You Have To Use Them Right
Just like any other tool, there is a right way and a wrong way to use Colony or any imported true nitrifying bacteria. Fish are typically cared for based on their needs and behaviors. Bacteria are the same and deserve the same attention and respect.
Fish come in a bag and bacteria come in a bottle. Because of this, too many consumers don’t associate a bottle of bacteria as being livestock. Bacteria are and must be treated like livestock!
Because the market is saturated with impostor nitrifying bacteria, their instructions obviously aren’t much use and no education is gained in this area. Only confusion remains. This has left the hobby without much knowledge of how to utilize and bring along a true nitrifying bacteria culture such as Colony to its full glory.
Have you ever brought fish home and just chucked them in the aquarium straight away? Of course not. The fish are brought along slowly to most effectively embrace their new environment. Once out of their comfort zone they won’t function properly and might even die. Bacteria require acclimation the same as fish.
In order to acclimate bacteria, it is important not to throw the kitchen sink at them. We see this often in a “fishless” cycle where an ammonia product is used as a surrogate food source to fish waste to the tune of many parts per million. This is not the way to bring bacteria along.
True nitrifying bacteria do not need to be force-fed huge amounts of ammonia to develop. In fact, a light load allows them to nest and start working optimally much faster. That’s the whole point, to do this fast. The point isn’t to throw the kitchen sink at them to see how much of a beating they can take to prove their effectiveness. This isn’t done to fish, corals, or inverts and shouldn’t be done to nitrifying bacteria either. They need what they need so they deserve the same care considerations.
For a more detailed procedure to properly utilize Colony, see our field guide used at industry and home aquaria.