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Test results (cycling tank)

This is a discussion on Test results (cycling tank) within the Axolotl General Discussion forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; I've been cycling my tank for about 2 weeks now. Here are the test results from today: Ammonia: 1-2ppm Nitrate: ...

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Old 21st January 2010   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation Test results (cycling tank)

I've been cycling my tank for about 2 weeks now. Here are the test results from today:
Ammonia: 1-2ppm
Nitrate: 0-5ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Ph: 7.6

There is about 3 cubes of brine shrimp in there at the moment. & I bought a female siamese fighting fish for my male fighter fish & put her in my axie tank (without the axie) to see if that would increase the ammonia.
What should I do now? Just wait?



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Old 21st January 2010   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

How often are your water changes?



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Old 21st January 2010   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

The best route you can take is to do a fishless cycle. Take the female betta out, and drop more food in, like a cocktail shrimp or more brine shrimp. OR, straight ammonia. You don't need a lot of ammonia though to cycle the tank. You've already started if you're registering ANY nitrites. Leave the decompossing food in the tank, don't do any water changes, and just continue to test everyday. once you register nitrates without any ammonia or nitrites, do a large water change and put your axie in.



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Old 21st January 2010   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

I do a 15% water change once a week.

There aren't any nitrites at all & I just tested it again & there still arent any (although it has only been 6 hours). What do you mean 'once you register nitrates without any ammonia or nitrites'? Do you mean when ammonia is 0 and nitrates is 0?
Thank you Angyles :]



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Old 21st January 2010   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

yes when nitrites and ammonia are 0, and you have any nitrates present.

Doing any water changes right now is going to do nothing but remove the ammonia that is food to your bacteria. The only time you need to worry about doing water changes, is if you have an animal in there.



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Old 21st January 2010   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Just a quick note. Once you register 0 ammonia and nitrite you still need to add some source of ammonia to feed the bacteria. So if your tank will be empty keep adding ammonia or put axie straight in once you have the 0s. And then moniter with axie in to see when you need to do water changes. Hope some of that made some kind of sense! Mel



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Old 21st January 2010   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Quote:
Originally Posted by melfly View Post
Just a quick note. Once you register 0 ammonia and nitrite you still need to add some source of ammonia to feed the bacteria. So if your tank will be empty keep adding ammonia or put axie straight in once you have the 0s. And then moniter with axie in to see when you need to do water changes. Hope some of that made some kind of sense! Mel
exactly. you have to make sure there's a constant source of decomposing matter in the tank to feed the bacteria. If you just keep adding food each day, you'll be fine.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Today, Ammonia is 2, nitrate is 5 and nitrite still 0. Does nitrite need to increase and then decrease along with ammonia?
I added 1 cube of brine shrimp too.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

yeah that's pretty strange. you definently should have nitrites at some point.

I would give it a day and test them all again. You certainly don't want to add him as long as there's any ammonia. Just keep testing and let us know what your readings are.

oh, are you using liquid tests or test strips? the paper strips are HIGHLY inacurate. you really need to be using liquid tests to get any reliable readings. That could definently account for this oddness.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Nope, I use liquid testers. I was made aware a while ago that they are much more accurate :]
Could the temperate affect nitrites being formed? Cos it's about 28 degrees in my tank (even though it feels about 25-26 degrees when I put my hand in). I put a plastic ice pack in there just then & I'll probably experiment with chillers while I don't have the axolotl.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

temp shouldn't affect a cycle. It's possible that you just don't have enough good bacterial yet and may be experiencing a mini cycle. only enough bacteria develops to deal with the amount of ammonia present. you may have already cycled, but the amount of ammonia in your tank increased, without yet having enough bacteria to deal with it. this is a min-cycle. it should catch up really quick though.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Oh man, I hope so.
I just tested the water for nitrite and nothing has changed, still 0. It's not even getting darker.



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Old 22nd January 2010   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Keep at it. A cycle can take up to 8 weeks. Once you get your nitrite spike you know your nearly there. Mel



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Old 22nd January 2010   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Hi Emeraldd,

The nill presence of nitrite may be due to the presence of plants. The plants will be competing with the bacteria for the ammonia (a food source) and this interferes with cycling process.

Further information can be found in this thread - well worth a read through, as the member who posted it was having similar trouble with their cycle.

Good luck!



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Old 23rd January 2010   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Today the pH is the same, 7.6, Ammonia is still 2ppm, nitrates is decreasing, so somewhere under 5ppm and nitrite is still 0.

After reading the thread Jacquie sent, I removed all of my plants and put them in a different tank. I was contemplating on whether plants would negatively affect the cycle, but I wasn't sure. I've added a cube of brine shrimp & I might test the water for nitrites later tonight or in the morning. Or both... I think I've become obsessive with testing the water hahahaa



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Old 24th January 2010   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

removing the plants is a good call. I'm sure now your test results will start making more sense.



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Old 24th January 2010   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

I think the ammonia is decreasing. The liquid is becoming lighter but not as light as 1ppm. Also, the colour of the liquid for nitrite is slightly different each time I test it. It's still light blue but you can see it's changing. But then again it could just be the lighting in my room...
Also, should I turn the filter off?



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Old 24th January 2010   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Your filter should be on...and i can't explain why your readings seems to change each time...as you said, it's probably just the lightning.



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Old 26th January 2010   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Ammonia has increased to 5.0, definetely. Nitrite is still 0, nitrate is between 0 & 5, & pH has decreased to 7.4.
I'm thinking about replacing the water and cleaning the sand (or keeping it as it is)? What do you think?
I'm not worried about how long this will take me, I've got all the time in the world, but I would like an axolotl soon :]



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Old 29th January 2010   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Test results (cycling tank)

Ammonia, i think, has increased to 8.0 and nitrite has increased a little bit, but not quite 0.25 and nitrate is 0. I think it always has been 0, actually. It doesn't make sense for it to be higher if nitrite is 0.
So I'm just going to wait for nitrite to increase a bit more, then ammonia should eventually drop to 0 and nitrate should increase. Is that correct?
Thank you, everyone, for the help and advice. I probably would've messed it all up without this site too :]



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Last edited by emeraldd; 29th January 2010 at 08:24. Reason: Spelling mistake :S
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