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Zer0

Questions about Bio-Spira

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Zer0

So I've always used the raw shrimp method to kick off the nitrogen cycle, but I thought I would give Bio-Spira a go and see how it worked. But I have a couple questions:

 

First, since my tank is only 10 gallons, I obviously shouldn't pour the entire thing in there since it's meant for 30 gallons, correct? Or do I just dump the whole thing in there?

 

Second, what do I do after I pour in the bio-spira? I've been reading that people dose ammonia right after they use bio-spira? Do I need to do that?

 

Appreciate any advice I can get! Thank you!

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banasophia
58 minutes ago, Zer0 said:

So I've always used the raw shrimp method to kick off the nitrogen cycle, but I thought I would give Bio-Spira a go and see how it worked. But I have a couple questions:

 

First, since my tank is only 10 gallons, I obviously shouldn't pour the entire thing in there since it's meant for 30 gallons, correct? Or do I just dump the whole thing in there?

 

Second, what do I do after I pour in the bio-spira? I've been reading that people dose ammonia right after they use bio-spira? Do I need to do that?

 

Appreciate any advice I can get! Thank you!

Yes, you use the whole bottle. 
 

You can do a fishless cycle to be 100% certain your tank is cycled and safe. If you do that you can add shrimp or ammonia drops as your ammonia source and then the BioSpira will just get you through your cycle faster than not using it since you added tons of both types of the bacteria you need and it’s just a matter of them adjusting to the right size population for your tank.
 

Personally, I add fish rather than doing the ammonia or raw shrimp method, because I’ve used the products before and I’m confident they work, but I don’t add the fish on day 1 because a lot of things can go wrong in the first week with a new tank and I don’t want to put my fish at risk. So I double up on my bacteria products (using BioSpira, Nutri-Seawater, plus live sand) to have a back up in case one product got damaged during shipping/storage since they can be sensitive to temperature extremes. I get my tank wet (using the Nutri-Seawater), add the BioSpira, along with matrix media in my back chambers for additional surface area for my bacteria, add a seachem ammonia badge to alert me of an unexpected ammonia spike. I run the tank for about a week to be sure equipment is functioning (pump, heater, thermometer, wavemaker, lights, tank). I make sure the water level, salinity, and temp stay stable. I check my parameters (salinity, pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate) to make sure everything looks good, my ammonia and nitrite are zero, and nitrate level is acceptable, then I add 1-2 small hardy fish. The fish waste and their food will provide the source of ammonia when doing it this way.

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banasophia

Here are a couple articles on cycling that I find helpful:


https://www.drtimsaquatics.com/resources/fishless-cycling/

https://www.drtimsaquatics.com/resources/library/quick-guide-to-fishless-cycling-with-one-and-only/

 

Dr. Tim is Dr. Tim Hovanec, he is the inventor of both BioSpira and Dr. Tim’s, he has a PhD, here’s some info about him. 

 

https://www.drtimsaquatics.com/about-dr-tim/

 

“Dr. Hovanec’s groundbreaking research on nitrifying bacteria led to him discovering and developing BioSpira® and then DrTim’s Aquatics One & Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria.

 

Dr. Hovanec regularly speaks to pet store owners, distributors and hobbyists on a diverse range of topics, all with the goal of increasing knowledge exchange which can benefit everyone in the hobby.

After studying limnology at Uppsala University in Sweden, Dr. Hovanec graduated from San Diego State University with a B.S. in Biology and an M.S. in Biology.

 

Dr. Hovanec earned his Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he investigated the phylogenetics of nitrifying bacteria in aquaria and Mono Lake, California. Dr. Hovanec was the first to demonstrate that bacteria of the phylum Nitrospira were the active nitrite-oxidizing bacteria in aquatic systems such as aquaria. His work on nitrifying bacteria has led to the discovery of many new species of nitrifying bacteria in freshwater and saltwater systems and the granting of several U.S. and foreign patents, with additional patents pending. He has also conducted much research on topics such as ammonia excretion and toxicity in aquatic organisms, bio-filtration systems design and fish feed formulations.”

 

I’ve met him a couple times at meetings. He said you can add fish with his products but he also gives instructions for the fishless cycling method and sells the ammonia drops for those that are more comfortable going that route. 

Dorky pic of me when I met Dr. Tim at Aquashella:

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Zer0

Thank you for your reply! You answered all my questions and then some lol.

 

So I add the Bio-Spira, then dose ammonia, and test the water frequently to check where the parameters are at? And once ammonia shows as 0ppm and nitrates are elevated, do a water change, then I can start adding livestock iirc, right?

 

I was thinking of using this: https://www.amazon.com/Fritz-Aquatics-Fishless-Solution-Aquariums/dp/B08MLCY3TT/ref=sr_1_14?dchild=1&keywords=ammonia&qid=1613947884&sr=8-14

 

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banasophia
2 minutes ago, Zer0 said:

Thank you for your reply! You answered all my questions and then some lol.

 

So I add the Bio-Spira, then dose ammonia, and test the water frequently to check where the parameters are at? And once ammonia shows as 0ppm and nitrates are elevated, do a water change, then I can start adding livestock iirc, right?

 

I was thinking of using this: https://www.amazon.com/Fritz-Aquatics-Fishless-Solution-Aquariums/dp/B08MLCY3TT/ref=sr_1_14?dchild=1&keywords=ammonia&qid=1613947884&sr=8-14

 

Great, yes, that Fritz ammonia looks like it’s just like Dr. Tim’s ammonia... the advantage of both products is that you are able to add the exact amount of ammonia needed to get to the specific ammonia level desired in your tank, and you also know it doesn’t have any unsafe additives. 
 

If I was doing it that way, I would follow these directions, that I posted above (just make sure you are using the correct number of drops of the Fritz ammonia rather than Dr Tim’s ammonia to get to 2 ppm):
https://www.drtimsaquatics.com/resources/library/quick-guide-to-fishless-cycling-with-one-and-only/

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Zer0
3 minutes ago, banasophia said:

Great, yes, that Fritz ammonia looks like it’s just like Dr. Tim’s ammonia... the advantage of both products is that you are able to add the exact amount of ammonia needed to get to the specific ammonia level desired in your tank, and you also know it doesn’t have any unsafe additives. 
 

If I was doing it that way, I would follow these directions, that I posted above (just make sure you are using the correct number of drops of the Fritz ammonia rather than Dr Tim’s ammonia to get to 2 ppm):
https://www.drtimsaquatics.com/resources/library/quick-guide-to-fishless-cycling-with-one-and-only/

Got it! Thank you!

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mcarroll

Follow the directions on the bottle.  Hopefully that's what you've been doing.

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banasophia
1 hour ago, mcarroll said:

Follow the directions on the bottle.  Hopefully that's what you've been doing.

So you actually think he should add the full bottle of BioSpira and then add fish right away? That surprises me. I’m not disagreeing, just surprised. 

 

472FA5A1-DD7F-49A9-8A56-8370D2A01C08.thumb.jpeg.a359330cc2d41b163f941a4b1ca48afd.jpeg

 

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Zer0

Just as an update in case anyone cares, I just went ahead and dumped the whole bottle. I mean, it does say *up to 30 gallons*, so whatever. I dosed 2ppm ammonium chloride, then dumped in the bio-spira. Will test the water to see where it's at tomorrow.

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banasophia

Alriiight! Here we gooooooo

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mcarroll

It seems like the liquid ammonia procedure would be a good proof to use if you had some doubt about the potency/freshness of the product you selected.  Use it like a test.

 

But if you don't have doubts that it works, then the intention is for the product to go in with the actual ammonia source – the fish.  (I mean according to the Marineland as well as the inventor, Dr Tim.)

 

Using it where you grow out a bacterial colony with ammonia, is actually sorta retrograde in terms of making use of the technology of this kind of bacterial product.  It's definitely not very reefy.

 

In fact, you really don't even need the bacteria in the bottle if you aren't using it to add the animals in a hurry.  The bacteria you need are omnipresent in the environment in minute quantities and will grow on dead shrimp or any ammonia load you add to the tank.  Usually takes 30-40 days...sometimes called the natural method.  The oldest, tried-est and truest way to start a tank.  👍  Probably the best innovation on cycling for the average Joe(lene), IMO, has been Seachem's Ammo Alert....knowing your ammonia level at a glance, without even taking a water sample, is a powerful thing during cycling.  Almost turns cycling into a no-brainer.

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