After doing a 100 percent water change, I started the cycling over. Day four. After the water change, I cut back to feeding Flash, my betta, twice a day. I feed a frozen diet since he does not like pellets or flakes--even in garlic juice as suggested. I rotate between daphnia, bloodworms and brine shrimp. Been feeding him daphnia and bloodworms. He gets two pinches of daphnia (with pointed tweezers) or two bloodworms per meal. I have two otos in the tank as well. They have been refusing the algae wafers I have offered. Since they are not thin, I'm assuming I have algae that I cannot see and that's what they are eating.
My tank size is 10 gallon (top fin goldfish starter tank). My temp is about 76/78 degrees. I have been using BettaSafe water conditioner. Nothing else.
The last two days, I've had ammonia spikes of 1.5. Day before that, it was 0.25. No nitrates or nitrites. The other readings have been within range of ideal. The PH is somewhat alkaline. Zero chlorine. Soft water.
The days that I've had ammonia spikes, I vacummed the gravel. Did a 50 percent water change both times. Realized that my fish are super poopers. Also realized that the otos are refusing the wafers. I know that a high protein diet can cause ammonia spikes. However, can an uneatened algae wafer also cause ammonia spikes?
What do I do? I was told to cut back on the water changes, but I'm afraid to leave it alone with the ammonia at 1.5. What do I do?
I would love to get my tank cycled so I can get a couple of ghost shrimp and a couple of other fish...may be platties.
Never been this confused before... Thanks!