Male Axanthic Axolotl Would Love to Have His Water Improved (Please Help With My Cycling Crisis!)

kwally

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Hi all! I'm currently looking for some advice concerning the cycling of my tank and could use a few experts to help eliminate my problem. I am hoping to cycle the tank properly, but after 75 days I am still receiving concerning readings for ammonia and very little nitrate. Any advice would be greatly appreciated and I will post additional information regarding my setup below to help identify the problem. Thanks to all in advance for any help or support they can offer as this is my first post on the forum.

Tank: The tank is 55 Gallons with approximately 45 gallons of water contained within it.

Animal: A beautiful Axanthic male axolotl (7.5 in).

Substrate: I am currently using pool filter sand with large river stones as substrate.

Filters: For my filters I am using two Cascade 700 cannister filters with spray bars. These filters were only cleaned when they were first purchased and nothing has been done since they started running. The filters use a sponge, Floss and activated carbon.

Water Changes: I perform a 50% water change, weekly or as needed if ammonia levels are too high. The substrate is also cleaned and turned up to remove lost food.

Feeding: Feeding dishes are used to avoid additional mess at meals and he is fed once daily Pellets and bloodworms.

Cycling: I have used two entire bottles of Tetra Safe start, using half the bottle at each attempt to cycle the tank.

Testing: I use an API Master Liquid Test kit to determine Ammonia, pH, Nitrite and Nitrate levels. The kit expires in 2019.

Water Conditioner: I am using Prime water conditioner when performing water changes.

Chiller: I am using an active aqua 1/10hp Chiller to maintain a constant tank temperature of ~60°F.

Live Plants: There is currently 6 medium sized Moss Balls and 10 leaves of Java Fern in the tank with no lighting being used (low light plants)

Testing Trend:

Friday June 9th:
1.0ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
66 Degrees Fahrenheit

Saturday June 10th:
1.0ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
68 Degrees Fahrenheit

(*Water Changed*)
New Parameters:
0.5ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
66 Degrees Fahrenheit

Thursday June 15th:
0.5 ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.8 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

(*Water Changed*)
New Parameters:
0.25ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

Tuesday June 20th:
0.5ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.8 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

Thursday June 22nd:
0.5ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.8 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

(*Water Changed*)
New Parameters:
0.25ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

Thursday June 27th:
0.5ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.8 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

(*Water Changed*)
New Parameters:
0.25ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
5.0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

Saturday July 1st:
0.5 ppm Ammonia
0ppm Nitrite
0ppm Nitrate
7.4 pH
60 Degrees Fahrenheit

Any additional information that might help lead to a solution, feel free to ask! I would really like to tackle this problem in the near future. Buying supplies is not a concern, whatever will help him feel more comfortable in his tank, I'll be willing to do. Thank you!
 
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