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Despite all of the advice not to cycle with fish I am trying to cycle with fish. I have about 800 litres in my system (just a simple IBC system with a single growbed from the cutoff portion) with 19 small goldfish, 1 medium size, and 2 larger, 150mm, goldfish). 

My ammonia levels have not budged from 0.25ppm, even after going from 10 small fish to my current stock.

No nitrite, or nitrate.

Where is all the fish waste ammonia going if it is not being converted?

What ammonia level is required to kickstart this thing? Can I add extra ammonia even with the fish in there?

I am just collecting a few bits and pieces for another system that will probably be a fishless system. Maybe I should get that system cycling and swap everything over - fish and all.

Thoughts?

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Hi Mike,

As long as you have an ammonia reading your system will cycle eventually. The time it takes will be the same as dosing with more or less ammonia. Please bear in mind that your fish will undergo a very harsh and painful experience and some or all of them may perish during or after cycling.

Hi Harold

Thanks for the advice. I chose this route because I figured that new fish (pet) tank owners cycle with fish and if I did it slowly it would be okay.

Maybe not.

Mike


Harold Sukhbir said:

Hi Mike,

As long as you have an ammonia reading your system will cycle eventually. The time it takes will be the same as dosing with more or less ammonia. Please bear in mind that your fish will undergo a very harsh and painful experience and some or all of them may perish during or after cycling.

You got that right and it's not so fun either, not for you or the fish.

Harold Sukhbir said:

 some or all of them may perish during or after cycling.

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