cycling my new tank ? What is to be expected ?


New member
is it good to run a skimmer while cycling the tank ? I've been givin differant infomation some say yes others no. which is it ? i have it running right now and it doesn't seem to be taking much out of the water and when it does it is just dark brown water not that foam that it should be ?

its a 45 gallon and i got about a 4 inch live sand bed and 20lbs live rock and 20lbs base rock.
it has all been up and running for about a week now and the Ammonia is off the chart 0.8 or higher
nitrate is at 10 or lower and nitrite is 2.0 or lower Alk 3
Is this all normal for right now and what can i expect to see happen

Anyone have a good site with information about Cycling and again is the skimmer a good idea for right now ?
and one more thing, should the lights be on ?


New member
Its deff ok to run your skimmer
I would do a water change to get that ammonia lower, gotta keep it as low as possible.
I would run my lighting but maybe start off at only a few hours a day and gradually increase it will keep the algae bloom somewhat under control until you can get a cleanup crew in there

Read through this in your free time


Registered Member
No right answer on the skimmer ... a skimmer removes organic material which helps feed the cycle ... to some that's bad for the cycle .. the skimmer also helps remove phosphates which can become a long term problem for the tank.

It appears that your going to do a DSB ... some pro's and con's on that and most of the pro's are based on having a biological active sand bed ... that's something to research and try to promote.


New member
Your skimmer pulls out foam, a bit by bit, when it settles in the collection cup, it becomes a liquid (sounds like you're skimming wet). Collected brown liquid is all the gunk that's been pulled out of the water (proteins and other junk). IMO, it is ok to run skimmer during cycle, especially if cycle is induced during curing LR.

All you need to worry about during cycle is to keep your temperature and salinity stable. Alk, pH, and other parameters will be out of wack because curing/cycling is an acidic process.

IMO, performing water changes ~25% every few days will help export ammonia and nitrites when their levels are high. This will help existing life to survive.