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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
okay so i bought a betta for my daughter on a whim. i knew when we bought him that we would be putting him in a 10g tank. i did not know about tank cycling before i bought him. so i read about it and have been trying to cycle for a little over two months now. about three weeks ago i used to api test strips to determine my cycling status and it must have given me false information, i thought the tank was cycled. i bought more fish, four corey cats, and the next week 4 neon tetras. my betta was happy when i first got him, had a little bit of a downspell (which I'm almost certain was due to overfeeding when i first got him) and i put him on a fast for a couple days and he was back to himself again. all the other fish seem to be thriving. they ALL play together, my betta even mimics the cats and swims alongside the tetras. he has a super laid back personality and i cannot get enough of him! sooooo, i don't really know what made me do it, a haunch i suppose, i bought the api testing kit and my tank is WAY off. i don't know why this is. when i got the new fish i knew it was a tad much for the tank as I'm going to upgrade to a 30 gallon in a few weeks, so i do a water change of about 25-40% almost everyday(by siphoning the waste from the gravel,)since I've worried there would be an overwhelming amount of ammonia. so i just did a full test and here are the results:
ph- 7.5
hard ph- 8.0
ammonia- .50
nitrite- .25-.50
nitrate- 5.0

WHAT can i do to fix this?? i hate things got out of hand and that i assumed everything was okay for a bit and messed up! my fish literally mean the world to me, ESPECIALLY my betta. he's so smart and awesome and i don't want anything to stress him or happen to him!

could anyone please tell me how to correct this without stress on my fish. they don't mind water changes, i actually think they love them, they all play around when i do them, and seem to really enjoy it, surprisingly. also how would i go about upgrading my tank? i could cycle it, but won't it stress them out going from a tank thats high levels to a tank thats on point?

oh, and this might be a factor, the filter i have is the appropriate size for my 10g but my betta HATED it because it was way too much current and he couldn't swim and he'd hide, so i put in sponge but the sponge builds up with bacteria and slows the filter wayyyyy down, I've added new sponge about 3 times now, but i don't know if the filter isn't actually getting anything done because of me having to slow the current way down for my betta. uggghhhhhh. :((( i also feel like my current filter (for 10g) would put out a suitable current if i use it for my new 30g tank but would it get anything done since its for a 10g??? i hate that my betta has a hard time swimming around with the filter on full force.
please any advice would be great.

I've asked a couple of questions on here before but it was hard to read the comments/answers because i was only able to access this page thru my cell phone, now I've got a laptop so i will be able to actually access answers and reply now. sorry to anyone if they wrote to me and i didn't reply.
 

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Welcome to the forum. When I first read your post; I wasn't going to reply; primarily because I am also new here and I'm not that knowledgeable. But eventually I changed my mind; just for the simple purpose of giving you some encouragement.
Your test results are not that bad. Thats my opinion. Your Ammonia is at .50 ppm; ideal is 0 ppm; however; there are some experts here that say .25 ppm is not that bad. Your Nitrite is at .25 - .50 ppm. Again that is not that bad; it shows that your tank is cycling and putting out Nitrite. Ideal is 0 ppm. My experience has been that when it goes down to 0; it basically will stay there. That is the way it is with me. ( so far )! Your Nitrate reading also is not that bad; yours is .50 ppm; mine jumps back and forth between .5 and 20. My take on that is that the cycle is starting and eventually your Ammonia and Nitrites will drop, and your Nitrates will show something; and that is because the cycle is working. Low amounts of Nitrates are not harmful. One way to get them down is by using real plants.
Keep up your water changes and cleaning; plus it really helps if you can add some supplements like Prime or Ammo Lock. I also used something called Tank buster. This is advertised as "Live Nitrifiers" for "Super Fast new aquarium breakin" Not promoting this stuff; just telling you what I used. You will see that most people recommend Prime.
As for your filter; I wouldn't worry to much. When I cycled my tank, I used a larger Fluval C3 exterior filter and I put a canister filter inside also. The current created didn't bother my fish at all; and i had a betta in there to! (by the way; my Betta was in uncycled water with way higher Ammonia readings than yours; and he survived. Matter of fact he is swimming around right behind me as I speak)
If you're concerned you can always try a DIY baffle that is made out of a plastic water. bottle.
There you go. Stick with it; keep reading and everything will turn out just right.
Hopefully you will get some people that have more experience than me giving you some advice; as I'm sure some that I gave you may not be 100% correct. I'm what you call a wannabe!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thank you so much for replying! i makes me feel so much better because i really am trying to figure this all out and i was definitely panicking thinking i had done something wrong. so you think daily water changes are okay? i use AmQuel plus ammonia detoxifier, i that the same as what you're talking about? i really appreciate you taking the time to answer me:) settled my nerves a ton!
 

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In regards to the AmQuel plus ammonia detoxifier; I did a Google search on the product you're using and it appears that it is similar; however; like I mentioned; there are are a lot of very knowledgeable people on this forum; and they all recommend Prime.
 

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Amquel Plus is an OK product. It actually breaks ammonia into it's constituent molecules making it safe for your livestock. Make sure it's Amquel PLUS. Check that it treats ammonia. Use as directed. Use NovAqua along with it to remove heavy metals.

Continue water changes as needed to keep ammonia below 0.25ppm. Your tank is trying to cycle and that's what your want. Do not replace any sponges. Squeeze them out in old tankwater. When ammonia and nitrite are 0.0ppm and you see a slight increase in nitrate between water changes, then your tank is cycled.

CYCLING: the two-sentence tutorial
 
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