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brandon429

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let's make a live time work thread here that patterns out control of the cycle during any stage of reefing

 

if you have a new tank and want to know what date it will be ready to carry life, describe your setup and the booster arrangement, an exact start date will be listed your system can carry life. This isn't rule breaking whatsoever, reef conventions start on time right? how many non stalled reefs is that present, 200 or so? we'd use the same science here for both live rock transfer and dry starts, like they do. 

(reef cycle truth #1, forum cyclers are trained for the open-ended never ready wait; they buy more stuff this way. Sellers never, ever, ever miss a start date to sell us ways to unstick a cycle, it just never happens to them, they're using a different rule than forums use)

 

if you want to rip clean your nano reef to rid it of dinos or hair algae issues, that'll need cycle control. post your before pics

 

if you want to relocate your  nano to a new home and never have a mini cycle, we have a neat way here. post your work job for tank relocations. 

 

 

if you want to move your current setup in to a bigger one and skip the cycle, post up the before pics on the current tank. 

 

 

If you want to remove your current sandbed and go bare bottom, or change out the sandbed for new sand all at once, you'll need cycle control, post up your before pic. 

 

Anything involving surface area and cycle activation is what we'll collect here, post up your challenges and we'll build a roll of successful outcomes its pretty fun to do.

 

and lastly, the most fun, if you feel your cycle has stalled and you've missed a desired start date, we'll fix that too. Post a pic of your setup, post zero pics of your test kit levels, post a description of your booster arrangements (bottle bac and feed chosen, number of dates underwater for it all) and we will name the date it will be ready for use, though you seem to be currently stalled. the end result will be that your aquarium carries life as long as you want it to carry life; were you to be invited to a reef tank convention with that setup, you'd make the friday start date like all the other tanks did / timely cycles are out there for the taking. the key to the timeliness about to follow is that what non digital test kits show on a cycle won't be considered here, we're going to use the sellers rules, not the buyer's rules. 

 

if there's a particular cycle in question we have ways of using non digital kits for ammonia to proof readiness, but its not by looking at a single pic showing .25. its a succession of three pics we'd produce to show ammonia motion, in the very very few cycles we'd need to verify. most have been underwater much longer than day ten from a cycling chart (the universal ammonia drop date marker we use for most bottle bac assessments excluding mb7 its testing slower for us than the others)

 

anything that has to do with a cycling challenge, post it up.

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  • 10 months later...
TheCoffeeReef

Hi Brandon, is this thread still in play? I'm just starting my cycle on my pico, and wondered if here or a new thread is best to post the full info?

 

I've been following and hopping the threads that covered the myths of cycling times and parameter measurements, and feel astonished how it's moved forward.

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brandon429

I 100% appreciate the post, pls link up all the details!

 

highlights of the thread I predict we will see once we start getting worked examples:

 

-the rarest thing we'll ever see here is a cycle that isn't done right when the first pics and details of the tank is posted. That's been the trending for 3 years straight/unbroken in reef2reef's big cycle collection threads, no reason to break % here is the bet. 

 

an example of a not-done cycle is a tank with dry rocks, saltwater, no food or bacteria added. 

 

reason why all cycles we see in forums are already done: bottle bac is nearly universal now, it carries fish on day one/handles nominal ammonia bioloading on day one with zero prep time. dump from a bottle, tank handles ammonia, no thought or prep involved is 99% of cycles

 

the other 1% are dealing in live rocks one way or another and of that fraction, half are pure skip cycles because they used cured aquarium rock and the other half are non cured ocean rock cycles that need dieoff stop wait time, the wait time is not to add bacteria. of all cycling sources, uncured ocean rocks have the most cycling bac in play when they get shipped to us.

 

99% of all cycles are bottle bac cycles is why most of our works here will be done cycling, the day they posted. 

 

*a small detail exists for bottle bac cycles. when we dump in the mix to our tanks, the water is dosed vs the surfaces. the bac swirl around and handle fish ammonia just fine, but technically a 100% water change right then would remove all your dosed bac. it's not locked-in cycled. 

 

in about 3-5 days, nearly all brands of bottle bac for cycling tested in Dr. Reef's huge 99 page r2r thread were implanted onto surfaces within the tank, and a 100% water change did not stop the ability to handle ammonia. that's true locked-in cycle, for any bottle bac dosers, within 3-5 days.

 

 

-any and all challenges to any stated completion date here will never be dead tanks or dead animals, it will be a non digital ammonia or nitrite test kit causing the alert (and we will ignore them, we want your seneye or your hanna digital ammonia readings, all else we don't want in the thread as a distraction)

the number of ways non digital test kits misread, or readers fail to heed instructions (wait time before report, nh3 vs nh4 conversion etc) are simply too numerous to cover. api and red sea ammonia will have no basis here, they're my arch enemies in cycling threads as they only bring doubt and steer folks away from factoring fish disease preps/supplanted by cycle fear preps instead. 

 

 

 

so the big question is, where'd you get your rocks from

 

B

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TheCoffeeReef

Thanks so much for the informative reply Brandon, I'm going to digest the above, but I got my rocks from a local LFS that advised they were from Australia and had gone through quarantine and been in the coral tank (with a few roaming fish and other inverts) for a few weeks.

 

I'll look to post pics, it's literally day 2, I've used the following and currently have the tank set with this equipment:

 

22ltr rectangle tank.

1.5" Carib sea agri-alive Hawaii black live sand.

4kg of live rock.

1kg of argonite rock.

10w sicci jolly heater 

1 x Jecod SW2 wave maker 

Tropic Marin classic salt.

 

I made a miscalculation with the first salt mix and was at 45ppm, this took me about 8 hours to resolve as was overnight and no RODI water available - changed out 6 liters for fresh RODI and checked with refractometer, now 30 ppm. 

 

Water is clear, smells fresh. 

 

Temps 24.6 c.

 

No lights on yet. Should I expect any repercussions for the high salinity initially or just count down to 10 days and then consider my hermit crab additions?

 

Cheers, 

 

W.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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brandon429

Yours is a complete and total skip cycle

 

 

Don't buy bottle bac for this cycle. These are cured rocks, the true ideal for any reef. This is how reef conventions run, folks able to set up many display reefs on time, no stalls, no testing, it's the greatest unspoken rule in the whole reef convention the sellers never tell the buyers: live rock always transfers with no dieoff when it's tank cured, they don't even transport it in water mostly. It's in styro coolers, damp but not submerged the whole way up and back. Unsold items are skip cycled back home, for sale

 

Your tank will be a safe to carry fish on day one as day 180, fact. Only your specific disease protocol shapes the disease outlook for the fish. There is no point in testing for ammonia it will only serve to cause you doubt when some registers as nh4, which we expect because as the hanna + seneye ammonia meter show, reefs dont run at zero. 

 

We wouldn't test for ammonia because you're using perfect skip cycle rock and nobody has had that fail. The rocks did not uncycle unless they were left out in the sun weeks to dry inside and out. 

 

 

The best thing you can do is make a cloudless new reef. A cloud-able new reef is less desirable than a laser clear, can't be clouded prep reef

 

There is no benefit in using unrinsed sand that clouds, we don't need bacteria from sand it's a sales gimmick/ made up in forums. Bare bottom tank runners know we don't need sandbed bacteria... when you rinse your sand in tap water a couple hours till clear, then in saltwater at the end to evacuate tap, you can assemble the skip cycle rocks on that perfect sand and fill with new water, and have a true instant laser clear reef no bottle bac. 

 

(These are also the steps of the full nano reef rip clean, the cure to any cyano or dinos issues in most small reefs..its a rinse sand + reassemble exactly like new skip cycle tanks. Old tanks can skip cycle deep clean to opt out of an invasion, no bottle bac, we'll be using this assembly and rinse steps in invasion fix threads later on)

 

You can stock corals if you're feeling froggy. I have threads that show instant 1 day reefs on reef2reef. You'll be doing the first skip cycle setup here. 

 

Ps

Bring home some common coral frags. You don't have to do a $500 gold torch lol but some simple lps will suffice. If you're going to lead our first example with skip cycle ready cured rock, add some corals day one and show the real trust and benefit of a skip cycle reef, this is how reef conventions are built then rebuilt back at home after the sales event. If you mix up salinity higher at .025, run temp at 79 ish you'll be set. Any common coral you buy, ran among those rocks, placed under a known high quality reef light, is a day one skip cycle reef. My red montipora strain from my pico would do just fine as a day one sps if you did an ai prime light on heavy blue low light

 

Just set the reef up with 78-80 degree water, .025 salinity, those rocks on rinse prep sand. It'll reef immediately, like a convention display nano. Have a high quality controllable reef light ready to rock and roll

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On 11/14/2021 at 12:27 PM, brandon429 said:

if you have a new tank and want to know what date it will be ready to carry life

There are a couple of parts to this.

  1. First, is the current level of total ammonia (free ammonia can be computed with the following calculator: https://www.hamzasreef.com/Contents/Calculators/TotalAmmonia.php).
  2. Next, is if the nitrifying bacteria can process the amount of ammonia input into the system.  For this, we can monitor the ammonia level to determine if it's going up or down.

I'd agree that there are assumptions and/or generalizations which can be made to come up with a generic timeline which will work for most.  A timeline might be helpful if someone didn't have access to test kits.  However, test kits are widely available for less than $20.  I believe that testing ammonia, while the nitrogen cycle is being established, can be good practice for future testing (like for phosphate, nitrate, and alkalinity).

 

On 11/14/2021 at 12:27 PM, brandon429 said:

how many non stalled reefs is that present, 200 or so?

I don't believe there is such a thing as a stalled cycle.  Nitrification doesn't cease, even if persistent low levels of ammonia are observed (as we can usually see that ammonia is still being processed by observing the rising level of nitrate).

 

Low levels (although often undetectable by our hobby grade test kits) are typical in tanks with livestock.  Sometimes these low levels can even be detected with our kits.  Plus, it can sometimes take awhile after an ammonia spike for the ammonia to become undetectable again.  During this time, livestock shouldn't show any visible signs of distress (because these levels are actually safe).

 

On 11/14/2021 at 12:27 PM, brandon429 said:
  • if you want to rip clean your nano reef to rid it of dinos or hair algae issues, that'll need cycle control. post your before pics
  • if you want to relocate your  nano to a new home and never have a mini cycle, we have a neat way here. post your work job for tank relocations. 
  • if you want to move your current setup in to a bigger one and skip the cycle, post up the before pics on the current tank. 
  • If you want to remove your current sandbed and go bare bottom, or change out the sandbed for new sand all at once, you'll need cycle control, post up your before pic. 

Most of these activities don't remove enough nitrifying bacteria to initiate an ammonia spike (and the nitrifying bacteria is transferred along with the rock).  So these activities can usually be accomplished with a little care (like not disturbing an organically saturated sand bed,  which could potentially cause an ammonia spike).  You'll see that most of the problems causing ammonia spikes, have to do with disrupting organically saturated substrates.  Fortunately, we know how to perform these tasks without causing a large spike in ammonia.  The nitrogen cycle is necessary, ammonia spikes are not.

 

On 11/14/2021 at 12:27 PM, brandon429 said:

post zero pics of your test kit levels... the key to the timeliness about to follow is that what non digital test kits show on a cycle won't be considered here

Test kits reveal information about the concentration of the element in question.  Ignoring the results of tests because they might be in conflict with one or more presumptions, seems a bit questionable.  Is it because it's possible to get a positive ammonia test result, and yet not be able to observe any visible signs of distress from your livestock, or because the digital monitor that you refer to doesn't concur with these "non digital" kits?

 

If you assume that the presence of any NH3 will result in visible distress to livestock, then I can see your dilemma.  However, these lower levels of total ammonia can exist without any negative effects.  But this doesn't mean that NH3 isn't toxic in higher concentrations; it just means that these lower levels aren't toxic.  I feel that it would be more helpful to know what levels of NH3 are considered safe (and not just acute toxicity).

 

On 10/2/2022 at 9:26 AM, brandon429 said:

reason why all cycles we see in forums are already done: bottle bac is nearly universal now, it carries fish on day one/handles nominal ammonia bioloading on day one with zero prep time. dump from a bottle, tank handles ammonia, no thought or prep involved is 99% of cycles

I agree that bottled bacteria is a valuable tool, which can provide immediate benefits.  However, dosing bacteria will not typically support a full bio-load of fish without measurable increases in total ammonia.  You might even have verifiable examples of where people have added fish on day one without any losses.  So I guess that you can correctly claim that it supports life.  However, I feel that we should still strive to keep NH3 levels to a minimum.

 

On 10/2/2022 at 7:53 PM, brandon429 said:

We wouldn't test for ammonia because you're using perfect skip cycle rock and nobody has had that fail.

If it's fully cured live rock, then I agree that it will not cause an ammonia spike.  However, it's possible that it's not fully cured.  Experience has taught me not to blindly trust what a local fish store tells me (I like to verify what they say via testing).  I've purchased fully cured live rock before which has resulted in an ammonia spike.  I've also purchased dry rock which caused a large ammonia spike (due to dead organics still on the rock, even though it looked clean).

 

Again, it's not that expensive or difficult to test for ammonia.  Plus if you know how to interpret the results, it can give you peace of mind.

 

On 10/2/2022 at 7:53 PM, brandon429 said:

Bring home some common coral frags. You don't have to do a $500 gold torch lol but some simple lps will suffice. If you're going to lead our first example with skip cycle ready cured rock, add some corals day one and show the real trust and benefit of a skip cycle reef

I propose that these hardy corals (assuming everything else is alright), won't be affected by low, but measurable amounts of total ammonia.  So I'm not sure what this would prove.  Personally, I'd rather use a test kit instead of animals to check levels.

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TheCoffeeReef

Thank you both for the detailed replies. 

 

I appreciate the counter points that Seabass raises, particularly to question the LFS statements. For context, I do hold my LFS options (UK North West) to high scrutiny - they are businesses who's main goal (exaggerated to achieve thanks to the difficulties in the economy) is to sell products. This to me tracks with what Brandon states, particularly about testing kits and extra equipment. 

 

The search for live rock (and what a minefield that has become- the term life rock was thrown around several times, interchangeable, until one LFS mentioned it was just seeded dead rock- the most 'old school' of the LFS who advocate a fish in cycle only and were baffled by my decision to do a Pico reef) was a real challenge, and the only store that had any that appeared genuine was a single branch of a chain called Maidenhead Aquatics.

 

All others were very strongly against the notion and proceeded to reinforce the bottle back method using whichever products they had. One LFS, the preferred one for now I will return to for the coral frags, was balanced in approach and reasoning for this. 

 

His view was similar to others (why risk hitchhiker introduction/ environmental concerns/ absolute control on parameters) however, he was also not pushing me to purchase extra equipment following my discussion of the tank set up, with offers of small frags when I'm ready, grattis in some cases (I wish to keep GSP primarily).

 

Brandon, further details to add to my tanks setup, the lighting is a Fluval Sea Nano 3.0 LED, which should arrive today. I was pushed to buy an A80 or AI prime 16hd at every turn, however research and budget led me to the above as a budget friendly and controllable start point, a notable goal with the tank.

 

Can you add any views on what this will be safe to light? I'm under the impression zoa's, GSP, mushrooms will be good (it will be approx. 4" from water surface, rock work begins .75"- 1" below that). 

 

Further question to ask, CUC- snails have me concerned after LFS mention of potential ammonia bombs should they disappear and perish - Seabass I would welcome your views too- is there much truth to this?

 

CUC (and currently display wants) are hermit crab, maybe a sand sifting starfish as alternative to a snail or similar. I'm very open to compatible suggestions. Feather duster worms are also a strong candidate. 

 

Overstocking has been my folly in the past when I last did a FOWLR tank, and I don't wish to repeat.

 

I'm quite willing (career is one of science, albeit with trees) to perform the experiment route and go for the coral frags added, although i won't be able to get to purchase until the day 7 point of the tank being active, I take it day 1 refers to the first day post cycle water change? Is this even needed in the case of a skip cycle system? 

 

Thank you in advance for all the input. 

 

W.

 

 

 

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On 10/3/2022 at 2:05 AM, TheCoffeeReef said:

Further question to ask, CUC- snails have me concerned after LFS mention of potential ammonia bombs should they disappear and perish - Seabass I would welcome your views too- is there much truth to this?

Once the biofilter has been built up, I wouldn't worry that much about ammonia.  However, you should check on your livestock and remove any dead or dying animals.

 

On 10/3/2022 at 2:05 AM, TheCoffeeReef said:

CUC (and currently display wants) are hermit crab, maybe a sand sifting starfish as alternative to a snail or similar. I'm very open to compatible suggestions. Feather duster worms are also a strong candidate. 

You can't keep a sand sifting star in a 5.8 gallon tank.  They feed off of life in the sand bed, and need at least a 75 gallon tank (even if you target feed).   The others should be fine.  You could keep a small Goby in there, or a cleaner shrimp.

 

On 10/3/2022 at 2:05 AM, TheCoffeeReef said:

e, I take it day 1 refers to the first day post cycle water change? Is this even needed in the case of a skip cycle system? 

Actually, I believe he was referring to the day that bottled bacteria is added.

 

However, as I was arguing, this might be premature depending on the amount of ammonia present, the dead and/or dying organic matter, along with how much ammonia the biofilter can handle.  Safety can be determined by test kits.  It has worked for years.

 

Is it possible (as Brandon suggests) to save a few bucks on test kits based on a set of assumptions?  I think that you potentially can in some cases.

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brandon429

Skip cycle means you can add coral on day one, as conventions do for decades

 

Cuc will follow the same rules for you that they follow in anyone's tank. If some die, your system handles it without crashing. There isn't a way to make your issue complicated, it's skip cycle rock and nothing will go wrong. 

 

Regarding the light: the way to verify it is to pull up threads using the light and see what it grows, this is the ideal way to vet any light purchases 

 

* we aren't expecting the lfs to agree, these are new methods to forums but most lfs owners are familiar with the concept of skip cycling, they exchange substrate and rock and animals all day long without depending on bottle bac

 

 

 

based on all these tanks that did the job as stated without loss, risk, fear or any invented risks we can proceed:

 

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/a-thread-tracking-pure-skip-cycle-instant-reefs-no-bottle-bac.794146/

 

anything we do in this thread has already been applied for years on other sites.  We are making a nano-reef.com version

 

*what can be learned if we just copy all other cycling threads? It's a set of folks disagreeing over what api reads... all with varying start dates, nobody's tank can make a reef convention if invited

 

Nobody discusses fish disease preps like fallow and quarantine, common cycle threads are simple nitrite or ammonia debates. Based on testing, from non digital kits...

 

we want to be different here in every way: any tank posting will get an exact start date stated upon first post feedback, no ranging dates, can make the convention. No testing, we use known # of days the rock has been in contact with saltwater to assign cycle ready dates, referencing the ammonia line from a cycling chart primarily. 

 

There is no ammonia testing in this thread unless it's hanna or seneye, that's how we keep made up fears at bay. All other cycle threads want api and red sea information, but not us-to be different. We stand out from other cycle threads by already knowing what ammonia will do, and by when, as compared to a cycling chart in each build. You get to skip ramp up time bc someone else did the ramp up long before you and wet surfaces don't lose bacteria. A cycle can't be starved, stalled, or undone in common home settings. 

 

Watch how well our cycles time for completion never using tests, even on dry rock cycles coming up. 

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TheCoffeeReef

Thanks for that both, I'll be looking through that link and planning my CUC and leaving the starfish alone. 

 

Will post images as I progress. 

 

W.

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brandon429

I always had the idea once I worked up to the starfish, the way to overcome their common starvation trending in tanks/ slow decline is just to feed them

 

I can't imagine a starfish on earth that would reject a long feeder pipette, such as Julian Sprungs the thing feeder, with rods feed + reef nutrition roti feast injected right into its center console lol

They would eat it and be fed. Then we could do increased water changes, to handle the increased feeding, all in plan to house a starfish the right way

 

 

Opposite of what the masses do: input starfish into tank, take no change in action/ it melts away. Have the habit of slightly higher salinity at .024-5 and temps around 78-80 and you can do water changes unlimited to keep nutrients in check, to handle exceptional feeding habits, to keep exceptional animals

 

Your tank/ skip cycle rocks have this ability.

 

As this thread proceeds with examples slowly over time, watch how we're never in doubt about what ammonia is doing

 

 

*any risk you read about for a stall, an incomplete cycle, a failure to control ammonia is simply a relay from someone else's non digital ammonia measurement

 

it's made up fear, with no linkable threads to show it occurring in digitally- measured reefs; a lark indeed. 

 

When you study digital ammonia measurement threads, seneye for example, you readily see that only the non digital test owners bicker over ammonia control, doubting it routinely. There are so many thousands of seneye reefs posting online, on fb, in forums, that we can easily see what ammonia does in cycling and in all reef tanks. Even when the tester is missing... we aren't likely to see seneye readings here but we'll be operating in hopes to get spot checked by someone with a seneye 🙂 We will pass the audit

 

Fish disease from skipping simple quarantine and fallow preps is the #1 killer of fish in the hobby. Cycling has killed so few fish, I don't expect to see one single example posted we can read of the event in this thread. It's all delayed disease onset or acclimation issues non stated in the description post.

 

We can notice here that all cycling charts in books or online media for decades, 50+ years, show inherent ammonia compliance by day ten and it doesn't come back up as a hover, in any chart. 

 

Cycle fear advocates are trying to tell you that the charts are wrong; the ammonia line rises back up for some

 

And all they have to upend 50+ years of data are api ammonia posts, that won't do. 

 

go to google and search "cycling a reef tank with bottle bacteria and fish"

 

exclude any results I'm posted in lol/bias, read the ones I'm not in.

 

 

when you click the tank, are the fish fine? every link you read for 400000 pages of search returns, no dead fish?

 

ammonia control comes right out of the bottle, or we'd be seeing dead cycling fish in those 400000 pages of search returns.

 

they're all wins, give that search a try. that's inherent ammonia control, right out of the bottle, skip cycle via retail purchase right before our eyes. api read as positive for ammonia bc that's what api reads in most reef tanks, anyone reading api threads .25/.5 can see. 

 

 

*every skip cycle, bottle bac cycle or tank transfer or sandbed swap we do here is based on the fact the ammonia line from a cycling chart does not rise back up after day ten. it runs every concept we'll apply here. The only way to stand out from all other cycle threads that are posted to the internet is to be resolved, calm and assured about ammonia right from the start. we're underway doing that.

 

 

if everyone's fish and corals live just fine, we're dealing in good science.

 

if I kill some fish and coral, that's bad science. a clear demarcation has been made, it's based on how animals do vs a cheap test kit.

 

We will get the maximum fish life retention % by factoring disease preps used by Humblefish and Jay once your cycle is deemed ready for a given setup here. 

 

a skip cycle reef can move right into disease preps and the highest quality feeding (along with the water changes to export excellent feeding habits) and any system here will thrive. 

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On 10/3/2022 at 6:38 AM, brandon429 said:

we want to be different here in every way: any tank posting will get an exact start date stated upon first post feedback, no ranging dates, can make the convention. No testing, we use known # of days the rock has been in contact with saltwater to assign cycle ready dates, referencing the ammonia line from a cycling chart primarily. 

Can you provide the timeline (and/or cycling chart) that you refer to?

 

I believe that what you are actually proving, is that low ammonia levels might not be as deadly as was once thought (and not that elevated ammonia levels don't exist, or that kits which detect these levels are wrong).  I'd like to see what levels of NH3 are actually proven to be safe.  And by safe, I'd prefer that we aren't just talking about deaths.  It's almost like saying that cyanide is safe or toxic.  Apple seeds contain cyanide, but won't cause any real problems until the level gets high enough.

 

Your disregard for "non-digital" kits seems to be a point of convenience.  These kits are showing actual positive reactions to ammonia.  However, if you are actually making a point that these low levels don't cause death, then I agree.

 

On 10/3/2022 at 6:38 AM, brandon429 said:

There is no ammonia testing in this thread unless it's hanna or seneye, that's how we keep made up fears at bay.

That doesn't seem very scientific.  What might be more helpful would be:

  1. Getting a certified lab to test different samples and compare them against the digital and traditional ammonia test kits which are available to us.  Then we would know if a certain test should be discounted or adjusted for.
  2. Assembling a chart showing safe NH3 levels for different types of livestock (individual fish species, coral types, zooplankton, and other inverts).  Ideally this would list what levels are: no risk, an intermediate risk, or a high risk to the species in question.

 

On 10/3/2022 at 7:29 AM, brandon429 said:

any risk you read about for a stall, an incomplete cycle, a failure to control ammonia is simply a relay from someone else's non digital ammonia measurement

I totally agree that nitrogen cycles don't stall; but they aren't linear either.  On a cycling line graph, the ammonia line curves; it doesn't just consistently drop or fall off a cliff.

timeline1.jpg

In addition, we commonly see slightly elevated ammonia levels reported after an ammonia spike  These levels are usually safe and don't typically result in loss of any livestock.  Finally, ammonia levels in tanks with livestock never really hit an absolute zero.  A lab can even detect measurable amounts of ammonia in samples taken from the ocean.

 

Technically most nitrogen cycles are incomplete (in that they don't convert nitrate into nitrogen gas).  This is because there is a lack of anaerobic zones supporting denitrification, which are not typically plentiful in most nano reefs.

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brandon429

 

 no seneye data, you invalidate it because it goes against false cycling science timing in every possible way so any reference to digital nh3 trending is omitted from all your posts. 

 

it's not linear/the ammonia drop. it's day one on all fish-in cycles with bottle bac. my point of day ten reference is you're safe to reef in most settings/we will identify the ones that aren't safe/those are rare. 

 

why not just go build a work example thread using opposite means?

 

 

hit your ignore button

 

we reef oppositely, I request that you don't attempt to derail future work threads / select ignore/ we will never agree on cycling science. 

 

 

 

 

 

we have already been testing day 10 cycles for 33 pages/3 years at rtr. this is intended to be a new one with new examples all from nano-reef.com tanks

 

 once we get a lost tank/recycle loss we can legit review the causes. 

 

 

I only want this to be a collection of reef action wins or fails, that simple. start a separate thread to critique my methods and have your own work threads linked for the read, I promise not to try and derail anything you have ever posted to this site. I now demand that same standard from you, I'm aware you won't honor it so just hit ignore permanently.

 

 

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brandon429

For the folks who chat with me in messages, see why that's better? how many times have we argued in the past 5 years over a chat job? anyone's nano reef fail to run correctly? 

 

only in the upper strata posting do you get pageslong arguing without an actual tank as the example. in chat, we built your reef and that was such an objective example to consider/it prevented us from ever disagreeing.

 

results are the only thing that matters in cycling challenges. 

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brandon429

Seabass, I can see you're still typing here, about to respond, that's unfortunate. I can tell you will not stop arguing in my posts no matter how direct the request is.

 

it's open game on other's threads/free speak. this one was my intended work thread of examples

 

have you seen me post in any of your threads to wreck them? one time in twenty years? I left you to work your own ways this whole time/respond in kind.

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Sorry, I see your point.  It's your thread, and I didn't intend to derail it.  I actually agree that fears about ammonia toxicity have traditionally been overblown; and that your approach shouldn't cause ammonia poisoning.  I just feel that traditional testing allows us to monitor levels and better understand why:  A Look at Ammonia

 

I don't want to ignore all of your posts because I feel that you often provide good content and have good intentions.  Plus, I've learned a lot from our past discussions, and have valued our debates.  I could address your statements above, but I'll try to comply with your request not to sidetrack this thread.

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brandon429

Now that peace has been spoken on both sides, clean start. 

 

 

If anyone prefers to have your cycle job ran in chat to avoid all arguments, we can do that it's been working for years but it does not evolve cycling science when it's out of the public view.

 

If you'd like to contribute to our collective cycle studies using uncommon rules then post here and from this point on we can continue without issue. 

 

Your tanks will have a known start date after any job we undertake, based on patterns from tanks that came before, your fish won't die and you won't lose anything to a tank recycle. that's how we'll handle jobs upcoming and results will guide the evaluations. if we need to know ammonia levels for a given job, I'll ask immediately first sentence in the assessment. 

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TheCoffeeReef

Honestly, this is one of the nicest moments I've seen for de-escalation of a difference of views. Thanks both for replying with your insights. 

 

Brandon, I've followed your threads through now on Reef.com and I'm certainly curious enough to test the waters with this method, I've a healthy scepticism to established methods centered around products, which I'm sure in time could be leveled at Seneye data and digital monitoring, however it does establish a baseline that the reagent test kits struggle with; consistency of application.

 

I'm not in a position to stock the tank with it's first life until likely the 10 day point, so I feel I'm sadly not going to contribute to the day one for a true skip cycle example, however if it's of use I'll be happy to chart my experience from the point I add my first higher life to it. 

 

Image attached of tank at 3 days.

 

 

IMG-20221004-WA0014.jpeg

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brandon429

that’s great rock 🙂

 

you can still test easily the skip cycle offer: don’t add any bottled bacteria to the tank and don’t feed anything until you stock it. That rock sitting in water is same as where it came from, just don’t add bottle bac and even if you take twenty days to stock some test loading it’s a legit demo of skip cycling, thank you for your input and follow up so much on our first example run

 

 

if your rock came wet from a pet store we consider it skip cycle rock because not once in twenty years has anyone been tricked by a pet store who barely submerged dry rock for one hour before selling it as live rock. In every case known so far, wet = bacteria and bacteria on high surface area rock = skip cycle.

 

we see curing time needed for ocean rocks packed in extra life but that kind above is set in tank/ reef on 

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TheCoffeeReef

That's cool, in which case I'll update once I've stock added and begin to feed.

 

I'm thrilled I've just witnessed my first two recognisable organisms in the tank. 

 

One I believe is a feather duster worm, the other I'm unsure on? 

 

A question to ask; what would be the expected outcome to the skip cycle if you added copepods to try and get an establishment of them going prior to any livestock? Is this even something to consider doing?

 

Thanks for the advice and information so far.

FD Pico_edited.jpeg

_KS_5331_edited.jpeg

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mcarroll
On 10/2/2022 at 11:30 PM, seabass said:

And while the nitrogen cycle is absolutely essential, ammonia spikes are not.

🙏👏  The way ammonia spikes are pursued these days, you'd think Dr Tim himself was going door to door handing out Blue Ribbons for them!!  🤷‍♂️😒

 

 

On 10/2/2022 at 11:30 PM, seabass said:

I feel that it would be more helpful to know what levels of NH3 are considered safe (not acute toxicity, where there is 50% mortality).

You aren't wrong!!!  

 

I suspect the problem is that the definition you (and we) would like to have, would be highly variable...possibly even down to the genera or species level.

 

First

While ammonia can be toxic, I think we, collectively, have built the problem up to be larger than it really is.  (As usual.)

 

Having ammonia in the blood is a normal and necessary condition for critters that consume protein (i.e. all?) – and so, therefore, there are ways to tolerate its existence.  

 

Given that level of prevalence, ammonia is not likely to have immediate lethal/pain effects at ordinary exposure levels.  (And we observe this to be true all the time, as you've posted more than once – our tanks run at "undetectable" level of ammonia, not zero.  

 

This distinction from "zero ammonia" is crucial (and unavoidable) once you step away from ammonia as a simple filtration concept or pollutant.

 

Second

Different critters have different levels and methods of tolerance for this ammonia.  From my current understanding, the methods involved in tolerance are quite diverse.  

 

BUT...

 

What level of ammonia is "ordinary" for the critter you're considering??   Some critters can tolerate EXTREME levels of ammonia in their blood while others have much less tolerance.

 

An extreme example to illustrate the capability of tolerating ammonia is the Pacific hagfish.  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25499242/

 

This brief description of our own (human) adaptation to ammonia is even helpful IMO: (from: https://openoregon.pressbooks.pub/nutritionscience/chapter/6d-protein-digestion-absorption/)

Quote

In order to use amino acids [from food] to make ATP, glucose, or fat, the nitrogen first has to be removed in a process called deamination, which occurs in the liver and kidneys. The nitrogen is initially released as ammonia, and because ammonia is toxic, the liver transforms it into urea. Urea is then transported to the kidneys and excreted in the urine. Urea is a molecule that contains two nitrogens and is highly soluble in water. This makes it ideal for transporting excess nitrogen out of the body.

 

Because amino acids are building blocks that the body reserves in order to synthesize other proteins, more than 90 percent of the protein ingested does not get broken down further than the amino acid monomers.

 

Third

The ammonia molecule itself changes dramatically (including its toxicity) based on salinity, temperature and pH.  As these parameters get bigger, generally speaking, ammonia gets more toxic.  (And vis versa....so low pH and temperature in your fish shipping bag is a godsend rather than problems per se.). Maybe it's worth pointing out that newbs tend to focus on having high pH and activities go along with elevating pH...AND ALSO have issues (eg fish disease, et al) that relate to ammonia toxicity?

 

Last

Almost all the research I've seen on fish and ammonia focuses on high-density aquaculture, and so on very high concentration of livestock, high concentration of ammonia, disease, etc.   This isn't the best way to phrase research on the topic if it were being done in our interests.   We would like to know the lower-end tolerance levels for a given type of fish under LOW DENSITY conditions.  I'd like to see fishy research on ammonia effects done with this focus.  But we can still learn some things from the research that's out there!

 

In summary, the folks that make ammonia tests seem to know all these things.  I like the grading of their range of concern:

image.thumb.png.e14dcc7cd27828ae566e64b68b4e2153.png

My read of it...

  • Up to 0.05 ppm problems are unlikely.
  • Up to 0.20 ppm you need to be observant for signs of stress and ready to take action.
  • Above 0.50 ppm you should be taking some action to remove or detoxify ammonia.

 

I've always thought this was a very reasonable scale.

 

The effects of ammonia on invertebrates is more intriguing (and mystifying) to me.  Would like to see ANY references on this.

 

 

[Author's Note:  The website bugged out during editing (while clicking on a word in the editor) and simultaneously saved AND double-posted the save!  LOL.  I never quite finished my draft, but I guess I'll be done now.]

Edited by mcarroll
Clicking in the edit field during editing (on the word "deamination") my post was simultaneously saved AND double-posted....it gave me a message about my posts being merged afterward. I never hit save!. LOL
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brandon429

You just found proof of benthic organisms, fanworms, that prove this is skip cycle rock covered in our example link from rtr that's a big deal clue you found for proofing. Coralline is a great one too where applicable

 

Coffee Reef thank you for your patience and feedback of these details to help us stay on track

 

We are using opposite rules here vs the norm, MC's post with a non digital ammonia meter is opposite of what we do, I can tell there's going to be push back if someone wants to set up shop in a thread here that isn't in line with other businesses on the block. 

 

And the result of you buying living rock the pet store said was living, was that you got attached animals that take months to generate and adhere, which proves all ammonia-controlling bacteria are in place. 

 

I discussed visual benthic cues twenty times in the linked example read of skip cycle rocks who never buy an alert badge, thank you Coffee for relaying them here as a continuance. if someone's alert badge misreads, or is expired and they don't say that in a thread, then 100% of the umpires agree the cycle is broken (and that all charts are wrong)

 

we don't want to go down that path here, it's digital or nothing in this thread. Hanna makes a $59 digital nh4 meter we accept, and seneye makes a $180 one. hach has a lab-quality one for a grand+ but I've never seen anyone use one on a forum post before.

 

 

On this thread, stated in opening post, we don't want non digital ammonia kits that's what makes this thread unique among cycle posts 

 

 

Coffee you did not post about ammonia, I simply thank you for the bump and the first job completed using updated cycling science instead of trying to force change the threads direction.

 

We are getting to test in your tank exactly what we need to test to forward updated cycling science, thank you. 

 

There are no live rocks with attached organisms that are so new underwater they don't have cycling bac. Any rock that comes from that holding vat is now verified for total ammonia control, as much as any tested rock will perform. 

 

 Any hint that some systems can't control enough ammonia, and some can, comes from non digital ammonia testing. That's old cycling science, anytime you read of fear of stall or half completion... that's old cycling science (digital measures show no stalls no half cycles)

*this is not said to prompt a two page written counter argument by anyone, it's an explanation of why page page 10 on this thread we will have tanks that carry fish with no recycles or stalls or lost setups. That is the best explanation I can find for the patterns already on file, and for what's coming here in this unique testless cycle thread. 

 

We all stack rocks like a wall in the middle of the tank, it's a scaled repeating thing all reefers do, so the tanks control ammonia in scale... see any calibrated seneye owners logs. 

 

this thread is set apart from all other cycle threads MC so I'll ask you please don't try and blend us in with the old ways. 

 

Can I get permission from the gatekeepers on nano reef.com to just work my own thread as a testless cycling thread?

 

Once we fail, then pounce, not before. 

 

 

Sit back chill, take note on outcomes coming for any type of cycle, no tests. Testless cycling is coming here. Press for testing in the regular cycling threads.

 

once we get to page ten of working tank examples, using no tests and nobody had trouble with their tank carrying fish I will be highly interested to see your analysis on how we got there.

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TheCoffeeReef

Update to the tank- day 8 of the reef and so far. 

 

  • 4ltr water change done.
  • Green Star Polyp frag added 2 days ago.
  • 1 x Halloween Hermit crab added 2 days ago.
  • Live copepods added to generate some supply for potential additions.
  • Reef roids bought to supplement feed the GSP and liverock. Dose is absolutely minimal as such a small water volume. 
  • Drip acclimated new inhabitants, lights on very low blue spectrum only for 14 hours. Normal cycle followed.

Images of the new guys now- all seems good. Salinity checked daily, solid 1.025. 

 

Sgt Gerrero Day 2_edited.jpeg

GSP Day 2-1_edited.jpeg

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brandon429

great update pics, super sharp there/better than any of my gear can do for macros. that's the only way I do reefing/the skip option. aka pet store translocation reefing

 

if I had to wait years for white rock to turn into that, and go through six generations of dinos and cyano and barrenness to look like that, I'd like the hobby less.

 

 

that's a very reefy look, without having to wait to 2025 which is why that's my favorite method. 

 

This is my personal prediction on disease emergence numbers for pico/nano reefs who skip disease preps and just make use of that rock's ability:

 

-you get some portion of a boost above white rock. Pattern watchers in Jay's disease forum at rtr, as well as disease posting at Humblefish's site, have spotted a small trending in disease suppression by those use who real live rock, but not much.

 

the key is fish speciation it seems

 

nano-reef.com is 20+ years of folks keeping two clowns and a goby just fine, pretty much (bulk majority of jobs since start= live rock transfer tanks. dry rock trending is 2012 on up so we're at halfway breakpoint...live rock skip cycles are now the minority cycle option/dry is #1 and now disease trending is up a little here, enough that HF posts here)

 

**in 2005, disease trending was nil. I saw it live time the whole time here, we didn't even factor it. something has changed, we must factor it now.

 

so if you stock two clowns and a goby, expecting low disease outbreaks is reasonable. if you feed well, change water / great environ

 

Once you speciate beyond those fish too much you bring in collection activities, regional sourcing changes due to access patterning in marine fish and we'd better be following Jay's and Humblefish's threads for prep

 

because

 

of all the people with multispeciate tanks who skip preps and claim all the wins/have the unicorn ability it seems

 

none of them run disease correction threads. Jay and Humblefish do, we'd defer to their protocols until someone shows up with more work threads corrections using alternate means. 

 

because Jay and Humblefish get stat significant results with their methods  over no prep tanks (qt and fallow; clean fallow on new stocks as well/true fallow habit) they have the strongest fish retention science of the day.

 

This is not said to bait anyone or cause arguments, it's a direct summary of twenty years of reading web posts on fish aquariums obsessively. it's the sum total of how I see it.

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TheCoffeeReef

Thanks Brandon, 

 

If my updates are better placed on a journal forum thread, please let me know- I appreciate what this thread is seeking to achieve and I'm certainly keen to see if anyone else takes the plunge to test the methodology.

 

I know what you mean about the timescales - I strongly believe impatience and the wrong set up method is what leads to many early issues- I've done the rushed stocking and overstocking before, and much is because I wanted to see what I'd seen in magazines and online; mature reef scapes and healthy fish colonies.

 

I'm hoping to get better with the photography as I go, part of my incentive for this is another subject to record via photography, another hobby.

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