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Hi, new planted freshwater tank owner over here...;)

Nadoot

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Hi there, I am into week 3 of cycling a newly established planted tank. I was told to do 50% water changes daily for the first week as I used Amazonica soil which apparently likes to leak Ammonia initially.
Now in week 3 I am changing the water 3-4 daily, I wonder if this is sufficient or too much/ less?
I hear different opinions on this but never checked in an actual forum.
I'm cycling with Prime and Stability products and am fertilizing the tank daily with a half dose of ADA Nature aquarium fertilizer.
Currently the tank parameters are : PH= 7.2, Ammonia= 0.25, Nitrite =1, Nitrate=5.
I am a total beginner with no experience owning tanks or growing underwater plants so I appreciate any help.
Not sure if this matters but this tank has a Co2 infusion (2 bubbles per sec) for 7 hours a day, lights are on for the same 7 hours currently. Oh and this is a fishless cycle.
Hope everyone is doing good out there today.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions/ advice.
 

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JuiceBox52

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Welcome! Be sure to ask any questions if you have them and tag me if you need help :) keep doing water changes daily until your ammonia reaches 0ppm. Your tank looks amazing! Do you have a specific idea for what fish you will put in it when it has cycled?
 
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Nadoot

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Oh thanks so much! Ok cool will do water changes daily... I'm not sure about fish yet.... I like porkchop rasboras.
My friend told me whatever you do DON'T overstock the tank so I'll be keeping that in mind.
I would like a few blue shrimp and maybe 2 small bottom dwellers ( no idea if that exists, i realise a lot of bottom dwellers get quite large) if you have suggestions,i'll happily take them on board.
I only want fish that I can keep throughout their life, I don't like the idea of returning a fish to a store once it has gotten too big, which apparently is something people do...
I have loads of time on my hands right now to research ;)
 

utahfish

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From the looks of your tank looks like you got a handle on it so far. Keep up on your water changes id suggest keeping to a strict dosing schedule to avoid problems and expect that dosing schedule to change as the plants and tank mature. Also you can probably expect to change out the substrate after a year or two as it will break down lose its nutrients and can become anaerobic and toxic. ADA knows this which is how they keep the bucks rolling in. Other than that keep keeping on, when you add fish its important you pay attention to the ferts and the CO2, while nitrates and phosphates and CO2 are great for plants, in excess amount they can all be detrimental to the health of fish. Good luck welcome to the forum!
 

Retired Viking

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Hello and welcome to the forum. Having a planted tank with fish is a balancing act to keep both healthy. If you add something to the tank you should check before adding to make sure it will not have a negative affect on the other, Like adding to much CO2 may be great for your plants but can kill your fish. It is usually the fish that suffer. I agree with @utahfish your soil will wear out and you will have to replace it. Many of us use gravel or sand instead and use plant tabs of liquid fertilize to feed the plants. You do have a nice looking tank. Good luck. :good:
 
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Nadoot

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Cheers guys, great advice. I'll check back for some fish talk once the tank has cycled.
Yeah I kinda got talked into the ADA products by a clever sales person, I've heard that it is not the best long term solution afterwards....
If i ever do another tank I'll be playing with some other substrate and products.... definitely wayyy more low budget than this one. ;)
 

Naughts

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Oh thanks so much! Ok cool will do water changes daily... I'm not sure about fish yet.... I like porkchop rasboras.
My friend told me whatever you do DON'T overstock the tank so I'll be keeping that in mind.
I would like a few blue shrimp and maybe 2 small bottom dwellers ( no idea if that exists, i realise a lot of bottom dwellers get quite large) if you have suggestions,i'll happily take them on board.
I only want fish that I can keep throughout their life, I don't like the idea of returning a fish to a store once it has gotten too big, which apparently is something people do...
I have loads of time on my hands right now to research ;)
Beautiful tank!
Small bottom dwellers would be corydoras but they need to be in a larger group and are not suitable for nano tanks. They also need soft water. What is the GH? What size is your tank?
A good site for your research is seriouslyfish: https://www.seriouslyfish.com
 
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Nadoot

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Beautiful tank!
Small bottom dwellers would be corydoras but they need to be in a larger group and are not suitable for nano tanks. They also need soft water. What is the GH? What size is your tank?
A good site for your research is seriouslyfish: https://www.seriouslyfish.com
GH stands for general hardness doesn't it? How do I test it?
 

essjay

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You can buy a GH tester, but the first thing to try is to look on your water provider's website for hardness. if they give it, you need a number and the unit of measurement rather than some vague words.
 

Byron

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There are a couple issues here. First, as this is a planted tank you should not attempt to "cycle' it. The Seachem Stability is only adding more chemicals to the mix and you do not want to be enouraging nitrifying bacteria in a planted tank at any time because the plants need the ammonia/ammonium and they can take up an incredible amount, and faster than the bacteria.

As for Prime, without fish, why use it? There is nothing wrong with chlorinated water with just plants (no fish yet), chlorine is a micro nutrient for plants. But it is harmless anyway (with no fish). One less chemical adding to the soup. And once fish are present, Prime does impact them the more there is of it.

Ammonia leeching from the substrate is a real concern. Obviously fish cannot go into the tank until this is finished. I know nothing about ADA "soil" so I can only point this out. Ammonia at 0.25 is not much of an issue, provided it does not increase. At this stage, I would stop all additives except for the plant supplements (if that is what ADA suggest) and forget water changes, and test for a few days to see what the ammonia is at. Again provided no fish are present, this can cause no harm, and it will give you a more accurate idea of what the system will be; all of these additives do impact the system because they are interfering with the natural processes and these are what you want to stabilize.

Notwithstanding the above, I would do one major water change to remove as much of all the chemicals compounds as you can so the plants have clean water and the system will be better able to settle and stabilize.
 
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Nadoot

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I actually just did an experiment, I tested my tap water today for Ammonia and the result is also 0.25 on the colour chart, so the same result as my tank water.
I have a feeling my tank is getting to the end of the cycle.... Nitrite today =0.5 which is the lowest it has ever been so I do feel things are settling.
Interesting point with the prime, I just don't have much experience to draw on so I'm not yet game to experiment with removing things at this stage but I do see your point about adding unnecessary chemicals.
It's quite an eye opener how may different ways people are doing things...
I appreciate your comment.
 
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