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jessica

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I just set up another tank 10 days ago. It holds 36 gallons according to the tank calculator. It has an aquaclear 300. In it I have a sponge, then an aquaclear 200 sponge taken from my other tank then ammonia remover then another sponge which sticks out above the flow a bit. I have added cycle twice following the directions on the bottle for cycling a tank. I put two little goldfish in 9 days ago. The are 2 inches long each including their tails. I haven't done any water changes. I don't have a test kit so I took a water sample to the pet store yesterday and watched as they tested the water. The ammonia and nitrite tested nothing. And the nitrates tested nothing. So the lady said it was all good. Then I said it was a 10 day old tank and she changed her mind and said that it hadn't started to cycle yet. She told me to but a bottle of cycle and put it in and that would cycle it in about a week. I told her that I already did that and it had already been over a week. She insisted that two small goldfish were not enought to cycle a tank and that I should throw a bunch more in. I have a few fake plants in it that I took out of my other tank that are covered in green algae. So maybe that is eating some nitrates. Do I need to add more fish? I don't want anymore except maybe some hillstream loaches or a bristlenose (I have driftwood in the tank). But I wanted to make sure the tank was cycled before adding them. Any thoughts? Thanks so much. Jessica

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I wouldn't add any more fish until the tank is settled down. The best is to buy a test kit and do a water testing everyday if it is possible.

But algae on fake plant will not eat enough nitrate to remove entire nitrate from your water though.

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The culprit here might be the "ammonia remover" insert in your filter. It binds the ammonia from the water into a form that the bacteria can not feed off of. Once full, it won't do any good, and you'll have to truly start your cycle.

I would suggest removing the ammonia insert and using biomax.

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The culprit here might be the "ammonia remover" insert in your filter. It binds the ammonia from the water into a form that the bacteria can not feed off of. Once full, it won't do any good, and you'll have to truly start your cycle.

I would suggest removing the ammonia insert and using biomax.

I agree with L.E. An aquarium cycle works like this:

Ammonia --> Nitrite --> Nitrate --> Water Change

If you stop the first step with ammonia-remover, you're never going to finish the cycle.

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Thanks that makes total sense. I guess that could mean that all the good bacteria that I put in from the sponge in my other tank and the bottle of cycle would probably be dead now since it had nothing to feed on. Well I took the ammonia remover out and replaced it with the biomax from my other tank's filter. I will take a water sample in to the pet store again in a couple days. Thanks for the advice.

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Can anyone tell me how long it takes the benificial bacteria to die without an ammonia source? Also is the pet store employee right that two goldfish aren't enough to cycle this much water (36 gallons). Thanks

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Can anyone tell me how long it takes the benificial bacteria to die without an ammonia source? Also is the pet store employee right that two goldfish aren't enough to cycle this much water (36 gallons). Thanks

Contrary to what your petstore clerk thinks, I'm sure even ONE goldfish can bring about a nice cycle.

Goldfish are a wonderful source of ammonia for any nitrogen-fixer colony. (In fact, that's why many don't recommend goldfish for first-time fishowners, they produce more ammonia per body than almost any other domestic fish) What will happen is that only enough bacteria will populate to handle the load it's given. So with two goldfish, you'll get enough bacteria to handle the load of two goldfish.

That's why it's very important to watch the parameters very closely whenever adding additional fish. The new fish bring about an extra load of ammonia and your bacteria has to be given time to play "catch-up."

So in this case, I wouldn't listen to that clerk. Just take out any "ammonia-remover" packets from your filter and don't attempt to add more fish.

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Thanks Nenn for the reply. It didn't make sense to me that I had to add more fish. I should have known better than to listen to anything the pet store told me. thanks again.

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