Cycling - How without animals?

Post here if you have an emergency! For general health questions post in the appropriate "Health, care and maintenance" forum.

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-03 21:25

As said in title - I would like to do an animal free cycle before I get the Axolotl in - How should I do this?
I'm already getting some Elodea, and I will use the sponge out of my filter in the new filter going into the tank.
What else will I need to do to get it just right for him to movein, and how long will it take?
(My goldfish Rex did his tank's cycle for me bless him. A bit mean I suppose, but I didn't know the fishfree way existed at the time. And He's a happy fishie still!)
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby KittyKat » 2005-12-03 22:08

you need to add a source of amonia to it: a good idea would be to add all the stuff you syphon from your tank
Kat
stock list | main display tank | 60 litre cycle log (aka, guide for beginners) | Flickr
User avatar
KittyKat
Site admin
 
Posts: 6873
Joined: 2005-09-04 14:50
Location: Norwich, UK

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-03 22:39

Hmmmmn - so dump all the water I take out in a water change into the tank.... that's clever. See, that's the sort of thing I didn't know. (Mind you, my Ammonia only hits 0.25 - is that enough?)
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-03 22:52

Ooh, what if I get some ammonia from the chemists - will that work?
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby susankat » 2005-12-04 03:32

If you want to fully cycle a tank without fish, Just use a few drops of pure ammonia. Do not let the reading go above 5. It will take you about 4 to 6 weeks.
Or you can add a raw shrimp from the grocery store or where ever, The decomposed shrimp will raise your ammonia levels. Keep adding a few drops of ammonia every couple of days or another piece of shrimp in a couple of weeks, when the readings of nitrite start to show up, do not add anymore ammonia source.

This is how I do a new tank.
Or do a silent cycle, heavily plant a tank, fast growing plants at least 80%, add some mulm from your old tank to the filter of the new tank, add your fish. You shouldn't see an ammonia or nitrite spike. Test your water daily, if you see the slightest rise in ammonia or nitrite, do a small water change.
Susan
Image
Image
User avatar
susankat
Addicted member
 
Posts: 537
Joined: 2005-10-31 22:00
Location: Tulsa, Ok USA

Postby saracen » 2005-12-04 09:26

If you buy amonia from the chemist, just be sure to check the ingredients. They throw in all sorts of rubbish just for fun. The onl ingredient that should be listed should be the amonia.

Taking water from your old tank will do very little, the bacteria that you need do not colonise very well in the water column. if you can take out gravel or a large ornament that would be better.

The shrimp way is the easiest, you just bung it in and forget about it.

When you are doing the fishless cycle, you have to monitor your levels every couple of days. You need to watch for the different spikes. At first you should see Amonia, and nothing else. Then as the bacteria colonise you will see amonia start to drop and NitrIte rise. Keep monitoring, then youwill see NitrIte drop and NitrAte rise. When Nitrite is at zero, you are ready for a water change to remove the Nirates and then you are ready for fish.

This can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks, depending on how readily the bacteria colonise.

If you use any of the seeding methods, you need to give the tank a light bioload immediately. If the bacteria have nothing to feed on, they will die.

Good choice on the fishless cycle, it is so much kinder to the animals!
Click for Quiz!
--------
ImageImageImage
User avatar
saracen
Moderator
 
Posts: 2717
Joined: 2005-10-30 17:57
Location: Warrington, England

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-04 20:04

Ahhh - I see! So - best thing to do - plant up with the Elodea as planned - and dump a rotting shrimp in the water??? Hokiedokie.
Well, Manageresses Axolotl will just have to be a late Christmas present - I intend on doing this properly.
So using the sponge from my filter is good, plus a spoonful of mulm (from when I clean it) - chuck in the shrimp and test every day... gotcha.
Oh, and lob the Axolotl in the moment the Nitrites have gone - that right?
(I like to summarise - that way you know I got the idea right...)
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby Sam » 2005-12-04 20:41

You might get the axolotl in time for christmas, as fishless cycles are much quicker, and you can control much more easily.
<img src='http://img300.imageshack.us/img300/8835/wkdsig3qp.png' border='0' alt='user posted image'><br>--------------------<br><a href='http://allfishforums.com/TropicalFish/index.php?showtopic=531&st=0#entry823364' target='_blank'><img src='http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c185/Quirlys/Webpage%20-%20links/POTMRibbon.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image'></a><img src='http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c185/Quirlys/Webpage%20-%20links/POTMRibbon.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image'>
User avatar
Sam
Addicted member
 
Posts: 1495
Joined: 2005-10-18 15:21

Postby saracen » 2005-12-04 21:01

Thats a good summary. If you are using seeding as well as the shrimp, Sam is right, it may go quickly enough. you have 3 weeks today!

Water change before you put the creature in, but apart from that you nailed it!
Click for Quiz!
--------
ImageImageImage
User avatar
saracen
Moderator
 
Posts: 2717
Joined: 2005-10-30 17:57
Location: Warrington, England

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-04 21:33

Gotcha - and if I got this right does seeding mean throwing a dose of bottled bacteria in? (Not plants lol!)
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-04 21:34

*Has just reread entire thing and is pleased to note that she got it right!*
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby tankgirl » 2005-12-04 21:53

i saw at the lfs the other day these 'bacteria bouquet' things (i might have this name completely wrong btw!). they guy said they waited a year before they decided to sell them to see how they were doing on the market and apparently they're doing really well. i cant remember what they look like but they are supposedly marvelous if, say, your filter crashes, and you need a back up. anyone have an idea about what i'm talking about? (i know, i'm being REALLY vague here!).

so what i'm getting at is this: can you put these things in to spped up the cycle?? (a fishless cycle)
--------------------<br><a href='http://allfishforums.com/TropicalFish/index.php?showtopic=531&st=0#entry823364' target='_blank'><img src='http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c185/Quirlys/Webpage%20-%20links/OPOTMRibbon.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image'></a><a href='http://s13.invisionfree.com/TropicalFish/index.php?showtopic=531&st=0#entry823364' target='_blank'><img src='http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c185/Quirlys/Webpage%20-%20links/TOTMRibbon.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image'></a><img src='http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c185/Quirlys/Webpage%20-%20links/OPOTMRibbon.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image'>
User avatar
tankgirl
Regular member
 
Posts: 443
Joined: 2005-10-27 09:55

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-04 22:04

I have NO idea what that is - but if I have a problem like that, I lob in a big dose of bottled bacteria.... And an Ammoball/Ammochips if needs be.
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Postby saracen » 2005-12-05 08:26

No. The bottles bacteria things are usually a waste of time and money.

Seeding is what you are doing from putting in stuff that has already been in another tank and is covered in nitrifying bacteria.

The only one of those things that actually seems to work is a product called Biospira, and you have to get it from the fridge in the pet shop. If it is room temperature, then it wont work, it will all be dead.

If you get Biospira, then the ball game changes completely. You would need to follow the instructions on the packet.

I must stress at this point that one of my fundamental beliefs about this hobby, is that there is no substitute for patience. Patience is the one most important thing that any fishkeeper can have. You can't rush a tank, and you cant get a full bioload immediately. This is a little and often, creep and check hobby.

I have no idea what you are talking about Tankgirl (and I do mean that in the nicest possible way! :D ) If your filter crashes, then all you really loose is mechanical filtration and water movement. Its really the lack of water movement that makes the fish sick, because the o2 dips. The bacteria that you need for your cycle is on every surface inside the tank, gravel, ornaments, walls, and yes, filter and filter mediums.

The only way you kill the bacteria is by drying it out, hitting it with chlorinated water, or using cleaning products on it. You do get jumps in amonia and nitrite that we call mini cycle, but that is usually when you dont see a fish die and the body decays, or you add too many fish at once and there are literally not enough bacteria to deal with the increased bioload.

A cycle will take as long as a cycle will take. Some tanks take 2 weeks, some 6, depends on all sorts of things. I dont personally think there is a lot that you can do to speed up anything.
Click for Quiz!
--------
ImageImageImage
User avatar
saracen
Moderator
 
Posts: 2717
Joined: 2005-10-30 17:57
Location: Warrington, England

Postby Indigo Blue Fish » 2005-12-05 09:37

Thankyou Saracen - that explains a lot! As I said, I'l be using the old Mechanical sponge from my filter in the new filter - that should kickstart the bacteria...
But I didn't know about the bottled thing - Mind you, mine seems to work ok - but then I always keep it on the window sill, behind a book - so it'l be dark and cold most of the time!
User avatar
Indigo Blue Fish
Addicted member
 
Posts: 5132
Joined: 2005-10-18 19:42
Location: England

Next

Return to 999/911

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests