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Old 03-11-2013, 10:33 PM   #1 
ryancalif
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peksy nitrites

So I changed the water on my 5.5 gallon betta tank on saturday (50%). Checked the nitrites on sunday and they were at 1-2 ppm.

Before I changed the water, the ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates were at 0ppm, 0ppm, and 40 ppm. Very happy with those results.

Nitrites shot up dramatically after the change... I did another 50% change about an hour ago, checked the water and it's still at 1-2ppm.

I'm not sure if I retarded the nitrogen cycle or what. For the time being, I put in some Kordon ammonia detox solution to help make the water a bit safer for my fish.

Does anyone know how long it generally takes to transition to the last state of the nitrogen cycle? That is, when nitrites start going away.

Thanks

FWIW, my betta looks great. No behavior issues... Color is fine. Still hungry.

Last edited by ryancalif; 03-11-2013 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:42 PM   #2 
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Make sure your filter is on constantly, and that the flow is decent. What dechlorinator are you using, and have you tested tap water that's been allowed to de gas for about an hour or two?

My first cycle took about a month or so to settle down, and after that, everything's been a breeze. Try tossing in a few live plants; they help keep the parameters nice and even during the cycle
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:46 PM   #3 
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This happens.. cycling can take up to two months. With levels this high you may need 3 or even 4 50% changes to make the nitrites safe again.

While it's cycling you should be testing daily and doing an extra 50% change any time you see as little as .25ppm of either. If it gets higher you will need an extra but if you test daily you won't see spikes this high
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Old 03-12-2013, 12:07 AM   #4 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JKfish View Post
Make sure your filter is on constantly, and that the flow is decent. What dechlorinator are you using, and have you tested tap water that's been allowed to de gas for about an hour or two?
I'm using Kordon Water Conditioner.

I don't think it's the conditioner though. I changed my 12 gallon tank on saturday (90%) using the same stuff, and the very next day everything was stable... 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 5-10 nitrates. However, that tank has been running for a few years so I'm sure it has a pretty robust nitrogen cycle.

Quote:
This happens.. cycling can take up to two months. With levels this high you may need 3 or even 4 50% changes to make the nitrites safe again.

While it's cycling you should be testing daily and doing an extra 50% change any time you see as little as .25ppm of either. If it gets higher you will need an extra but if you test daily you won't see spikes this high
That makes sense. I'll just have to wait until it runs it's course I guess. My betta tank is pretty new... less than a month old.
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:59 PM   #5 
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Well I came home during lunch to test and the nitrites were hovering between 2-5ppm.

I did a 90% water change, added a dose of water conditioner, waited about an hour later and checked nitrite level. Now it's at 0ppm.

I was kinda hoping it wouldn't drop THAT low because now its going to take forever to get my nitrogen cycle completed, lol. Oh well, at least fishy is happy.
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Old 03-12-2013, 11:21 PM   #6 
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If you already have a cycled tank, swap a portion of the filter media from that tank to the uncycled tank. Doing so will seed the new tank with the beneficial bacteria and will decrease how long it takes to cycle your tank. :)
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Old 03-12-2013, 11:35 PM   #7 
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If you already have a cycled tank, swap a portion of the filter media from that tank to the uncycled tank. Doing so will seed the new tank with the beneficial bacteria and will decrease how long it takes to cycle your tank. :)
That is a great idea! I'm going to do that :)
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Old 03-13-2013, 12:47 AM   #8 
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Just a curious question? Are you using a liquid test kit?
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Old 03-13-2013, 09:53 AM   #9 
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Yep. API
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:44 PM   #10 
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Tank just finished cycling sometime between yesterday and today :D

Just tested and 0 nitrites, 0 ammonia.

JKFish, thanks a bunch for your advice on the filter media swap. I think it really sped things up!
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