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Just finished fishless cycle on 75 gallon. Nitrates are through the roof. I have done 2, 75% water changes with very little reduction of nitrates. Os it okay to keep doing large water changes to get them down? I'm afraid of messing up my cycle! As of now, it converts 4ppm ammonia in less than 24 hours with 0 nitrites
 

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Yes. The Nitrates will do nothing at this point except cause you problems. It's time to stock the tank with some fish! But, doing a MASSIVE water change to remove those Nitrates out of the water of your aqaurium, just prior to placing the fish in the tank (measure again), will get everything off to a clean, fresh start.
Oh, and do remember to acclimatize your fish S.L.O.W.L.Y to all of that clean fresh water of your aquarium. it's possible they have never been kept in water that is so clean and low in Nitrates! So, to avoid causing water chemistry shock in your fish, adpat them to the water of their new aquarium very slowly/carefully.
Should work out just fine. :)
 

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Thank you so much! I did another massive water change this morning...roughly 90% ( what I could get without disturbing the substrate. Going to retest this afternoon. Fingers crossed, hoping to add some fish tomorrow!
 

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Thank you so much! I did another massive water change this morning...roughly 90% ( what I could get without disturbing the substrate. Going to retest this afternoon. Fingers crossed, hoping to add some fish tomorrow!
Welcome to Cichlid-forum!

Get the nitrates down to 10ppm or lower before adding fish. Be sure to add all the fish at once to maintain your full crop of beneficial organisms that you grew during your cycle.
 

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Sounds like you are in good shape. Add some fish to that clean and dechlorinated water. As long as nitrifying bacteria is wet and has some oxygen available, the research from Florida state university says it will live fine for up to 6 months without more food. I’ve tested this by setting up an old, cycled sump to run in a circle for more than three months with no tank or other food available to feed the bacteria on the k1 media. Then I added ammonia to 8ppm and kept checking. 24 hours later it was at 0 again. No nitrites either. So nitrifying bacteria lasts as long as it’s got oxygen.

So the tank is ready, but there’s no hurry.
 

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the research from Florida state university says it will live fine for up to 6 months without more food. .
Do you have a link to this study? I know there's some pretty new science that says there is a lot of really strong evidence that certain Nitrospira can actually feed aerobic ammonia-oxidizing bacteria in the presence of more complex nitrogenous compounds and can possibly even live off of nitrates and oxygen, but I haven't found any evidence that this applies to the ammonia oxidizing bacteria whether aerobic or anaerobic.

My google-fu must be pretty weak because the only Florida State Study was a pre-published analysis of removing excess nitrogen from sewage before it was reintroduced into the water table and polluting wells.

I'm always excited to read new science.
 

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Do you have a link to this study? I know there's some pretty new science that says there is a lot of really strong evidence that certain Nitrospira can actually feed aerobic ammonia-oxidizing bacteria in the presence of more complex nitrogenous compounds and can possibly even live off of nitrates and oxygen, but I haven't found any evidence that this applies to the ammonia oxidizing bacteria whether aerobic or anaerobic.

My google-fu must be pretty weak because the only Florida State Study was a pre-published analysis of removing excess nitrogen from sewage before it was reintroduced into the water table and polluting wells.

I'm always excited to read new science.
Hi I<3Cichlids,
My mistake. I found the information; in an old book a friend bought me. Here's the info: “The Isolation and Study of Nitrifying Bacteria”, W. Gibbs, 1919. The bacteria in question lasted for 7 years without feeding them. Kinda funny how we've known for 100 years that nitrifying bacteria lasts a long time unattended, but yet the internet is full of people who think their cycle crashed in a matter of days without food. Kinda sad really.
 

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Hi I<3Cichlids,
My mistake. I found the information; in an old book a friend bought me. Here's the info: “The Isolation and Study of Nitrifying Bacteria”, W. Gibbs, 1919. The bacteria in question lasted for 7 years without feeding them. Kinda funny how we've known for 100 years that nitrifying bacteria lasts a long time unattended, but yet the internet is full of people who think their cycle crashed in a matter of days without food. Kinda sad really.
Thanks. I'll have to see if I can find a copy of that somewhere. I'm hesitant to rely on microbial science that's a century old, or grant it as something "that we've always known" and are purposefully obfuscating it for some unknown reason especially given this is research that predates the discovery of Penicillin by a decade. However, I've been surprised before. I'm eager to really hit this with a fine tooth comb. I'll definitely pop back in with any nuggets of pertinent data I find.

Thanks again!
 
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