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Old 06-05-2013, 02:40 PM   #11 
waterdog
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OK, this one is easy. First and foremost, your doing too much water changing.
Think of this......how can the bacteria cycle and adapt if your always taking it out? You have to give the cycle a chance to work. I don't care what anyone tells you, you are not going to keep all your levels at zero during a cycle. It's a biological impossiblity! Ammonia has to go up so the nitrites can feed and multiply. Nitrites have to go up so nitrates can feed and multiply.

Make sense yet?

The best thing you can do is SLOW DOWN. Your only concern is that ammonia doesn't go over .20. Everything else just has to let run it's course! If ammonia or nitrites go nuts, say above .25, do a 25% water change just to keep them in check. Otherwise plan on doing a 50% water change once a week.

Stop driving yourself crazy. This is how people give up fish keeping.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:11 AM   #12 
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Okay, I'll loosen up a little on the water changes.

I've also been reading up on "silent cycling" by adding a bunch of plants. Would it mess up what progress I do have, to switch to that? I want lots of plants anyway. So, should I just add them now?
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Old 06-07-2013, 07:23 AM   #13 
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I don't see how it could possibly hurt to add in plants. You probably just want to take your betta out while you add them, then put him back in once the water is clear.
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Old 06-07-2013, 07:25 AM   #14 
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Once you try doing an NPT and getting a "silent cycle," you won't ever want to go back to doing anything else! I'm utterly new to fish, and it has been so unbelievably easy. You could just take your fish out, switch over to NPT, and put him right back in!
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Old 06-07-2013, 08:04 AM   #15 
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I did an NPT with my sorority, stocked it as soon as the water was clear later that day, and had nitrates within four days. Just be sure to really splurge on plants, and put in plenty of floaters (like frogbit--you want to cover about 25% of the tank with floaters, and the bettas are crazy about them) as well as plenty of fast-growing plants like swords.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:34 PM   #16 
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I definitely want to try an NPT eventually, but I'd really rather just use the gravel for now if it'd work. I do have liquid ferts to add. I already have Wisteria and Willow Hygro, both are growing very well.

I'm looking into Java Moss, Ludwigia, Corkscrew Vals, Pennywort and some form of floater (if I can ever find one). I don't need enough plants to justify the shipping cost of ordering online.

Wisteria
Willow Hygro
Java Moss
Ludwigia
Corkscrew Vals
Pennywort
Frogbit or Water Lettuce (If I can find it)

Would that be enough to support my Betta? It'll probably end up being a little too full, but I can switch some over to the new tank once I get it going.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:37 PM   #17 
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Also, I was reading up on Prime and some people are claiming that it can mess up your test results. I don't actually measure it either. So, it's likely I'm overdosing a little bit.

Could this be part of my crazy nitrite readings?
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Old 06-07-2013, 02:46 PM   #18 
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Prime should not affect your readings. Adding live plants is always a good idea.
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Old 06-07-2013, 02:49 PM   #19 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouiMon View Post
Also, I was reading up on Prime and some people are claiming that it can mess up your test results. I don't actually measure it either. So, it's likely I'm overdosing a little bit.

Could this be part of my crazy nitrite readings?
Prime is two drops per gallon. (:
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