Never-ending cycle?

mermaid

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Katie
Hi everyone,

I desperately need help! I have dangerous water conditions and no idea how to alleviate them. I had to get a new tank and am in the process of cycling it. Yes, my axolotl is in there. I thought it would be ok to cycle with him in there as long as I did daily water changes when levels started to rise. But since then I have discovered that this really isn't the case.

So here is what happened:

-First I had an ammonia spike (like normal at the beginning of a cycle), mostly alleviated and then totally eliminated with water changes, bringing ammonia to 0 ppm;

-Then immediately I had a HUGE HUGE nitrite spike. I had to remove my axolotl from the tank as the test was turning dark purple INSTANTLY after adding the test drops, even though I was doing 50% water changes every day.

-Then I went up to 95% water changes daily, and I added some plants.

-At first upon doing this all my problems seemed solved! -- Everything was at 0 ppm (ammonia, nitrites and nitrates)!

-But then after about 4 days I began having elevated ammonia, nitrites and nitrates (before it was just a nitrite spike, now it is all three).

-I've continued doing daily 95% water changes this entire time (so, altogether doing that for a few weeks now) still with no change.

-All this time I have of course been adding Prime with every water change. Since the nitrite spike I've been doing 5x the normal dose (as it says you can on the bottle during emergencies). And despite this, after 24 hours my levels are high again. I thought Prime was supposed to work for 24-48 hours, so I'm confused.

Here are what my readings have been at for the past week (they fluctuate slightly):
Ammonia = 0.25-0.50 ppm
Nitrite = .50-1.0 ppm
Nitrate = 5.0-10 ppm
pH = steady at 7.4

Before, during the initial nitrite spike, nitrite was reading at 5 ppm (although I think it was higher--that is just the max reading, and it was turning that color instantly). Now it is lower, but still bad, and accompanied by the increased ammonia and nitrates.

I'm really lost on what to do. Could the plants just be dying but not visibly showing it yet? Could that be causing the issues?

I'm worried that this problem will never go away! I am trying so hard to fix it with the daily 95% water changes, adding Prime always, getting the plants, and for the last few days adding Stability (another seachem product that introduces beneficial bacteria). Is this just a part of the cycle? It seems not to me as the ammonia and nitrate levels have risen again, rather than nitrites dropping to zero and nitrates rising as should happen toward the end of a cycle. I don't know what to do!!

In case it makes a difference, here is my tank setup: It's 10 gallons, bare-bottomed, with a few hiding places for him (all safe material, I got them at petco in the aquarium section), hang-off-the-back filter, several java ferns and a moss ball, and I have a nano chiller running that keeps his tank at a steady 67 degrees f. I also have a small air stone thing in there.
 
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    NewbieAxie has left the room.
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  • opaltheaxolotl:
    I've seen a lot of people say different things about it in articles, and I don't know if feeding them frozen bloodworm cubes is good for my axolotl. Can someone help?
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  • xxianxx:
    Bloodworms are not a great sole diet for small axolotl or bigger ones, though many people do use them exclusively. Your better off using eartworms which are considered a complete diet
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  • opaltheaxolotl:
    okay, thanks
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  • Shay876:
    How long after axolotl start moving in egg do they hatch? Also when should I start the brine shrimp hatchery going?
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  • tammyaxie:
    I just noticed two of the ghost shrimp in my axie tank have horsehair worms. I removed them immediately. Can these worms affect the axolotl and what would be the treatment?
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  • maddyb9903:
    Hello guys! I was wondering about nitrates in an axolotl tank. If there are 0 nitrates, will that harm the axolotl?
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  • AMurry24537:
    0 nitrates doesn't sound dangerous, but it does sound very unlikely if the tank is fully cycled. Are you positive you're performing the test correctly? If you're using the API one, that is by far the trickiest test to do right. If the reading is correct, I would guess that either your tank is not cycled, you just did like a 100% water change, or that you have plants sucking up the nitrates, but even those shouldn't leave you with 0.
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  • Dragonfire:
    0 is fine unless the tank isn't cycled. Most tanks definitely won't run at 0, but I've had fast growing emergent plants drop nutrients so low that other plants like floaters were choked out and began dying so it isn't impossible. Some less sensitive kits may read 0 but they are just not precise enough to give an accurate low level reading too.
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  • GabbyGums:
    Hey Yall my Axolotl has this like tail thats like a dent on the top, I was told it was meant stress but idk whats stressing out my Axolotl. The plants recently gotten moved since they were falling apart but like she's been eating/pooping fine and the temp and water tests are good for the Axolotl. So I don't really know whats causing her to be stress. Does anyone know anything?
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  • AMurry24537:
    Post a picture of the dent (in the "Sick Axolotl" thread) please
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  • GabbyGums:
    How do I do that? Im new to this website
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  • GabbyGums:
    nvm I found ot
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  • GabbyGums:
    *it
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    did it
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  • Skeemloc:
    Hey are any still available?
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  • Toothpickthelotl:
    Hey guys! I’m having an issue with my filter and was hoping for some suggestions. I use an aqua clear 20-50 gallon filter for my 20 gallon axolotl tank. It has worked great since I got it back in December! Recently though, I’ve noticed the flow of the water has turned into more of an intense trickle than a constant flow (if that makes any sense?) I thought it may be something was stuck in the filter or maybe the sponge needed to be swished around in tank water, so I did both of these and it still trickles. It’s a very strong trickle, so the tank is still getting good filtration. It is just so loud and I was wondering if this has happened to anyone else and if there’s a way to fix it?
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  • AMurry24537:
    Hmm, I don't know much about those filters, and I'm having trouble picturing what you mean, but could it be simply that your filtration media is arranged in a different way? Or maybe you're losing water content to evaporation? Just throwing out ideas. 😁 Again, I don't really know much about that kind of filter
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  • CrazyForLotls:
    Hello all. My male axolotl's cloaca hasn't been looking quite right for 13 days. When I first noticed it, I immediately checked the temperature of his tank and it was around 70-71. Way too warm for him, so I took him out and have had him tubbed in the basement ever since. The temperature of his water is now 64-65. The issue seems to be that one 'half' of his cloaca is flared out and has white fuzzy stuff on it. It almost looks like a bunch of little white spikes of hair. Only one half is this way. Sometimes said half is flared out almost all the way, and other times it's almost completely back inside of him. I had him in tea baths overnight for probably five days, and then a solid 24 hours of mild tea for around three days. I don't remember exactly, my apologies.
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  • CrazyForLotls:
    Since it was looking better (not flared out so I couldn't tell if it was still fuzzy) I put him back in plain, dechlorinated water. He gets daily water changes, always dechlorinated. The tea I used was plain black tea. The brand was Lipton and it came in a large box, purchased from the grocery store. Does anybody know what this could be? I found a couple old threads with a similar issue, but nobody ever replied to them. I can post a thread if you'd like some pictures, but they aren't very good. My camera was having trouble focusing and my axolotl kept moving.
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  • Audrey22:
    Hey guys! Just made a post asking for help with an injured eastern newt. I could really use some help. if you would read it, I would really appreciate 🙏😌
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  • Nexbane:
    @Audrey22, A salt bath *might* be a good idea, but I have never heard of them used for anything but axolotls. I would think as simplistic of a setup as possible would be best. Are you a member of the newts & salamanders group on facebook? You might have better luck getting more information quickly there! lots of the same members as here.
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  • Audrey22:
    Ok ill on Facebook too. Thanks. I've heard tea or salt and also neosporin. Do axolots breathe and absorb through their skin like sallies? Thats what I'm afraid of. Because I don't want them to absorb salt if that will hurt them. Anyways, I'll look at Facebook too
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    Audrey22: Ok ill on Facebook too. Thanks. I've heard tea or salt and also neosporin. Do axolots breathe... +2
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