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Cycling tank with Matrix

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I have seachem matrix under my substrate and I am attempting to cycle my tanks via a fishless cycle. I am worried that the Matrix is removing the ammonia before the bacteria get a chance to metabolize it. I dose 4ppm at night and about 24 hours later it is practically 0ppm (tank has only been filled for a week). Has anyone ever cycled a tank with matrix in it?

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Have not used Seachem Matrix so cannot speak from experience tho it makes sense to me that if it removes the ammonia then the bacteria are left with nothing to thrive on.

That or you've just broken a world record for fastest aquarium cycle in history! lol

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haha, I was actually thinking about that while dosing the aquarium on my third bourbon.  Unfortunately I cannot cycle the filter separately as I am using a HMF and UGF. I may grab some media from my planted tank during this weeks water change. Put it in a net bag and drop behind the HMF. I'll keep dosing ammonia daily until then.

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hmmm, reread the Matrix tub and it says its inert, so it should not affect the ammonia in the tank....

 

"Matrix™ is a high porosity biomedia that provides efficient biofiltration for the removal of nitrogenous waste. Matrix™ is a porous inorganic solid about 10 mm in diameter. Each liter of Matrix™ provides as much surface (>~700 m2) as 170 liters of plastic balls! Plastic bio-materials provide only external surface area, whereas Matrix™ provides both external and internal macroporous surface area These macropores are ideally sized for the support of nitrifying and denitrifying bacteria. This allows Matrix™, unlike other forms of biomedia, to remove nitrate along with ammonia and nitrite, simultaneously and in the same filter.

Matrix™ is completely inert and will not breakdown. It need not be replaced. Since the majority of the bacteria are internal, Matrix™ may be rinsed when needed without damaging the filter. Matrix™ is compatible with all types of wet or wet-dry filters."

 

Going to check nitrates tomorrow evening if ammonia has dropped quickly again.

 

My substrate consists of a layer of Seachem Matrix on top of my UFG, then some Aquasand, then mironekuton powder + bacter AE + prodibio and then more AquaSand to top it all off (about 5" in total). Also added another vial of prodibio to the water column after about 5 days.

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This is the advice I was given by a cycling expert and when I say that, he can be a pain in the butt with his research, but he doesn't half know his stuff.

Trying moving the bag of media as far away from the filter as you can so that the bacteria have to migrate to the filter for flow and oxygen. If the bag is left next to the filter the bacteria may stay where they are whilst enjoying the benefits of the flow.

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I only use Matrix. If your tank handles 4ppm in 24 hours, it already has more than enough filtration power for ammonia (AOB). Do listen to Poopian as nitrite is another story, it can take longer as the bacteria for nitrite (NOB) doesn't start to grow until AOB start to convert ammonia to nitrite.

 

Ammonia (NH3/NH4) is consumed by AOB and nitrite (NO2) is produced.

 

Nitrite is consumed by NOB and nitrate (NO3) is produced.

 

So, your tank should have enough AOB colony, but you need to test nitrite to ensure it has enough NOB to form a compete (half) nitrogen cycle needed for aquatic life.

 

Matrix is just filter media, it doesn't do anything to ammonia or nitrite, but the bacteria colony grown on it does.

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It would be Seachem Purigen that would remove the ammonia before the bacteria get a chance to metabolize it.

 

You are good to go in terms of cycling, in fact the matrix is probably helping you colonize bacteria allowing your tank to cycle faster (:

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