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  1. #1
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    Cycle

    We are setting up a brand new 250 gallon aquarium. We can put water in it tommorrow. I am getting driven crazy here because the guy at the pet store said to use Cycle, it is a great product, it will help the Nirogen cycle along and make the transition easier for your fish, he said he was going to give us some gunk from the tanks in the store to help get the process along too, so we could bring our fish home this weekend. GREAT YEA!!!! RIGHT?

    Well not the built the aquarium said do not use Cycle it is crap and can actually kill the bacteria you want in the aquarium gravel. He said do not bring the fish home, put the three bala sharks in there and that is it let the amonia go up up up up and then when the amonia drops add the other fish. Also do not mess with water changes, leave it alone

    Ok I have other aquariums and I have been very successful using cycle at the beginning and then every week thereafter. I do a 25% water change after 4 days, after 8 days and then every week thereafter, that gets me through the 30 day period and I water change once a month after that. This has worked very well for me, so it is what I want to do this time.

    I don't know what the right thing to do is, I don't want to lose any fish but I want my fish home, they have been paid for for two months now. HELP!!!!



  2. #2
    what? SP2's Avatar
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    This is only my opinion!! Take the gunk from the established tank(the more the better)........take a just a couple of fish. Wait a week or two, do your water changes. Wait and check your water. You know what your looking for right.??? Then just add fish slowly over time. My opinion is that cycle is snake oil....would never use it, but what the heck do I know. I dont know how many fish you have paid for for a 250 gallon tank but you are crazy if dump a ton of fish into a new tank.



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    thank you, there are 3 balas, one blue acara, one motoro stingray and one leopaldi stingray



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    Senior Member Richer's Avatar
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    You have some pretty expensive fish there (it is here anyways), personally, I wouldn't chance anything but a fishless cycle. Read this article http://www.tomgriffin.com/aquamag/cycle2.html that should get you started on doing a fishless cycle for your 250 gallon tank. Stay away from things like "cycle." I've tried it before, and it didn't do anything to speed my cycles along.

    If you want to make sure those fish don't die, leave them at the LFS for a few more weeks while you get your tank ready (via a fishless cycle).

    -Richer



  5. #5
    The Algae Grower kamla's Avatar
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    hi.. the link is not working



  6. #6
    redorkulated happychem's Avatar
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    If you don't add ammonia, you're not cycling.

    Cycling is the growing of nitrifying bacteria colonies. One strain converts ammonia (NH3/NH4) secreted from your fishes' gills to nitrite (NO2). Another converts NO2 to nitrate (NO3). If these colonies are sufficiently large then your fish will not suffer from ammonia or nitrite poisoning.

    These bacteria require 3 things: a surface to adhere to, a source of NH3 for food, a source of O2 to respire. Nitrifiers use NH3 and NO2 in the same manner as we use carbohydrates: energy. In an oxygen rich environment NH3 has more potential energy than NO2 and NO2 more than NO3. The bacteria use NH3 or NO2 and O2 to get energy, with which they carry out their life processes.

    So what can you do for them? Well, the higher the surface area, the more bacteria can colonize, so anywhere with a high surface area can potentially hold large colonies. Finally, they need constant water flow. Flowing water carries new NH3/NO2 and O2 to the colonies, in stagnant water these would have to diffuse which is much slower.

    Stress Coat, to my knowledge does nothing to grow bacteria, other than dechlorinate. I've stopped using it, personally, because other, cheaper dechlorinators work just as well (for me, no chloramines) and don't add unneeded stuff (like aloe) to my water. If you're on a well, better for you, no need to add anything.

    To sum up:
    To cycle you need a source of bacteria, a sponge from the filter of an established tank is best, NH3 and O2 (flowing water). If any of these is missing, you're not cycling. You can run your tank w/o fish for as long as you want, if you're not adding ammonia (or a source of ammonia), you're not cycling.
    The tiny purple fishes run laughing through your fingers,
    and you want to take her with you, to the hard land of the winter.
    -Cream

    My tank(s) - latest update Nov. 7, 2005 (56K warning)



  7. #7
    You should be dancin' JesseJ's Avatar
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    I would make sure the tank is fully cycled before getting any fish. Do a fishless cycle like Richer suggested. I have used Cycle in my tanks and I find that it is useful at startup but after that I don't use it. The sponge squeeze is sketchy to me. I wouldn't be comfortable taking it unless I was really really sure that I had a competent LFS giving it to me. The guy you talked to probibly just wanted you to buy stuff that day which is why he said it would work. It would be better for your fish if you got the bacteria started and were sure it was doing fine and could handle all the wastes before you got the fish into the tank.

    If I had a 250 G (mmmmm......... big tank.....) GAH where did all this drool come from?........ Anyways I couldn't wait to load it with fish but waiting would be better if you can do it.



  8. #8
    Cowbell! I need more cowbell!
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    If I knew the tank(s) to be healthy, I would much rather get some cultured gravel or filter squeezings to start a cycle. Those both have the actual bacteria responsible for oxidizing ammonia/nitrite, unlike Cycle...

    Jim



  9. #9
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    IMO the best way is to set the tank up and fill it with water. Let that run for a day or so and then get some fish to add in there and start the cycle. I've cycled plenty of tanks including a 150 gallon and have never used fishless cycling. I very rarely loose a fish I got to cycle with.



  10. #10
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    Just a couple of things to mention.

    While Cycle doesn't really work, I doubt it will kill your bacteria. If anything it just does nothing but waste your money.

    If you do a fishy cycle then I highly suggest not letting your ammonia levels get above 1ppm and nitrite levels above 0.25 ppm. Don't let them climb and then drop. That will at worst kill your fish and at best leave them weak and prone to disease and a short life.

    With expensive fish like that buy a Master test Kit and make sure the levels never climb above what I mentioned. Keep it lower if possible with water changes with a good dechlorinator.

    If you do go the fishy cycle way then make sure to add the fish slowly and as long as ammonia levels keep climbing between water changes then do not add more fish yet. And feel free to add some gravel or filter media from an established tank. Just adding water or a squeeze of gunk really won't do much though.
    My White Cloud Mountain Minnows can beat your oscar anytime. From the inside!



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