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Old 02-22-2013, 03:13 PM   #1 
Otterfun
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Seeding a new tank

Hi,

Today is day 40 of my cycle with a guppy and previously a betta, 4 amano, 1 golden mystery snail for my 5g tank. I have 0 ammonia & nitrite, and 10-20 nitrate consistently for the 5th day and i am not sure if the tank is cycled yet.

so thinking of starting another tank by seeding it with some existing plants and substrate. is it too early to do so? how much longer should i wait?

5g tank planted with wisteria, hygrophilia, marimo moss ball, marimo moss covered driftwood, some crypts.

1 guppy, 4 amano shrimp, 1 golden mystery snail.

This is caption from the sticky:
"Seeding" your tank to "kick start" the cycle:

As mentioned above, beneficial bacteria live almost exclusively on the surfaces in your aquarium, not in the aquarium water itself. Thankfully, this means that it's relatively easy to "kick start" the cycle, no matter which method you're using, by "seeding" your tank with bacteria from an already established tank. There are a number of ways to do this. The simplest is to simply move some of the decor (driftwood, rocks, plants, artificial decor) from the established tank into the cycling tank, bringing bacteria with it. You can put bacteria-rich substrate into a mesh bag and put this in your filter or in a high-flow area on top of the cycling tank's substrate. Perhaps the best seeding method is to literally move some filter media (sponges, ceramic rings, filter floss, etc.) from an established tank's filter into the cycling tank's filter. When moving decor, substrate or filter media from an established tank to the cycling tank, be sure to keep any of these materials wet as any beneficial bacteria they house will die if the material dries out. If it's not possible to physically move the filter media, you can squeeze the media into the cycling tank's filter, which deposits some bacteria on your new filter's media and on the other surfaces in your tank. Because very few bacteria actually live in the water column, moving water from an established tank to a new cycling tank is ineffective as a means of seeding the new tank. There are also "bacteria in a bottle" products designed to add beneficial bacteria directly to your tank, some even claiming that they'll instantly cycle your tank for you. If you choose to use one of these products, make sure that you go for the type that needs to be refrigerated (bacteria are living organisms, after all). Results seem to be mixed with some reporting great success and others saying the product didn't seem to make a difference. While seeding a tank can have observable positive effects on the aquarium cycle it is not a substitute for cycling but rather a means to aid it. For this reason, caution should be taken not to place too much stress on whatever bacteria might have been introduced as it takes time for them to multiply.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:33 PM   #2 
shellieca
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Sounds like your tank is cycled. I would test a couple more days to be sure. I wouldn't try to use media from this tank to start a 2nd tank until this one has been established 4-6 wks at the least. The best way to start a new tank would be to take some filter media from the current tank & put it in the filter of the new tank. That's what I did & had a cycled 2nd tank.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:36 PM   #3 
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Another option would be to take media from the NEW tank, stuff it into the filter of the existing tank (if it will fit), and let it run for a few weeks. Then put it into the new tank, and you'll already have bacteria there. Easier to do that than to take the media out of the already cycled tank!
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Old 02-22-2013, 05:22 PM   #4 
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Oh, ok, so my filter is a foam block with a slot for carbon bag and one for Biomax (Fluval Spec V). So when you say media, did you mean some of the carbon and some of the biomax? My carbon bag is due to be replaced on 3/1/13 but I am thinking of going with Tekkguy's suggestion in another thread of using the carbon bag slot for a mesh bag with gravel....should I remove the carbon bag now and do the mesh bag with gravel for seeding prep? thanks so much for helping..
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Old 02-22-2013, 05:24 PM   #5 
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Yeah, dump the carbon and use that space for seed material! I have my Spec V carbon chamber filled with sponges. If I need to start a new tank, I can lift up my big filter sponge, pull out a little "seed" filter (or a couple), replace with fresh ones, and use the seed filter in the new tank. Instant, revolving cycle!
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Old 02-24-2013, 12:34 PM   #6 
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Went to Petco @ pasadena, the guy suggested me to get another bag of Biomax and put it in the carbon bag slot, he said it is better than gravel...we'll see. I got the Fluval Edge sponge & Biomax pack since they will no longer carry any Biomax bags because he said that will never need replacement even though the manual says every 6 months. he said once you dispose of the biomax, the cycle starts again because the Biomax has the BB. What do you guys think?
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:43 AM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Otterfun View Post
Went to Petco @ pasadena, the guy suggested me to get another bag of Biomax and put it in the carbon bag slot, he said it is better than gravel...we'll see. I got the Fluval Edge sponge & Biomax pack since they will no longer carry any Biomax bags because he said that will never need replacement even though the manual says every 6 months. he said once you dispose of the biomax, the cycle starts again because the Biomax has the BB. What do you guys think?
The Biomax should not be replaced ever, but if it is restricting the flow it should be rinsed in tank water. Also, the sponge does not need to be replaced once a year like it says ... don't replace it unless it is disintegrating.

As cheap as the biomax packs are, using that instead of gravel is totally fine. If you already have gravel and a bag on hand, surface area is surface area. That's all that really is required for bb to grow.
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:05 AM   #8 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tekkguy View Post
The Biomax should not be replaced ever, but if it is restricting the flow it should be rinsed in tank water. Also, the sponge does not need to be replaced once a year like it says ... don't replace it unless it is disintegrating.

As cheap as the biomax packs are, using that instead of gravel is totally fine. If you already have gravel and a bag on hand, surface area is surface area. That's all that really is required for bb to grow.
Thanks
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:57 AM   #9 
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I have extra biomax in ALL of my filters just so so I can instantly set up another if I need to... I like that it comes already in mesh bags so I can just yank one out and toss it in another filter, and return it if I tear one down (which is handy to quickly set up a QT tank for example) chemical filtration is for the most part unnecessary in most tanks unless you have a specific need to remove something from you water (specific medications, like copper, or if you have driftwood leeching tannins you'd like to clear up). I have purigen in my tank with lots of DW, I tried taking it out and started to notice the water yellow a bit, so I put it back, and I also have it in my shrimp tank.
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Old 02-25-2013, 02:22 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahspins View Post
I have extra biomax in ALL of my filters just so so I can instantly set up another if I need to... I like that it comes already in mesh bags so I can just yank one out and toss it in another filter, and return it if I tear one down (which is handy to quickly set up a QT tank for example) chemical filtration is for the most part unnecessary in most tanks unless you have a specific need to remove something from you water (specific medications, like copper, or if you have driftwood leeching tannins you'd like to clear up). I have purigen in my tank with lots of DW, I tried taking it out and started to notice the water yellow a bit, so I put it back, and I also have it in my shrimp tank.
what is DW?
Do you use a new carbon bag every time or re-use an old one that has been used a week or so?
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