Betta Fish Care  
Go Back   Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care > Betta Fish Bowls, Habitats, and Accessories
Check out the eBook Betta Fish Care Made Easy
betta fish
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 11-12-2012, 04:13 AM   #1 
Blacklight
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Cycling and filter changes

My betta is about three weeks into her 5 gallon tank and I have yet to see any signs of cycling yet.
Now the filter for the tank is a tetra whisper filter that looks like a cup and uses the the bio bag filter media. It looks like a bag with charcoal in it with a clip on top.

As far as changing the filter bag. When do you normally consider changing it? I know from previous experience with tanks that charcoal needs to be changed about once a month because it eventually stops working.

I don't have any instructions with this thing so I'm unsure of when to change the filter bag. I would imagine that changing it too soon would mess up the tank cycling?

I have a feeling that the cycling is going to take months because she's one little fish and there's never any leftover food. I would have thought by now that I'd at least be starting to see ammonia unless my vacuuming the tank every 5 days or so is holding it back.

*edit* I just found the answer. Once a month for the filter media.

Last edited by Blacklight; 11-12-2012 at 04:19 AM.
Blacklight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 09:27 AM   #2 
shellieca
Member
 
shellieca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blacklight View Post
My betta is about three weeks into her 5 gallon tank and I have yet to see any signs of cycling yet.
Now the filter for the tank is a tetra whisper filter that looks like a cup and uses the the bio bag filter media. It looks like a bag with charcoal in it with a clip on top.

As far as changing the filter bag. When do you normally consider changing it? I know from previous experience with tanks that charcoal needs to be changed about once a month because it eventually stops working.

I don't have any instructions with this thing so I'm unsure of when to change the filter bag. I would imagine that changing it too soon would mess up the tank cycling?

I have a feeling that the cycling is going to take months because she's one little fish and there's never any leftover food. I would have thought by now that I'd at least be starting to see ammonia unless my vacuuming the tank every 5 days or so is holding it back.

*edit* I just found the answer. Once a month for the filter media.
Do not change the filter while cycling the tank & do not change the filter unless it is absolutely falling apart. When you do a water change swish the filter around in the tank water & that will get the bulk of the gunk off of it. Are you using strips or a liquid water test? Strips are not accurate & from what I've seen often times give a lower reading than a liquid test will. I did a fish IN cycle with a 10g & I registered at least .25 ammonia almost from day 1, I had 1 female Betta. Did you add any bacteria booster such as Seachem's Stability or Tetra Safe Start (I think its called)? Your vacuuming isn't depleting the ammonia as your fish is producing it pretty much constantly, I was doing 50%+ water changes every 3 days & still had traces of ammonia.
shellieca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 05:49 PM   #3 
Blacklight
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
I'm using the liquid water test, not the strips. I never liked strips. There's just one female betta in there. If there's ANY trace of ammonia in there, it's REALLY close to 0. Usually, when I test it, it's usually either 0 or a little bit darker than 0 on the color scale. I test every 3 days or so just to be sure. The cycling doesn't seem to have gotten started yet. We've been getting the same readings since I set the tank up.
I think it's just going to take a while to really start. It's only one fish that gets pellets so there's no excess food waste aside from that produced by the fish and I don't think she produces that much compared to the size of the 5 gallon tank. She's the only resident.
Blacklight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 06:45 PM   #4 
paloverde
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Las Vegas
Hi, the above poster has given you some very good advice. The carbon in that filter will become useless in a matter of weeks. If you can find room in the filter adding a bio media ( sintered glass, ceramic, pumice, sponge ) without disturbing the original filter material, would boost the area for bb. After the tank has cycled you can remove the carbon and stuff with more bio media ( bio media is never replaced ) so that your bacteria can continue to process away.With one small fish the bacteria is only going to grow to the extent that is needed ( lack of food) so that it may appear that nothing is happening ( nature has a way of working it out )
paloverde is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 07:53 PM   #5 
Wendyjo
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
It's fine if the cycle is slow - so much better for your fish. Just remember that we are fish keepers, not bacteria keepers - the cycle will happen in due time.
Wendyjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 08:53 PM   #6 
shellieca
Member
 
shellieca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
My 10g took 8 wks to cycle with one Betta & then about halfway through I added a Mystery snail. My 46g took 5-6 wks to cycle with 3 females, 2 CAE's & 2 Mystery snails. So, be patient it'll happen. I tested daily & averaged 50% water changes about every 3 days.
shellieca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2012, 09:14 PM   #7 
fishyMcDoodle
New Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
I had an identical setup as you blacklight when I was cycling. Currently, I'm 90% sure my tank is done cycling but it took longer than I suspect because I changed the filter media on my Tetra Whisper 10i. Also, if it has not been mentioned, a heater greatly helps with bacterial growth.

Nitrifying bacteria take a relatively long time to grow. It was a great test of patience for me.
fishyMcDoodle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2012, 04:05 AM   #8 
Blacklight
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Yeah. I have a feeling that there's going to be a shortage of food in there for the bacteria to eat. The only live thing in there is the one little fishy. We didn't want to put any live plants in there. I tend to kill plants. I'm amazing at it.
Blacklight is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Under gravel filter for cycling? baylee767 Betta Fish Bowls, Habitats, and Accessories 3 01-07-2011 09:58 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:44 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.