Clearly, I am a newbie here. I have been roaming the internet for centuries now, & the stress of my betta fish is making my head ache!
Can someone PLEASE help me?!
I am currently attempting my first fishless cycle, & I am pretty impatient.
~ 5 gallon aquarium; Aqueon Mini Bow
~ built in filter ^
~ light hood; not on for cycling purposes
~ heater made for 2.5-5 gal tanks; constant 8.0 (°F)
~ got rid of Tetra Whisper Air Pump because it was too strong
~ no airstone, for obvious reasons ^
~ over an inch thick of gravel & purple acrylic jewels
~ baby java ferns strewn around the bottom of the aquarium
~ decor, such as pots and such
~ no beneficial bacteria available to seed
Ammonia - 4.0ppm
Nitrites - 0ppm
NitrAtes - 5.0ppm
pH - 7.6
This fishless cycle has been going on for exactly a week now... NOTHING HAS CHANGED.
I mean, as soon as I added the ammonia, the next day the water was cloudy & had produced this disgusting film on the surface of the water that we are ALL (or most of us) are unfortunately familiar with...
& I had read in a different thread that it was a good sign --- beginning of the cycle! *silent cheer*
The water has cleared up since then (thank the fish gods) & the nasty film is slowly breaking down. YAY!
BUT, here's my real question(s):
1) When will my cycle finally DO SOMETHING???
2) How long will this whole process take? I'd hoped for 3-4 weeks!
3) I AM GOING ON VACATION IN 2 WEEKS (bad planning, obviously) - Should I just add my betta fish in early? Or what???
4) I was also thinking about adding an amano shrimp as well as a ghost shrimp to the tank (my betta fish is a chronic biter... cause highly unknown; decided it was boredom & that he needed friends PRONTO) Will THEY survive the cycle if added early?!
5) IF the cycle actually finishes in time (doubt it
) what do I do??? Will one betta fish & two shrimp be enough to keep the cycle going?!
That's all I can think of for now...
Thank you SO MUCH to people who are willing to respond right away! You do not know how much I will appreciate you!
Master fishkeepers --- Please WELCOME!!!