Cycling question

Shan85

New member
Hello reefers :) my 280 liter tank (approx 74G) has been cycling for 22 days now. I put in a cocktail shrimp in the sump to kick start the cycle. Along with 35kg cured LR.

Ammonia is zero .. Nitrites were zero but have gone up to 0.1 mg/l .. Nitrates came down to 0.2 mg/l but yesterday increased slightly to 0.5mg/l

Can someone plz tell me what's going on? And what should I do? I removed the cocktail shrimp on the 20th day of cycle.
 

Xavibear

Crazy Prophet
Did the ammonia ever spike? I would try ghost feeding to help the cycle along. Sounds like things are going ok for you now. Just a little more waiting & watching before you can start adding things.
 

Shan85

New member
There was no ammonia spike.. Went upto 0.5 mg/l in the first week then down to zero and been there since.

I had a diatom bloom in 2nd week.. I shut off the lights completely and it died off.

How do I ghost feed? How many times? should i use normal pellets? Please give details as this is my first attempt at a marine tank :)
 

iceet

New member
Patience and time are your friends. A new tank can take up to a year to become fully mature and cycled. That doesn't mean you have to wait a full year before you can add livestock, it just means that you should take things slow and move ahead carefully.

Also I think you could probably put your shrimp back in there. Although they have minimal bioload I think it will stick help cycle your tank because they carry bacteria on and in their body. Don't get too upset or worried about your nitrates your tank is still cycling.
 

iceet

New member
Your tank is still cycling and you have no livestock except for the lone shrimp. Also your nitrates are at 0.5 ppm which is relatively low, almost undetectable. Based on this info I think you probably don't have to do a water change at the moment.

I know you want your tank to cycle as quick as possible but I don't think a water change will accomplish anything right now. I say keep an eye on ammonia and nitrite and when they both hit zero you know you are on the right track.

:beer:
 

Shan85

New member
Hmm .. I'm a bit confused .. I forgot to mention that my nitrates went up to 50mg/l in the first week then steadily down to 0.5 mg/l right now.. Is my cycle complete?
 

scott3569

New member
you don't want to do a water change, let your tank cycle, it may take another 2-3 weeks. I say leave the shrimp in there or replace it with a new one..let that ammonia keep breaking down it will make more bacteria which is a good thing..even though I started getting very low numbers in ammonia I kept putting more in there..it can only be good at this point.
 

scott3569

New member
Hmm .. I'm a bit confused .. I forgot to mention that my nitrates went up to 50mg/l in the first week then steadily down to 0.5 mg/l right now.. Is my cycle complete?[/QUOTE

Don't worry about your nitrates right now, All you should be worried about is building up the bacteria with the ammonia...

heck when I started my cycle my nitrates where 0, then they went up to 5 back down to 0 then topped out at 40, never got higher than 40..but I also started my cycle with Dr. tims..I don't know if that made a difference or not, But I went through This phase of the cycle in about 2 weeks..
 

scott3569

New member
Also you do your first water change, when the bacteria in your system can process the ammonia and nitrite in a 24 hr period, when I got to this point I kept adding a little ammonia each day just to make sure..I am not sure but, I think I was headed to having a super cycle..

And just so your not confused, I say this part of the cycle, because I truly believe that all the algae phases everyone get is part of your tanks cycle also..
 

Shan85

New member
My final question is.. How do I know my tank is cycled?

From what I understand .. Ammonia turns into nitrites which then turns into nitrates. Then the good bacteria break these nitrates down and I will get a reading of zero. Ok so far?
 

Triggerfish

Active member
There was no ammonia spike.. Went upto 0.5 mg/l in the first week then down to zero and been there since.

you just mentioned the spike there. sounds like the initial cylce is completed.
which is about the 3 week point. as the bioload is increased nitrifying bacteria will also increase enough to stabalize the system. denitrification is where the nitrates will be converted to nitrogen gas (live rock, sand bed,macro algea).

in order to not initially overload the new system you need to add stock slowly over time or you will go through another nitrogen spike.
 
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