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  1. I have 2 fantail goldfish in a 65 lt tank. The filter is a hang on back filter but back because i keep it in my room i turn the filter off at night. Does it affect the cycle of the tank or is it ok?
  2. The Nitrogen Cycle Cycle: your fish produce ammonia. Beneficial bacteria live in you filter media (one reason why filtration is so important!). The bacteria take the ammonia and convert it into nitrite and nitrite into nitrate.
  3. Fishless Cycling Below is a quick guide to cycling your aquarium without fish. Cycling without fish has many benefits for both you and your future fish. It is less stressful for you because there is no need to worry about daily water changes and the health of your fish, and less stressful for your fish because they will not be exposed to harmful toxins during the cycling process. You can expect a complete cycle to take anywhere from 1-3 months on average, but every tank is different. If you are not familiar with the nitrogen cycle please read about it here http://www.kokosgoldfish.com/cycle.html What you will need: 1. Ammonia source - Liquid ammonia, used for cleaning, can be found at hardware stores, dollar stores, and some larger chain stores. Ammonia should be free of any dyes or perfumes. Ingredients should read ammonia and water only. - If liquid ammonia cannot be obtained, a frozen prawn or fish food can be used as an ammonia source. Liquid ammonia is preferable though when it is available because it is easier to measure exact amounts. 2. Water test kit - A liquid test kit, such as the API master freshwater kit, is necessary. Test kit should contain pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate tests. - A kh and gh test kit can also be helpful, particularly if you suspect you may have soft water. 3. Heater - A heater is not always necessary, but can help the cycling process along. Starting the Cycle: - It is a good idea to keep a log somewhere regarding your cycling process. You can use a notebook, or start a thread on the forum in the water quality section. 1. Test your tap water to determine if your tap contains ammonia/nitrite/nitrate, make note of this if it does. Also test pH along with gh/kh if you have this test kit. Ultimately, pH should be 7.2 or above and gh/kh should be 100ppm or above for goldfish. During cycling, a pH of less than 7.2 and kh less than 40ppm can inhibit the cycling process. Optimal pH and kh for the purpose of building a colony of nitrifying bacteria are 8.3 and 300ppm respectively. If you find you have a low pH and kh you will need to buffer your water. A commercial buffer, crushed coral, or baking soda can be used for this purpose http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/110296-stabilizing-your-tank-ph-with-sodium-bicarbonate-baking-soda/ 2. Fill your tank as you normally would, adding dechlorinated tap water 3. Raise tank temperature to 80F. This will help the beneficial bacteria to multiply more quickly. 4. Add enough ammonia to bring the ammonia concentration to 4ppm. How much ammonia you need will depend on the concentration of your ammonia. However, approximately 1.5 ml (.3 tsp) should bring 10 gallons close to 4ppm. Add ammonia to tank, wait 5-10 min for it to circulate, then test ammonia. Adjust as necessary. - If you are using fish food, begin by adding about 1/2 tablespoon of food per 10 gallons or frozen prawn to the tank. You can place food in a mesh or pantyhose for easy clean up if you like. Wait a couple days and test ammonia. If ammonia is less than 4ppm, add more food and repeat ammonia test in a couple days. It is a good idea to replace the food with new food every couple weeks 5. Wait..... test your ammonia regularly. At the beginning of your cycle it is not necessary to test daily, however as you begin to see ammonia dropping it is important to begin testing on a daily basis so that you will know when it is time to add more ammonia. There is no need to test nitrite/nitrate until ammonia begins to drop. 6. When ammonia drops near 0ppm, add enough ammonia to bring it back up to 4ppm. Continue testing your water daily, and bring ammonia back up to 4ppm as necessary. It is important to begin testing nitrites at this point. 7. When you first register a nitrite reading, drop the ammonia concentration down to 1ppm. From now on you will dose 1ppm of ammonia. Allow ammonia to drop near 0ppm before raising ammonia back to 1ppm. It is important to begin testing nitrates at this point in the cycle. 9. If nitrites reach a concentration of 2ppm, do a large water change and add ammonia back in. Nitrites higher than 2ppm can sometimes stall the cycle, so water changes are necessary to keep these lower. 10. You should begin seeing nitrates soon. If nitrates register as high as your test kit is able to detect, do a large water change and bring ammonia back up. Completing the Cycle: You will know your cycle is complete when, within 24 hours of adding 1ppm of ammonia, ammonia and nitrite test 0ppm and your test kit registers some nitrate reading. Nitrite readings typically take longer to bottom out as compared to the time it took for ammonia readings to drop to 0ppm. Remember that cycling can take time, keeping temperatures warm, kh high, and pH at an optimal level will help things along. However, if you feel as though your cycle is taking longer than typical to complete, please begin a thread in the water quality section of the forum and we would be happy to help you problem solve. Adding Fish and Cycle 'Bumps': When you feel certain your tank has finished cycling, do a 100% water change before adding any fish. When you add your fish, check water parameters daily for at least 1 week to make sure there are no cycle bumps. If you do see ammonia or nitrite readings, indicating a bump in your cycle, follow the instructions below: - Test water daily. If ammonia plus nitrite are less than 1ppm, add a double dose of Seachem Prime water conditioner for the day (repeat the next day if necessary). If ammonia plus nitrite are equal to 1ppm or higher do a large water change to bring ammonia/nitrite down. Please remember to match temp and tap pH when doing water changes. Tank and tap pH should match within .5ppm and temp within about 3 degrees. If there is a large difference between tap and tank pH you may need to do multiple smaller water changes to bring ammonia/nitrite down. Other Notes: - If you have a tank that is already cycled or have a friend with a cycled tank that you trust is free from pathogens, you can seed your filter with cycled media to speed up the cycling process significantly. Depending on how much cycled media you add to your filter, you can almost instantly cycle your tank. - Do not clean the tank/filter or wipe down walls during the cycling process. Your beneficial bacteria are just beginning to establish and cleaning can disrupt this process. - Do not use cartridges in your filters. Please check out this link on how to set up your filter without cartridges http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/page/index.html/_/aquatic-equipment/simple-media-setup-for-hob-filters-r248 - Bacterial additives that claim to cycle a tank instantly are making false claims. Nothing will cycle your tank instantly, except perhaps the addition of already cycled media from another tank. These products get very mixed reviews. Some people have reported faster cycling time using these products, others have seen no effect. At best these products will increase cycling time, at worst they are a waste of money. They are not necessary for the cycling process, but will not hurt if you want to try them. Written by Koko's mod/helper team! This post has been promoted to an article
  4. Hi all, I was wondering if anyone would care to share how long your fishless cycle took, especially if you fishless cycled without old media. I had to do a total tear-down of my tank and have been using pure ammonia. It is currently at 3-4 ppm for 10 days without any sign of dropping or nitrites. The last time I fishless cycled, I think it took about a month, but that was nearly 5 years ago. When my tank had a massive BB death and re-cycle about 16 months ago, I had to do fish-in cycling, they suffered since I had to go to Europe for two weeks and had my hapless boyfriend trying to do water changes, and so I don't know how long that took to fix itself. Specs: 29-gallon tank with sand and moderate planting; two AQ 70s; bubble wand; 81 F; lights for the plants during the day. So.... I know that the correct counsel is patience, but I'd like to know if something's wrong or what other people experienced.
  5. Hello! So I'm relatively new to fish keeping. Because of REALLY bad circumstances, I have ended up with two single tailed fish in a 10 gallon tank with a 29 gallon tank that I'm planning to move them into eventually. What I want to know is, how can I cycle my 29 fast and safely? Should I leave the fish in the 10 and do a fishless cycle on the 29, and then add them once it's cycled? Or should I just add the fish and cycle the tank with them in it? I have a 400 gph hang on back filter with filter floss and ceramic media. Thanks!
  6. Hey Guys, I am excited because this is my first ever post here! WAHOOO!! Anyway, I'm fairly new to fish keeping (serious fish keeping anyway). The other day I bought a lovely Lionhead Goldfish (1 1/2 inches at the moment) and put his in my 20g tank. However, I thought I could get away without having a filter in the tank! How wrong was I?! He makes so much mess for a small fish!!! So after just 24 hours I have bought a big filter that will filter nearly 3 times the size of the tank every hour. The thing that I'm worried about is that this filter won't have the beneficial bacteria needed to take out the ammonia and nitrites. Will he be okay? I'm doing daily 50% water changes to try and keep the water quality good until the filter arrives! HELP! Thanks.
  7. Hi everyone, so I noticed a minor leak in my eheim 2217 canister last night and made the decision to remove the canister until I could fix the leak. This was so that I could sleep properly. Anyways, I will likely not have time to fix the issue for a couple of weeks. In the aquarium (65 gallons, 5 fancies), I still have a marineland c220 canister which has awful water flow and an internal fluval u4 which are both well established. The eheim 2217 holds the most media and has been in the tank since day 1 (the other 2 filters were subsequently added). Of course my concern is a cycle crash. I was fully cycled and had great metrics. 0 ammonia and nitrite and sub-20 nitrate. Any ways I can alleviate the risk of a crash until I can "reinstall" the eheim? Also, the current media in the eheim will sit dry, so I assume all the good bacteria creation gets destroyed...? This is a terrible situation as things were going well, but what can you do?? Any advice would be much appreciated. thanks in advance!
  8. So about 3 weeks ago I got really excited to start seeing nitrites, and hoping my cycling was coming to an end. In a matter of a few days my super high ammonia dropped to zero. And my nitrites skyrocketed. We're seeing both nitrites and a few nitrates (10-20) but they never get very high because of all the water changes we've been doing to keep the nitrites in check. For a few weeks we've been doing nearly daily 60% changes (sometimes a bit more) with almost no change in the nitrite level. It is still between 2-5ppm. Last night before the change it measured between 2-5ppm, and after a 90% change is measured .25ppm. It's the lowest it's been. I had hoped it was enough of a reduction to help us stay ahead of it. Well, not so much. This morning, 12 hours after the 90% change the levels are right back up where they were. Our tap ammonia is .5ppm, so I know we're putting more into the tank when we change the water, but would that (plus what comes from my fish) be enough to make it jump that high in just a 12 hours? I know the second stage of cycling takes longer, so do I just need to be more patient (haha hard for me) and keep changing the water, or is there something else I can do to help this along? It's been weeks!! We are dosing with Prime every time we change the water. I've got 2 small goldfish, 2.5 inches each maybe. They both appear to be fine, as a matter of fact, they love to play in the bubbles the water makes when we pour the new water into the tank. You all were so helpful in getting me to this stage, I'm hoping you have some great insight for this second step. Thanks for your input! J
  9. I'm just wandering roughly when do your nitrites appear? I haven't gotten to seed my tank (unfortunately) and I added ammonia so the reading was 2.5-3.0ppm, its been about 5 days? I have no nitrite reading whatsoever. Am I being too impatient? How long roughly do nitrite first appear?
  10. I am returning to Koko's and goldfish keeping after a six year break. Here is a little of my fish keeping background: My dad kept fish off and on when I was a kid- once we kept goldfish for a whew years until a lengthy power outage required we return them to the LFS, and later the kept tropical fish after I foolishly tried to keep a tropical tank in my dorm room in college. My first experience with keeping my own goldfish started while I was nearing the end of college. I started with a ten gallon tankwhim under gravel filter, and a tiny black moor named Lucien. When Lucien got sick for the first time I stumbled onto Koko's and gained a wealth of info that led me directly down the path toward goldfish obsession. I quickly began accruing more tanks, I had a grand total of three when I gave up my fish habit- one 29 gallon with three goldfish (black moor, fantail, calico fantail), one 20 gallon with three lion heads, and one ten gallon QT tank. At some point I started having severe allergy problems-I assumed it was from a fine film of mold under the hood of my tank, and after a devastating loss of a few fry I had painstakingly kept alive,and since my husband and I were about to move into our first apartment together, I decided to sell my tank and fish, and give up the fish keeping habit. Skip ahead approximately six or seven years. Since then I have graduated from college, completed my Masters degree, and I am in my fifth year of teaching art in elementary school to kindergarteners through sixth graders. I have been engaged, married (5 year anniversary next weekend!),and had my son who will turn four this year. I also have gone through elaborate allergy tests confirming that I am not allergic to ANY molds or mildews, (only dust mites- guess I should've vacuumed more often:() and my best friend decided after three years of fish woes to get rid of her tank, so here I am again. I am currently in the process of setting up and cycling my new-to-me 29 gallon bow front tank. From the moment we brought the tank into the house I have been completely fish obsessed, worse than ever before. I quit my fish habit cold turkey six years ago and now it's almost like my past addiction is trying to make up for lost time. I plan to use this blog to post updates as I go through the process of fishless cycling and adding fish to my tank. Hoping that the blogging outlet will stop me from going completely fish crazy.
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