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Thread: I Need help with a cycle issue please.

  1. #1
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    egapelc's Avatar
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    Oct 2016
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    I Need help with a cycle issue please.

    So, I finally got around to starting up a tank I've had in storage for a while. It's a 36 gallon bow front, that is planted. It has an aquaclear 50 filter, same type that I have running in my other tank. I used the foam from my established tank with the remaining media being new (carbon and bio-carb). I did squeezing out the foam onto the new foam piece for my existing tank. My existing tank is 27 gallons, and has 12 ember tetras, 2 honey gouramis, 4 platys and some cherry shrimp. It's also heavily planted.

    Someone gave me some substrate ferts from The Plant Guy, which I used in the new tank in black flourite and small black gravel. There is also some driftwood, boiled for 2 hours and soaked for a few days, in the tank. This driftwood was purchased at my LFS. Water changes are not showing tannins in the water.

    Since I was using seeded media, I put the four platys in the tank the day after it was started.

    The fish are doing fine, they are eating and swimming around. They are showing the same behaviour they did in the other tank. But, the water is not good...

    The first water test had Ph 7.6, 8ppm ammonia, 5ppm nitrites and 5 ppm nitrates. Temp 26.2.

    I did a 30% water change, and threw in a bottle of Colony (figured it would do any harm). About 3 days later, another test, Ph 7, 4 ppm ammonia, 2 ppm nitrites and 1 ppm nitrates. Temp 25.4. I did another 30% water change and squeezed out the foam in the discarded aquarium water.

    I just did a water test again, and Ph was 6.4, ammonia 4 ppm, nitrites 1 ppm and nitrates 5. Temp is still 25.4.

    The fish are still active, showing no signs of distress. I, however, am distressed! Click here to enlarge

    I understand it takes times, but I never had that issue with my other tank. Water has been stable there almost from the start.

    I use tap water in all my tanks, which I haven't tested yet, but that is my next step. The only difference with this tank is that I use tepid water from the tap. The other tanks I always used aged water. I'm just running out of buckets and space to store it!

    I also always use Seachem Prime.

    Any advice?

  2. #2
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    egapelc's Avatar
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    Just tested the tap water, PH 7.6, ammonia, nitrites and nitrates all 0, so that is not the problem.

  3. #3
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    Leigh Partridge's Avatar
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    There is just not enough benneficial bacteria in the tank for the load of the 4 platys. Everything else is new in the tank besides the sponge right. I would have took the bio media instead from the established tank. You could still do that, there should be enough in the gravel to keep the established tank still in good shape. But.. I'd just dose seachem prime daily at this point and ride out the cycle. If you use it as directed daily, it has the ability to make it so the ammonia and nitrite will not negatively affect the platys. Also in the future I would just ditch the charcoal and use more bio media or sponges instead. The charcoal is pretty much useless. Most people only use it to remove medications as it does not last long. It will also remove some of the plant fertilizers that you are adding. Kind of counter productive.
    100g CA/SA Cichlids 77g Jaguar Cichlid
    40g SA Cichlids 36g Convict fry

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