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Cycling 47L tank when I have a 130L established tank

Discussion in 'Cycle your Tank' started by Irkrts, Nov 7, 2019.

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  1. Irkrts

    Irkrts New Member

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    Wondering if I could get some advice about how to speed up cycling my new empty 47L tank when I have a fully established healthy 135L tank.

    I have:
    AquaOne 620T 135L with Fluval 305 external filter + built in filter.
    The fluval filter has two canisters of ceramic beads, been going for years.

    New tank is:
    Basically a chinese knock off of AquaVue 480 (same dimensions, built in drip filter, filter looks less good than real Aqua ones although the tank is equally attractive).

    I also have:
    Never used Fluval branded ceramic gravel for the filter
    Second hand ceramic beads from Gumtree which are used.
    Several coarse sponges
    Carbon sponge
    Extra small filter that could be used if beneficial initially

    I was thinking to only fill the 47L from water from the main tank over two water changes, to put the never-used beads to replace some in the 620T fluval filter and move some beads from the established tank into the new small tank. To ensure bacterial transfer, I also planned to wash all the sponges in the main tank and put the extra dirty water over.

    My questions are as follows:
    a) What do you think about my plan to transfer old water mainly
    b) When do you think I should add plants / fish (the big tank is very heavily planted)? I was thinking to add one or two anubias (I have about 6 huge anubias in the big tank and two small).
    c) How many fish do you think I should add for cycling? I have four 6cm long tetra-like fish that look pretty hardy and are my least favourite from the main tank, and would probably go back into the main tank after cycling has finished.

    Thank you for any help!
     
  2. Naughts

    Naughts Fish Crazy

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    I wouldn't use dirty water. I would use clean de-chlorinated water and set the temperature then move used filter media and plants. I'd run the used filter over night, test the water then add new fish if all good. The cycle should be fine but test the water daily for a couple of weeks to spot any blips.
     
  3. Jan Cavalieri

    Jan Cavalieri Fish Crazy
    Pet of the Month Winner!

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    Why would you be using ANY fish to cycle a tank? And you offer up a couple fish you don't like very well??

    These days tanks are cycled by the Ammonia method using household ammonia instead of fish. It's just as effective and places no stress on the fish. The only time you would use a fish method of cycling a tank is if you already had fish in the tank and no place to put them.

    I like your ideas about transferring things to the uncycled tank - substrate is another thing you can transfer - just take a cup or so from the old tank and place it in the new one - that's far better than placing dirty water in the new tank although that idea doesn't particularly bother me if you weren't using fish to cycle you tank.

    On this forum in the Cycling section is a post that includes how to cycle using Ammonia. It takes about 4-6 weeks just like cycling with fish also takes 4-6 weeks. By adding all the stuff you're adding to the uncycled tank it make take 2 weeks off the cycling time - then again it may not. Last time I tried this it didn't make any difference at all but others report how much faster cycling goes.
     
  4. Naughts

    Naughts Fish Crazy

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    Good catch with the substrate Jan.
    I've used filter media plus substrate to cycle two tanks and it was 'instant' in one tank, the other tank read a small amount of nitrite one day which was resolved with a 50% water change and didn't reoccur.
     
  5. seangee

    seangee Member

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    Just put half of the media from your established filter into the new filter. Replace it with new media in the established tank. Add dechlorinated water to the new tank and add fish. Job done. Make sure the media stays wet and try to turn the new filter on as soon as possible after moving the media.
     
  6. f1avor

    f1avor New Member

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    So I have only been in the hobby for a little over a year. However I do read a lot and watch a lot of videos on it. From what I understand you just need to get your filter media established.

    So run your new filter in your established tank for a week. Afterward you just setup your new tank, fill it up half way with your cycled water and top it off with fresh dechlorinated water.
     
  7. f1avor

    f1avor New Member

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    This actually faster than my method.
     
  8. essjay

    essjay Moderator
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    It needs longer than a week for the new filter to grow enough bacteria for the new tank - it needs at least 4 weeks.
    And there's no such thing as cycled water, I'm afraid. The bacteria live on surfaces rather than in the water so moving water will not move bacteria.



    Planting a tank well removes the need to cycle a tank. Plants use ammonia as fertiliser, and they don't turn it into nitrite. Provided the tank is well planted - more than just a couple of slow growing plants - and the plants are actively growing, fish can be added. Floating plants are particularly good for this.
    Plants and mature media are even better.
     

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