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Re: how soon to add fish & fishless cycling

> From: Biplane10 at aol_com
> Subject: Re: how soon to add fish & fishless cycling
> Thanks for the points made.
> I'd just like to add another cents worth. As I go along in this hobby, my
> view of *heavily planted* changes. So, what I thought was heavily planted in
> the beginning, is now perceived as *plenty of room for more*, i.e. lightly
> planted.  Maybe it's just me . . . I don't have the artistic flair that
> others seem to have, right off the bat.

Yes, mine started out with less than I have now, but the vast majority
were stem plants and I would say I had about 80% coverage from the
start.  Things have changed a lot since then but I still have about 70%
coverage and no nitrates with a farly heavy fish load (all small fish though).

> Secondly, it's worth mentioning that, even heavily planted, without the
> addition of CO2, I don't think the plants will use the amount of ammonia
> produced. You didn't mention, but I'm assuming that you are running CO2?

Very true and a great point to make!  I am running DIY CO2 with
80W of NO fluorescents so my plants are growing very well and have
right from the start.  Also I started with a fairly light fish load; even though
I had 12 fish, they were neons and otos.

> Does anybody NOT use CO2 and still get 0 readings on ammonia, nitrite or
> nitrates?

I think plants will help in the ammonia department as long as they are growing.
You can certainly grow plants at 1.5W/g without CO2, but they grow a lot
slower than mine at around 3W/g with CO2.  If you had a small fish load you
would still see the benefits.  You will probably have a larger bacterial
in the non CO2/lower light tanks.  Thus you might get a higher nitrate reading,
but you should still get 0 ammonia and nitrite ;-)

> I just set up a 29 gallon tank, new gravel, new filter, etc. with a nearly
> full fish load (from a previous tank). I do have it somewhat heavily planted,
> but am running CO2. Ever cautious, I still threw in the biopad from an old
> filter on there. And I'm reading 0 on ammonia and nitrites, fortunately.

The only way to do it in my opinion.

Good luck with it.