The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

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The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

Post by jared on September 30th 2010, 8:43 am

I am converting a bare bottom tropical reef aquarium to a temperate biotope aquarium. Naturally I plan to add a chiller and remove the existing livestock and live rock. However, I am considering leaving the water in the aquarium in hopes of speeding up the nitrogen cycle.

Can a nitrifying bacteria population survive the change from tropical to temperate temperatures?

Is the set of nitrifying bacteria species in temperate water significantly different from that of tropical water?

Is porous ceramic filter media a viable alternative to bio balls in a temperate tank?

Are commercial products such as Brightwell Aquatics MicroBacter7 or Nutrafin Cycle effective in temperate aquariums?

Thanks!
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jared
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Re: The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

Post by Michael Milligan on September 30th 2010, 5:33 pm

You can even leave all your stuff in the tank. Just cool it off. The live rock won't hurt anything.

You should certainly not need to cycle the tank again.

There is no difference between temp and trop reefs other thank temp and what lives there.
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Re: The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

Post by jared on September 30th 2010, 6:44 pm

Thanks Michael, that's what I was hoping too. I'm going to give it a try. I have removed everything from the tank except the water and some live rock. I have decided to go ahead and use some porous ceramic filter media as well as some MB7 in hopes of maintaining a healthy bacteria population. I'll post the results here.

Next step is to cool down the tank. As I do that I'll be watching for signs of a cycle.

Does anyone else have input on my questions?
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Re: The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

Post by steveweast on September 30th 2010, 8:15 pm

The main difference between tropical and temperate is the speed at which the bacteria process waste. It takes much more of them to process the temperate bioload than the same tropical bioload (IMO). I recently was having a problem with small amounts of nitrite appearing after adding some rocks (even after a few months). I had to add more bioballs......which solved the problem. Of course, I'm using native basalt rocks which offer few bacterial colonizing opportunities.

I've also experienced the same thing with vodka dosing.....needing three times the amount to have similar results as warm water. the same goes for the new carbon dosing pellets. If a tropical tank needs 500ml....a temperate tank will need 2000ml.

Basically...the colder the water, the slower the bacterial reactions.
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Re: The Temperate Nitgrogen Cycle

Post by Hero on October 1st 2010, 7:56 pm

I might lower the temperature gradually to minimize die off. But everyone else summed it up!

What livestock do you have in their already? I'm not sure if it all would do so well in temperate water.

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