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When to add mature rock/sand

Discussion in 'Tank Chemistry' started by zombie, Apr 10, 2018.

  1. zombie

    zombie Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    So I have my 65g cycling with a pinch of pellets as an ammonia source, fresh sand, and dry rock that was bleached to remove every bit of organics from it. Ammonia is at 0.25 ppm and nitrate and nitrite are undetectable on the API test kit.

    I added a bottle of bio spira to kickstart bacteria population and tank is still cloudy from that.

    My question is should I wait until the nitrate spike to add a couple scoops of sand and a couple small pieces of live rock from the biocube to seed to maximize the likelihood of microfauna surviving the transfer, or should I add it now to help kickstart the bacteria colonization?
  2. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    It does not matter if you wait, but I would get it in there ASAP. The faster that you get the sand seeded, the better. What the rock is able to contribute will depend on the localized phosphate concentrations bound to the rock as well as the organic matter clogged up into the pores and structure - bleach cannot even touch these. If the rock is clean, then it could be a fast process... but if not, then it could be two years like so many see.

    The key element here is the phosphate content. I recently did a test and dry rock was able to at least hold 350x the volume of P than in the ambient water - I had to stop the test because my tank was starting to get algae and the point was proven already. There are results on RC if you want to read them.

    The bacteria will be fine, even with high nitrate readings. Even if you kill all of the microfauna, they can all come back in on the first rock and frag plug that you put in the tank.. pods, worms, etc. come in on everything.
  3. JuanGutz

    JuanGutz Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    I agree to get it in there right away.
  4. zombie

    zombie Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    That's a good point. I will add some seeding rock/sand tonight.

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