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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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About cycling

I need to check this thing, I want to do everything right:

I'm doing fishless cycle with ammonia. I have now nitritespike and no ammonia anymore. Do I add more ammonia now or when nitritespike is over? Thanks.

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 08:30 PM
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Really don't need to add any more. Nitrite will take around one week before it peaks and then drops. After that, the tank is done cycling.

You can actually plant the tank right now and didn't really need to start out w/fishless cycling to begin with. The plants suck up the ammonia and nitrites like mad.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
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But I can't add fishes yet so I need to keep bacteria alive right?

IMO plants don't use much nitrate or ammonia. I need prooves because I only have prooves that they actually don't.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 09:20 PM
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Most of us battle the nitrate uptake of plants by adding sizable amounts of NO3. In a non-planted tank NO3 just builds up and needs to be reduced by water changes. Proof enough?

Of course, plants which don't grow don't take up nitrates either. Plants that die add to the N cycle.


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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 09:29 PM
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I can show you proof after I get back from Thanksgiving break. I can post a picture of the setup then.

FYI, I setup a new 90G tank this last weekend and added 32 fish on the same day. I used Tom Barr's method for cycling a new tank.

As WP said, we add nitrates to the tank for the plants regularly.

Eric


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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 10:50 PM
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When I first setup my 100g planted tank two years ago, I added full fish load, plants, fertilizer the same day. Did not detect any cycling(ok, tiny amount for couple of days). Another proof. Fishless cycling is a waste of time in a heavily planted tank.


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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2004, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
IMO plants don't use much nitrate or ammonia
Oh, the longer you hang around here Thapsus, and the deeper into this hobby you fall, you will find that particular opinion will change!

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 06:50 AM Thread Starter
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Yes my opinion can change but I really need good proves. The tank I'm cycling is planted, thought plants don't like nitritespike that much...

Well, here my prooves or one proof about plants not using that much nitrate.

"Waterplants are 95% water, about 3% of fresh-weight is albumen, and about 1/6 of that is nitrogen (nitrate NO3 contains nitrogen and oxygen).
In 1 kg of plant there is 1,6g nitrogen, to grow 1kg plant needs 22g of nitrogen aka 100g nitrate. To keep nitrate-value same in 200l aquarium you would need to remove 2,7kg of fresh plants. That is if your nitrate-value would grow 100mg/l in one month. (J. Järvi)

Few aquarium have enough plants to remove enough to keep nitrogen away with plants. That means that using plants as filter is very difficult. "

I haven't managed to use plants as nitrate-users. I have 2 planted tanks. It is good news thought if that is possible. Potted plants with their roots in the water are totally different case thought.

But I really can change my mind, I would actually be preciated if you would try to

thapsus (horticulturalist)
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 07:05 AM Thread Starter
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By the way:

How small was that minicycle when you add all fishes in same time to planted tank? I'm adding very valuable and delicate fishes to that tank and I really don't want any of them die.

And another thing... One can't only use nitrogen as fertilizer, plant's need other nutriens same time to grow and use that nitrogen (as well as carbon sioxide and proper lighting). But Wasserbest probably just meant this, didn't you?

I must apologise if I sound quarrelsome. I don't want to but because english is not my mother language I don't know the real tones of my centences, and how they are normallu said. I'm actually having really good time Thanks.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thapsus
But I can't add fishes yet so I need to keep bacteria alive right?

IMO plants don't use much nitrate or ammonia. I need prooves because I only have prooves that they actually don't.
Hmmmm...... I hate to say it but you really need to stop thinking theoretically and start observing what goes on in the real world. I have a 4 watt per gallon CO2 injected 55 gallon tank and it goes though about 8 grams minimum of potassium nitrate each week. Along with the ammonia generated by the fish.

While I have never weighed the trimmings from my 55 gallon tank it amounts to around a 5 gallon bucket worth every month or so.

And the problem with your math is that if you are off even by a few percent in the amount of water in the plant your figures get blown out of the water so to speak.


I have also started several planted tanks using the "silent cycle" method (see my Guide if you are not clear on this method) and never seen an ammonia trace or a nitrite spike. And I have had full fish loads in the tank within 7-10 days.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 03:08 PM Thread Starter
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Ok rex. Where have you gathered your information? From books, internet, trying by yourself, from scientists?

Aren't you just doing how I said you would need to....Prune plants. So actually it is not difficult to use plants as filter. This is just the proof I want to hear. But I also like to hear what kind of plants do you have in your aquarium.

thapsus
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
I must apologise if I sound quarrelsome. I don't want to but because english is not my mother language I don't know the real tones of my centences, and how they are normallu said. I'm actually having really good time
We understand that Thapsus! No need to worry!

You keep refer to using plants as filters. I don't think any of us do that here.

Plants do absorb NO3! Nitrogen is utilized by both terrestrial and aquatic plants. Nitrogen is a macro nutrient, as is Potassium and Phosphorous. Aquatic and terrestrial plants utilize all of these nutrients.

What proof do we have that our aquatic plants utilize NO3? The fact that we actually add NO3 to our aquariums to insure good plant growth. Most of us can dose an aquarium with NO3 to 10 ppm at the beginning of the week, and test our water for NO3 at the end of the week and find the NO3 levels have dropped to zero.

That's proof enough for me!

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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-25-2004, 04:17 PM
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Gawsh. Wish I had all the scientific eloquence needed to say this but I don't.

All I have is personal experience. It took a mighty big hammer to finally pound this into my head: NO AMMONIA NEEDED TO CYCLE A PLANTED TANK.
This was a brand new concept to me and it sounded way too good to be true.
Right off the bat, (10/21/04) I put 2tsp. ammonia in my brand new 75G planted tank (2tsp. was the amount needed to bring ammonia to a reading of 5).
It took a couple days for plants to remove ammonia, but soon they did.

After that, every 12 hours ammonia was back down to zero, and every 12 hours I chugged 2tsp. back in. Tank went thru nitrite spike. Ammonia kept dropping to zero. And I kept adding back that ammonia.
...However, by day 16 of my persistantly dumping ammonia back into this poor tank, I started to notice that my ammonia was not popping back to zero as efficiently as before. Nitrite was still at zero, but only for awhile. and I was getting Nitrates. I did a huge water change and of course dumped in more ammonia. I was sure the good bacteria would starve and die if I did not feed ammonia.

Wish I would have left well enough alone at that point.

At that point, it seems like tank just stopped using ammonia up very efficiently at all. For the next 4 or 5 days I was getting .25 ammonia, nitrites came back, and nitrates around 80 - every day. Obviously I am quite inexperienced. Maybe this is all normal behavior, but after getting used to seeing zero ammonia and nitrites, I was terribly disappointed to see those new higher readings every day. I decided I was doing harm by adding ammonia.

I did another water change and stopped adding ammonia.
That was exactly 2 weeks ago, today.
As of today, ammonia and nitrites have stayed at zero. Nitrates are 5.0-10. My last water change was 2 days ago.

Tank is thriving. And I am happy.
I will never, EVER use ammonia to cycle a planted tank again. Never.

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-26-2004, 03:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thapsus
Ok rex. Where have you gathered your information? From books, internet, trying by yourself, from scientists?

Aren't you just doing how I said you would need to....Prune plants. So actually it is not difficult to use plants as filter. This is just the proof I want to hear. But I also like to hear what kind of plants do you have in your aquarium.

thapsus
Well I have started several tanks using the "silent cycle" as I show in my Guide. I have been a member of most every large Planted Aquarium forum on the Internet. I remember most everything I read, I subscribe to the Aquatic Plants Digest, I follow what Tom Barr says, and he is one of the most knowledgeable people I have seen when it comes to growing plants in an aquarium.

Plants are not a filter. They remove nitrates and ammonia though. You still need to provide water movement and mechanical filtration. But plants provide most the of biological filtration in a well maintained aquarium.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-26-2004, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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This silence cycling sounds quite good. I must try it next time I'm cycling to see myself. I need to add "big amount" of fishes right away when tank is cycled. How would silence cycled tank react to this?

How much does aquatic plants cost in there, where ever you live, by the way?

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