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Cycled or not?

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by SarahLeta616, May 11, 2012.

  1. SarahLeta616

    SarahLeta616 New Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2
    My DIY CHOP system is 8 days old and I am curious why I am not seeing any fluxation. My pH has been holding steady at 7.4 Each time I lower the pH, it will hold for about half of the day, and then is back up. I have well water and at startup PPM was 330 but tests at 310 now. Water hardness isn't helping my pH from what I've read. Nitrites, Nitrates, and ammonia have been next to nothing since day one. Is my GB to fish ratio in an acceptable range? ...65 yellow perch in a 275 gallon IBC with 4 barrell GB's + one small GB. I am not complaining, everything looks healthy and happy, but I wonder if my system is cycling.

    However, there is an issue I am having with my perch. Come to find out, they were not pellet fed. I am having trouble getting them to eat the pellets. I have fed minnows, but cannot find small enough minnows to feed 3-5 inchers. I have tried sinking lady beetles, wax worm, crickets, all mixed with small amounts of pellet. I still don't think they are eating properly, but I have not had any deaths.

    Could this be why I am not seeing results in my water testing because the fish are not producing the needed waste?!!

    Any advice is appreciated! I really need to get the babies onto the pellets...

    System5.8.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2012
  2. Fishdood

    Fishdood Member

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    Nov 7, 2011
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    Hi Sarah,

    Thant's a good looking stup you have.

    Cycling will take usually up to six weeks depending on water temperature.

    Since you have fish in there already it will be a little quicker however given your starting number of fish you will need to watch your ammonia levels closely as they will rise very suddenly and the the nitites after that.

    What is your water temp?

    I'd sugest asking on the FISH thread about weaning fish as you will get some ideas there.
    I have heard about mixing eag whites and fish pellets tegether in a slurry.......never tried it myself.

    Fish number could be kept down too as it is a new system.

    Keep us up to date.

    Paul
     
  3. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi Sarah, Welcome!...

    While not ideal, a pH of 7.4 is fine at the moment, it's okay for your plants and fish and it's actually better for the development of the beneficial bacteria than a lower pH.

    I wouldn't try and adjust it by adding acid directly to the system, any acid added will react with the carbonates in the water and will quickly dissipate as there is far more carbonates in the water than the acid can consume. As the acid dissipates over a few hours, the pH will rise back to where it was... this is the daily pH bounce you referred to.

    Once your system has begun to cycle, the nitrification process will produce a constant supply of acid that will eventually consume all the carbonates in your water, your pH should then start to drop naturally. At this point you will need to introduce more carbonates back into the system to counteract the acid that's being produced. This can be done with the addition of limestone or shell grit. In a well balanced system the pH then becomes self balancing.

    Cycling hasn’t taken place until you’ve had both an Ammonia and Nitrite spike that have both then returned to 0.0

    Cheers, Yabbies.
     
  4. Murray

    Murray Site Admin Staff Member

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    Very neat setup you have Sarah. Just be patient, it won't happen overnight but it will happen. The fish you have may not be enough, but once again keep trying with them and see how it pans out for you.
     
  5. SarahLeta616

    SarahLeta616 New Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
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    Thanks Paul for the info! My water temps are 64 F (18C) I have been fighting high ammonia and changing a lot of water. Have had a few fish deaths too. Things seem to be on the right track, but this is the price for cycling with fish.
    Take care!
     

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