View Full Version : Quarantining heckels

01-31-2014, 06:34 AM
Just a quick question.
I have been waiting to add more heckels to my show tank for a year. Recently, a small group of heckels have arrived at my trusted dealer. I've decided to buy five juvenile heckels and I was hoping to pick them up on Monday but my quarantine tank is still cycling (fish-less) with two sponge filters since 2 and half weeks ago. The cycling is obviously not complete and I'm still waiting for ammonia to convert into nitrite. In an ideal world, I would give it at least another three to four weeks but I don't want to loose the opportunity to pick the best heckels from the available group by deferring the purchase for an extra two to three weeks. Would it at all be possible to get the heckles and place them inside a half cycled quarantine tank and do 50+ percent water changes twice a day in the hope that the cycling would catch up without causing an ammonia burn or nitrate poising? Or is that too risky? I don't want to seed the filters by using bacteria from another setup as I fear this would be dangerous. Thanks.

01-31-2014, 06:37 AM
I meant "nitrite poisoning"...

01-31-2014, 06:50 AM
I'm guessing the supplier is Francis. Ask him for a sponge filter before you go there, he may be able to let you have one. I'd not worry too much over using filter media from one of your existing tanks, it is what I do. I accept that it introduces some risk but it is better to have a cycled tank. One of the main reasons to qt is to give the fish chance to recover from shipping (i.e. getting them home) and it gets them used to their surroundings. On the rare occasions I have put fish in uncycled tanks I have done two water changes a day @ nigh on 100% and I'm on a meter here too!

01-31-2014, 08:46 AM
Hello Paul. Thank you for your quick and helpful reply. You have guessed it right and I'm sure Francis could provide me with a seeded sponge as he had done it before although I thought could possibly avoid this scenario by doing huge water changes but I understand your point about the importance of having a fully cycled tank at the outset. I will keep an eye on those levels during the weekend and if the filters won't shift the ammonia and nitrite quick enough I might resort to the seeding method along with water changes and prime to neutralize the ammonium as an added safety measure and I will try and not think about the water bill as I've been up all night doing my tax return. Last minute as ever... A friend of mine gave me a booster pump so once I connect that hopefully my RO waste water will come down a bit. Thanks again.

01-31-2014, 09:12 AM
People on SD say large water changes while a tank is cycling works. Why don't you use one of the commercially available bacteria preparations like Seachem brand Quick Start? You can add it multiple times. I do not know what is available in London but in the USA there are several brands of these preparations, Quick Start just came to my mind first. I have no idea which brand is best.

01-31-2014, 05:41 PM
I used to aging my water for WC with Nutrafin Bacteria... someday I tested before and after add the bacteria and I discovered this product change the pH from 6.0 to 6.4.

Do you know if all bacteria products do that or only this product?

01-31-2014, 07:14 PM
I used to aging my water for WC with Nutrafin Bacteria... someday I tested before and after add the bacteria and I discovered this product change the pH from 6.0 to 6.4.

Do you know if all bacteria products do that or only this product?It sounds more like CO2 gassing off which would cause the pH to rise - it's pretty common.

02-01-2014, 07:55 AM
Hello Elliots. Yep I've already been using seachem's stabilty to speed up the process. According to the instructions, it should be possible to add the fish straight away by adding stability on a daily basis but I've heard mixed responses about the use of any of these live bacteria products. Don't get me wrong. I'm sure they work but I wouldn't be comfortable with the idea of relying on stability alone with these fish. So I'll continue monitoring the levels and decide what to do come Monday.
Vendetta, it's interesting you've mentioned about he ph increases in connection with the use of these products. Paul definitely has a point about the off gassing of CO2 but I too have been trying to work out the reason for my ph rise to 8.0 after using stability in a small volume of water as opposed to my large system which showed no such increases in the past. I'm using aged RO water so I couldn't work out why this increase would occur. I don't know if more aggressive aeration in a small valume of water might have such an affect by pushing more of the CO2 or whether it has got something to do with the product. Anyhow, if this is red herring on my part, just ignore it people. Thanks again for all the help.