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what am i doing wrong?

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mountian72

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Messages
14
Location
ar.
its been 7 weeks since i started to cycle my 30 gl. tank and my amonia is still to high ive anded about 3 lbs. sand from my lfs show tank (its 4 yrs. old) i also bought a bottle of marine bacteria (tlc is the product name)what am i missing ?
 

mattseattle

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
first off i wouldn't add any of those bacteria kits that are in a bottle. they are usually dead anyway and are not beneficial and can only add to problems.

second what test kit are you using to measure ammonia? was your rock cured or uncured when you added it? do you have any fish or other living things in your tank? have you done a water change?
 

mountian72

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Messages
14
Location
ar.
lfs tested my water i only have 1 tetra tec saltwater test for ammonia asfor live stock ive got 3 damsels ,1 serpent star , 1 hermit crab , 1 coral banded shrimp , many small fan worms i used 20 gl. water from my sisters 90 gl. reef and 10 ro water 7 weeks ago and i have not done anthig else to the water since i started
 

mattseattle

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
seems like alot of live stock for a tank that is only 7 weeks old.

what was your ammonia reading? and nitrates? did you have those tested?

i'd do a 20 - 30% water change if i were you to see if i could ease the ammonia some. are any of your tank inhabitants looking stressed due to the ammonia?
 

Elmo18

Clownfish
Joined
Aug 5, 2003
Messages
2,662
Location
Seattle
Be patient. I would also do a 20% water change. Just provide circulation and let the tank be for a while longer. Add appropriate top off water as needed on daily basis.

- Elmo
 

NaH2O

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
8,568
I agree. With your tank being young, your bacterial population may not be large enough to handle the load of your livestock. When did you add the inhabitants? My tank is at week 5 of the cycle, and I still have low ammonia readings...my rock was uncured, however. Was your LR cured or uncured - do you have live rock in the tank (I don't see it listed)?
 

cdeakle

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 25, 2004
Messages
199
Location
Lynnwood, WA
Sounds like you went to fast to quick. Should have gotten your paremters in check and stable before adding even one single inhabitant.

I also suggest that you do some reading and get a couple of books, any of these would be good:

Ultimate Marine Aquariums: Saltwater Dream Systems and How They Are Created
by Michael S. Paletta
Hardcover: 192 pages; Publisher: Microcosm Limited; (June 2003); ISBN: 1890087742

Natural Reef Aquariums : Simplified Approaches to Creating Living Saltwater Microcosms
by John H. Tullock, Martin A. Moe
Publisher: Microcosm Limited; ISBN: 1890087009; (November 1997), 336 pages

Successful Reef Aquarium
by Daniel Knop, Horst Kaiser (Translator)
Publisher: AQUALOG Verlag GmbH; ISBN: 3921684471; 1 edition (January 1, 1999), 200 pages

The Conscientious Marine Aquarist : A Commonsense Handbook for Successful Saltwater Hobbyists
by Robert M. Fenner, Christopher Turk
Publisher: Microcosm Limited; ISBN: 1890087025; (March 1998), 432 pages

The New Marine Aquarium : Step-By-Step Setup & Stocking Guide
by Michael S. Paletta, Edward Kadunc (Illustrator), Scott W. Michael (Photographer), Michael D. Paletta
Publisher: Microcosm Limited; ISBN: 1890087521; (May 1999), 144 pages

Your First Marine Aquarium : Everything About Setting Up a Marine Aquarium, Aquarium Conditions and Maintenence, and Selecting Fish and Invertebrates)
by John H. Tullock
Publisher: Barrons Educational Series; ISBN: 0764104470; (July 1998)

The Coral Reef Aquarium : An Owner's Guide to a Happy Healthy Fish (Owners Guide to a Happy, Healthy Pet)
by Ron L. Shimek
Publisher: Hungry Minds, Inc; ISBN: 1582451176; (August 1999), 128 pages

You should be testing for all of the following, please let us know what your results are:

Ammonia
Nitrite
Nitrate
ph
Alkalinity
Calcium
Salinity

What do you have for filtration (skimmer?)

How much LR/LS do you have

What additives are you using (Iodine, Magnesium, Calcium, Kalk, Strontium, etc)
 
Last edited:

mountian72

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Messages
14
Location
ar.
i do have a few books and they say to use damsels to cycle the tank. i have 48lb. uncured live rock, really big peices (7 peices all together) as for filtration ive got a pump used on my old 125gl. and a 60 to 100 gl. protien skimmer. im only testing for ammonia now cause as long as theres ammonia the water is not gonna be even close.once the ammonia is gone ill buy a full test kit for everything please dont think im trying to hurry i only want to do everything the best way i can.
 

cdeakle

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 25, 2004
Messages
199
Location
Lynnwood, WA
No worries, early on I was known to have been impatient more than a few times also.

i do have a few books and they say to use damsels to cycle the tank.
That was the old school way of doing things. Unfortunately that will normally kill off the damsels due to toxic levels of ammonia or in a best case scenario your damsels will be stressed out and close to death and if they survive you will be stuck with those hellions.

Adding LR to a new tank just like you did will be more then enough to create ammonia due to die off and thus jump starting your cycle. Or one can add a small piece of raw shrimp to a tank, the shrimp will start to decompose creating ammonia and starting the cycle as well.

asfor live stock ive got 3 damsels ,1 serpent star , 1 hermit crab , 1 coral banded shrimp , many small fan worms
Your tank is definately not ready for any fish, shrimp, inverts at this time. I can understand if you were a little mislead and not up to date with cycling the tank without fish but you definately should not have added the star or shrimp.

With your ammonia being so toxic and not knowing what your other paramters are chances are they may not survive the rest of your cycle. I would highly recommend removing all inhabitants if possible and have a friend or member from here babysit them untill your tank is ready.

Please don't think I'm trying to be rude to you, I'm only trying to help you. Sometimes I'm not the best at conveying my thoughts into words. We all here would love to see you have a thriving and beautiful reef tank.
 

Beckmola24

Hawkfish
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
1,112
Location
Columbus, OH
I used a single yellow-tailed damsel to cycle my tank, and wound up having to rip apart the rock and stuff to catch him. It was such a little agressive fish and picked on all the new inhabitants. Good luck with those little guys.
 

plumber_bob

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 22, 2004
Messages
207
Location
Federal Way
Mountain,
Welcome to the Forum. If you have a hang on filter or even a sump for the 30 gallon. Sometimes what I've done is ask an individual (One that I new the system very well and new how clean it was, establish, etc...) if I could have there filter bad that has been cleaning there tank. If you can get it in some of their tank water submerged in a bucket. Take it home and run some of you tank water through it, just like you would use it as a filter, either on your hang-on filter or sump if you have one. Usually there is good bacteria on these pads, if they haven't been cleaned extremely well in a week or so. Its often helped some people I know in the past.
Bobby
 

edonato

Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2004
Messages
8
Location
costa rica
hi i think that you went a litle bit to fast, do a partial water change, but remember that after the ammonia peak comes the nitrites peak and then nitrates, i suggest to look for a place to put the fish and inverts and let the tank cycle alone, you are in an ammonia peak , so thinga are goinh the way they should, just have patient. and abouth damselfishes, they are the terrorists of a fishtank, send them to gitmo
 
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