for example at the aquashella convention in dallas, 400 vendors set up instant reefs that had no cycle and they didn't have to dose prime or change the water as CPR

how did they break the rules? fritz bacteria and or live rock transfers, as was done here, majority.

some of those tanks had thirty fish and ten grand in corals...3 days tank

what if the convention were to last 3 months...would those 3 days tanks begin to die, or raise up ammonia? Nope, though they were set up in two hours, they were ready to run twenty years straight...cycles are complete when a desired bioload is manged by bacteria such that the system doesn't die in 24, 48, etc.

the uncycled aquarium by rule shows a daily increase in ammonia, since bioload never stops respiring and inputting ammonia. a truly uncycled tank ran in the test above will not come back down in 24 hrs
 
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brandon429

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I never take the stated assembly date as the age of the system, press em for details and uncover useful stuff
 
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MnFish1

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So I have had my 75 gallon tank running since 26 March 2019. My ammonia has been at .50 for two weeks and my nitrites and nitrates are at 0 still.

I have had an algae bloom but it’s fading away now.

Should I expect a higher ammonia spike soon or should I just take means of eliminating what ammonia I do have in the tank and assume it’s cycled?

This is the first time I have a tank not really progress in the nitrogen cycle and I’m kind of confused as to what I should do now.
Did you add any bacteria? Just ghost feeding should take quite a bit longer If you're just waiting for nitrifying bacteria to populate the tank. The doubling time of these bacteria is much less than regular bacteria. Though - since its already a month - you'd think that you would at least have some nitrite. A couple suggestions - double check your tests, Add some Fritz turbo or other bacteria supplement, or wait - eventually it will happen.

One more thought - depending on how much you're feeding .5 is not that much ammonia either - it could be that you're not feeding enough?
 

MnFish1

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you might have skipped cycle...live rock brings in bac, it doesn't req extra

the wet pack live sand/more bac


wet=bac

can you post tank pics, curious to see live rock maturation details if any, from pics
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/the-microbiology-of-reef-tank-cycling.214618/

I bet your cycle is one of the two main types in the thread

if I put fish food in my live rock setup, it too wouldn't register any free ammonia, breakdown is too slow for rock loaded up with bac.

the thread shows how to visually ID rock for skip cycle assessment without testing for anything.
Can you explain what a skipped cycle is? The assumption from above is that if its 'live rock' the nitrifying bacteria are already there (including those that convert ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate and Nitrate to N2? Meaning that the reason the nitrate and nitrite are 0 is that the bacteria in the rock are immediately taking care of both as they are produced??

If that is so - unless he is feeding a lot of food - I am surprised that the ammonia is .5 (unless its an API error) - with the others being 0.

PS - I agree with you that adding ammonia may not be the best thing to do.
 

William DeCoursey

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I read your writing as maturation vs cycling above. what to you defines a completed cycle?

I think immature tanks are fully cycled under one month all the time...for example at the aquashella convention in dallas, 400 vendors set up instant reefs that had no cycle and they didn't have to dose prime or change the water as CPR

how did they break the rules? fritz bacteria and or live rock transfers, as was done here, majority.

some of those tanks had thirty fish and ten grand in corals...3 days tank

what if the convention were to last 3 months...would those 3 days tanks begin to die, or raise up ammonia? Nope, though they were set up in two hours, they were ready to run twenty years straight...cycles are complete when a desired bioload is manged by bacteria such that the system doesn't die in 24, 48, etc.

the uncycled aquarium by rule shows a daily increase in ammonia, since bioload never stops respiring and inputting ammonia. a truly uncycled tank ran in the test above will not come back down in 24 hrs
I appreciate the broader "cycle" concept many use in regards to tank maturation and phases one may expect to go through before, hopefully, reaching a period of relative stability. By definition though, and as it matters to most of us new folks, how you describe the cycle is on-point. "When can I responsibly add a fish," is the question everyone wants an answer to.

I also don't think the two are mutually exclusive. Though it may seem impatient or short-sighted to more seasoned hands, it seems to me that getting a natural and stable ammonia producing fish (and all the associated bacteria and microfauna) into the system reasonably early on can do nothing but help the tank to mature properly. It's also much easier to be "reefer patient" when you can at least gaze at a two fish and some gsp, not an empty tank.
 

brandon429

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on those statements I just mean you get to move rocks A to B and continue as soon as you setup B

cycling implies a wait for one reason or another, a verification and testing phase where chemistry misreads rule the roost. we want a test kit independent way to move, clean, cycle and skip cycle reefs

summary: this poster could have brought home green star polyps and some caulastrea corals along with the live rock and sand, set it all up, and have corals in the reef the very second the live rock hits.

it then proceeds to be a reef, instantly, but only due to moved substrates.

I think my summary still applies to Fritz type skip cycles, where we talked about the water-borne added bac taking all fast fish waste if that's a preferred method of setup..then the surfaces take on the bac fast :) 24 hours I guess per Dr Reef's work, but either way even dry rock setups can be skip cycled nowadays, Fritz is making a killing on it.
 

MnFish1

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on those statements I just mean you get to move rocks A to B and continue as soon as you setup B

cycling implies a wait for one reason or another, a verification and testing phase where chemistry misreads rule the roost. we want a test kit independent way to move, clean, cycle and skip cycle reefs
Right - as I've said before I dont test ammonia or nitrite or nitrate when cycling. I just wanted to know what is a 'skipped cycle'?
 
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brandon429

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the link shows different readings from icp and other testers, clearly its a statement that any single point reading we refer to in reefing might be wrong. don't put 100% stock in a test reading for parameters beyond low level ammonia

how he may have packaged the sample for prep/icp testing might be an error point, if I'm not wrong icp takes mailed-in samples
 

MnFish1

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the link shows different readings from icp and other testers, clearly its a statement that any single point reading we refer to in reefing might be wrong. don't put 100% stock in a test reading for parameters beyond low level ammonia
AGREE - what is a skipped cycle lol:)
 

Ross Petersen

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I’m in the same boat. But... I’ve used microbacter7 and seachem stability bacteria to eat away at Dr. Tim’s ammonium.

15 days and 2ppm ammonia still and no nitrates. Red Sea test kit.

Thought it’d be quicker with adding bacteria daily as per manufacture.

A compelling/fun problem!
 

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