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cinnamonbear 01-23-2013 10:33 PM

Cycling Nano -Some help
Hello, I was told to come join this forum because there is good advice given here. I have a 1.5 gallon nano I'm attempting to set up, it will eventually just be for a couple of shrimps and maybe mystery snail. The tank gets natural sunlight from my window and 2 hr of 40W desk light at night. Right now I'm in the cycling stage.

In the tank I have guppy grass, hornwort, duckweed, loads of water lettuce and a floating plant with round leaves (not sure what it is) I got from a established tank. Its pretty packed since I read shrimp love plants.

I am using pure ammonia and dosed the tank to around 3ppm.

However, it appears the plants are just sucking up the ammonia. Within a day, my ammonia read 1ppm and than within other it became 0.25ppm. However, I have no nitrite or nitrate output. So I re-dosed it to 5ppm yesterday and today its 3ppm, but again, no nitrite or nitrate at all...

I'm not sure if the tank is partially cycled and the bacteria is actually converting to nitrate and the plants just been adsorbing it completely or if the plants are actually absorbing the ammonia and the tank is not cycled.

Some help with this? Should I keep adding ammonia and hope for some signs of nitrite/nitrate? Should I remove the plants and try to cycle without them? :confused:

I will say that my duckweed seems to double in numbers everyday....

Thanks for any advice. :biggrin:

tekkguy 01-24-2013 01:50 AM

If you have that many plants, and your bioload is that small, you probably don't need to cycle at all. It sounds like the plants can handle it, and the bacteria will show up eventually.

I would do a water change to drop the ammonia back to 0, stop dosing, and stock it!

MABJ 01-24-2013 02:24 AM

Nope.. Nope.. Nope.. Every tank needs a cycle to be healthy.

You should eventually see nitrates. I see them in my 3gal with tons of moss and floaters.

All in all, you need to keep working so that your dose of ammonia is gone in 24 hours.

tekkguy 01-24-2013 02:30 AM

I don't know, I'm a believer in the silent cycle if the tank is heavily planted.

Based on the plant list, the really low bio load, and the tank size, I don't think a silent cycle is immediately out of the question.

MABJ 01-24-2013 02:34 AM

Do you know how big mystery snails get and how much they poop?

I am a believer in adding ramshorn snails, cycling, testing then planting and waiting before adding shrimp.

It is tried and true. Won't fail anybody.

plantednano 01-24-2013 03:26 AM

id keep cycling it. as a fellow newby to the aquarium world (specifically planted) i cycled my 2.5g for a month. Only really bc I way over dosed ammonia on accident the first time i added it and it leached into the substate and took this long to fully disapate. However now that i stocked it with fish and shrimp all of my levels stay at zero, even nitrates after a week without a water change (need more fish! lol)

But the cycling time gave my plants time to root, some parts died off and grew back even stronger and greener.

IMO its worth the wait for the piece of mind, plus it makes you that much happier to finally have things moving around in the tank once you do actually stock it.

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