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Cultivated Reef

Is My Tank Ready?


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I'm using the API Liquid Test Kit and its showing 0's across the board. My PH is about 8.2. The tank started cycling last week on April 5th haven't seen a diatom bloom yet. I'm using incandescent lighting, right now till my t5 fixture gets here :). It also stopped smelling as well. Could it be ready for livestock. If it is i want to try some snails. Any opinions?

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If you havent hit the diatom stage then no your tank is not ready and if you add a cuc they will just starve just be patient and it will all come together. ;)

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The thing that I would worry about is that there are no nitrates. 0's are normally good, but you do want some nitrates in the tank.


What type of rock did you place into the tank? Something should always be decaying in a tank so your cycle either hasn't even started or your running with dead rock and dead sand and it will never really start without a food source.

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I agree if there are no nitrates after 1 week and you havn't done a water change then the cycle probably has yet to begin. Drop a piece of shrimp or other food into the tank and leave it. I'll bet you'll start to see the nitrogen cycle kick off.

I know the waiting is unbearable but if you plop in fish now I'll bet you'll be battling ammonia then nitrite and nitrate problems for the next month or two and bailing water like mad to try to keep your fish alive.

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The LFS sold me some Fiji live rock. When i first put the rock in the tank, I found alot of dead critters on it. Also it smelled horrible. I have a hob with filter floss and carbon just to clean it up a bit. Also i noticed a few small spots that where more browner than the rest of the sand. Could it be my diatom bloom?

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No need to force a cycle - I wouldn't add a shrimp or any other crap to the tank. It's only been a week.


I had my first tank set up a month before I considered putting anything in it... then waited two more weeks after that.


Patience is all you need.

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you could always pee in the tank it will cycle for sure............ just kidding DO NOT do that.


Seriously, if i could offer one bit of advice it would be WAIT! you'll be rewarded with a better place for your fishes, also dont overstock


i just setup my first nano on 4/2/10 and i know what its like to want to get fishes swimming in it.

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