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Old 05-30-2013, 07:03 PM   #21 
slug61
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Originally Posted by AyalaCookiejar View Post
Yeah and the food source was removed for 3 days. What I'm saying is the safestart probably worked, but the BB were starved of food and crashed the cycle.
But, i kept adding pellets and the ammonia was .25
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:08 PM   #22 
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Hmm. Are you sure it was cycled, then?
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Old 05-30-2013, 08:04 PM   #23 
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Hmm. Are you sure it was cycled, then?
I never said it was cycled.
Now i'm really confused.
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:16 PM   #24 
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Lol, safestart worked like a charm for me but its possible that yours did not work. How much did you add to the tank?

You would've had to do some tests to be sure it cycled. I've heard good and bad things about safestart, and I've also found that it never works for fish less cycles when ammonia is dosed too high.

Of course there are other factors that negatively affect the cycle which I stated in a previous post.

It seems that since you have the pure ammonia now and the tank is not cycled, you'll have to attempt to fish less cycle the tank. I haven't had good experiences with this, lol, but I can give you the info that I know might help your tank cycle faster.

You'll want to dose to 4ppm ammonia. This will not be too high to establish a cycle but also will establish a cycle that is definitely strong enough to support just one betta. It is also supposed to cycle faster at this higher amount.

The bacteria pretty much falls from the sky so if your tank is covered well, it will be difficult to do. Increasing the temp to 82-84 degrees will help the BB grow faster, as will more gas exchange, so if your filter is adjustable or baffled, it will help to unbaffle it or create a stronger flow while cycling. Remember to never add any unconditioned tap water to avoid killing your BB and never turn off the filter. The lighting might be best if its dim or off but this is probably not a big deal.

Don't let the BB starve by making sure you keep the ammonia up. This process can take a month or two, but fish less cycling will always be safer for your fish than fish-in cycling. It might help if you have an already established cycled tank to transfer over some gravel or filter media.

Otherwise, like I said, you can try a bacteria in a bottle like safestart. There are others with better reviews, though, such as Dr. Tim's live nitrifying bacteria, or Biospira, but these are more expensive and harder to find in my experience. It's all kind of up to you. If you have the patience to go the pure ammonia route (which I don't after trying for months) then go for it! Otherwise, do what you think is best for your fish.

Also I have been told that the bacteria in the air is less abundant when the air is dryer (like during the winter). Also consider the surface area in your tank including gravel, decor, and most importantly, the filter media. Extra sponge would be good for establishing a cycle.

One last question I completely forgot is what is the size of your tank? This might affect it...

Sorry this post is all over the place, I'm just typing as I remember stuff :p
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:27 AM   #25 
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Originally Posted by AyalaCookiejar View Post
Lol, safestart worked like a charm for me but its possible that yours did not work. How much did you add to the tank?

You would've had to do some tests to be sure it cycled. I've heard good and bad things about safestart, and I've also found that it never works for fish less cycles when ammonia is dosed too high.

Of course there are other factors that negatively affect the cycle which I stated in a previous post.

It seems that since you have the pure ammonia now and the tank is not cycled, you'll have to attempt to fish less cycle the tank. I haven't had good experiences with this, lol, but I can give you the info that I know might help your tank cycle faster.

You'll want to dose to 4ppm ammonia. This will not be too high to establish a cycle but also will establish a cycle that is definitely strong enough to support just one betta. It is also supposed to cycle faster at this higher amount.

The bacteria pretty much falls from the sky so if your tank is covered well, it will be difficult to do. Increasing the temp to 82-84 degrees will help the BB grow faster, as will more gas exchange, so if your filter is adjustable or baffled, it will help to unbaffle it or create a stronger flow while cycling. Remember to never add any unconditioned tap water to avoid killing your BB and never turn off the filter. The lighting might be best if its dim or off but this is probably not a big deal.

Don't let the BB starve by making sure you keep the ammonia up. This process can take a month or two, but fish less cycling will always be safer for your fish than fish-in cycling. It might help if you have an already established cycled tank to transfer over some gravel or filter media.

Otherwise, like I said, you can try a bacteria in a bottle like safestart. There are others with better reviews, though, such as Dr. Tim's live nitrifying bacteria, or Biospira, but these are more expensive and harder to find in my experience. It's all kind of up to you. If you have the patience to go the pure ammonia route (which I don't after trying for months) then go for it! Otherwise, do what you think is best for your fish.

Also I have been told that the bacteria in the air is less abundant when the air is dryer (like during the winter). Also consider the surface area in your tank including gravel, decor, and most importantly, the filter media. Extra sponge would be good for establishing a cycle.

One last question I completely forgot is what is the size of your tank? This might affect it...

Sorry this post is all over the place, I'm just typing as I remember stuff :p
I have a 2.5 minibow with filter and pre-filter sponge. There is a floss/sponge combo that i put in the filter instead of the floss carbon cartridge that came with the tank.

I added 1/2 bottle of TSS that is for 15 gallons, because i have 2 tanks, so, i put a half bottle in each. Or, 3 times the amount of the tank (enough for 7.5 gallons)

If i dose up to 4ppm ammonia, will this harm the decor (silk, plastic and fake rock)?
I just tested again this morning and the ammonia is still 1ppm.
Nitrates holding at 10-20ppm
I really don't know what to do now cause my fish is in a plain 1 gallon bowl to treat him for the rot. i was hoping to have his tank cycled by the time his rot is cleared up in another 5 days or so.

I had already cycled the tank back in april with TSS, but lost the cycle when i added a snail (didn't work..fish attacked) so i removed the snail the next day.

So 12 days ago i added more TSS, but he developed rot on day 7, so i took him out. I added omega one pellets to try to keep the ammonia at .25 at least..then i added the pure ammonia on day 10 to 1ppm....now on day 12 i still have 1ppm ammonia.
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Old 05-31-2013, 11:34 AM   #26 
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Hmm... That is very strange because adding a snail should not kill your cycle. It would spike it, yes, but not kill it...

To answer your question, 4ppm means parts per million. You have 4:1000000 ammonia to water ratio. The ammonia you are adding is probably only 10% ammonia, too. 4ppm sounds high but it's really not, and it won't harm anything in the tank besides livestock.

Also, the only other thing I can tell you is that most people don't cycle 2.5 gallons because they are so small. I'm not saying its impossible to establish a cycle, but it may not be a stable one. In tanks less than 5 gallons I still recommend 2 weekly water changes (50%). Otherwise live plants act as a great filter. I have them in my smallest tank along with a filter.

Edit: oh, also, if you're treating his fin rot with AQ salt and not meds, next time I would keep him in the tank. I treat my boys with AQ/Epsom salts in their tanks all the time (not if they have shrimp/snail tank mates, though, and only Epsom salt in tanks with live plants). Fin rot is probably due to not enough water changes..

Last edited by AyalaCookiejar; 05-31-2013 at 11:38 AM.
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:21 PM   #27 
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Originally Posted by AyalaCookiejar View Post
Hmm... That is very strange because adding a snail should not kill your cycle. It would spike it, yes, but not kill it...

To answer your question, 4ppm means parts per million. You have 4:1000000 ammonia to water ratio. The ammonia you are adding is probably only 10% ammonia, too. 4ppm sounds high but it's really not, and it won't harm anything in the tank besides livestock.

Also, the only other thing I can tell you is that most people don't cycle 2.5 gallons because they are so small. I'm not saying its impossible to establish a cycle, but it may not be a stable one. In tanks less than 5 gallons I still recommend 2 weekly water changes (50%). Otherwise live plants act as a great filter. I have them in my smallest tank along with a filter.

Edit: oh, also, if you're treating his fin rot with AQ salt and not meds, next time I would keep him in the tank. I treat my boys with AQ/Epsom salts in their tanks all the time (not if they have shrimp/snail tank mates, though, and only Epsom salt in tanks with live plants). Fin rot is probably due to not enough water changes..
I was always changing 2 times per week 50% each time.
But, when you add TSS you don't do water changes..so it had been 8 days or so without one.
He developed rot due to biting his tail off.
I took him out to treat because i didn't want to disrupt the TSS cycle with any other additives.

Like i said, now i don't know what to do....i'm thinking i will do multiple water changes in his tank to get the ammonia down to .25 add prime and stresscoat and just put him back in on Sunday...
That will be 7 days of AQ treatment.
I'm very worried about not being cycled when we go away for 8 days in July and there is no one to change water..that's why i really wanted to cycle.
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:31 PM   #28 
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Hmmm... Definitely a water quality issue if he develops rot, even if he were biting his tail. I have some females that have had tail damage for months and one who ripped off most of her dorsal fin and has a huge lesion in her back from jumping and hitting the hood really hard, and none of them have fin rot.

Anyways, now I have a bit of a better understanding. I think your current plan is good. Do water changes in the tank until you get the ammonia back down and then put him back and continue doing two 50% weekly changes which should be sufficient.

For future reference, I would advise against adding any kind of tankmate (snails or shrimp) in anything smaller than a 5 gallon. I am just speculating here, but since the tank is so small and has less surface area (which is why cycling is harder in smaller tanks) adding the snail may have made it impossible for enough BB to grow to support both the snail and the Betta due to limited surface area, if that makes sense.

If the tank had cycled after adding SafeStart then I would try it again, without adding a snail this time. And just so you know, I know you aren't technically supposed to due water changes too soon after adding safestart but I did one like two days after and didn't mess up the cycle... If the ammonia hits .25 (or nitrites) you should do a water change regardless of what the bottle of safestart says. It didn't mess up my cycle.

Otherwise, I highly doubt your fish will die without a stable cycle if you leave for 8 days. I know it's not ideal and you'll probably feel bad about it, but I've seen fish go months in one gallon bowls with no water changes and not die. But I do totally understand why you want to cycle it before you leave. (I only recommend retrying safestart because if you are leaving in July, that may not be enough time to cycle using a fishless cycle and pure ammonia...)
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:34 PM   #29 
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Your cycle with happen inadvertently when you do water changes each week no matter what you do. so by the time July comes, it will be cycled.

I'd do a 100% change before you put him back in to just "refresh" things and continue on with your twice weekly changes.

He'll be fine for the 8 days that you're not there.
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Old 05-31-2013, 05:55 PM   #30 
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Your cycle with happen inadvertently when you do water changes each week no matter what you do. so by the time July comes, it will be cycled.

I'd do a 100% change before you put him back in to just "refresh" things and continue on with your twice weekly changes.

He'll be fine for the 8 days that you're not there.
Well, I don't think it will cycle on its own....the first time i was doing 2x per week 50% changes for over 9 weeks.....no cycle completed...so i tried TSS..it worked in 8 days..but i screwed it up with the snail....took out the snail and tried again 12 days ago....and it didn't work.
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