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Old 31st January 2006   #1
stipe
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Ok most of you know how im now in the middle of cycling my tank. My tank was basicly already cycled because i had it set up for a month or two befor i put everything in the new tank. WHen everything was added a checked the water next day, and there was no ammonia, no nitrite and nitrate was at 15. After a week or so the nirate dropped to 5, ammonia still at 0 and then the nitrite rose to 0.25. Most of you said its jsut goin through a mini-cycle and i thought i'll wait it out. Its been now a couple of weeks and the nitrite didnt go down, it actually rose to 0.50. Im stating to get worried. The tank was basicly aready cycled, not to mention that have the water in the tank plus the ornaments and rock and half the substrate was from an established that. What could be the problem. Oh yeh and i have about 20-30 guppies in there (mating, so they must like it) and now only 2 ghost shrimp left (i had 10) and 2 adult and 16 baby mystery snails. What could be the problem, any help. SHould i buy that chemical 'quick-cycle' thing or wait it out. I need help. Im planing of moving halfof the rest of the substrate form squidys old tank into his new tank and then that'll make nearly 3/5 of the gravel from an established tank. HELP!



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Old 31st January 2006   #2
edward
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I would suggest waiting it out. If you are having spikes it is because something disrupted the bacteria, too much of a bioload on the tank and/or over feeding. All of these contribute ammonia to the tank, which in turn contributes to the nitrite levels. What was the nitrate level when the nitrite level hit 0.5? Did it go up or stay the same?

Ed



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Old 31st January 2006   #3
stipe
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The nitrate was and is at between 5 and 10ppm. I would guess 7 or 8. Not much of a rise. And the ammonia is still at 0. Should i get rid of half or so of the guppies???



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Old 31st January 2006   #4
edward
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Stipe,
What kind of test kit are you using?

Ed



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Old 1st February 2006   #5
stipe
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I dont think its got a brand name on it, but it says on the box, 'fresh water master test kit'. Its not the strip one you place in the water if thats what your asking. Its the drop one. The box containes, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, ph and high ph test kits. It's accurate. Just hard for me to tell the colour of the water, dont know what light to put it under.

Anywayz, the nitrite has dropped to 0.25 or even less because the shade of purple is lighter than the 0.25 shade, it has to be blue to be at 0.

Finaly i think its dropping, the nitrate is definatly at 10 now. Im trying to keep it like that for a bit to make sure, if it rises i'll do about 25% water change (should I ?????). After its good, then squidy can move in.



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Old 1st February 2006   #6
joan
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Stipe, I used this kit for a while too, before I realized that it didn't work. I was constantly getting false ammonia and nitrite readings and super-high nitrates. I finally got a baseline reading from the LFS and realized the kit was WAY off.

Get a dry-tab kit. They're much more accurate, and have a longer shelf-life.



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Old 1st February 2006   #7
stipe
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Ive heard of them. Is that the one that you place tabkets in the test tubes? i'll have a look, thanks Click the image to open in full size..



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Old 2nd February 2006   #8
jinny
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The freshwater master test kit is good as long as you aren't testing too soon after adding new water (certain conditioners skew results) and take care to get your sample from the bottom of the tank, not the top (dip the tube upside down before letting the air out).

I've actually heard the opposite about the different types of tests. The strips become worse as they are left out, exposed to moisture, etc.

(Message edited by j4782 on February 02, 2006)



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Old 2nd February 2006   #9
stipe
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I never take my sampel from the top. I place it upside down so no water gets in and take my sample from the middle. I dont take it from the bottom becasue of a slight chance i might get some fish or axie poop in there, which would most likley give bad results.



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Old 2nd February 2006   #10
theresa
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Interesting. Here in the states, for the most part the master kit is way better than the strips, and usually very accurate, unless expired. I have never had a problem with them, but have found the strips to be way off. I never use them anymore. just our experience and the recommended advise of allot of fish keepers.



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Old 2nd February 2006   #11
stipe
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I dont think joan or evfen i was talking about the stip ones. We where or at least i was talking about the liquid one. You fill the test tube with water and place some tabletgs in it and shake it till it disolved adn match the colour, oh well, lol.

Ok enough of that... MY amonia is 0 MY nitrite is 0 AND MY nitrate dropped to 5, YEY. THat could mean only one thing, ITS CYCLED. FINALY!!!. lol, i didnt mind it that much but i think squidy didnt enjoy his bare tank for a month, it made him even more depresed.

Thanks for all your help, i always new that the cycled pre-gravel ( from squidy's tank) would kick in sooner or later Click the image to open in full size..



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Old 2nd February 2006   #12
stipe
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Omg i jsut relised how bad my spelling was, if you ever wonder why its because i type to fast.



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Old 2nd February 2006   #13
edward
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The liquid test kits are typically accurate as long as the following is observed
1) the kit is not expired
2) the tubes are well rinsed between uses (residues will readily skew the results)
3) the tip of the dropper bottle is never allowed to come into contact with the interior of the tube as this can cause intake of a different reagent or water causing misreadings
4)the same tubes are used for the same test each time (this helps prevent bad readings)
5) the dropper bottles are not left open for too long as the reagents evaporate and oxidize.

Any of the above will ruin the test kit and give odd results.

And yes a "brand new" test kit may be bad if it has sat on the shelf too long or there was a manufacturing error (we had that happen here and had to send the kit back). I know the master test kits here in the USA have expiration dates on them.

Stipe, I am not sure your tank is cycled as your test readings have been all over and do not fit what occurs when a tank is cycling.

Unless you are using a denitrifying filter, a plenum system, or massive water changes, nitrates should not drop at the rate you are documenting. Even in planted tanks, the nitrate level takes a long time to come down (unless the tank is under super heavy lighting, CO2 injected, and massively planted and then the nitrates go down more because the plants feed on all of the available ammonia than any other reason).

Some thoughts.

Ed



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Old 2nd February 2006   #14
stipe
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The night befor the reading went down, i did a 10% water change just to help it abit. I used 'prime' water declornator. It syas on the bottle that it detoxifies, nitrates and nitrites, and for the sake of my ghost shrimp i placed half a capful more that usual. Mbey thats why. But the thing is with my tank is that all the gravel has been cycling or pre cycled from other tanks, along with the rocks and ornaments. I've even placed my filter in my old tank to colonize that. Oh yeh and i have a Heavily planted tank, with 2 grolux and i poweglo bulbs near the surface of the water, also i have a CO2 reacter.

(Message edited by Stipe on February 02, 2006)

(Message edited by Stipe on February 02, 2006)



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Old 3rd February 2006   #15
joan
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If you're using a chemical that neutralizes nitrites and nitrates, you'll never cycle your tank. You need nitrites and nitrates to cycle, and by neutralizing these, your bacteria have nothing to feed on and you won't build up enough bioload to support your axolotls. I would change to a regular dechlorinator, one that doesn't 'detoxify' anything but chlorine/chloramines, and then see if your tank cycles.



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Old 3rd February 2006   #16
stipe
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It syas on the bottle that 'to' detoxify nitrites add five times the directed amount. I never added five times that much. My nirites where droping anyway, not my nitrates rose abit.



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Old 3rd February 2006   #17
edward
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Not only do these products disrupt the cycling process, they also tend to play havok with the test kits preventing an accurate determination of the levels in the tank.

Ed



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Old 3rd February 2006   #18
stipe
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Ive used this same declorinater for all my fish tanks for over a year now.
Squidy is still not in his tank but after i get more readings i will put him in when im sure.

Oh yeh is my last post i said "...anyway, not my nitrates rose abit..." i ment to say 'BUT my nitrates rose abit'.



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Old 3rd February 2006   #19
jinny
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What's your tank size? I'm looking and thinking it could be overstocked. Apple snails (and this is the smaller species, p. bridgesii) need 10 liters each because they're messy creatures, which means your tank should be 180L minimum for just the snails. 200+ would be better considering all the guppies.



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Old 4th February 2006   #20
stipe
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the tank is 250L, ans now all the guppies are back in their origanal tank so that the bioload can catch up.



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