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Re: Fishless cycling

Michael is trying fishless cycling:

>I will be setting up a 30 gallon this weekend.  For the first time I'm 
>going to try the fishles cycling method.  The substrate will be texas 
>blast over laterite.  I was going to add some sagittaria in the foreground 
>and then add the rest of the plants after the tank has cycled.  Since I 
>will be adding more ammonia than is usually present when tanks are cycled 
>naturally, is this bad for the plants?

I've never had sag in the tank, but I think it'd be ok.  I've used Crypt 
wendtii and Wisteria and both survived.  Did you buy the sag 
potted?  Potted plants seem to work best for providing a bacteria seed in 
this situation IME.  I suggest you also add some old, mature filter media 
to speed up the process.  I've found that a medium sized tank will cycle in 
2 weeks or less using 10% NH3 so long as a fat starter colony of bacteria 
is used.  Be aware that the plants may compete for NH3 and prolong the 
cycling process--that's been my experience, anyway.  I guess it depends on 
the number of plants used.  I usually wait until after the nitrogen cycle 
is established before I add plants these days, or I just use a mature 
filter and don't cycle the tank at all.

Good luck!

Chuck Huffine
Knoxville, Tennessee  USA
mailto:grendel at usit_net