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A 4th week tank no-cycling!!

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  • A 4th week tank no-cycling!!

    Hello there, I would like some help with this issue!
    On 6/26 I began a new aquarium - 5 gal - with just a betta inside.
    I've been following the Tank Cycling Schedule that I found at your web site.... I know that every tank is different and this is not a strict procedure.
    • Anyway, the parameters have been stable regarding GH= 4 dGh (yesterday was 5) , Kh= 3 dKh, Ph= 7.8 (actually very alkaline), Temperature: around 78F
    • The filter is a hang on with floss and matrix mixed together with another biofilter media - Sera Siporax Mini... I read somewhere at the forum that during the cycling is not recommended to have any chemical filter, at the bottom of the intake tube there's a sponge filter.
    • Regarding the water just top it off weekly
    • I did not change any water until yesterday (the beginning of the 4th week) because 5 days ago the Ammonia badge began to change more close to alert than safe, and yesterday I thought it was in ALERT, I decided to change 25% of the water ( the real total amount of water is 4.5 gal) because even using AmGuard daily following the instructions and reading in the forum, the badge never returned to a safe state. At this point I'm only using AmGuard to deal with the emergency (5 days of using it), I stopped Prime.
    • The badge was tested with glass cleaner and is working
    • Also I began to add Stability again since the change in color.
    • At this point I still don't have ANY Nitrite nor Nitrate
    • My tap water tested positive for Ammonia (API) and if I place the Ammonia badge inside tap water the color of the sensor is a weird yellowish/green. I have pictures with the water inside Purified water, and inside Tap water if you guys would like to see them also. I keep them for comparison purposes.
    • Mmm just for curiosity and to listen what you guys think, according to the Ph badge, in what number do you place this reading?? because the API result was 7.8...I will upload a picture of this also
    I really don't have any more ideas in my head..... on how to lower the Ammonia and I'm worry about Mr. Yoda
    Any comment and help would be very much appreciated.

    Andreina Grillet
    PS: Picture attached of the Ammonia Badge just now

  • #2
    Thanks for the post, AGrillet!

    I would say that the pH Alert is between 6.6-7.0. The Ammonia Alert appears to be on Safe.

    Here are some additional tips and information regarding using Stability to cycle a tank. We also suggest the use of Prime or AmGuard as well. Please see below:

    The product Stability will seed all of the bacteria colonies needed to develop a healthy nitrogen cycle. Thus, by the end of the first week of dosing, your tank should have had some readings for ammonia and possible nitrite if an ammonia source was added. However, it may take some time after these first seven days of treatment with Stability for the bacteria colonies to grow to match the amount of waste available in the tank. The actual cycle process can take anywhere from 1 week to 8-10 weeks depending on the system.

    If you are seeing some ammonia or nitrites, then the bacteria should be working to convert ammonia through the cycle. The rate at which these bacteria colonies grow is dependent on stability of pH, temperature, availability of suitable surfaces on which to grow, and many other factors. We have heard of tanks that have been completely cycled by a few days after the week of treatment with Stability, but most tanks require at least three weeks total to cycle completely. To facilitate/speed up the cycle, you will need a continued source of ammonia. This can be from fish, fish food, or household ammonia.

    If you choose to add a few fish to provide the ammonia needed to grow you bacteria colonies to the size needed to keep a tank full of fish stable, but you will want to be adding Prime/AmGuard every 48 hours as long as there is ammonia or nitrite present in the tank. If you choose not to add fish, you will need to add some source of ammonia to feed the newly added bacteria. You can also use fish food, or household ammonia as mentioned above in the place of fish if you choose to go this route. Ammonia will typically need to peak between 1-2 ppm to facilitate the cycle. If levels have been consistently low on ammonia thus far, you will need to add more organics to the tank. It is best to avoid water changes if possible as this will simply prolong the cycle process as you are removing ammonia and organics before they can peak in the appropriate range.

    You can use Prime/AmGuard every 48 hours to keep your ammonia and nitrite bound in a nontoxic form until your tank is fully cycled. This dose will detoxify 1 mg/L of ammonia or nitrite, and should be plenty to prevent any harm to your fish from these compounds. If you want to give the system another boost, then you can use a booster dose of Stability at any time to add some additional bacteria in the event that some has been compromised during your cycle time. In addition, a good bio media such as Matrix (Seachem. Matrix) in your filter would also help as it would give more surface area for colonization of beneficial bacteria.


    • #3
      Thanks for your response!!


      • #4
        No worries!