Brand new tank and all kit - Nitrates present!

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I agree with others, you're better off doing a fishless cycle and adding your entire shoal when you're ready. Fish-in cycling is stressful and if the fish are weak you may lose some/all throughout the process depending on how it goes, I don't think you will find many members of this site who would recommend a fish for this reason. Plus if you introduce fish at a later date without quarantine you risk infecting the original fish. I would say go with a fishless cycle as it will give your son a good message about good animal husbandry and not rushing into things without considering the impact on the fish. It will also feel so much more rewarding when the tank is ready! In the meantime you can perhaps buy some plants and get him to help plant them as something to do while you wait for the tank to be ready for fish?

Yep. Absolutely sound advice. That would have been my approach if I hadn't promised him what the fish shop recommended.... Might have to let him down gently then with a visit to bowling or something

So the minefield of fishless cycling.

I'll go and do some more reading then - At least I won't have to worry about the nitrates in the water at the moment and I suspect the cloudiness will sort itself out in due course.
 
what the fish shop recommended....
Never ever listen to a fish shop. Most of them haven't a clue. If you ask for advice on fish they'll either sell you a fish which will grow to the same size as the tank, fish that need the opposite of your hardness or fish that will kill each other.

Neon tetras used to be hardy fish but nowadays they are delicate due to breeding practices at far east fish farms :(
 
The one guy I spoke to in the shop said that he always used pure ammonia for his initial cycles - He was saying it could be done with small fish, but I didn't really agree with the fish in.

Another place I spoke to recommended NT Labs Filter start, with it being added to the tank on days 1, 3, 5, 7 and on the 7th day do the small fish.

Like I said, so many ways that people recommend.

@Essjay What would be your method of cycling, assuming you didn't have access to established media?
Is the Dr Tims ammonia or similar the best route, or another one of the million products out there?

Thanks for advice btw
 
If the tank is to have live plants, I would go with a plant or silent cycle. Plants take up ammonia as fertiliser and they turn it into protein rather than nitrite. There needs to be enough fast growing plants to take up all the ammonia made by the fish, and floating plants are especially good for this. Plant cycling involves planting the tank then waiting until the plants are actively growing. Taking a photo of the newly planted tank provides something to compare growth to.


If live plants are not wanted, the best bottled bacteria products are Dr Tim's One & Only and Tetra Safe Start as they contain the correct species of nitrite eaters. Since the use of these micro-organisms is copyrighted, only the copyright holders can make products containing them - those two I've mentioned.
There is another product in the UK, Tropco Goop, which members have found to be effective though there are other members who doubt that it can actually work.

Ammonia is becoming less easy to find. A lot of the ammonia listed on Amazon and eBay contains surfactants (detergents) and/or perfume. Dr Tim's ammonium chloride is available here and does not have these additives so that's a good source of ammonia. Follow the dosing instructions on the bottle and use the fishless cycling method on here. If you use one of the bottled bacteria products it will speed things up.
The old method of fishless cycling said to add ammonia every time it drops to zero, but this means so much nitrite is made that the cycle stalls. TwoTankAmin wrote our method so that if followed properly nitrite can never get high enough to stall the cycle.
 
After doing more reading, I think I'm going to give Nitrico Goop a go.
Looks a pretty amazing product they have managed to get to market.
Obviously will still do the tests over 3-5 days and see how the results come out, but for me, it looks like a game changer!
 
Yep. Absolutely sound advice. That would have been my approach if I hadn't promised him what the fish shop recommended.... Might have to let him down gently then with a visit to bowling or something

So the minefield of fishless cycling.

I'll go and do some more reading then - At least I won't have to worry about the nitrates in the water at the moment and I suspect the cloudiness will sort itself out in due course.
Ignore the fish shop. Listen to this places wise heads. They’ve helped increase the life quality of hundreds of thousands of fish worldwide. Not all super hero’s wear capes.
I always come down on the side of a planted cycle. Unless of course you can get your filter seeded by someone?
 
Ignore the fish shop. Listen to this places wise heads. They’ve helped increase the life quality of hundreds of thousands of fish worldwide. Not all super hero’s wear capes.
I always come down on the side of a planted cycle. Unless of course you can get your filter seeded by someone?

As previous post, I'm going to give the goop a goo (as we say in the Black Country :) )

Sounds like a pretty decent product so will see how I get on. Feel more comfortable doing this than fishless.
 

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