Does bacteria in a bottle work to speed up cycling a new tank?

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HB AL

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I’ve never tried any but starting your new tank with quality live rock, and live sand and even some established tank water you can eliminate the cycle process. If that’s not an option and you started with all dry rock then adding it wouldn’t hurt along with some live rock, a little sand from an established system will greatly speed up the cycle. If the bottle bacteria is your only option then go ahead and add some from a couple different types and it might shorten the cycle process but not actually make the tank an instantly well established system as doing the things I noted above.
 
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adobo

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Just posted this in another thread but will hit this one too. I designed my new tank setup along the Triton method before Triton was a"thing". I had issues with filtration with a koi pond project I did many years ago. Not enough biological filtration for the fish load I had. Biological filtration was inadequate and therefore fish died. Veggie filtration and increased biological surface area turned things around for that system. Why not apply the same principals for a reef tank?
Now I have a pass through tank with ceramic media blocks, bio balls, and chaeto algae. My tank cycled in four days using Dr. Tims "all in one".
You may just not have enough surface area for bacteria to attach to properly?
IMG_0411.JPG

I have 15lbs of reef rock and 10-15 lbs of live sand in a 10 gallon tank. Seems like plenty of surface area to me. I mean, to get 2ppm of ammonia in a 10 gallon tank, I only had to add maybe 25 drops of ammonium chloride.
 

tippin.turtle

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I have 15lbs of reef rock and 10-15 lbs of live sand in a 10 gallon tank. Seems like plenty of surface area to me. I mean, to get 2ppm of ammonia in a 10 gallon tank, I only had to add maybe 25 drops of ammonium chloride.
I have 15lbs of reef rock and 10-15 lbs of live sand in a 10 gallon tank. Seems like plenty of surface area to me. I mean, to get 2ppm of ammonia

Could be you got a bad batch bacteria. I ordered coraline algae from Algae Barn which got toasted in our metal mail box because I was given the wrong shipping date. Hard to say what may have happend to yours in the course of shipping? Might be one possibility out of many. I know Dr. Tim's product works; at least it did for me. Try and try again my friend. Best of luck!
 

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Cycling a new tank is easy.
Not stocking a nano tank to fast and to heavy and causing a new cycle is much harder.
Be patient and add thing slow and let the tank adapt and mature as it goes. Don't over-light it, and don't over-feed it. Expect some ugly periods and in a year or so you'll be happy.
 
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adobo

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Yes it is. And same reason I got the dead stuff.
But I am adding live to it now after Dino’s and chrysophytes.
I spent so much money on bacteria in a bottle and I wish I had just spent that $$$ on some good live rock.
Just lessons learned and trying to help;)
But if you want bacteria in bottle the two I wrote about worked in a day or 2.

No, I definitely appreciate the input.

My experience with live rock is that it is not a magic bullet either, particularly if it is not pre-cured. I mean, maybe they don't sell that stuff anymore but even cured still will have some die off as part of being shipped from wherever.

In the end, whether the source of bacteria is a bottle or live rock, the bacteria will need to multiply and colonize other surfaces to meet the needs of the tank. I not sure that live rock is more effective in allowing bacteria to multiply or to colonize other surfaces. I do appreciate that live rock from the ocean might have more natural and diverse strains of bacteria though.
 

brandon429

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this tank is already cycled would you like to test the claim or skip it

how you’re evaluating cycle completion can be streamlined


currently this is on track to go for pages back n forth, because it’s opposite of streamlined.

but you’re cycled. Easy proof, if you’re serious about investigating what filter bac do and by what submersion date they do it- given known inoculations. If you find the claim silly or inflammatory we can disregard.

I watch out for posts like this, and collect them in a particular thread where we unstick all stuck cycles, buying nothing new. Merely one giant water change is the cost. Then you're ready
 
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brandon429

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here's my proof for you/


your tank is like every tank collected there. And its outcome is the same, if you change water and begin

instead of debating minutiae, nitrite, ammonia at holding levels unsafe, consider the macro view

if you change water, add life, it lives. like the others, for a reason.

key terms between your thread and that thread, likenesses:

nitrite factoring.

perceived stuck ammonia above thousandths ppm sage zone, given presence of reducing ammonia already stated + days underwater

buying more bacteria*** hallmark theme, repurchase redundancy

a full crowd supporting all the measures that you're not ready.

the truth is, no cycles stick in reefing we've been misinformed.

If you add bioload to an uncycled tank it dies, that's the big picture. It's not in the minutiae
 
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adobo

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here's my proof for you/


your tank is like every tank collected there. And its outcome is the same, if you change water and begin

instead of debating minutiae, nitrite, ammonia at holding levels unsafe, consider the macro view

if you change water, add life, it lives. like the others, for a reason.

key terms between your thread and that thread, likenesses:

nitrite factoring.

perceived stuck ammonia above thousandths ppm sage zone, given presence of reducing ammonia already stated + days underwater

buying more bacteria*** hallmark theme, repurchase redundancy

a full crowd supporting all the measures that you're not ready.

the truth is, no cycles stick in reefing we've been misinformed.

If you add bioload to an uncycled tank it dies, that's the big picture. It's not in the minutiae

Why does this post come across as condescending?

Let me provide you with some corrections as it seems you misunderstand the nature of my thread:
  • no one is debating anything. I am not arguing for or against anyone else's posts. I am conveying my observations. If my observations are incorrect or are misunderstood, people are free to educate me on how to better observer or better interpret.
  • who said anything about re-buying bacteria or anything else?
  • a full crowd of doing the same thing is meaningless. There are crowds of people standing in indoor political rallies shouting at the top of their lungs while shunning social distancing and masks. Does that mean that I should follow the crowd's example? Information and evidence are useful and educational. Pointing at crowds without elucidating why the crowd is right is useless.
  • Who said anything about adding bioload? And what is it I am not ready for?

I came here for information, not a lecture.

This is a hobby - a thing people do for recreation. Nothing like a getting a sermon to put a damper on what should be a fun activity.

Edit: I have read and re-read your post like 5 times already. Let me just say that its entirely possible that you are not lecturing but rather pointing out that like others, I have been misled.

Is what you are saying along the lines of:

"The cycle is not stuck. It's the test kit (API) that is misleading. That many others have been misled in the same way. That the true measure is that once the cycle is done, you add life and it lives. And that is the true test of whether the tank is cycled, not what the test kits are saying."
 
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brandon429

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I usually get doubt when unsticking a cycle, hard push back in fact from others here, not you. We haven't met

If that's n/a then it's faster and better agreed.

Ready to test proof?

Mainly it's fun to rack up fixed cycles, that's the main goal. Yours is set
 
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adobo

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I usually get doubt when unsticking a cycle

If that's n/a then it's faster and better agreed.

Ready to test proof?

I think we have a language / communication gap. I'm doing my best to bridge it.

Let me try this way - what is the best way to gauge the progress of the tank cycling? I currently have an API ammonia test kit - one that in your other thread, you and others seem to say that the kit gives misleading information. Is there a better way or are you saying that is not important? If so, what are the signs that you suggest would be good indicators?

How do you suggest I go about "test proof"?
 

brandon429

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If you added fish right now they'd live, and in an uncycled tank they'd die.

You would change out all your water, or as much as possible, to eliminate algae fuel from cycling water + metabolite mixes, then you can start. Add life, it's the proof. It'll live.

If you want to test before starting, redose ammonia to 1ppm and it'll drop that's proof too

The rule at hand is only ammonia matters, and we know it's dynamic from clues above, solid. It's already lowered once, that's how I knew you are cycled. Staying at zero ammonia not required :) cuz it's in thousandths, that reader can't tell that detail it's reporting best it can

All the pages in that work thread are testing the thesis that once down means safe level, can't hover, is safe due to that indicator. The presence of nitrate isn't required to confirm things, but when there, does.

Where most will staunchly disagree with me: nitrite doesn't factor, and downward trend ammonia being the safe indicator, no hard zero required. The thread shows us patterning safe starts using the updated info as a legit test imo
 
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adobo

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If you added fish right now they'd live, and in an uncycled tank they'd die.

You would change out all your water, or as much as possible, to eliminate algae fuel from cycling water + metabolite mixes, then you can start. Add life, it's the proof. It'll live.

If you want to test before starting, redose ammonia to 1ppm and it'll drop that's proof too

I am open to any of that. I am even open to getting a seneye if I were not purely a mac user. I do have some concern regarding the well being of a fish if I prematurely add.

Redosing ammonia to 1-2ppm is actually relatively easy - I have a ton of ammonium chloride. If I were to do that, presumably I would see a drop from from that value over the course of 24 hrs, correct? For this purpose, would the API ammonia test kit suffice?
 

andrewey

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If you added fish right now they'd live, and in an uncycled tank they'd die.

You would change out all your water, or as much as possible, to eliminate algae fuel from cycling water + metabolite mixes, then you can start. Add life, it's the proof. It'll live.

If you want to test before starting, redose ammonia to 1ppm and it'll drop that's proof too

The rule at hand is only ammonia matters, and we know it's dynamic from clues above, solid. It's already lowered once, that's how I knew you are cycled. Staying at zero ammonia not required :) cuz it's in thousandths, that reader can't tell that detail it's reporting best it can
@brandon429 This is a gross oversimplification and I'm really confused why you keep pushing this incorrect and frankly dangerous information. I am more than happy if you have theories or pet projects on any number of topics including "rip cleaning" or bacterial additives, but you should not be telling people that "death" is the only barometer one can judge a cycle by, "ammonia can never raise for any reason in a tank" or that fish can not be harmed by ammonia in any way other than by dying. I really am at a loss for why you continue to say these things over and over again about ammonia in every thread? I'm not trying to insult your intellgence and I know it's important that you are somehow leading a new reefing revolution, but please, you've got to hold off on the hyperbole when it comes to ammonia. Of the many things you are trying to promote and do in this hobby, your statements about ammonia are frankly dangerous if taken at face value and it does a disservice to those observations and theories you've made in other areas that are grounded in fact and basic scientific concepts. As you have repeatedly turned down my invitations to talk about the topic, I would be more than happy to get you in touch with any number of marine biologists if you would like clarifiction about the effect of ammonia on fish and their gills, skin, and eyes.
 
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adobo

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@brandon429 This is a gross oversimplification and I'm really confused why you keep pushing this incorrect and frankly dangerous information. I am more than happy if you have theories or pet projects on any number of topics including "rip cleaning" or bacterial additives, but you should not be telling people that "death" is the only barometer one can judge a cycle by, "ammonia can never raise for any reason in a tank" or that fish can not be harmed by ammonia in any way other than by dying. I really am at a loss for why you continue to say these things over and over again about ammonia in every thread? I'm not trying to insult your intellgence and I know it's important that you are somehow leading a new reefing revolution, but please, you've got to hold off on the hyperbole when it comes to ammonia. Of the many things you are trying to promote and do in this hobby, your statements about ammonia are frankly dangerous if taken at face value and it does a disservice to those observations and theories you've made in other areas that are grounded in fact and basic scientific concepts. As you have repeatedly turned down my invitations to talk about the topic, I would be more than happy to get you in touch with any number of marine biologists if you would like clarifiction about the effect of ammonia on fish and their gills, skin, and eyes.

For me, this actually goes against "conventional" wisdom. I mean, I can buy that a test kit is giving false indications and maybe one can't really expect more than that from hobby grade kits.

I do have my doubts about the whole "this is a ploy to sell bottled bacteria". Reason being, testing for zero ammonia was an established "best practice" long before bottled bacteria became mainstream. In the olden days, you bought live rock. Then you waited a month and tested for ammonia. If your rock was uncured, the process might take longer due to die off. Nobody pushed bottled bacteria back in the day.

I am open to the idea that our understanding of when tanks are ready for livestock is faulty or maybe based on false premises. Its not my data, not my evidence and not my best practice. I have no idea how these things came to be conventional wisdom so I can't stand behind their veracity. Maybe the notion of ammonia having to be zero is a faulty premise. And that in a tank with inhabitants, it is never zero. Maybe close to zero is good enough.

I'm willing to try different things as informal tests given there are currently no animals in my tank. But I would be very hesitant to introduce any fish or inverts in the tank until I am satisfied that I have done what is reasonable to ensure the tank is ready.
 
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brandon429

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It'd be all opinion battling without the work threads imo. Furthering my process on it just to show wasn't haphazard:

Dr Reefs bottle bac test. Proves depositional time do check it out. Tests all brands here


You are past that time.

You had wet sand bac too as extra. That self confers to other surfaces within 20 days unassisted (have example thread) so factor that plus nitrate plus bottle bac plus feed plus already measured drop and your attachment surface area: dry rocks and sand. I knew it was cycled on your first written ammonia down. Change interference water :)

Adobo I like your thought process, open to consider but not quick to abandon universally accepted practice that's respectable science mode for sure.

Getting defensive seems like your second language though
 
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adobo

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It'd be all opinion battling without the work threads imo. Furthering my process on it just to show wasn't haphazard:

Dr Reefs bottle bac test. Proves depositional time do check it out. Tests all brands here


You are past that time.

You had wet sand bac too as extra. That self confers to other surfaces within 20 days unassisted (have example thread) so factor that plus nitrate plus bottle bac plus feed plus already measured drop and your attachment surface area: dry rocks and sand. I knew it was cycled on your first written ammonia down. Change interference water :)

If it wasn't offensive, I would be tempted to ask you what your native tongue is.

(God help me if the answer is English)
 

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Idk I've heard conflicting reviews of Dr. Tim's, not saying it doesnt work im sure it does and other factors play a role in the tank itself cycling process. I personally used bio-spira and within a week I was able to add a fish
 
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adobo

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Idk I've heard conflicting reviews of Dr. Tim's, not saying it doesnt work im sure it does and other factors play a role in the tank itself cycling process. I personally used bio-spira and within a week I was able to add a fish

As I understand it, Dr. Tim developed Bio spira. Unless Dr Tim has constraints on what he can develop and market based on his previous employment in Marineland, I have a hard time figuring out why the Dr Tim's product would be inferior to Bio-spira.
 

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As I understand it, Dr. Tim developed Bio spira. Unless Dr Tim has constraints on what he can develop and market based on his previous employment in Marineland, I have a hard time figuring out why the Dr Tim's product would be inferior to Bio-spira.
Idk I wouldn't even go as far as calling it inferior to one another because many people do use Dr Tims with great results. I've just noticed you see alot of people saying their tank is not cycling even after using it. Maybe more people use it so you get more feedback than you do with Bio-Spira. Plus factors of did the bacteria get hot and die. I just know when I used Bio-Spira it cycled my tank so fast that I swore I was reading the test wrong or something and ended up testing it 3 times just to make sure it was correct, added a fish and cleaner shrimp and they have been okay for a week now. Eating good and look healthy
 
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