If your tanks have been set up for any length of time (at least a few months), and you do not toss out your media every month, I guarantee that they are cycled. It is just the natural order of things The only way they couldn't be is if you actively impeded their ability to grow by sanitizing everything all the time and regularly throwing out the media. That's what a lot of people seem not to understand.
Question about this, I have had a tank for about a week, I am doing a cycle with the betta. I have been testing the water daily and changing it about every 3 days. The current levels read
A few days ago the nitrate was at like 5, is it wierd for it to go that far down with the a 30% water change?
And the nitrite hasn't much gotten past 0, once I think it was 0.25.
A week is pretty early in the cycle. The ammonia numbers will rise much higher than 0.25 if you let it. Same goes for the nitrites. You should expect it to take 2-3 weeks for the ammonia to peak and fall, and then another 1-2 weeks after that for the nitrites to drop. The nitrates will rise steadily for there.
I am going to post some info I have on the raw shrimp method, this method has been around for a long time and well It is not a real good practice, sure it will cycle your tank but their are many risks to it, if you think about it it does go against common sense, when a fish dies in our tanks we do not leave them in there for multiple reasons. fouls the water, bacteria growth and well you never really know what the fish died of and what you may be leaving in your tank to fester, I remember when this method was first being passed around in the 90's, but alas here is an article and info on it for all to read and decide for yourselves....http://www.americanaquariumproducts....html#rawshrimp
I think the nitrates may have been a false reading. That test can be difficult. Posted via Mobile Device
I Agree with Olympia. Cycling a tank can take up to 6-8 weeks so likely a false reading. If you are using the liquid testing kits make sure you shake the "heck" out of those bottles before and during. Some ingredients settle out and can harden on the bottom of the bottles. 2 minutes shaking is recommended.... and if memory serves me, I think it's the NitrAte test that is one of the tricky ones.
Remember to test your tap/well water to know what that reading is too. That way when you do water changes you know what you are adding. (my water reads .25 ammonia in it from the tap so I do smaller water changes cause I'm adding ammonia and I only use Prime. Probably why my fully planted tank does so well as plants take up ammonia). Having said that... Live plants help protect your fish from the Nitrogen Cycle even if just floating on the surface. Good luck!
i have a question, if i took out silk plants or other decor or water from a already cycled tank and add it to a tank i'm going to start cycling will it help? also if i just let it run like that for 3 weeks with a real plant will it cycle on it's own?
Yes, Jaysee is correct. You can transfer the good bacteria from another tank as it only lives on all the surfaces, like tank walls, gravel, rocks, plastic/silk plants etc. Know the tank it is coming from... you can also get bad bacteria or disease from another tank. Make sure the item does not dry out or stay out of the tank for over 24 hours and do not rinse it in tap water with chlorine. Try to not let the water temp drop too drastically too. I would say that the "good bacteria" is rather delicate so do your transfer as stable as possible. (Like live fish, you don't have to match the temp... but don't leave it at 70 degrees while the new tank will be at 80. know what I mean?)
Any live plant you can add to your tank will help protect your fish. And the fish prefer the live plants over plastic too.