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Old 09-07-2012, 09:35 AM   #1 
TigerRegalia
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FIshless cycling: Finally ahve nitrIte and nitrAte readings, so what next??

Hello, everyone! I am currently a very happy camper because I have been attempting my first fishless cycling in a 5-gallon tank for 2 months and I FINALLY have nitrIte and nitrAte reading!! Here are the readings from just a few minutes ago:

-Ammonia: approx. 2-3ppm
-NitrIte: .5ppm
-NitrAte: in between 5 and 10ppm (it's difficult to determine the exact number on the API Freshwater Master Test Kit color scale)

I just added a couple more drops of Ammonia (literally just 2 drops) to feed the beneficial bacteria. I have three questions now: 1.) What can I expect now for the fishless cycling pattern and how do I know when the cycle is completely done? 2.) When can I add Tommy to his new spacious home? and 3.) How do I add him safely?

Thanks, everyone!
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:46 AM   #2 
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Once you have the nitrite spike you want to decrease the amount of ammonia you add by half.
Once your nitrite falls....and you have nitrate...

Stop adding the ammonia and allow the process to happen on its own-Keep testing every day until the ammonia, nitrite are 0ppm and nitrate at least 5ppm for a few days without any spikes-this should only take 4-5 days-Then make a 50% water change with light vacuum in all areas you can reach without moving anything.

Acclimate the Betta and add....monitor water prams and make 50% water only with ammonia, nitrite 0.25ppm or greater-This is over and above your regular weekly 50% with vacuum.

Not uncommon to have a spike or two until everything settles down since you usually colonize more BB than you need with the fishless cycle for a low bioload-due to the BB self limiting factors
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:57 PM   #3 
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Thanks for all your help, OFL!! :D Will keep everyone updated, as will Tommy!
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Old 09-07-2012, 08:13 PM   #4 
Perseusmom
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Awesome doesnt it feel great to know your almost there !!!! I did a fish in cycle and it was more stress on me than my fish I do believe...lol He loved all the water changes and following the gravel vac around and I bet he misses but having as many water changes since it cycled but he is keeping busy this week working on a bubble nest.

It took my 5 gallon around 2 months too cycle as well but so worth it, Tommy is going to love his new home , it took 9 days for mine to finish the cycle after I started to get 5.0 nitrate readings or more each day.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:27 AM   #5 
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Talking

Thanks for your input, Perseusmom!! I am *SO* excited that I am almost there... I had to start all over after waiting over a month the first time around (I had accidentally stalled the cycle that time), so when I saw the nitrIte test water turn purple yesterday, my face was first like this: , and then this was me: !! haha, I will keep everyone updated!
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:36 AM   #6 
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I had to start over too cause of a power outage when I was a month in so I know just how you feel, yeaaaaa so excited for you !!!!
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:44 AM   #7 
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Yay, so happy for you and Tommy! I have low ammonia and nitrite readings right now, but nitrate was 5.0 last time I checked! I'm doing a fishless cycle though.
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Old 09-09-2012, 10:00 AM   #8 
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Thanks, everyone!! It feels good to know that you all support me and can empathize with my excitement :) By the way, after the cycle is complete, what percent PWC do I need to do before adding Tom to his new and spacious abode?
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Old 09-09-2012, 10:33 AM   #9 
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I haven't done this yet, but I was told to do like an 80% change... Hopefully someone else will answer.
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Old 09-09-2012, 11:41 AM   #10 
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That's what I had heard to do, too. If no one else answers, I'll just surf this forum because I know that many others have probably asked that same question. Regardless, I now feel like an official aquarist! :D
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