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Guest SminiFish

Fish Has Been Swimming Upside Down And Is Listless

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The Eheim is a good filter - I am sure you'll like it. Big Al's can second-day or overnight if you ask them...

As to the fishless cycle, I think I would continue to add the 10 drops of ammonia every time it goes to zero until the nitrites stay at zero, and the nitrates start to shoot up. Then I'd do a big water change to get nitrates back in line, and you're done! It would also be great to get your new filter in on this ASAP and start to colonize the biomedia.

Tell me about hospital tanks - yeesh - at least one of the two I'm running is cycled, or I'd really be nutso. Remember, Prime is your friend - use it often in the hospital tank - hard to overdose it when you are changing that much water.

Dave

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How are Uno and Cajun today, SminiFish?

I have been thinking about them as I do my water changes in my main tank for Dory and Nemo.

Dave

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

Good to hear from you! Cajun and Uno are doing well, but their hospital tank sure gets dirty fast. I am automatically doing water changes twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening, to keep the water parameters within normal range. Sometimes, I do the water changes more often. I also add in a little aquarium salt to help them along. The water in the 30 gallon tank hasn't looked so clear and clean in such a long time! I can't wait for the tank to be cycled so I can put Cajun and Uno back in it.

I tested the water again tonight in the 30 gallon tank and the ammonia is 0.25 and the nitrites are at 0. Does the nitrite value seem odd to you? I thought there would be some nitrites there tonight (this morning the nitrite level was 0.25). I'll add some more ammonia (10 drops) to the tank tomorrow morning and test it again to see whats going on.

Thanks again for your help and I look forward to hearing from you soon!

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No, the nitrite value does not seem that odd. Establishment of a cycle in a tank is sometimes a wierd process. As long as the ammo keeps going down, you'll eventutally get nitrites.

There is another possibility - your nitrite-eating bugs may be maturing faster than the ammonia-eating ones. I've seen this happen with BioSpira. What are your nitrAtes?

Dave

Edited by parkerdt

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

I tested the water tonight and the Ammonia was 0.25, Nitrite was 0.25, and nitrate was 10. Looks like we are moving along in the cycle! :)

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

Wanted to give you an update on the tank parameters:Ammonia: between 0 and 0.25, Nitite: 0.25. Hopefully the tank will be completely cycled in the next few days or so.

I'm going to purchase a cannister filter tomorrow and get it hooked up as soon as I can. Uno and Cajun are hanging in there and doing well. Can't wait to get them back in the 30 gallon tank.

Thanks again for all your help! You and JenW have truly been lifesavers! I don't know what I would have done without your help (I know I still wouldn't have figured out what was going on with my tank)! I will post here again when I get Uno and Cajun back in their tank. Hopefully, it will be just a matter of days. Thanks again!

Susan

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One other thought, Susan. After your filter is hooked up and you are satisfied that the tank is cycled, you might give some thought to moving Uno back in first, by himself for a few days. The flow is going to have changed radically, and it might be good to give him a bit of time to get used to his new surroundings before he has to compete for swimming space and food. After all, your two are not small fish :-) This will also give your cycle a few more days to adjust to "fish waste" instead of just pure ammonia, and your new canister a chance to start to pick up some of the bioload. Just a though.

Hope they are both doing well.

Dave

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

Good to hear from you. I am still waiting for the cannister filter. Hopefully it will be here in a few days.

The cycle was going well with the tank. Both ammonia and nirite were nearly at zero, so I decided to put Uno and Cajun back into the tank (this was before I read your recent and last post). I was having to change the water in the 10 gallon hospital tank 5-8 times a day because it was getting so dirty and the water parameters would get so bad so quickly. I figured the water parameters were probably a lot better in the 30 gallon now than in the 10 gallon hospital tank, and I felt terrible when I would return home and find them in really dirty water and the ammonia was sky high. So I went ahead and put them back in the 30 gallon, figuring the cycle was complete. They were so happy to be back in their tank, swimming and having a great time. But later this evening I started to notice that Uno was slowing down again. I tested the water and the ammonia was 0.25, nitrite 0.5 and nitrate 20! :unsure:

I'm afraid I may have put them back in too soon, but my 10 gallon hospital tank was getting so dirty so quickly, even after all the water changes I was doing. I'm not quite sure what I should do, as I am afraid to do a water change and mess up the bacterial colony that is trying to get started.

Thanks for your help! I hope I haven't messed up things here. :(

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Susan,

I personally would dose with BioSpira after doing a 25% water change. If it keeps up, you may want to separate them until the biobugs can deal with the load., but then of course you'll be changing water in two tanks. That's a call only you can make tho. Also remember, Prime is your friend, but it only goes so far...

I don't think 25% water changes even twice a day will seriously affect your cycle at this point. I'm intentionally double dosing my 58 gallon with 2 tsp of ammonia per day to try and get the colony up to snuff, but it is taking forever for my nitrites to come down even tho the ammo is zero every morning.

Dave

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

Thank you for the advice. I think I'll try to do a 25% water change on the tank. Uno and Cajun seem to be much more perky today. Hopefully I will be getting the cannister filter soon. I'll keep you posted on whats going on. Talk to you soon!

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I am glad they seem to be doing better! Just keep up the water quality monitoring and change when you need to, I'm betting you and the boys will be fine.

Dave

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Guest SminiFish

Hi Dave,

I just tested the water tonight and the ammonia was 0 but the nitrites were above 5! :blink:

I just went ahead and did another 25% water change and will test the water again but why are the nitrites so high? Is the Biospira not working? Is there a reason why the nitrites are staying high and not going down? The nirites have been high now for 2-3 days. Thanks for your help! Looking forward to your reply.

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It can take a bit for the nitrites to go down (I can't remember how long it took in my tanks when I first cycled but I know the entire cycling process took about 13 weeks for me - which I know is long but I was cycling with fish in the tank.)

You may need more than a 25% change. 5 is pretty high. Check you reading after you water change & go fromthere. (I think mine stayed pinned pretty high for longer than a week & I was doing twice daily 50 % changes & still getting readings of 2-3ppm. It's part of the reason I switched to Prime so long ago.)

:D Jenn

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Susan,

I think Jenn has hit the nail on the head here. Often times, the nitrite-eating bugs just don't multiply as quickly as the ammo-eating ones, even with BioSpira, and you're likely seeing more waste in the tank than the ammount of ammonia you used was providing. Also don't forget you are extremely light on filtration atm. If you can get some more BioSpira, might want to try dosing it directly onto whatever biomedia you have - O know this works well with biowheels, for example.

You need to get those nitrites down pronto with water changes, and go heavy on the Prime - use half the dose at least a couple of times a day is what I would do. I agree with the recommendation of 50% water changes, two a day if required.

This "nitrite spike after cycle" happened to me in Nemo's termporary tank as well, but it resolved itself in about a week with 50% water changes, and has not reoccured. Hang in there!

Dave

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How is the fish doing?

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Guest SminiFish

Hello,

Uno and Cajun are doing well! I am so excited because my cannister filter just came in! I have been waiting for it to arrive so the tank can have some more filtration. I hooked it up tonight and it is running well. The nirtrites continue to be high, but I keep doing water changes. Maybe now with the extra filter it will help the nitrites start to go down. I'm going to add in some more Biospira to the tank to help as well.

A question about the cannister filter: The tubes from the tank that lead down to the cannister on the floor are a bit long, but don't kink or impede the water flow. Should I cut the tubing so they go straight up and down from the tank to the cannister, or is a little extra tubing and slack ok?

Thanks for your help!

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That's such good news :D

Depending on the cannister filter you purchased, a little bit of slack is ok. I have an Eheim 2229 wet and dry and if the tubes aren't straight and exactly the same length, then it doesn't work as it should. I have most of mine 'tidy' but this is mostly for appearance and if you want to resize them, it's easy to cut them to size. Which cannister did you get?

It will take a couple (or so) weeks for the new filter to actually have any impact on your parameters but as it's running on an already cycled tank - it doesn't take long so you should notice a change for the better fairly quickly :)

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SminiFish- I don't think that adding this filter will make the cycle go faster, but it will make it much more stable once it's complete!!! I really like my cannister filters (I have both HOB & cannister).

How well I remember that phase of my cycle. It felt like forever. For me it happened all at once. One day I tested the water (totally prepared to do my daily changes & lo & behold that tube was blue instead of violet (I thought it'd never happen.)

I'm glad your fish are doing better!! Keep up the good work!!! :D Jenn

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Congrats, it all sounds good to me. I think it is OK to leave a little slack to make it easier to work on things, but you do want the tubes to be equal length. Glad to hear Cajun and Uno are doing well!

Dave

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Guest SminiFish

Oh Geez! :blink:

I guess I spoke too soon when I said things were going great. I came home from work today to find Uno VERY lethargic and listless. I tested the water and the ammonia was 0, but the nitrites were 5! :blink:

I thought my cycle was leveling out (nitrites seemed to be on a downward trend), but now they have skyrocketed back up again! I immeadiately did a water change, between 25-50%, added new water with Prime. Boy Uno sure perked up fast! (Thank goodness!). I'm not sure why my cycle is doing this. I was thinking of buying some more Biospira tomorrow during my lunch hour at work and then adding it to the tank when I get home. Any other suggestions? Why is the cycle taking so long with Biospira added? (It has been over 2 weeks now)

Thank you so much for your help. Looking forward to your replies.

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Don't panic, Susan.

I've seen very similar patterns in both the tanks I've fishless-cycled with BioSpira.

One day, all of a sudden, nitrItes will be gone. Until then, you will need to keep up strict measuring and water changes, but it WILL happen. BioSpira is great but it is not a miracle. An extra dose (after your next water change) might very well help in the short run, but not if you are having to do large changes every day. Doesn't give the good bugs time to colonize rock and bio media.

Personally, I would continue to measure and be prepared to do ~ 50% water changes daily - this worked for me and took about a week. On the first day measuremensts say you can skip a water change, I'd do one anyway, and hit it with some BioSpira. Again, this is only what has worked for me.

good luck,

Dave

Edited by parkerdt

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Guest SminiFish

Thank you so much Dave! You have been such a life saver through all of this! I don't know what I would have done without your great advice and help! :)

I will continue to monitor the water parameters and do water changes. I will also get some more Biospira at the LFS in the town I work. I'll keep you posted as to what happens.

Thanks again for your help!

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Thanks, Susan,

I'm no lifesaver, but I have learned a thing or two about helping our GF friends here, and it is my pleasure to be able to pass along what little I know. I hope things continue to improve for you.

In reading through a lot of these threads, the one thing that grabs me most is water quality issues, and I certainly had them. I'm beginning to believe if we could all have perfect water, we'd have a lot less sick fish...

How are Uno and Cajun today?

Dave

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