Please help! New tank and weird test results. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-13-2013, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Please help! New tank and weird test results.

Hi fish tank people,

Just had a few questions about my tank. If anyone needs any more information to be able to answer my questions please ask!

I setup this tank on 11/16, and immediately planted enough to fall in to the 'moderately planted' category. Tank is a 29g, 30x18x12. The first plants were Amazon Sword, Java Fern, Anubias Nano, Crypts. After about a week my LFS recommended I add a few small fish to get the cycle going. I started with 4 Gold Pristella Tetra because the owner of the store said they were hearty. I started out extremely diligently with testing and water changes.

Here are the results of testing with the API master kit (and yes, I have shaken well)

11/18 pH 7.6 Ammonia .25 ppm, Nitrites .25 ppm, Nitrates 5ppm
11/19 30% WC
11/20 pH 7.4, Ammonia 0, Nitrite: .25 Nitrate: 0-2ppm
11/21 30% WC
11/25-12/4 pH 7.5, Ammonia .25, Nitrite .25, Nitrate 0 (no major spikes, levels never went above .25 so I did not do a water change).
12/5-Present: pH 7.6, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate 0

Every time I test the levels are consistently 0. A few days ago I added 4 Longfin Leopard Danios. They were pretty good, except they chased the tetras around all over the place. I tested the water each day and levels were all still 0. Today I returned the danios and only have the tetra. All of the fish look good and arn't acting unusual at all. They look great actually. I am just kind of at a loss of whats going on... surely the tank hasn't cycled yet? Could it be the plants keeping the levels in check?


Lights on

Lights off

Also, why does my water have an extremely slight greenish tint? I hardly notice it until the lights are off and then it is visible. Is this from the driftwood or something else?

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

Last edited by Noah091; 12-14-2013 at 03:40 AM. Reason: added two pictures
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-13-2013, 11:37 PM
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Looks like your biological filtration is not established yet.. so yeah, you're still in the cycling process. You have to keep do water changes to get the ammonia and nitrites nice and low until you only see nitrate present which Im sure you already know what to do by now.. you done your research, right.Oh yeah, luckily your fish are quite hardy! Otherwise they would be burned by their own waste. The brownish tint in your water is caused by the driftwood that is in the tank; they will go away in time from doing water changes. So yeah, in the meantime just keep at it with water changes when ammonia and nitrite is very high to remove them and driftwood tannins.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 12:03 AM
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I agree with neon, you need to assume the tank is not established.
What you can do to help speed up the process, is add in another hardy fish that you'll keep inthe long run. Something like an albino bristlenose pleco would do wonders. They'll not eat the plants, they'll help clean the tank, and early on they'll poop so much they'll jump start your cycle. these plecos are easy to care for, and the only thing I could see you would need to add for them is to create a small cave for them to hide every now and then.

Things to remember with this is to keep an eye on it by testing daily, or just go ahead and do 25% water changes every day without testing (just to save on the test kit).
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 12:23 AM
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This may seem like a bummer but what I see is not a cycled tank yet. It is a very slow, slow process. You may have read about it but doing it is much slower! Some basic in non-tech language? First group of bacteria don't get started growing until they have ammonia. The ammonia can be added or fish can be used. Many prefer fishless as it is pretty hard on fish. But when you added the fish and food, some winds up as waste and rotting. In maybe couple weeks, more or less, this group is converting ammonia it finds to nitrite and a second group begins to grow. When the second group gets going it can convert nitrite to nitrate. What you may see in the readings is maybe a tiny bit of wishful hoping and a little bit of color tricks on your eyes?? Reading those colors is not a really precise thing for me. The colors can be off by just reading them under different lights. Bottom line is it has not happens and likely will be quite a while yet. Both ammonia and nitrite are really hard on fish so you have to keep it down by changing water often, but then if you change too much water so that there is NO ammonia, the bacteria don't start. Fish in cycle is real tedious to follow through on. Sorry, but it will work, given time.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 01:01 AM
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I cycled my tank in 8 days with API quick start

125g,75g,50g,40g,27g,10g
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 02:28 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys.. This is what I thought too. I just thought it was weird that I was picking up ammonia, nitrites and nitrates initially for the first few weeks and now I am getting nothing pretty consistently.

Today we picked up some rasboras to hopefully get the cycle going a little faster.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 02:35 AM
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One thing to add, a 29G tank dimensions are 30x12x18 (LxWxH). Don't want you to be disappointed if you ever go to buy a light and the 24" doesn't fit!
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 03:00 AM
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I see tannins in the water from your drift wood, that may be what you are seeing in the water.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-14-2013, 03:40 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edstewart5 View Post
One thing to add, a 29G tank dimensions are 30x12x18 (LxWxH). Don't want you to be disappointed if you ever go to buy a light and the 24" doesn't fit!

ah thank you! Fixed that. I bought a 30" finnex planted+ a few days ago
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-15-2013, 12:20 AM Thread Starter
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Added a few more hearty fish last night. Woke up this morning and tested Water.

pH 7.6
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 5ppm

?????
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-15-2013, 01:59 AM
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Woo hoo! Looks like your tank's cycle has completed! Congrats. Now just keep the tank as is a little longer for the cycle to mature nicely for another few weeks, also be sure to not overfeed; then you can add more fish.

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