Instant cycling - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 02:25 AM Thread Starter
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Instant cycling

I thought I remembered reading somewhere that you could almost instant cycle a smaller tank but I don't remember where I read it. I found a dwarf cichlid at the LFS that I want, but do not really have a tank to put him in yet. I am going to be buying and setting up a 40 breeder that he will go in. My question is, I have a 16 gallon tank sitting empty. Could I use water/substrate from my 25 gallon planted tank to almost instanltly cycle the tank, or will it still take weeks to cycle. I am not sure how much of the beneficial bacteria is in the water, and how much is in the filter and substrate. Any help would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 02:27 AM
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There is a small amount to no bacteria in the water column. There is bacteria in the substrate, but it usually is only in the top 1/2"-1" of substrate.

In order to do an "instant" cycle, you would have to have a filter that has already been running, and the used substrate. And even with that, you will likely go through a mini cycle still.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 06:07 PM
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Even with a mini cycle, you are still guaranteed a cycle, and guaranteed bacteria right away that continue to grow. To me, this is "almost instantly cycling," but I would still be careful about putting fish in there for a while.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 09:51 PM
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i think onedersave makes a product that does that.

I believe i heard on a episode of pet fish talk. that they have a product you can pour into your fish tank and add fish immediately

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 10:11 PM
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The way I attempted a "instant cycling" is to use filter, substrate, new plants, and water from my other cycled 80 gallon to new 75 gallon tank. It is not going to be fully cycled, but a great start to introduce the beneficial bacteria to new tank. What helps if the older and new filter is running at the same time. Introduced about 30 inhabitants the following day for the water to be cleared of debris. No loss and did fine. In your case with the 16 gallon. It shall be a much smoother transition. Others I know done it this way too and was successful. Hope this testimonial helps. I am running a community freshwater set up now and enjoy every moment of it.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 11:22 PM
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Take half of the filter media from the cycled tank and stick it in the new filter and fill the rest with new stuff. Or even get someone with a sponge filter and ask them to squeeze it onto your new media. I have done this multiple times for new shrimp tank with no ammonia cycle.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 11:33 PM
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Just make sure to do lots of water cahanges and your fish will be fine.

It's not recomended to add a fish to an uncycled tank. But a single fish in a 40 gal tank with water changes every day will be just fine.

Doing the water changes will increase the time that your tank takes to cycle, but will keep him safe in the mean time.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-16-2011, 12:04 AM
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Instead of moving substrate over to the new tank, when you're ready to set up the new tank, do a really thorough vacuuming on your established tank and collect as much mulm (debris) as possible. Pour off most of the excess water, leaving the mulm in about an inch or so of water in the bucket.

Then pour the mulm in the new tank and spread it around the bottom. Put the substrate in on top of it and, fill up the tank, and slowly start stocking.

Between that and moving over some established filter media, if you do experience any ammonia or nitrite spikes, they should be minimal and easy to deal with using Prime water conditioner and small daily water changes.

I always set up new tanks like this and rarely ever have spikes.





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