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Old 01-21-2013, 10:34 AM   #11 
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I have plants in there, they use nitrates. It is very heavily planted and the bioload is small in comparison to the plants. I have talked extensively with my LFS and read many different websites and forum posts about this. I'm not worried, if anything I may have to start dosing nitrates but seeing as how my anubias are taking off like crazy I'm going to conclude the nitrate deficiency isn't much of an issue.

Last edited by breeglet; 01-21-2013 at 10:37 AM.
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Old 01-21-2013, 01:36 PM   #12 
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That's not what sainthogan meant at all. He didn't mean you should increase them. He meant if you're not having any your tank is not cycled. This might help:

You will see nitrates during cycling. The plants will eat some but they will not likely keep levels like this..Some plants don't even eat nitrates, others do to a certain rate but if you've only been changing 10% a week it would be extremely unlikely to have those readings. How long have you had the tank set up? Cycling takes up to 2 months to complete, during which time you needed to have been supplying an ammonia source (like drops of pure ammonia, fish or fish food), so how long has it been set up with an ammonia source?

Can you share pictures of your tank please so we can get an idea of how heavily planted it is?
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:08 PM   #13 
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Originally Posted by sainthogan View Post
A fully cycled tank has nitrates between 10 and 40. If all are at 0, it's not fully cycled.
This is true in regular tanks that use inert substrate or in tank with inert substrate that are lightly planted, however, in soil based or very heavy planted tanks even with inert substrate-It may take a long time if ever to see a nitrate reading-due to the plants using ammonia for a food source before conversion. With that said, the nitrogen cycle is still happening-but it is silent....since the hobby grade test products only test at a PPM level-you will always have some ammonia, nitrite and nitrate in the tank for the bacteria.
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:40 PM   #14 
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I do not feel like delving further into a discussion that makes me feel like my intelligence is being attacked and looked down upon. I appreciate everyone's concern and suggestions, I really do. Oldfishlady has it right, look into silent cycling. There are a number of ways to cycle and establish a nitrogen cycle. Bacteria do not necessarily have to bear the brunt of the nitrogen cycle, if you are heavily planted.

I am out-ie now. :) Thank you all for your wisdom & guidance. It has helped me put some thoughts into my mind.
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