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Old 10-25-2010, 11:47 AM   #1 
emeltee
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Argh! Need to re-cycle my tank

I was in week 4 of my cycle when we went on a trip. I was doing a fishless cycle with shrimp. Well, it appears that I lost the cycle and now I have to start all over again!

I've added another piece of shrimp, but the ammonia level doesn't appear to be rising much. It's been 5 days, and it's only about 1ppm.

I didn't clean the tank or the filter before popping a new piece of shrimp. Is this a problem? I have a Hawkeye 5 gal tank.

Also, I know not to change the filter media, but what about the other part of the filter (the part with carbon in it?)

Thanks!
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:55 AM   #2 
Oldfishlady
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What are all your numbers-ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH

If you plan on using carbon and it is separate from the sponge or filter media-I would change the carbon per the package direction

You are correct on the filter media itself-best left alone during a fishless cycle
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Old 10-25-2010, 01:44 PM   #3 
emeltee
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Ammonia = 1ppm
Nitrite & Nitrate are both 0
pH around 7.2(i will confirm this with a test later. this what it was for the longest time; i haven't tested for pH since the start of this new cycle.)

I bought some ammonia today at the hardware store. I think it's 10% ammonia peroxide. Is that the right stuff? It's sold as just Ammonia, janitorial strength stuff.
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:22 PM   #4 
Oldfishlady
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Your pH is fine the ammonia-as long as it is pure ammonia with no surfactants it should be fine

Once you start to see nitrate readings you are getting close to a completed cycle
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:41 PM   #5 
emeltee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldfishlady View Post
If you plan on using carbon and it is separate from the sponge or filter media-I would change the carbon per the package direction
Do I have to use carbon? I just popped in whatever came with the package. What are my other choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldfishlady View Post
Your pH is fine the ammonia-as long as it is pure ammonia with no surfactants it should be fine

Once you start to see nitrate readings you are getting close to a completed cycle
No surfactants, meaning non-sudsing, right?

Yeah, I was close to a complete cycle last time.
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:59 PM   #6 
Oldfishlady
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It may not take long this time and yes, no sudsing...lol...

What is your stocking plan on the 5gal?

No you don't have to use carbon, it is more of a personal choice-I don't use it-but I always have some on hand just in case I need it for an emergency....lol.....water change will do the same thing as carbon for most common issues like odors, tannin, medications, yellow water type things
Most of the carbon on the market are low quality and are used up in 2-4 weeks and need replaced-some debate still going on with used up carbon left in the filter and it leaching all the bad stuff back into the tank-I don't agree-when I used store bought filter media that was combo sponge/carbon- I have left them in my tank for over a year without any problems.....

If your filter uses separate sponge and carbon I would look at replacing the carbon section with bio-balls/media that stay in the filter for ever and provide a good surface area for the beneficial bacteria-they only need a rinse/swish every so often so that they have good water flow just like the filter sponge-lack of oxygenated water and the beneficial bacteria can die.
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:48 PM   #7 
emeltee
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Do you have any links for products to replace the carbon sponge? Is there stuff I can get at PetSmart, or do I have to go to a LFS (which I can, it's just a bit further away.)

I plan on one betta and hopefully one or two shrimp. Yes, I know that my betta might devour the shrimp, but I'd like to take a chance on that. If not the shrimp, maybe a snail. I don't know what kind of snail, but we'll cross that road if we have to.

Thanks for all your advice!
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:51 PM   #8 
emeltee
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Oh yeah, and some plants, too. I have an anubia on a piece of driftwood in there right now. I will add marimo balls, java/christmas moss & pennywort. depending on how much they grow, maybe water sprite, too.
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:05 PM   #9 
Oldfishlady
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Sounds like a good plan-give me a link to your filter and that will help me know what to help you with as far as media.....

The plants all sound good-water wisteria, naja grass and rotala are also good stem plants-maybe spiral vals in the back and water lettuce as a floater are nice and they love to build nest under the water lettuce-you can also cycle safely with the Betta in the tank especially with the live plants...provided that you make the needed water changes-it takes about the same amount of time to cycle with or without a fish

And you are right...some Betta will hunt, kill and eat shrimp and other do not...I have both and it seems it is more the females that kill the shrimp than my males...but I do have males too that kill some shrimp...I just have so many shrimp that I don't notice it as much- but the guy I have in one of my 2g planted tank has never even looked twice at the shrimp but loves to pick on the tiny snails......they do keep us on our toes.....I say give both the shrimp and snails a try....only one way to find out and with the plants that gives them a step-up.....lol.....
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