I think I may have OD'ed my tank with ammonia doing a fishless cycle... eck!

  • Get the NEW AquariaCentral iOS app --> http://itunes.apple.com/app/id1227181058 // Android version will be out soon!

JamesBenjamin

Hopeless Romantic
Nov 7, 2002
114
0
0
44
NoVA
www.thejoyofliving.net
I put 5ml of household ammonia, thinking it would be a start, since household ammonia is pretty watered down from what i've heard, but its been in there about 24 hours and is still reading at the max my test can test for!?! (8ppm?)

should I dump the water and start fresh? or just wait a few days and see if the bacteria catches up?

Thanks!
 

slipknottin

the original legend
Jan 13, 2002
2,722
0
36
37
CT
Real Name
Connor
the bacteria will catch up.

you could do a water change, but theres no need to start over from scratch.
 

perrito_blanco

Cichlidophile
Sep 9, 2002
31
0
0
NJ, USA
How big is your tank? 5 ML isn't much. 24 hrs. isn't much either.
Did you seed your filter with some material from an established tank? If you didn't, it'll take a while for the bacteria to colonize. A few weeks really.

And be really sure you are using plain ammonia. The article Rosshaven linked to is great. Worked for me!
 

famman

AC Members
Aug 16, 2002
444
0
0
Los Angeles, CA
I would water change until you get ammo at 5ppm.
good luck
:)
 

Water Witch

Registered Member
Nov 28, 2002
3
0
0
Visit site
No need to dillute it. It's just extra food for the developing bacteria. In my experience, the extra large doses just end up giving you a larger bacteria bed and usually faster than the normal smaller doses. Make sure you spike the tank with appropriate starter cultures of bacteria so you speed the process up even more. A large water change bordering on 100% at the end of the cycle will remove the excessive nitrate levels that will result without harming the bacteria cultures assuming you match the temperature and other parameters of the replacement water to that of what was removed.

Instead of watching for the ammonia levels to drop, keep an eye out for the nitrite and nitrate levels to spike. If you're spiked high enough to go off your test kit, small drops in the ammonia level wouldn't show themselves but would be apparent in the tests for the nitrite and nitrate.

I've even started off tanks after the nitrate spiked high while ammonia and nitrite were still testible. A 100% water change removes the remaining ammonia and nitrite and since the nitrate had spiked so high there was sufficient bacteria development to allow the wastes from the start up school of fish to be processed without accumulation to testible ranges.

Good luck. There's more than one way to skin a catfish.
 
zoomed.com
hikariusa.com
aqaimports.com
Store