How long was your fishless cycle?

BRS

How long did it take to cycle your tank?


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bleuchzsteve

bleuchzsteve

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Don't add any more ammonia (or fish food, dead shrimp, etc) for a few days and see if that ammonia goes down. Measure your nitrATES at that point as well.
I know a lot of people use the (relatively) new Dr. Tim's method of adding a lot of ammonia along with the bacteria... I personally never used bottled ammonia but did "ghost feed", and that worked well for me. Seems like adding the ammonia drops can cause problems if the drops are too large and the system ends up with too much ammonia.

Regardless, you're on the right track and will soon be onto the "I'm so tired of algae" stage ;)
Sweet, thanks for the feedback
 

IslandLifeReef

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Sweet, thanks for the feedback
Don't add any more ammonia (or fish food, dead shrimp, etc) for a few days and see if that ammonia goes down. Measure your nitrATES at that point as well.
I know a lot of people use the (relatively) new Dr. Tim's method of adding a lot of ammonia along with the bacteria... I personally never used bottled ammonia but did "ghost feed", and that worked well for me. Seems like adding the ammonia drops can cause problems if the drops are too large and the system ends up with too much ammonia.

Regardless, you're on the right track and will soon be onto the "I'm so tired of algae" stage ;)
If you have nitrite in the tank, you will get a false nitrate reading.

I would consider adding a different bacteria product if you want your tank to cycle soon. If you don’t care, it should cycle in the next 4 weeks if you don’t do anything else. If you want to use a different product, I would suggest Fritz Turbo start, the refrigerated one, or Microbacter7.
 
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bleuchzsteve

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Ok I need some feedback boys and girls. I’m on days 17 of my cycle and here is what I’m looking at. I started with dr tims bacteria and bottled ammonia and haven’t added anything else since, I had to go out of town for a few days. Should I be adding ammonia now? I feel like the ammonia should be showing 0. I have live sand and dry rock . Thanks for the help

41342269-5FC1-4FBB-B62E-0358EE78ABB5.jpeg
 
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bleuchzsteve

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Isn't .25 within the acceptable margin of error for API? Looks like there has been movement down compared to the last pic of the vial, which would indicate to me it is cycled.
This is what I’m thinking but does the nitrates seem right if it is cycled ? I’m color blind so it doesn’t help lol
 

Layton (OR)

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It looks in between 0 and 5. I know others have said it, but I’d highly recommend upgrading to Hannah or Salifert down the road. From everything I’ve read, API struggle with the lower levels. More of just a gauge to watch movement up/down.
 

Erin1971Texas

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If you do another ammonia test, place the tube on top of the card (or hold it up against the white background) before taking the photo. I agree that, once a tank has been cycling, a reduction in ammonia to a color between 0 and .25 using the API test can be considered to be zero, but it's hard to tell what color yours currently is.
Once you have a reading of 0 - .25 ammonia, you can do a final ammonia challenge by adding enough to bring the tank to 2ppm and then test 24 hours later... If it's back down to 0-.25, the tank is definitely cycled.
 

Erin1971Texas

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If you do another ammonia test, place the tube on top of the card (or hold it up against the white background) before taking the photo. I agree that, once a tank has been cycling, a reduction in ammonia to a color between 0 and .25 using the API test can be considered to be zero, but it's hard to tell what color yours currently is.
Once you have a reading of 0 - .25 ammonia, you can do a final ammonia challenge by adding enough to bring the tank to 2ppm and then test 24 hours later... If it's back down to 0-.25, the tank is definitely cycled.
Sorry, I just read back through this thread... I forgot I had replied previously, lol! In the photo you posted on 6/12 was much easier to see the colors of the test tubes.
That's what I was trying to get across in my last post ;)
 
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bleuchzsteve

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So I added ammonia last night and tonight this is what it looks like. These 2 pics are the 24 hour difference, seems like ammonia hasn’t gone down much, should I add turbo start or something similar or just let it ride :
Last night after adding ammonia:

FD9CCC0A-B63D-48F7-8609-A5B0E7EC71AD.jpeg

24 hours later
FBB52671-3345-4C0E-8FFC-62223FD4B078.jpeg
 

Erin1971Texas

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I would have expected at least SOME ammonia reduction since you've been cycling almost 3 weeks...
At this point, adding more bacteria is not going to hurt.
The other thing you can do is buy a new ammonia test kit... It can still be API if that's all that's available, but make sure the expiration date is not soon.

(I'm not an API "hater" and have used their tests in the past, especially when cycling a new tank, but it's possible the reagent has expired or was somehow contaminated, so using a brand new test kit might be worth the investment).
 
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