This tank was setup almost a month ago. A five gallon tank, it is filtered by an Eheim Classic 2211 canister filter. Planted. I bumped the temp up to around 78-79 a few days ago. A couple of weeks ago, I dosed the tank with Tetra SafeStart, in an attempt to give the cycling a little bump. I don't think it did much.
About 3 days ago, the ammonia and nitrites tested the lowest they have tested, thus far, at .25 ppm each. I took this as a good sign, that the bacteria were finally up to doing their job. I dosed the tank with .6 mls of ammonia to get the tank up to 4 ppm of tested ammonia. Two days later, hopeful... the ammonia has dropped to 1 ppm. I was hoping for a zero. Nitrite bumped up to a 5 ppm, which I guess is expected. Nitrates have spiked quite a bit.
No fish are in this tank (until it is cycled and ready), but there are quite a few snails that were introduced via the plants, and are now reproducing readily. I have introduced no food into the tank, just light. The snails are consuming algae, I suppose. There is plenty of snail waste sucked up when I do a water change.
I have been keeping track of my water test results. Do things seem to be normal and on track? I guess I'm getting a bit impatient, but I don't want to introduce fish livestock until the tank is capable. Any suggestions, advice... I would appreciate.