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....has no life....
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 75g tank that has had fish in it since May 30th...started with 5 fish. My problem is that it seems like it is taking forever to get through the full cycle. It was only just over a week ago that there was enough ammonia in it to register on my test kit. I had it peak Wed before last at 2ppm and did a couple of 15-20% water changes that got it back to 1ppm. Since then I have been doing daily 15% water changes to keep it at 1ppm. Still...I register 0ppm for nitrites and nitrates.

How long before my ammonia starts going down and nitrites go up? I use well water, my ph is kept at 7.5, I have 2 Aquaclear 70s, and I have gotten a little more than a handful of gravel from my local fish store that is in a nylon bag and placed it in my tank. I have 17 fish in there right now.

Just frustrated with how long this is going on, understanding that every tank is different. The two 55g tanks I had a few years ago cycled in about 1 month with nothing special done to them. Any help would be appreciated if there is something I can do or not do to speed things up.
 

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Queen Platy
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A 75 gallon is big. Are the 5 fish you got small? Cycling with fish takes longer than fishless because every nitrogen toxin has to remain low enough so the fish wont be affected but also high enough for it to cycle. Whereas fishless you can make the ammonia 6ppm and increase cycling by 3x or 4x faster.

What you can do is let your friend hold the fish for you (if he has a fish tank that can hold your fish) and do a fishless cycling. Because it sounds like your tank is in the beginning of cycling. It would take a long time for a tank to cycle with the ammonia constantly at 1ppm.
 

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....has no life....
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the reply......

I think I may have had a breakthrough....this morning the ammonia was at .5 and has been the last two days without a water change. The difference is nitrates finally started to show and got a 5 level reading. Hoping that my ammonia levels will start to diminish at this point. I still have not registered anything for nitrites.
 

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Queen Platy
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Nitrites dont always show up during a cycle because some of its spikes happen fast. You might not catch it with a test kit. As long as nitrates are starting to show its good news.
 
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Well normally in your tank you want your nitrates as low as possible but when cycling and you see nitrate levels at all it usually means you've cycled or are getting close to cycled. This combined with ammonia and nitrites at 0 ppm means you've crossed the finish line.
 

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....has no life....
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Took my readings this morning and ammonia is now .25ppm, nitrites 0, and mitrates are still holding at 5mg/L. Tested late yesterday afternoon and my nitrite readings indicated a small reading. In the API liquid test, light blue is the color you want to be at (0ppm) but I had a slight purple color, but not quite the dark purple for the first level on the test card.
 

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....has no life....
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
To answer a previous question....the original 5 fish that I started with were guppies. There are 19 total fish in there right now (9 Guppy, 10 Platy) with two baby guppies. I have lost about a dozen fish along the way at this point in the process.

I think some fish also struggle getting accustomed to the well water that I am forced to use. I use water treatment to get rid of some of the dissolved metals in the water.
 
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