Paddy's first marine tank

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Paddone

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Reply #30

I hope everyone had a good weekend!
I would be most grateful for a bit of guidence...

My water levels 4 days into my cycle are as follows:

Ammonia: 2ppm
Nitrite: 0.5ppm
Nitrate: 25ppm

I have been dosing biomature and now DrTims One and Only, before yesterday it was Waterlife bacterlife. I also added live rock rubble from LFS yesterday.

Today is my first Nitrate test so I have nothing to compare it to.

I'm guessing a high ammonia and nitrate with a low nitrite is not ideal. Is it because the bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrite are taking longer to establish than the nitrite to nitrate bacteria? I'm only 4 days into the cycle so might be worrying over nothing!?

HK_Fuey

  • Graeme
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Reply #31

I wouldn't worry just yet.  Keep tracking levels and we'll see how it progresses.

Paddone

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Reply #32

I have increased the glass height on my second sump chamber with laminated glass bonded to a very thin strip of neoprene around three edges. I created a seal and gives it a very firm hold but means I can take it out or change it if it doesn't work out.

Cycle is getting very close to ammonia spike.

HK_Fuey

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Reply #33

What a great idea.  Did you make that yourself?

Paddone

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Reply #34

Yes, I went to a glass cutter and got a piece of glass a couple of mm too small for the tank depth/width and then glued thin strips of neoprene to the edges. They are compressible so squeeze down and create a seal.

I think I am starting to get some diatoms growing on my dry rock, it has a v.thin coating of light brown on some surfaces. I am only 1 week into the cycle. Ammonia is over 2ppm and nitrites are only just visible on test sample. I looked around and it said diatoms should only arrive at the end of the cycle, I may have too much phosphate leaching from the rock. Should I get a phosphate test kit?

HK_Fuey

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Reply #35

You'll need one eventually, so yes, might be worth getting.  I wouldn't be concerned about diatoms just yet. They tend to burn themselves out in time.  Lots of things will grow and die back as different food sources mean different things can thrive.  Eventually it will all find a balance.

Diatoms tend to feed on silicate, so could be new sand is the source.

Water changes are fine during the cycle, as long as you continue to feed the tank.  The bacteria are on the rock and sand, not in the water column.  So, you could safely do a water change (to bring down phosphate and silicates) and not mess us the cycle.

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Paddone

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Reply #36

Thanks for the reassurance! my cycle looks like it is moving on now.


Ammonia 1.5ppm
Nitrite: 0.5-1ppm
Nitrate: not tested today


I keep topping up the ammonia and every day it comes down a bit more.  Nitrite has doubled in the last couple of days, I assume it is the beginning of my nitrite spike.


Should i keep the ammonia up at this stage or let it drop to 0 before I dose again?

Asco1104

  • Tim
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Reply #37

I would cut back on dosing ammonia for a few days and see what Happens, the bacteria will be ok.
Nitrite bacteria take a lot long to colonise.


Tim

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Paddone

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Reply #38

Left the ammonia dosing out for a few days and now have less than 1ppm in the tank (gets hard to read the test kit less than 1ppm).

Ammonia: 0.25 - 0.5
Nitrite: 2ppm
Nitrate: 25ppm.

Should I start to dose ammonia again or wait until it is undetectable on the test?

Asco1104

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Reply #39

You need to wait for the nitrite to start dropping, if you dose more ammonia it will convert to nitrite push your nitrite level to high if it's not being converted.

Don't worry about the ammonia bacteria starving, it will be fine.


Tim

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Paddone

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Reply #40

Today's results:

Ammonia: 0.005-0.25ppm
Nitrite: 3ppm
Nitrate:  50ppm

Time for a water change?
I need to go and get more RO/DI because between the tank fill and top up I am nearly out.

Paddone

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Reply #41

I have stocked up on RO and today's readings are

Ammonia 0.25ppm (still!)
Nitrite: 1ppm
Nitrate: 100ppm? See picture

I'm guessing I need to do a water change soon but should I wait until the nitrite comes down lower first?


Asco1104

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Reply #42

Personally I wouldn't do a water change to get nitrate down at this stage, if ammonia or nitrite was high then I would do a water change


Tim

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Paddone

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Reply #43

Thanks Tim,

Paddone

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Reply #44

Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0.25ppm
Nitrate: 100ppm

I have got my first 0 ammonia result today and I came as the nitrite took a big dip to 0.25 (possibly closer to the 0.1 colour).

I assume this is now the time to dose ammonia to 1ppm and watch to see how quick the ammonia and nitrite go back to 0. Should I wait for the nitrite to hit absolute 0 before I add more ammonia?

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