Should we rethink and refine means and methods for cycling tanks?

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Lasse

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It really doesn't matter about bioload if the tank you have fully cycled and stocked tracks out to a fully stocked cycling tank correct?
Cycled means enough of biofilm able to process the nitrogen bioload. If you 10 fold your bioload - your biofilm have to ten fold itself in order to process the new daily input

Do you want me to admit that your reef is better?
It is Lasse ive been following it for a long time and its been great inspiration.

Not at all is not that
Even though they are constructed differently they are still functioning properly according to the rules you yourself have stated regarding cycling.
Are we splitting hairs here?
Let us say like this - I would not bother to lower my fish count to 4 and my daily feeding of 2 cubes instantly without risking anything. Will you go out and purchase 46 new fishes and start to feed 20 cubes a day - instantly?

Sincerely Lasse
 
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brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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I got lucky w that example Robert, its the exception not the norm.

thats the fullest sps can be driven during that keep time, its working well to the point he's upgrading.


however that's a very very new dry rock start, bringing up sps documented very well.


*his cycle is unique here: it was feed only, no bottle bac, ready by cycling charts date (30 days from start)

no bottle bac was used, so it stands out among cycles that dosed 3x strains. he coaxed natural and free bacteria to be ready, but as a dry rock start its close to the example you want for sps for sure.

as a third contribution to new cycling science, howaboutme's post also sets the maximum time frame you will ever see a feed-only cycle take. nobody's is going to take 60 days, cycle charts aren't set for 60 days they're set for 30 and we show thats the max compliance time for feed-only cycles.


each of the major cycling approaches has its predetermined completion time, its not open ended, that's key.
we discussed what different cycles do with ammonia

no ammonia was used there, feed conversion cycling was done.
 
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Lasse

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I will go old school 4 month cycle and shrimp any day. Is what I do, longer cycle indeed, but will get you to full blown alot sooner. Might be able to get away with shorter cycles with softies and LPS. But show me a SPS Dominated tank, with a very short cycle, thats full blown in 1 yr or even 2, from frags to colonies....
That´s no old school - it is middle age school :D

Sincerely Lasse
 

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I just want to pop in and say this.

@LRT and @Lasse you guys are the perfect example of how to have a discussion about things. I wish others would partake in discussions in the same manner you two are.

Also, this is an interesting discussion, as I have set up straight new everything tanks and done a ton of moves with additions and never had issues. The fact that I have been in this hobby for a very long time helps, but also continually monitoring things is why it I feel as though I can do it. If one thinks it is a set it up and forget it, they are in for a world of trouble IMO.
 
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Not sure of that. Cycling of the nitrification process means that you have working biofilm on most of your substrates available to process your load. you had that on all of your corals when you move them in - you did have to wait for the nitrification organism to establish themselves on your substrate. The time it takes for these organisms to build up - that´s the nitrification cycling time. You just bring in the biofilm with your corals direct

Sincerely Lasse
We are still cutting hairs.
According to definition of cycling i did experience a bump in ammonia at least 3 x and them back to 0. Sure it was never more than .006 after first few feedings for first cpl days. But as small as it was I did experience a "cycle" by definition. A cycle is a cycle that we can see in the data I think we can at least agree on that.
Agreed i brought over all the necessary biodiversity from my rock and coral plugs etc..

Having said that.
If a reefer goes through the motions of cycling tank properly and tank is fully capable of maintaining bioload. Should we wait another 3 months or is there a benefit of adding more biodiversity with the addition of stocking the tank with corals and what comes with them from healthy established tank. Do you feel it could possibly aid in getting the rest of the new surfaces covered more quickly?
You see absoloutely no benefit to this at all?
 

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I got lucky w that example Robert, its the exception not the norm.

thats the fullest that sps can be driven during that keep time, its working well to the point he's upgrading.

*his cycle is unique here: it was feed only, no bottle bac, ready by cycling charts date (30 days from start)

no bottle bac was used, so it stands out among cycles that dosed 3x strains. he coaxed natural and free bacteria to be ready, but as a dry rock start its close to the example you want for sps for sure.

as a third contribution to new cycling science, howaboutme's post also sets the maximum time frame you will ever see a feed-only cycle take. nobody's is going to take 60 days, cycle charts aren't set for 60 days they're set for 30 and we show thats the max compliance time for feed-only cycles.


each of the major cycling approaches has its predetermined completion time, its not open ended, that's key.
He moved a rock full of life and corals to a new box of water with another rock. The rock he moved appears to have been established for at least 7 months, theres no major reason to cycle a tank like this as the beneficial bacteria is alive and well on the rock transferred. Put that lone rock into a tank with 100 pounds of dry rock and nothing else and you still won't see a "cycle" from an ammonia standpoint (unless you go dumping food and fish in), but those SPS likely wont live, and if they do it will be a while until they start showing much growth.
 

DavidinGA

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Most of us aren't so impatient that we have to have our tanks cycle in 48 hours, let alone 24 hours, even if it's viable.

I'm of the older crowds opinion that sure you might be able to technically cycle in such a short amount of time, but if you're running the new go-to methods of setting up a tank with just dry rock/sand and a bottle of bacteria your biodiversity is going to be very very poor and this opens the door for other issues - disease/stress.

IMO the best method is to set up a tank with LR, but with today's crazy high prices most people would rather go the dry route...
 

Lasse

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I really, really want people to think on this going forward... this hobby, as well as many others that try and replicate nature by displacing living things from their habitats is under scrutiny and it will likely get worse. Don't start with me on the whole captive breeding stuff since all of you know that they people making the attacks will not look at this.

Hobbies that are cavalier about husbandry and that always want to cut corners even sometimes at the expense of the animals will further be reduced and maybe even strictly regulated. The look of threads like this that superficially debunk real science perhaps at the benefit of outliers and one-offs only to speed human desire is a BAD look. I am not saying that this is what is happening here, but you have to see the potential. When somebody takes a look at our hobby they need to see mostly successes with proven methods of husbandry that are backed by real science and best-of-breed type of stuff. When some congress person or CITES committee look to restrict imports, you don't want them to see the vocal folks on message boards recommending bleeding edge practices for these living creatures just captured from the wild. If we want this hobby to continue, we need to be the best keepers that we can be. For some, what is in this thread might work... but you all know that this is terrible advice for the masses. Hawaii is voting soon on starting to import fish again and the argument would be a whole lot easier if threads like this were qualified with the nuance and caveats as to why it is so hard versus how everybody else in the past is stupid.

What the people making decisions will see is a hobby that thinks of themselves more than the animals... right or wrong.

If you were captured by aliens and taken to their planet, would you want a habitat with already established plants, trees, vegetables, etc. with steams full of fish and fauna both for food and to process waste that is for-sure ready for life, or one that somebody just threw a basket of apples on the ground and a 5 gallon bucket for you to whizz in? The smart aliens can probably make either work for us, but even the dumb aliens can make the first scenario work.

I love these kind of discussions and like what they can bring, but we need to be careful to detail the nuances and experience necessary and not be quick at all to discount the real science and successes of the past.
Lovely - but II can´t understand that you still prefer MH :D:D:D

Sincerely Lasse
 
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Cycled means enough of biofilm able to process the nitrogen bioload. If you 10 fold your bioload - your biofilm have to ten fold itself in order to process the new daily input



Not at all is not that

Let us say like this - I would not bother to lower my fish count to 4 and my daily feeding of 2 cubes instantly without risking anything. Will you go out and purchase 46 new fishes and start to feed 20 cubes a day - instantly?

Sincerely Lasse
Lol I almost made exact same argument but it would be ridiculous for either one of us to even consider that and I wouldn't for the reasons you suggested.
I am watching my surfaces "mature" and go through the process you describe. Yes my addition of live rock and other things I added did fully cycle and does continue to fully cycle my bioload theres no denying that.
Just looking at what benefits it could have for others to take yours and my approach with stocking tanks that are capable of handling bioload as opposed to waiting.
 

brandon429

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agreed David. if shipping goes back to normal soon KP and TBS were mailing some fine setups. helps in dinos suppression too.


remember if someone does want a 48 hour cycle, we listed six legit reasons above they may want that in post #81. none were for show- the controlled cycles were for function

being able to wield the option, the procedure and know its exactly as capable as a 3 months wait cycle is the important part. that's where resolve in action comes from, total control over cycles so that unanticipated changes can be handled if any.

when a seller packs eighty thousand dollars in frags to take to aquashella and the stock living v dying determines next 4 mos house payments, exact control over fully legit start date value goes way up. no relying on open-ended waits, the convention may come and go by then.

if a new aquarist takes the same new tank start options as the convention cycler, that's ok to do even if they're at home the whole time. convention cycles don't expire, they're fully cycled tanks, nobody puts eighty grand in an iffy cycled tank.

I hope to cover disease preps well enough that it becomes fully engrained in all cycling discussions and instruction sets. the easy part was the cycle. all the measuring, careful planning, purchase set, planning for future all goes into fish disease control. the cycle is think about it once, pick the chosen start date first, then seize it


waiting months to start a tank does not alter disease expression we see in the fish forum, but like dinos suppression I'm sure a matured system helps suppress disease in many ways too.

but not so much that live rock tank owners aren't posting daily in the disease forum, they're losing fish at a massive rate right alongside the white rock tanks.
 
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AS
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Lovely - but II can´t understand that you still prefer MH :D:D:D

Sincerely Lasse
Couldn't disagree more.
Yes I get Jda post and respect that but strongly feel we can stick to the strict rules for cycling, that where set forth. Work inside of those rules with real time data and do new, better things in this hobby without worrying about upsetting the asylum oops im sorry masses that a bunch of 6 yr olds seems to be controlling nowadays.

I'm sorry but I'm not sorry if this thread makes a group of folks uncomfortable.
All we are truly discussing at the end of day is different approach to means and methods of getting tanks to cycle and stock using the pros strict adherence to guideline given long ago.

In fact. If anyone is actually paying attention we are actually proving old cycle science. And possibly showing the benefits to stocking a tank and adding more biodiversity up front than anything. Perhaps giving folks ideas that could be applied to setting up new tanks to have great success.
 
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Lasse

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Do you feel it could possibly aid in getting the rest of the new surfaces covered more quickly?
You see absoloutely no benefit to this at all?
It will be covered with time and bioload of N. NH4 is the food for the first steps organisms, NO2 is the food for the second (at least the energy part to both steps) The first step in a salt water aquarium that mostly is done by archaeas (Ammonium Oxidizing Archaea - AOA) grow probably grow faster than the second steps NOB (Nitrite Oxidizing Bacteria) If there is a stable N input (bioload of N) - the population of both AOA and NOB will be constant. If the bioload increase - new colonies of both AOA and NOB must establish themselves (if there is space enough) AOA are rather quick but doubling time for NOB is around 13 - 15 hours in pure media - longer in real life. If you ten double your input of N - you need either to put in new things with already established biofilm or seed with other sources of NOB

Sincerely Lasse
 

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I really, really want people to think on this going forward... this hobby, as well as many others that try and replicate nature by displacing living things from their habitats is under scrutiny and it will likely get worse. Don't start with me on the whole captive breeding stuff since all of you know that they people making the attacks will not look at this.

Hobbies that are cavalier about husbandry and that always want to cut corners even sometimes at the expense of the animals will further be reduced and maybe even strictly regulated. The look of threads like this that superficially debunk real science perhaps at the benefit of outliers and one-offs only to speed human desire is a BAD look. I am not saying that this is what is happening here, but you have to see the potential. When somebody takes a look at our hobby they need to see mostly successes with proven methods of husbandry that are backed by real science and best-of-breed type of stuff. When some congress person or CITES committee look to restrict imports, you don't want them to see the vocal folks on message boards recommending bleeding edge practices for these living creatures just captured from the wild. If we want this hobby to continue, we need to be the best keepers that we can be. For some, what is in this thread might work... but you all know that this is terrible advice for the masses. Hawaii is voting soon on starting to import fish again and the argument would be a whole lot easier if threads like this were qualified with the nuance and caveats as to why it is so hard versus how everybody else in the past is stupid.

What the people making decisions will see is a hobby that thinks of themselves more than the animals... right or wrong.

If you were captured by aliens and taken to their planet, would you want a habitat with already established plants, trees, vegetables, etc. with steams full of fish and fauna both for food and to process waste that is for-sure ready for life, or one that somebody just threw a basket of apples on the ground and a 5 gallon bucket for you to whizz in? The smart aliens can probably make either work for us, but even the dumb aliens can make the first scenario work.

I love these kind of discussions and like what they can bring, but we need to be careful to detail the nuances and experience necessary and not be quick at all to discount the real science and successes of the past.
@jda I agree with this completely. This does need to be looked as a discussion and not as "this new way is the way to do it".

Yes, I have had to setup insta tanks due to serious issues with someone elses tank being torn down and selling all they could sell (Mostly the rock and the poor fish are in an empty tank with nasty detritus ridden sand), but I have been in this hobby for a very long time, am very meticulous about things and overwatch a newly setup tank. I also know the signs of fish in distress, have no issue counting breaths and taking the appropriate steps if issues arise. Again, there are not that many of us out there that have that mindset or skill level.

I will say, that in some way, this really does need to be discussed. Too many people get into this hobby, screw things up and kill animals. I have a very soft spot for nems, and they are one of the most abused critters out there.

If we could discuss things and figure out some way to do some controlled testing, maybe we could all figure out a way to solve those issues and get it to the masses. Sadly, there will always be the rush in and throw the kitchen sink at tanks to start them up make them "pretty and full of fish" instantly. But, if we could find a way that that could be successful, then that would help save the critters and the people who rush things would do less damage.

A few things to think of in regards to taking a blank tank and throwing it all together.
- Dry rock is dead, we know that and bottle bac gets added to get it to be "live"
- would the addition of a ton of corals not be considered adding in "live" items that can process ammonia
- the frag plugs are considered surface area for bacteria, as are the skeletons of LPS. Add lods of them and you add loads of surface area for bacteria. (for now, lets not count alk stability and all of that, as it is a whole other discussion. Just keeping our eyes on processing ammonia and such)
- the addition of some macro to start would process ammonia, as they prefer it over load of No3 and PO4.

Just some thoughts, and in no way saying doing that would be beneficial or not, just looking at ideas here.

I know the above is a long shot. I still have to think there has to be some hope for the critters that get stuck in a super fast setup.
 
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It will be covered with time and bioload of N. NH4 is the food for the first steps organisms, NO2 is the food for the second (at least the energy part to both steps) The first step in a salt water aquarium that mostly is done by archaeas (Ammonium Oxidizing Archaea - AOA) grow probably grow faster than the second steps NOB (Nitrite Oxidizing Bacteria) If there is a stable N input (bioload of N) - the population of both AOA and NOB will be constant. If the bioload increase - new colonies of both AOA and NOB must establish themselves (if there is space enough) AOA are rather quick but doubling time for NOB is around 13 - 15 hours in pure media - longer in real life. If you ten double your input of N - you need either to put in new things with already established biofilm or seed with other sources of NOB

Sincerely Lasse
How are you testing for Nitrites?
What kit have you seen to be most accurate?
I've been toying with idea of doing a cpl experiments with a 10 gallon.
We can monitor orp as well @jda.
I do want to test and monitor for everything I possibly can to see what everything else is doing in relationship to ammonia using this approach.
 

Dom

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Why wait 48 hrs?
I've proven i can cycle a tank and fully stock it in 24hrs.
Point is why in the world would we wait any longer to stock a tank if its been fully cycled and capable of carrying bioload of fully stocked tank?

Okay, so you can get a tank up and running in 24 hours. I'm not disagreeing with the science. I'm just not seeing the benefit.
 
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brandon429

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whatever you were going to do with it in 4 weeks, can do now. sets a clear start date, for action. waiting for old markers to pass teaches hesitation where there is none justified, this negatively affects future reefing especially in the form of invasion systems where the owner fearfully doubted ability to clean the tank without harming the bacteria.

but then we came along and rip cleaned the setup and instantly saved them 5 months of bad looking reef. the filter bacteria setup fast, they adhere as long as the system stays wet, even if we rip clean out the dinos from total takeover.

cycles cannot be starved in open topped reefs in a home; don't keep pumping feed out of that fear as well.

knowing the cycle end date sets the action date for the investment and it teaches bacteria resolve vs doubt. that resolve can be used in precision controls against tank loss issues in the hobby.
 
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@jda I agree with this completely. This does need to be looked as a discussion and not as "this new way is the way to do it".

Yes, I have had to setup insta tanks due to serious issues with someone elses tank being torn down and selling all they could sell (Mostly the rock and the poor fish are in an empty tank with nasty detritus ridden sand), but I have been in this hobby for a very long time, am very meticulous about things and overwatch a newly setup tank. I also know the signs of fish in distress, have no issue counting breaths and taking the appropriate steps if issues arise. Again, there are not that many of us out there that have that mindset or skill level.

I will say, that in some way, this really does need to be discussed. Too many people get into this hobby, screw things up and kill animals. I have a very soft spot for nems, and they are one of the most abused critters out there.

If we could discuss things and figure out some way to do some controlled testing, maybe we could all figure out a way to solve those issues and get it to the masses. Sadly, there will always be the rush in and throw the kitchen sink at tanks to start them up make them "pretty and full of fish" instantly. But, if we could find a way that that could be successful, then that would help save the critters and the people who rush things would do less damage.

A few things to think of in regards to taking a blank tank and throwing it all together.
- Dry rock is dead, we know that and bottle bac gets added to get it to be "live"
- would the addition of a ton of corals not be considered adding in "live" items that can process ammonia
- the frag plugs are considered surface area for bacteria, as are the skeletons of LPS. Add lods of them and you add loads of surface area for bacteria. (for now, lets not count alk stability and all of that, as it is a whole other discussion. Just keeping our eyes on processing ammonia and such)
- the addition of some macro to start would process ammonia, as they prefer it over load of No3 and PO4.

Just some thoughts, and in no way saying doing that would be beneficial or not, just looking at ideas here.

I know the above is a long shot. I still have to think there has to be some hope for the critters that get stuck in a super fast setup.
Let's do this! I'm going to do a dry rock bottle bac as well as mimmick what ive done with my live rock start up.
I really do want to monitor everything as closely as possible to cross refference whats happening in both tanks.
You could bring other much needed experience and ideas in your system.

Like you guys have both said and couldn't have nailed it any better.
This is not a quick end all fix or approach. It really does take diligence to the highest level to maintain params and keep them locked in to be successful.
Im glad we are at least looking at and talking about this if anything.

So future readers don't run across this thread and think we are accelerating cycle times. We are not or have not and don't intend to go outside of those rules.
Strict adherence to cycle is being followed.
Accelerated stock is happening if anything.
And nothing is being stocked that tank bioload can't handle.
 
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Okay, so you can get a tank up and running in 24 hours. I'm not disagreeing with the science. I'm just not seeing the benefit.
I'm sorry you can't see the benefits of setting up and stocking a fully functioning tank but the applications are astronomical when done correctly. Hopefully we can show how.
Or perhaps when brs reports and does videos to show findings we may finally accept them. Idk
 

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Okay, so you can get a tank up and running in 24 hours. I'm not disagreeing with the science. I'm just not seeing the benefit.
I know this for LRT, but wanted to give some insight into this. At least from my perspective.

For me and referring to 100% new. (or at least close to 100% new, as I always keep seeded sponges in my tanks sumps for emergencies)

I have had to do this when I purchased a tank buy out a couple of times. I get there and thought it was just a tank and what was left over from not selling part by part and there are some fish in the tank. Well, I really wanted the setup, so I take the fish. Being as I do not want the fish to die, but I do not want to introduce them to my tanks, I setup a brand new tank for them with the tank I just picked up. This is used to observe the fish, get them eating and to ensure they are going to be strong enough for QT. I know, I could just QT from the beginning and call it day, but sometimes I find homes for them and others QT them. (i typically do not sell fish to people I do not know and all of them QT)

I typically use fritz turbo start and biospria (readily available locally) dry rock and no sand (unless needed). I then take the dry rock and place it in a bucket. The bottle bac goes into clean spritz bottles and is then heavy sprayed with it. From there it goes into the tank. I then put both of the bottle bacs on an old jaebo doser and dose it into the tank via the doser. Most of the time I use a HOB filter (even if it had a sump), as it allows me to get a sponge seeded very quickly or use one of my existing sponges. I also throw in macro into the display. This may or may not help, but macro does consume ammonia for food. It also provides food for the fish most of the time, as well as some hiding places for them. This allows the tank to process ammonia right from the start. or at least it appears that way with numerous testing and obeservations. From there, the tank establishes a biofilm on the rocks and dosing can stop after a few days/week.

While I know this may not be considered instant, it is one way to instantly provide a safe place for fish. Do not get me wrong, it is surely not a mature and biodiverse environment, but it does process ammonia.

There have been a few instances where fish showed no signs of distress, but ammonia levels were a little higher than I allow, so I setup a constant WC system with some float valves and small pumps. (think cat water fountain small). This has allowed me to exchange a ton of water over the course of a day for many days to allow for a biofilter to establish.

Now I know this not the norm, but wanted to weigh in on a benefit or 2 and those are below.

- Saved some fish from dying or being mistreated elsewhere.
- Made some money with quarantined fish or fat fish that stand a better chance at QT being sold to local reefers.
- Picked up some sweet setups for cheap, as the previous owners dropped the price way low, as I was taking the fish.


Some things I could see coming from this also that could be good.

In the event that a tank has something dumped in it and you can get the fish out quickly, but we know the rock/corals are going to be trashed due to it, the fish can still be saved. As well as time can be taken to correct the issue and get the messed up tank back online. Versus rushing and messing everything up in the main tank.

Again, I know I am not the norm when it comes to this. I put 110% every day, ever hour and every minute into my critters of the sea. I have that time to do that, as well as the drive.
 
BRS

Speaking of your latest coral purchase...

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  • It was a good deal

    Votes: 45 28.7%
  • It was nether good nor bad

    Votes: 33 21.0%
  • It was a bad deal

    Votes: 11 7.0%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 3 1.9%
ACC
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