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Old 07-26-2014, 11:20 PM   #1 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: VA, USA
Is my tank cycled?

(I asked this in my other thread, but I figured I might be better off starting a new thread for it.)

I have my two bettas in two 10 gallon tanks. (One betta in each 10 gallon tank.) the first tank and filter, I'd purchased in the beginning of July and started cycling the tank then. There were ammonia spikes and I'd change the water by 50%. I also noticed some slight nitrite spikes a few weeks ago, but they kinda went back down the last couple weeks and never went back up all that high any more.

Then all of a sudden, the other day, there was sudden a huge ammonia spike may have almost killed my betta. (I took it out and put it in a 1 gallon hospital container with epsom salt over night, and he became his old self again. It may have been the ammonia, or it may have been something else, I dunno.) I did 2 50% water within 24 hours, because the ammonia was very high, and then put him back in. (He's been doing fine ever since). Last night, his ammonia was slightly between 0 and 0.25, and tonight it's back down to a definite 0. The ammonia has never went *down* on it's own before.

The nitrites right now are a smidgen darker than 0 but not anywhere close to the next color, 0.25 on the chart. The same is with the nitrates, a smidgen darker than 0, but nowhere close to the next level on the chart, 5.0.

Will the nitrites start spiking next, or have they already spiked from previously in the month?

I understand the process now, (ammonia makes for nitrites which makes for nitrates) but it doesn't seem like my tank followed the pattern I expected. Unless there will be some huge nitrite spikes next.

Last edited by 2boys2fish; 07-26-2014 at 11:25 PM.
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Old 07-27-2014, 12:31 AM   #2 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Arizona, United States
How often are you feeding? It's somewhat rare to see a huge ammonia spike so fast in that size of a tank, with only two Bettas.

What is your water change schedule, if there is one, and is this a planted tank or not?

If you keep the ammonia level down, then there should be no nitrite spike at all. Normally an ammonia spike shows the tank is not cycled, or if it is, that you changed something huge (changed filter media to a new one without leaving some of it behind, cleaned out the filter and media, did a huge water change >50%, etc.).
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:45 AM   #3 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: VA, USA
I feed them twice per day.

I don't have two bettas in one 10 gallon tank. I have two 10 gallon tanks. One betta in each. I set one tank up at the beginning of July and other about two weeks later.

There is no substrate in either right now. In the older one, the one that was having the wild ammonia spikes, there are a couple stalks of languishing moneywort in there, and a couple stalks of anacharis that is doing pretty good, and medium-largish pothos hanging out the top that is thriving.

They both have sponge filters. This type:

I took one of the sponges off the filter from the oldest tank and put it in the other newer tank. That could have caused the ammonia to go wild in the older one. I probably should have waited for the older one to fully cycle before I did that. You jogged my memory, I had forgotten I had done that.

I have not noticed the same spikes in the tank that I put the sponge in, though.

I change their tank water by 50% about twice a week, depending on how high the ammonia and nitrites are.

I was wondering about the fact that the ammonia seemed ever so slightly high after the last change, but then went down to 0 when I checked it again. I guess the nitrites will probably spike a bit again soon.

Last edited by 2boys2fish; 07-27-2014 at 11:51 AM.
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