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Old 01-25-2011, 09:33 PM   #1 
Wildcat
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Unfortunately....did not cycle, now what to do to make it less stressful?

Unfortunately I did not read about the "Cycling" of the tank until after I had set up, acclimated and put my male Betta in his new 3.5 Gal tank.
I have read all the info on cycling and then some, but can't find info on what to do if you have already placed your Betta in the Uncycled tank.
He was pretty stressed in the beginning and would not eat, however is doing fine now.
I have been doing a 40% + water change every day, and it has been 1 week, wondering what I should do now to keep him less stressed.
Should I do a 100% water changes?
And if I do, how often should I do water changes and what %
I use Tetra BettaSafe Water Conditioner and tap water, heating it to the same temp as in the tank. Around 80 steady.
Any suggestions?
As always, Thanks.
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Old 01-25-2011, 09:40 PM   #2 
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Theres a product by SeaChem Called Stability that puts a jumpstart on the cycle that Ive been using and it supposedly claims to resolve ''new tank syndrome''. I got it in a 3 pack kit for 18 dollars that also included Prime there declorinator and Clear there water clearifier.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:52 AM   #3 
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In a 3.5gal filtered tank during the nitrogen cycle without a water test kit....I would make the same water changes as you do for a cycled 3.5gal tank....that is twice weekly 50%-1-50% water only and 1-50% include substrate cleaning with either a vacuum or stir and dip method

Give the filter media a swish/rinse in old tank water a couple of times a month and when the water flow has slowed to maintain good water flow

During the cycling process-both water changes are for water quality...once the nitrogen cycle is established (4-6 weeks) 1 water change is for water quality and 1 water change is for fin health......

Regardless of cycling stage-anytime you see a behavior change in the Betta....make a 50% water change.....to rule out the environment as the cause.....

IMO-the products sold for cycling are a waste of time and money....
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Old 01-26-2011, 12:21 PM   #4 
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I have been checking the chemical levels every day and all seem to be just fine. Am I understanding this correctly....that you do not make a 100% water change cleaning all the decor, gravel etc. once you have started your cycling? And that you only make water changes after that? So, if you have filtered water, you don't need to 100% change and clean? I have noticed a lot of debri when I add water the past couple of days, that is why I was thinking I needed to 100% clean the tank with my Betta in his Gallon bowl, not correct?

Sorry for all the questions, I am a little confused and am fairly new to all this.

Thanks for suggestions.
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Old 01-26-2011, 12:22 PM   #5 
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Thanks, I will research this and see if I can find this product.
Appreciate the tip. Thanks!
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Old 01-26-2011, 12:30 PM   #6 
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When you wash out your gravel and do a 100% change, your starting the cycle all over again each time you do it. Only change out 20-50% and use a gravel vac to empty it and clean the gravel in the same process without totally killing off all the good bacteria and also rub off debree on decor and plants in old tank water and not tap water or the bacteria will once agian die off starting the cycle over again.

Last edited by ChicagoPete; 01-26-2011 at 12:32 PM.
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Old 01-26-2011, 03:39 PM   #7 
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It can get confusing.......a few things to remember or understand....is that you are not dealing with or trying to maintain or create a sterile environment-you have lots of living things in the tank that work together and need each other....ecosystem....when you kill one it can cause others to die or bad ones to take over causing problems...its a balance.....since this is a closed system-we as the hobbyist are the equalizer and we have to maintain this balance with regular water changes and other cleaning duties.....

In filtered tank-the filter remove large particles from the water column so we can't see them and these particles are trapped in the filter media...so they never leave the tank until we remove them or the biological filtration is established...we can't see them but they are still there-once the nitrifying bacteria colonize-(the nitrogen cycle establishes)-they will start to feed off the byproduct of the waste/particles trapped in the filter media-natural decomp and decay happens and the byproduct of this is ammonia and other dissolved organic compounds among other processes that are happening in our little closed ecosystem

The nitrifying bacteria are somewhat like fish...in that they have needs that must be met in order to survive, thrive and multiply-they need oxygenated water (filter) they need a place to live (filter media, substrate, all surface areas in the tank) and food (fish waste and other debris, byproducts produced in the tank) the nitrifying bacteria can also be killed by chlorinated water, antibiotic, lack of oxygen among other things.... as well as over cleaning and removing too much of the bacteria causing a mini cycle or chemistry spikes-upsetting the balance

In filtered tanks-your goal with water changes and filter media care is to remove some of the solids in the substrate and filter media-not all...you can't get it all anyway with partial water changes and that is okay-if you are making regular water changes and not overstocked or overfeeding there should not be that much solid waste anyway or cloudy water problems-
With water changes and substrate cleaning the water should clear in less than an hour once the tank has been re-filled with fresh dechlorinated like temp water and filter has been turned back on......if not...then you missed a water change, overstocked or overfeeding..

This process is different in unfiltered tanks-you can't get a true nitrogen cycle established-so it is important that 100% water changes are made-depending on the volume of water you are dealing with or if you have live plants- will determine how often the 100% water changes are needed....

The smaller the volume of water the more water changes are needed to maintain water quality

Regardless of water chemistry being within normal limits for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate-weekly water changes are still needed due to the dissolved organic levels in the tank that we don't/can't test for on the hobbyist level that can also be harmful to livestock in the tank......

Active growing live plants can change the game and a whole different story.......
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:55 PM   #8 
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This is some wonderful information, I have read and re-read it three times....Really GOOD info, Thanks SO MUCH. I have actually placed some roots for the live plants, they have just started to sprout though. I think it will take a few weeks for them to start showing signs of actually growing.
I did another 50% water change today and as soon as my new filter arrives, I plan to do a complete 100% cleaning.
Again, Thanks SO MUCH!
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:57 PM   #9 
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Seachem's Prime.
Seachem's Prime.
Seachem's Prime.
Seachem's Prime.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:00 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicagoPete View Post
When you wash out your gravel and do a 100% change, your starting the cycle all over again each time you do it. Only change out 20-50% and use a gravel vac to empty it and clean the gravel in the same process without totally killing off all the good bacteria and also rub off debree on decor and plants in old tank water and not tap water or the bacteria will once agian die off starting the cycle over again.
Thanks, great tip on washing the deco in tank water. Really good info, thanks!
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