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So...really dumb question.

769 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  fishscale
In mid-August, I went on vacation and had to move out of my old house. I decided to attempt to preserve some of the bacteria colonies I had in my old tank, and took the gravel and water and kept it in 2 5-gallon buckets. I didn't know if this would actually work, but figured it was worth a shot. Then I threw in a bunch of fish food in hopes that it would produce enough NH4 for the bacteria to feed on. Fastforward to last night...

I completely forgot I had these two buckets until I went to the basement storage locker. I saw them...and said oh crap. I opened one up, and the smell could only be described as death. It had a strong sulfur smell, along with decay and pond muck. I also noticed there were a couple of dead snails floating at the top (probably mixed in the substrate). So, my question is, is there any reason whatsoever to keep this? Any bacteria to help start a filter? Or should I just dump it?
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Well, without a powerhead, all the bacteria that are now living are most likely anaerobic bacteria...hence the smell of death.

Dump it all.
Just dump it and forget about it. You could get a lot of liquid products available at your LFS for bacteria colonization, yet, it's so simple and it just a matter of time to achieve this.

What I am using now is green bacter in maintaing propagation of bacteria inside my canister filter & aquarium.
Its good for a payback operation....maybe someones car you dont

Let me get my list.
hahaha, paybacks a b*tch. We used to take tuna and shove it down the slots where the window goes up and down in the summer to people we didnt like that left their cars window down. You can't exactly just scoop it out either, gotta get the door taken apart, hahaha. Oh, to be young again.
Yep, dump it all. There are tons and tons of products that say they will jump start bacteria in a new tank but as you've already experienced, with no aeration, they can't possibly have any live bacteria in them. All these so called miracle products are bunk! I've tried them all. They are all just a waste of money. All except...................... Marineland's new product, BioSpira. This stuff is absolutely the bomb and works as advertised. In my planted tank, there have been several spur of the moment changes to hardware. A few resulted in a mini cycle and one, a full blown Ammonia spike. During this episode, my Ammonia was at 4ppm and NitrIte was 0 at 5:30PM on a Saturday evening in June when I introduced the BioSpira. I re-tested the water the next morning around 9:30ish. Ammonia 0, Nitrate 0, Nitrate 15ppm. My tank literally cycled itself in 15 hours time. Never to have any Ammonia or NitrIte return. This stuff is the real deal. But a word of caution, only buy it from a reputable dealer cuz if refrigeration isn't maintained throughout, it's bunk too!

So, if you decide to set up your tank again, you certainly can do whatever you want but my advice, unsolicited of course, would be to either cycle it the old fashioned way, do a fishless cycle w/ pure Ammonia, or buy this stuff. It's a little pricey. I paid about $25.00 but it was worth every penny.

Damn I wish I was on MarineLand's payroll!!!!!
DiamondSmile live
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definitely don't use media from a lfs. that's asking for disaster.
How much substrate is it? I would dump all of the water and wash the hell out of the substrate if its worth keeping. :biggrin:
Don't worry about the substrate, it was regular gravel from my betta tank. The betta is now happily at my girlfriend's mother's in a vase (really a tank) set up the correct way.

However, I am saving this...because I have quite the list.
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