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Old 01-18-2011, 05:17 PM   #1 
PewPewPew
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Unhappy Possibly going to cycle..?

Since my parents arent allowing me to bring home the ten gallon I just bought (SO MUCH SADNESS! They dont want that much water when Im home for breaks..), Im returning it to get a 5 gallon. Im hoping to get a Hex-type acrylic tank.
Cycling freaks me out though D; Especially since I would HAVE to have an in-fish cycle and Im compleltey new to testing, etc. I wouldnt mind the required cleanings in a non-cycled and it might be hard to do considering any things I'd need in the event of an emergency, I cant easily get in college :,c
But..Hm.
My question is, would it be possible to have both my boys in the tank if I decided to cycle? Or would that be too much ammonia for the tank? :c
I wouldnt have live plants, btw.
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:09 PM   #2 
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You can safely cycle a tank with the fish provided that you make the needed water changes...even without water testing products, however, having them will make your job easier and take the guess work out of it...but you can take your water to the pet shop weekly and have it tested.

In a filtered 5gal divided with 2 Betta-without water testing products on hand-make 2-50% water changes-1-50% water only starting on day 3 and 1-50% with substrate vacuuming...you may need to add a 3rd 25-50% as well-unless you limit feeding and remove any uneaten food after feeding...you also will need to make water only changes with any behavior changes but this is with both cycled and uncycled tanks....

If you have water test products-make your second and third weekly water change based only on ammonia and nitrite 0.25ppm or greater......sometimes you may not need the extra water only changes but you will always make at least 1-50% with vacuum weekly on a regular bases to maintain water quality-......during cycling you need to test the water daily-once cycled weekly water test

You also need to give the filter media a swish/rinse in old tank water with a water change a couple of times a month and when the water flow slows to maintain good water flow....it is best to wait at least 30 days before you make your first rinse during the cycling process, however, it is important to maintain good water flow too.....

Once you have 0ppm ammonia and nitrite and 5-10ppm nitrate you are most likely cycled(this can take 4-8 weeks)-continue the 50% weekly with vacuum to keep the nitrate under 20ppm as well as the organic that we don't test for to maintain water quality and fish health.....

Healthy adult fish usually will tolerate the nitrogen cycle process as long as you are willing and able to make the needed water changes to keep them safe.
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:14 PM   #3 
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Originally Posted by Oldfishlady View Post
You can safely cycle a tank with the fish provided that you make the needed water changes...even without water testing products, however, having them will make your job easier and take the guess work out of it...but you can take your water to the pet shop weekly and have it tested.

In a filtered 5gal divided with 2 Betta-without water testing products on hand-make 2-50% water changes-1-50% water only starting on day 3 and 1-50% with substrate vacuuming...you may need to add a 3rd 25-50% as well-unless you limit feeding and remove any uneaten food after feeding...you also will need to make water only changes with any behavior changes but this is with both cycled and uncycled tanks....

If you have water test products-make your second and third weekly water change based only on ammonia and nitrite 0.25ppm or greater......sometimes you may not need the extra water only changes but you will always make at least 1-50% with vacuum weekly on a regular bases to maintain water quality-......during cycling you need to test the water daily-once cycled weekly water test

You also need to give the filter media a swish/rinse in old tank water with a water change a couple of times a month and when the water flow slows to maintain good water flow....it is best to wait at least 30 days before you make your first rinse during the cycling process, however, it is important to maintain good water flow too.....

Once you have 0ppm ammonia and nitrite and 5-10ppm nitrate you are most likely cycled(this can take 4-8 weeks)-continue the 50% weekly with vacuum to keep the nitrate under 20ppm as well as the organic that we don't test for to maintain water quality and fish health.....

Healthy adult fish usually will tolerate the nitrogen cycle process as long as you are willing and able to make the needed water changes to keep them safe.
I'd be very willing :D Hm.. this makes me feel a little bit better about cycling. I'd have to look into it a bit more (of course). I'd get the kit, though I wish they werent so expensive! Sadly, there arent any (any!! Agh!) Pet stores within an hour of my dorm that I could easily get to. It literally takes an hour to get to a place ten miles away via the college's transportation :(
Would a siphon (or something?) work as a gravel vac? Idk if I could fit it easily enough in the tank D: ?
Thank you, btw :)
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:23 PM   #4 
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With the smaller tank I like to do the stir and dip method to clean the substrate instead of the vacuum...you can also stir and siphon...but dip is sometimes faster and easier......
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:27 PM   #5 
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With the smaller tank I like to do the stir and dip method to clean the substrate instead of the vacuum...you can also stir and siphon...but dip is sometimes faster and easier......
That's true.. What's the dip method? Like, you swirl up all the nasties and then suck it up from the top or something?
Right now, since the boys are in temp. tanks (1.5gal), I usually just do a full water change (I also completley rinse/clean the tank and decor/gravel with warm water) every week with various amounts of water changes every couple of days. I like a clean tank, Im nuts about cleaning lol!
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:35 PM   #6 
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You have to be careful over cleaning cycled tanks....you can clean too much.....you are not trying to create a sterile or too clean environment..or you will destroy the good bacteria along with the bad and the bad will take over and things will go down hill from that point......

Stir and dip is just as it sounds...you unplug the heater and filter-give the substrate a stir to get the waste up in the water column and dip half the water out...you will not get all the waste and this is okay...you don't want to....re-fill with like temp dechlorinated water-plug the heater and filter back in and the tank should clear in about an hour or so...if not you missed a water change or over feeding..... and will need to make an extra water only change......
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Old 01-18-2011, 07:23 PM   #7 
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Originally Posted by Oldfishlady View Post
You have to be careful over cleaning cycled tanks....you can clean too much.....you are not trying to create a sterile or too clean environment..or you will destroy the good bacteria along with the bad and the bad will take over and things will go down hill from that point......

Stir and dip is just as it sounds...you unplug the heater and filter-give the substrate a stir to get the waste up in the water column and dip half the water out...you will not get all the waste and this is okay...you don't want to....re-fill with like temp dechlorinated water-plug the heater and filter back in and the tank should clear in about an hour or so...if not you missed a water change or over feeding..... and will need to make an extra water only change......
I wouldnt be that picky if it was cycled, just when its in the little tank :D
And hrmm.. That sounds doable. I'll definitley be looking into this more now.
Thank you thank you, OFL!
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Old 01-19-2011, 03:06 PM   #8 
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I hope your cycling goes well!!! I'm currently a college student as well and I just started my cycle last night in my 14gal (had a kit sale at Petco, it was cheaper than the 10gal that came without a heater). I was so nervous to put the shrimp in! I'm currently waiting for my API test kit I got off amazon if you would like to try buying there? I know that students get a year of Amazon prime free which gets you free two day shipping on a lot of items.

I know how you feel for the transporation. It takes me an hour and a half to get to the next city for Petco via bus. I'm in Hawaii for school so despite everything being a some what short distance it takes forever!

Good luck with your cycling!
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:51 PM   #9 
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Just an FYI - the do make gravel vacs in different sizes. I use a small one in my 2 gal. drum bowl. :)
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:53 PM   #10 
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Thanks!! :D I just got the chanve to return my other stuff and get a 5 gallon marine land hex! :D The manager showed me the kits they use when testing their own tanks, it had 25 ammonia steps and 25 all in one testers. It was expensive, but the nicest kind and amount for the money x,x I picked that up as well as some bacteria state stuff as he advised. I'm doing the (double lol!) Fish in cycle, so phew, here's hoping!!! @.@
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