This is my first post. I inherited a tank and had beautiful old orandas. Unfortunately things happened and not knowing how to fix lost all. I was very overzealous. I have now been doing a fish less cycle b4 adding new fish. I believe week 7 maybe 8. My tank has cycled where I had nitrates and nitrites, however my ammonia is not going to 0. Last 4 days readings are roughly same am & pm. 2.0-4.0 ppm ammonia, 0 ppm nitrite, 5.0 or a little less on nitrate. Help please I am not going to hurt anymore glorious Orandas. 50 gallon tank. Have not done any water changes per your instructions but may be misunderstanding.
Thank you in advance
Using ace hardwares ammonia which I already had and was on your instructions. Cool on the nitrate all good there. I was adding am and pm to have a constant source and using an eye dropper that is halfway to fully filled. The ammonia is now about 2.0-3.0 ppm am and pm and as you stated in instructions my ph has dropped now to 6.4. Nitrite does go to 0 daily. I do not feel comfortable adding babies till ammonia drops so don't go thru same thing last time.
You do not have to add ammonia twice a day. Just add enough ammonia to get the reading up to no more than 5~6ppm in one go (every 24 hours) should be sufficient. By the time you get 0ppm ammonia and 0ppm nitrite at the end of every 24-hour cycle, your fishless cycling is done.
From the sound of it, your cycling is close to the end if not already finished. Just add ammonia once a day and see if it gets back down to 0ppm in 24 hours. If it is, then your cycle is done.
Do not forget to do a large partial water change of at least 50~70% before adding the fish.
Thank you. Today ammonia was down to almost zero. Added some going to check to make sure 5-6. Nitrates and nitrites perfect. Oh little low. Ok so water change (when ready) using prime and then safe to add new babies? I will probably need help once have as well to be safe lol. I appreciate the help.
When the aquarium is fully cycled, the only thing you need during the water change is the water conditioner. In your case it is Prime. Then it is safe to add your fish. Make sure you give them the time to adapt to the new water before put them in. Good luck!
Hope all is well? Last 4 days reading consistently except for spike in nitrite yesterday. Ammonia 3-4, nitrite 0, nitrate 5, ph has dropped to 6 or less. Ammonia is never 0, for goodness sakes what is up with that? Any suggestions, things to check in pump (new Fluval 405). I am losing patience (wink).
Than you as always.
You might have added too much ammonia. More than your aquarium can handle in 24 hours. Even a fully cycled aquarium has its limit. Try not to add more than 5~6ppm every 24 hours. If you see there is still ammonia at the end of 24 hours, you should either decrease the amount of new ammonia you add to the aquarium, or skip one day of ammonia all together.
As you have seen your PH dropping, you should do a partial water change to restore the water buffer. The good bacteria do not do well in acidic water when the PH is too low.
Hope all is well? Here are new updates. Nitrite, ammonia 0 every time I check. Nitrates are now off the charts at 160 deep red. Ph is back to 7.2-7.4. Did 50% water change yesterday and these are the same readings 3 days in row. Still adding small amounts of ammonia. Am I doomed?
Fish less in Phoenix.
In your case, your fishless cycling is done. The nitrate is supposed to be there as the final product of aquarium nitrogen cycle, and it should be 100% safe for fish as long as you keep it under 40ppm.
The only thing you need to do now is to lower the nitrate before adding the fish. It might require you to do much larger percentage water change than mere 50%. Try 70% water change a few times in a row on the same day, and it should do it.
Congradulation on completing your first fishless cycling.
Going to be changing water starting with 1 a day until weekend. Since I am using prime with new water may I fill with hose for these big Home Depot buckets I use are heavy and messy.
Is it ok?
You should add fish as soon as possible since you no longer add a source of ammonia to feed the good bacteria. They will starve and decrease in number quickly within days. So you need to just do several large partial water changes in a row right now and get your fish soon after, or you will lose your cycled bacteria colony. Once you have added the fish, they will produce ammonia to feed the bacteria. Or rather, the bacteria will be doing their job to keep the ammonia produced by your fish at 0ppm which is why you had to cycle the aquarium before getting the fish.
Make sure your filter media stays wet the whole time during water changes. Most of the good bacteria are in the filter media, and they must stay wet to be alive.
If you meant to use a hose to fill the aquarium, you must add Prime before add the new water. The chlorine in the tap water can kill the good bacteria and you do not want it to happen.
Hope you & all others are well.
Wanted to send an update and ask a couple of questions.
I now have two Orandas. One is a copper chocolate one with big pretty head and the other is a Calico ingot Oranda. My chocolate boy has been with me a month, eats well etc. the Ingot is not eating well. He grew up in tanks with no gravel and one day he had some stuck that he poofed out later. Feeding new life spectrum food. Just ordered some floating hoping would help but he ate little of the brine shrimp I tried yesterday. I also noticed that him and my chocolate baby have a little shedding on their noggins. The tank readings are good. PH is 7.6 give or take.
Second I think it would be time now to check the filters in Fluval, however since readings are good only added second fish do you recommend monthly or quarterly? I know to rinse in tank water but with what happened prior a little gun shy. I have read most of your posts but wanted some personal attention.
As long as the ammonia and nitrite readings are both at 0ppm, there is not much to worry about. Do not overfeed is more important than making sure of "eating enough". Fish do not need a lot of food to stay alive. Make sure there is no leftover in the water after feeding should be the priority.
You can add more fish one at a time every 2-3 weeks as long as the tank is not overstocked. Did you ask how to wash the filter? Just gently wash the filter media in a bucket of tank water or treated water should do the trick. Squeeze too hard might result in losing a lot of good bacteria.
Hope all is well? I have been doing very well have two happy Orandas. I lost one to floaty disease shortly after having but have been good since. Currently ALL readings are where they should be but I seem to be having a bacterial bloom which is causing stress to the fish. I have been doing weekly water changes and did rinse filter media lightly in tank water to remove debris. The bloom started before that. I have put in more bubblers for I want them to get plenty of oxygen however they are going to the top, being hyper then lethargic. I have done some reading and thought would let run its course but is going on two weeks. I ordered some products from dr Tim today for one stated helps get rid of bad bacteria leaving good. Any other suggestions. These guys are struggling. Had put one in bucket with bubbler and treated water and he did well? Should I remove both for a couple of days but then no ammonia to keep tank working. I never have ammonia if so very low gone within hours. Nitrite at 0 blue, nitrates 40 or below usually 20. What the heck? Can't lose these two they are my champs!
Ok update & need response. Now tank is clean, no fish in for almost 30 days. Ammonia is 4+, Nitrites at 0, nitrate 2-4ppm. Doing water changes, filtration clean, using one and only & nothing has changed. What up? Also see another post from someone needing help. You ok?
Sorry I was busy getting rid of all the spam every day. I missed your last question.
Please correct me if I am reading your post wrong.
If you have no fish now, and you are doing a fishless cycling again, it will take a while for anything to change. When I did a fishless cycling for the first time with no heavy seeding of bacteria, it took more than 3 weeks for any reading to start changing. Even with heavy seeding, it should take at least a day or so to see ammonia dropping.
Please make sure to test it again to get accurate readings.