Oh I see you got a bucket and a siphon. Those two items changed my life! So much faster to drain the water initially than scooping it out! Plus having something to fill up with new water and condition it is so nice too. My tanks are only 5 gallons but still, it's so much better!
Yeah I am glad mine is only 10 gallons! My friend has a 30 gallon and she is having a lot of trouble doing water changes, even with a siphon and a bucket haha!
Today's water change went by much more quickly/less messy.
June 1, 2014:
Ammonia: Close to 0
Did another 50% water change. Thank you, siphon and new bucket!!
June 4, 2014:
Didn't get a chance to test the water yesterday because I was so busy running around! Luckily nothing was off the charts :)
I soaked plants overnight. No sign of snails besides the ones I picked out last night... and I also found a little Thai Micro Crab in the plants!! He may be added to my tank, but in a breeding box for now because I am unsure of how Jackson will take to him.
I also have some driftwood which I have been soaking because of tannins... I want to add them into the tank already!! Ugh lol
I saw the picture of the little crab he's so cute! I got new plants yesterday too, except when I put them in my QT tank I found a worm. Ew! I was looking at that worm thinking "I'd rather have snails!" Your little "pest" sounds way better.
Haha ewwww. Yeah the little crabby dude was quite a surprise... but much more adorable than worms!
June 5, 2014:
pH: 7.0 -- I added the mopani wood and I believe the tannins brought down the pH slightly. No worries though Jackson does not seem to mind :)
I don't know why my nitrates keep fluctuating... do plants have anything to do with it?
Anyway, today's water change day due to the high nitrites.
I think the cycle is almost over... nitrites are spiking every other day or so now instead of everyday... hopefully in another week or two the tank will be fully cycled!
Another water change. I didn't have time to test the water yesterday and I stupidly didn't turn the filter back on after the water change :( Hoping this doesn't screw up my cycle.
Another note: I seem to be just stuck on the nitrates reaching 0.3 but no beneficial bacteria growing?!?! Is it normal for it to stall this badly? My ammonia levels are consistently 0 now but it's like my tank is having trouble with the nitrite... I don't understand :(
June 9, 2014:
Nitrite: 0.1-0.3 (closer to 0.3)
So time for ANOTHER water change... I DON'T UNDERSTAND D: I thought I was supposed to be done cycling by now?? I am so worried that I am doing more harm than good by doing 50% water changes almost everydya...