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Thread: Cycle fuge?

  1. #1
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    Cycle fuge?

    I am adding a 20gal refugium this weekend. I am going to be putting in 3" of reef sand along with 20lbs of cured LR. Do I need to let this tank cycle before allowing the water to transfer to my sump tank?

  2. #2
    Senior Member carrhd's Avatar
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    If you plumb it in with your main tank the bugs in the water of your main tank I would think that the bugs in the water in your main tank would very quickly populate the media in your refuge. I plumbed by 10g refuge into the main tank right away and didn't notice any problems.

    Hank.
    220G mixed reef main, 30 G (3 x 10) brood/grow-out, 25 G secondary, 6 G frag with shared sump

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  3. #3
    Moderator cres's Avatar
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    Cycle is one of those words with a couple meanings.

    There is the Ammonia spike, followed by the Nitrite spike, followed by the Nitrate spike. This is a dangerous time for living creatures as the Ammonia can build up to a fatal level. During this time, the bacteria and other benthic life build up to a level that can process the bio load on the system. This is often referred to as the "cycle". This is what nearly always happens with a new tank.

    If you suddenly add a Bio load, or have something die and not remove it, or even add uncured rock with lots of die off, you will see another Ammonia spike, followed by Nitrite and then Nitrate. Some people refer to this a "cycling again".

    But, what you are talking about, I believe, is adding fresh clean sand (nothing to die and cause an Ammonia spike) and some water. Will the new refugium be a good filter right from the get go? No. But, if it is connected to the rest of the system, the rest of the system will handle any load added (typically very low or none).
    Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by cres
    Cycle is one of those words with a couple meanings.

    There is the Ammonia spike, followed by the Nitrite spike, followed by the Nitrate spike. This is a dangerous time for living creatures as the Ammonia can build up to a fatal level. During this time, the bacteria and other benthic life build up to a level that can process the bio load on the system. This is often referred to as the "cycle". This is what nearly always happens with a new tank.

    If you suddenly add a Bio load, or have something die and not remove it, or even add uncured rock with lots of die off, you will see another Ammonia spike, followed by Nitrite and then Nitrate. Some people refer to this a "cycling again".

    But, what you are talking about, I believe, is adding fresh clean sand (nothing to die and cause an Ammonia spike) and some water. Will the new refugium be a good filter right from the get go? No. But, if it is connected to the rest of the system, the rest of the system will handle any load added (typically very low or none).
    Great explanation, thanks! :-)

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