Planted Tank Guru
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
New tank quick cycle/weird water test results
So I setup a little 2.5gal with an Aquaclear 20mini on it for shrimp. I filled the biobag with media from my established filter and crumbed a bunch of fish food, algae wafers, etc into the water to get some ammonia going.
Tested the first day, had an ammonia reading, figured the food was starting to break down.
Tested today, have 0.5 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 5 nitrate. How do I still have ammonia but no nitrite and nitrates already? I can understand if it was 0,0,5, then the cycle was complete, but still having ammonia, unless its the residual food still in the water thats still breaking down? The bio media came from a long established filter for about 3 months in which I quick started with media from a filter that is 9 months running, so it should have been loaded, especially since initially starting off in my turtle tank and they are bio-monsters.
I've never done a cycle like this before with fish food, either I've used established media and substrate and just threw fish in, checked params daily and did small water changes and let them ride out the cycle, dosing with prime to neutrilized the ammonia if needed, so I don't know how much food to add, to keep adding or where my filter is now? pH is 6.6. I did fill it with treated water with prime and I know that for the first 24hrs or so, prime treated water can give a false positive on Ammonia readings because of the ammonium it creates by breaking down chloramine, but its been 3 days now, shouldn't be getting any false positives.
This tank is going to be for higher quality shrimp, so I don't want to throw anything in yet but I know at some point, I do need a bio-source in there to keep feeding the filter.
This just popped into my head, I do have half a moss ball and a bit of xmas moss and java moss in the tank, could it be eating the nitrites right now over the nitrates or ammonia?
20g platy, , 2 x 10g shrimp, 3 x 20g shrimp, 7.5g shrimp and 1 great dane/mastiff puppy.
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