Is my tank ready - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 06:21 AM Thread Starter
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Is my tank ready

Been cycling my tank for a couple weeks now and started cycling using water and sponge filter from my established tank. Just to help out, I used a quick start solution. I have plans to have this tank strictly for shrimp. Is my tank ready?

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 10:19 AM
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I am assuming that the 3 test tubes are your ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates in that order . But your answer is NO . Ammonia and nitrates both should be YELLOW. Those store bought bacteria sometimes work and sometimes doesn’t work . Give it time .


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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 11:38 AM
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How is nitrate going to be yellow if OP has been cycling? The cycle goes from ammonia, to nitrite, to nitrate. Once it goes nitrate there is no exit to reduce nitrate without a water change (no denitrifying bacteria, especially in a new tank).

To me it looks like it is time for a water change and then see how quickly the tank processes ammonia and then have a stocking plan.

OP- how have you added ammonia to the tank to keep the process going and bacteria fed?
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Grobbins48 View Post
How is nitrate going to be yellow if OP has been cycling? The cycle goes from ammonia, to nitrite, to nitrate. Once it goes nitrate there is no exit to reduce nitrate without a water change (no denitrifying bacteria, especially in a new tank).

To me it looks like it is time for a water change and then see how quickly the tank processes ammonia and then have a stocking plan.

OP- how have you added ammonia to the tank to keep the process going and bacteria fed?
I have been putting fish flakes but not ammonia ammonia

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 03:00 PM
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I have been putting fish flakes but not ammonia ammonia

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Looks to me like you ate ready to add the shrimp. I would keep an eye on paramaters daily, and perform more frequent water changes for the first few weeks.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Looks to me like you ate ready to add the shrimp. I would keep an eye on paramaters daily, and perform more frequent water changes for the first few weeks.
For a 5 gallon tank, how much should I change? A gallon or 2? And thanks for your help!

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-11-2019, 03:23 AM
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Originally Posted by navarro1950 View Post
I am assuming that the 3 test tubes are your ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates in that order . But your answer is NO . Ammonia and nitrates both should be YELLOW. Those store bought bacteria sometimes work and sometimes doesn’t work . Give it time .


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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grobbins48 View Post
How is nitrate going to be yellow if OP has been cycling? The cycle goes from ammonia, to nitrite, to nitrate. Once it goes nitrate there is no exit to reduce nitrate without a water change (no denitrifying bacteria, especially in a new tank).

To me it looks like it is time for a water change and then see how quickly the tank processes ammonia and then have a stocking plan.

OP- how have you added ammonia to the tank to keep the process going and bacteria fed?

I'm fairly certain navarro meant to say that ammonia and nitrite need to be zero, which is definitely true. If nitrate was zero, the tank is definitely not cycled.

I don't know what color your test would show for zero, but make sure that nitrite is zero, especially with shrimp. Shrimp are very sensitive to nitrite. I've seen cycles stall on the nitrite portion, even though ammonia is being converted fine.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-11-2019, 04:01 AM Thread Starter
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I'm fairly certain navarro meant to say that ammonia and nitrite need to be zero, which is definitely true. If nitrate was zero, the tank is definitely not cycled.



I don't know what color your test would show for zero, but make sure that nitrite is zero, especially with shrimp. Shrimp are very sensitive to nitrite. I've seen cycles stall on the nitrite portion, even though ammonia is being converted fine.
both ammonia and nitrite are showng zero and nitrate is between 20 and 40

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-11-2019, 05:37 AM
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both ammonia and nitrite are showng zero and nitrate is between 20 and 40

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@benosa562 Those colors are almost exactly what I show on my own tank that has been established for quite a while now (my nitrates are lower. kind of a golden orange). I would estimate that your nitrates are closer to 40 than 20. Nitrates are kind of hard to read with the API test though. You should be good to go. Be aware that you will probably get a spike in Ammonia and Nitrite when you increase bio-load. Just to be safe, do a daily 2 gallon water change with conditioned water for the first week. This will keep things under control while your system catches up. After a week go with 3 changes over the next week. Test daily to monitor progress. After the second week you should be able to go with weekly water changes. If you are using a syphon to change, I would recommend you have your thumb ready to block the output just in case you suck up a shrimp. If you hold your thumb on the output you can gently shake the syphon to allow the shrimp to drop out of the syphon. I sucked up a tetra once and was able to stop flow using this method to allow it to escape before it reached the strainer. I imagine this could be a real problem with tiny shrimp.

Last edited by AguaScape; 02-11-2019 at 06:06 AM. Reason: edit
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-11-2019, 06:52 AM Thread Starter
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@benosa562 Those colors are almost exactly what I show on my own tank that has been established for quite a while now (my nitrates are lower. kind of a golden orange). I would estimate that your nitrates are closer to 40 than 20. Nitrates are kind of hard to read with the API test though. You should be good to go. Be aware that you will probably get a spike in Ammonia and Nitrite when you increase bio-load. Just to be safe, do a daily 2 gallon water change with conditioned water for the first week. This will keep things under control while your system catches up. After a week go with 3 changes over the next week. Test daily to monitor progress. After the second week you should be able to go with weekly water changes. If you are using a syphon to change, I would recommend you have your thumb ready to block the output just in case you suck up a shrimp. If you hold your thumb on the output you can gently shake the syphon to allow the shrimp to drop out of the syphon. I sucked up a tetra once and was able to stop flow using this method to allow it to escape before it reached the strainer. I imagine this could be a real problem with tiny shrimp.
Thank you for all the advice!!! I will definetly follow your advice on water changes when i get my shrimp put in. I know you said to watch the ammonia and nitrite spike, but do you think using a HOB instead of a sponge filter help curb the spike? Also, i havent had a heater in at all and i was wondering if I should get 1 put in for shrimp? The tank is on my window bay and it does get a little cold at night. I dont have a thermometer to check the exact temp, but do i need to maintain a set temperature all day and night? Or would the warmth during the day and afternoon and the cold at night emulate the natural surroundings of the shrimp?

Good tip on the siphoning the tank during water changes!! I usually use smaill air tubing to do my water changes so it will be easy for me plug it in case a castaway gets sucked up!

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