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Fish in cycle 😞 7 weeks in, still nothing??
#1
I have a 60l tank, 6 Black Phantoms, lots of live plants. 

Over the weeks I've added a bit of gravel and some media from an established tank, I've tested and water changed 20-30% almost daily using Seachem Prime each time.

I am still only getting 0.2 with the very occasional 0.5 of ammonia and have never seen any Nitrites or Nitrates? 

I've had so much differing advice from keep going as you are, to the plants have given me a silent cycle and I'm good to go, to don't change the water till the ammonia reaches 2.0?? 

I'm assuming that if the tank was cycled I'd be getting nitrates, which I'm not?? 

Any more advice you can give me please
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#2
Welcome to the forum. Smile
What are the nitrates from the tapwater?
That will show what the nitrate value is likely to be with daily changes. Wink
With only 6 smallish fish you may not see any nitrite spikes, especially if the ammonia is only around 0.2ppm.
It could well be that you've added just about enough media from the established tank to almost cope with 6 phantoms. The nitrite munchers are much hardier than the ammonia ones.
You do need to keep up with water changes to keep the ammonia below 0.5ppm, and eventually stop when it's zero for three days. Smile
The Prime will be turning the ammonia into ammonium, which the munchers will still use, but it isn't toxic to the fish.
If at first you don't succeed....
...get someone else to do it! Big Grin

Enjoy your fish, shrimps and snails!
Ian

All my posts are from a desktop.
Mobiles are way too complicated for me, although I do have one now. Wink
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#3
Hello and welcome to the forum Smile
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#4
Hello and welcome Smile
 😇 Heaven doesn’t want me...
And Hell is afraid I’ll take over! 😈
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#5
Hello. What Plankton said is bang on Smile
500L Sooperhooge Goldfish tank Smile
200L The Barbarium….Tiger barbs and a very grumpy BN plec
200L Marine Reef.....stocking in progress!
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#6
(21-09-2019, 09:37 AM)plankton Wrote: Welcome to the forum. Smile
What are the nitrates from the tapwater?
That will show what the nitrate value is likely to be with daily changes. Wink
With only 6 smallish fish you may not see any nitrite spikes, especially if the ammonia is only around 0.2ppm.
It could well be that you've added just about enough media from the established tank to almost cope with 6 phantoms. The nitrite munchers are much hardier than the ammonia ones.
You do need to keep up with water changes to keep the ammonia below 0.5ppm, and eventually stop when it's zero for three days. Smile
The Prime will be turning the ammonia into ammonium, which the munchers will still use, but it isn't toxic to the fish.
So my tap water is...... 
Ammonia 0.2
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0

Exactly the same as my tank water?? 
So if the water I'm putting in is 0.2 how am I going to get it to 0??
I'm assuming no more fish till then
Thank you
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#7
If your reading is 0.2 from your tap (mine comes out at 0.25ppm or a bit of a green tinge on the api test rather than bright yellow, always has although i havent tried the new test kit Big Grin) it will be your zero reading, its likely to be ammonium rather than ammonia. Just monitor the levels and see if they drop, although as you say if your getting 0.2 from your tap water it wont likely drop further (possibly just the test)
 😇 Heaven doesn’t want me...
And Hell is afraid I’ll take over! 😈
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#8
(21-09-2019, 04:46 PM)Gingerlove05 Wrote: If your reading is 0.2 from your tap (mine comes out at 0.25ppm or a bit of a green tinge on the api test rather than bright yellow, always has although i havent tried the new test kit Big Grin) it will be your zero reading, its likely to be ammonium rather than ammonia. Just monitor the levels and see if they drop, although as you say if your getting 0.2 from your tap water it wont likely drop further (possibly just the test)

I am currently having the same issues as OP, I was doing 50% WC with prime and Stabilty,with no success, taken further advice to do no more WC for 7 days - while bacteria builds up in my 4 week new tank fish in cycle and to half dose during this time with Stabilty, then after 7 days do WC  with prime and dose of Stabilty and monitor levels.

my tank test results 
Ammonia 0.5
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0
PH 7

Tap water test
Ammonia 0.2
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0

I was told the Ammonia could possibly be Ammonium and could show up on Water test as Ammonia.

Tap water test results below.

[Image: tBbQvu0l.jpg]
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#9
SuT Wrote:
plankton Wrote:Welcome to the forum. Smile
What are the nitrates from the tapwater?
That will show what the nitrate value is likely to be with daily changes. Wink
With only 6 smallish fish you may not see any nitrite spikes, especially if the ammonia is only around 0.2ppm.
It could well be that you've added just about enough media from the established tank to almost cope with 6 phantoms. The nitrite munchers are much hardier than the ammonia ones.
You do need to keep up with water changes to keep the ammonia below 0.5ppm, and eventually stop when it's zero for three days. Smile
The Prime will be turning the ammonia into ammonium, which the munchers will still use, but it isn't toxic to the fish.
So my tap water is...... 
Ammonia 0.2
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0

Exactly the same as my tank water?? 
So if the water I'm putting in is 0.2 how am I going to get it to 0??
I'm assuming no more fish till then
Thank you

That will be your zero as GL has pointed out.

You could dose with Seachem Stability to give the beneficial bacteria a boost.
Follow the instructions on the bottle.
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#10
(21-09-2019, 05:39 PM)Stephen Wrote:
SuT Wrote:
plankton Wrote:Welcome to the forum. Smile
What are the nitrates from the tapwater?
That will show what the nitrate value is likely to be with daily changes. Wink
With only 6 smallish fish you may not see any nitrite spikes, especially if the ammonia is only around 0.2ppm.
It could well be that you've added just about enough media from the established tank to almost cope with 6 phantoms. The nitrite munchers are much hardier than the ammonia ones.
You do need to keep up with water changes to keep the ammonia below 0.5ppm, and eventually stop when it's zero for three days. Smile
The Prime will be turning the ammonia into ammonium, which the munchers will still use, but it isn't toxic to the fish.
So my tap water is...... 
Ammonia 0.2
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0

Exactly the same as my tank water?? 
So if the water I'm putting in is 0.2 how am I going to get it to 0??
I'm assuming no more fish till then
Thank you

That will be your zero as GL has pointed out.

You could dose with Seachem Stability to give the beneficial bacteria a boost.
Follow the instructions on the bottle.
So basically after 7 weeks I'm not even close to the next step?
I'm assuming I've just got to keep going till Nitrite then Nitrate shows up?
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#11
Quote:So basically after 7 weeks I'm not even close to the next step?

I'm assuming I've just got to keep going till Nitrite then Nitrate shows up?


A fish in cycle can take much longer but you may already be cycled, hard to tell.
The Seachem Stability will certainly help build up the beneficial bacteria.
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#12
On my water test pic above
The chart shows
Both Nitrite and Nitrate boxes with zero have a tick next to them, I’m assuming this is a good thing ?

I’m sure someone more experienced will advise if you’ve already reached the correct levels of Nitrite and Nitrate. In my very limited experience I thought that
Zero levels where considered a good thing in the water tests , you seem to be at - both zero levels for Nitrite and Nitrate already.

Could it possibly be that at some stage you did have higher Levels of Nitrite and Nitrate and now the levels have gone down to an acceptable zero?
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#13
Are you sure your tap water has zero nitrates? Not even the slightest of readings? Have you had a look on your water suppliers website? Most will allow you to search by town or postcode to get average readings so you can have a baseline to compare to.

Unfortunately fish in cycles can be tricky like this. If your tap readings match your suppliers website then at some point you will have to choose when to stop dosing stability or water changing for a week and see if the tests (ammonia/nitrite) change. If they do then your not cycled. If thy don’t you can move forward.
500L Sooperhooge Goldfish tank Smile
200L The Barbarium….Tiger barbs and a very grumpy BN plec
200L Marine Reef.....stocking in progress!
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#14
(21-09-2019, 07:11 PM)Flex365 Wrote: On my water test pic above
The chart shows
Both Nitrite and Nitrate boxes with zero have a tick next to them, I’m assuming this is a good thing ?

I’m sure someone more experienced will advise if you’ve already reached the correct levels of Nitrite and Nitrate. In my very limited experience I thought that
Zero levels where considered a good thing in the water tests , you seem to be at - both zero levels for Nitrite and Nitrate already.

Could it possibly be that at some stage you did have higher Levels of Nitrite and Nitrate and now the levels have gone down to an acceptable zero?

People do tend to worry far too much about nitrates. You are not aiming for zero. Ammonia and nitrite need to be at zero. My tap nitrates are 30-40 and I have no problems. In fact they help to feed plants etc.
500L Sooperhooge Goldfish tank Smile
200L The Barbarium….Tiger barbs and a very grumpy BN plec
200L Marine Reef.....stocking in progress!
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#15
Newbies like me do tend to worry about all water Levels including Nitrates being at zero - especially when we look at the water test kit chart and only the box with zero is ticked as an acceptable level.

This chart test indicator states that we are aiming for zero Nitrates?
Just my thoughts.

Thanks for clearing this up CG.
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