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hockeyref88
04-02-2008, 02:40 PM
So I started a cichlid tank 2 months ago and its been going great. water parameters have been fine throughout. It is now time for a water change. It is a 80 gallon tank and I plan on a 20% water change. My question is, when adding the appropriate amouint of lake salt, do I just add it to a small bucket of water for mixing and add the remainder of the water without salt or should I mix in a little bit into 5 gallon buckets at a time??

hockeyref88
04-03-2008, 12:15 AM
So I asked this question this morning. No one on here has an answer to this????........................OK

jbeining75
04-03-2008, 12:17 AM
Put the salt in your fish net and hang it in the tank.... Let the filter streams dissolve it into the tank.

Nautilus291
04-03-2008, 12:17 AM
well it depends. the first couple of times you should add it in 5 gallon buckets but make sure you measure how much you have to add. then once you get the hang of it you can add it to one bucket and fill the rest of the tank up with water.

xoolooxunny
04-03-2008, 12:19 AM
I don't have a cichlid tank, but I think I would mix enough for the 16g your taking out into one 5g bucket. put the 2 regular 5g bucket fulls in first, then the mix with the last one. Or you could always just put the 15g back in and add the salt directly to the water.

whenever i add ferts and such, i always put it in after the water is filled back up and the filter is running again.

hockeyref88
04-03-2008, 12:30 AM
Thanks for your imput guy's

smcurry83
04-03-2008, 01:11 AM
I don't use salt, but....

I would add all the regular water first. Then put all the salt in the last bucket you put into the tank. That's what I'd do....

Dixie
04-04-2008, 05:20 PM
I don't use it either but would do it like smcurry83 said and be sure it's dissolved first.

You got by going 2 months without a water change? Most people do a 50% water change weekly. That's what I was told and do anyway for my 55g.. Even then I'm so heavily stocked that I sometimes have to do an added 20% change mid week also because of nitrates. I'm even thinking about doing 75% changes so maybe I can get down to just one change a week. I guess having a bigger tank (80g.) does help. They do say bigger is better and easier. Just out of curiosity,how many fish do you have in the 80g.?

hockeyref88
04-04-2008, 09:46 PM
Yeah I got by 2 months without a water change.............I was cycling the tank and changing the water during the cycle just prolongs the cycling process. I only fed them every other day and the Cycle went smooth as silk. Water parameters were great throughout cycle. Even when I decided to do the water change finally. Am-0, NO2-0, NO3-20, PH-8.4. I really could have gone longer but I did the change and it went great. The advise I was given was very helpful. Thanks to all who answered my question.

:19:
Rick

Wild Turkey
04-04-2008, 10:11 PM
Yeah I got by 2 months without a water change.............I was cycling the tank and changing the water during the cycle just prolongs the cycling process. I only fed them every other day and the Cycle went smooth as silk. Water parameters were great throughout cycle. Even when I decided to do the water change finally. Am-0, NO2-0, NO3-20, PH-8.4. I really could have gone longer but I did the change and it went great. The advise I was given was very helpful. Thanks to all who answered my question.

:19:
Rick

I would suggest doing water changes more often, if for nothing else than water clarity, if you continue to do water changes every two months ur gonna have a lot of crud build up and it will raise ur A lvls eventually

hockeyref88
04-04-2008, 10:36 PM
I don't want to sound like an A-hole, but did you read my post???? The tank was cycling. If you change water during the cycle it takes longer to cycle. I just started this tank on Febuary 7th. Of course I will do water changes more often, now that the tank has CYCLED. Thanks for commenting though.

hockeyref88
04-04-2008, 10:43 PM
I don't use it either but would do it like smcurry83 said and be sure it's dissolved first.

You got by going 2 months without a water change? Most people do a 50% water change weekly. That's what I was told and do anyway for my 55g.. Even then I'm so heavily stocked that I sometimes have to do an added 20% change mid week also because of nitrates. I'm even thinking about doing 75% changes so maybe I can get down to just one change a week. I guess having a bigger tank (80g.) does help. They do say bigger is better and easier. Just out of curiosity,how many fish do you have in the 80g.?

I forgot to say how many fish I have in there. 16 total............14 mbuna's and 2 catfish. As far as water changes go, I change the water in all my tanks once my NO3 gets to 20 and I test the water every other day in all of them including my Koi Pond. My water in all my tanks is crystal clear so I don't see the need to change it until the nitrates start getting high.

Wild Turkey
04-04-2008, 10:46 PM
I don't want to sound like an A-hole, but did you read my post???? The tank was cycling. If you change water during the cycle it takes longer to cycle. I just started this tank on Febuary 7th. Of course I will do water changes more often, now that the tank has CYCLED. Thanks for commenting though.

Lol i dont mean to sound like an A hole but i didnt suggest that you water change while cycling, and i wouldnt either unless you mistakenly used fish. But what i did say is if you CONTINUE to do so that would happen :) Did you read MY post? ty for the ty for the comment though. 75% water changes may be a little much, but im not the sw guy so u know.

fins_n_fur
04-04-2008, 10:47 PM
We're gonna shake hands now, right? Please?

hockeyref88
04-04-2008, 10:56 PM
Absolutely!!

fins_n_fur
04-04-2008, 10:59 PM
Thanks! I figured it was that, or you both would deck me LOL

Wild Turkey
04-04-2008, 11:00 PM
Absolutely!!

Lol of course! Misunderstanding is the number 1 starter of bs. We're both just crackin' wise. :19:

ILuvMyGoldBarb
04-04-2008, 11:00 PM
When I had my Malawis I had a bit bigger container so I was able to mix it all at once, but I used to premix my water before I added it to the tank.

hockeyref88
04-04-2008, 11:03 PM
I didnt mistakenly use fish. I used fish. Cichlids are very hardy and by feeding every other day the water parameters were fine through out the cycle. I didn't lose one fish and they were fine through out. I know most on this forum are for a fishless cycle and I would agree with some types of fish but The guy's at my LFS who have been keeping fish forever advised me on this and they have really not been wrong for me before.

Wild Turkey
04-04-2008, 11:10 PM
I didnt mistakenly use fish. I used fish. Cichlids are very hardy and by feeding every other day the water parameters were fine through out the cycle. I didn't lose one fish and they were fine through out. I know most on this forum are for a fishless cycle and I would agree with some types of fish but The guy's at my LFS who have been keeping fish forever advised me on this and they have really not been wrong for me before.

Kudos to u for no fish dying. However that doesnt mean it doesnt make the fish uncomfortable. But now that you have a cycled tank you wont have to worry about it anymore. I wish i could trust any of my lfs' theres probably about 4 of them and 95% of the people that work in them are morons.

Dixie
04-04-2008, 11:48 PM
Amen to that. You are soooo lucky to have a LFS that you can trust. I cycled with some cichlids too but I didn't know what I was doing starting out. I didn't loose any though so I figure they are pretty hardy. Someone told me I might have caused them some damage that will shorten their lifespan. Anyone know how long a cichlids lives anyway?

Wild Turkey
04-05-2008, 12:11 AM
Amen to that. You are soooo lucky to have a LFS that you can trust. I cycled with some cichlids too but I didn't know what I was doing starting out. I didn't loose any though so I figure they are pretty hardy. Someone told me I might have caused them some damage that will shorten their lifespan. Anyone know how long a cichlids lives anyway?

Depends on the species some live very long

RainMan
04-05-2008, 02:02 PM
So I started a cichlid tank 2 months ago and its been going great. water parameters have been fine throughout. It is now time for a water change. It is a 80 gallon tank and I plan on a 20% water change. My question is, when adding the appropriate amouint of lake salt, do I just add it to a small bucket of water for mixing and add the remainder of the water without salt or should I mix in a little bit into 5 gallon buckets at a time??

You definitely want to change the water while cycling a tank with fish. The more the better. But, you made it through it so good for you. Cichlids can be tough little buggers!


Put the salt in your fish net and hang it in the tank.... Let the filter streams dissolve it into the tank.

I've never done that... but, that's a pretty cool idea. Seachems salt is really fine though... so, it might not work well using a net. But, that course aquarium salt would probably work well with this method.


I don't use salt, but....

I would add all the regular water first. Then put all the salt in the last bucket you put into the tank. That's what I'd do....

That's a good way of doing it. Another way.... is to use a small pitcher to disolve and dillute the salt and slow pour it in proportionally as you fill up the tank. Depends on how I am adding water back in... if I am filling straight from the tap... I use the pitcher method. If I am doing small water changes with buckets... I mix and disolve it into the last container.... or I'll mix and dislolve it in each container (I use the concentration recommended to the ammount of water in the container).


....Someone told me I might have caused them some damage that will shorten their lifespan. Anyone know how long a cichlids lives anyway?

Avg lifespan for cichlids is 4-10yrs depending on species and a number of other variables (feeding, water temps, aggression, stress). Most will live to be in the upper part of that range. I've never heard that the cycling would reduce their lifespan. Probably not enough to notice.. I doubt there is a long term affect if they are taken care of after the cycle period.

Dixie
04-06-2008, 08:38 PM
Good. That makes me feel alot better. Thanks RainMan.
Yep, I was closely monitoring the water and doing daily if not twice daily water changes for a while during cycling. Those high ammonia then nitrite readings were really frightening. It was SUCH a relief when I got through it. Now I'm fighting high nitrates lol. Hopefully that won't be such a problem when I get a bigger tank.

RainMan
04-06-2008, 09:37 PM
Nitrate problem is why I am down to 4 cichlids and 2 synodontis.... Now I'm fighting with aggression. LOL Can't win with cichlids in a medium size tank! IIRC, you have quite a hefty stock of cichlids. :) Bigger is better when it comes to these guys!

Dixie
04-09-2008, 03:19 PM
What Rainman just said is so true.
Nitrate can get to be a problem... I usually do a 50% water change once a week and alot of times midweek a 25% change too (trying to keep the nitrates under 40).

Aggression can be a problem... I started our tank at the end of this past summer and have added fish all along. I always buy small young ones and have never had any aggression until recently. It's because some of my fish are maturing now. When they are young they get along fine but once they start to mature look out.

You can't win with cichlids in a medium size tank... I have a 55g. that I thought was huge and is ok for some cichlids. It might be ok if you are very careful about which one's you get and try to mix with others. Also is you're careful to have the male to female ratio right and the total number in general right but even with a 55g. I've found out bigger than that is better.

I don't mean to sound discouraging but successfully keeping malawi cichlids is kinda hard unless you do alot of homework on them. First is the water ( I got lucky with having a good pH for them) then trying to keep the toxins down (they need lots of filtration too). Research the fish you like before getting them and find out which ones will go together without alot of fighting or crossbreeding. Really 3 different species of malawi is all that's recommended for a 55g. tank and then there's alot to consider before just throwing 3 different fish together (like I was doing lol). I'm just trying to save you from learning the hard way. Good luck.

Dixie
04-13-2008, 09:29 PM
quote: "I'm just trying to save you from learning the hard way".

This wasn't intended for anyone in particlular lol. Just thinking maybe someone could learn from my mistakes.

The 80g. tank the OP of this thread has could house 5-6 breeding groups of malawi cichlids (going by what I've read). As long as careful consideration is paid to each species. Must be nice to have a tank that size. I can't wait to get a bigger one and my fish are having a hard time waiting too;).

plow
04-19-2008, 08:36 PM
Back to the salt.

I dont understand the issue... just chuck it in the tank and let the current from the filter slowly dissolve it..

whats the issue?

excuse me if Im missing something but thats what I do, no problems so far.

hockeyref88
04-19-2008, 10:18 PM
Back to the salt.

I dont understand the issue... just chuck it in the tank and let the current from the filter slowly dissolve it..

whats the issue?

excuse me if Im missing something but thats what I do, no problems so far.

I have several different species in the tank. I think the key is to have a lot of them so they don't pile up on any one fish. As far as the salt goes, it say's right on the bottle to disolve it in water first before putting it in the tank.

plow
04-20-2008, 06:11 AM
As far as the salt goes, it say's right on the bottle to disolve it in water first before putting it in the tank.

Is that the only reason?

hockeyref88
04-20-2008, 02:53 PM
Is that the only reason?

Isn't that reason enough??

plow
04-20-2008, 03:11 PM
no.

wheres the logic? why?

why not just chuck the salt in the aquarium? it will dissolve.

hockeyref88
04-20-2008, 03:17 PM
Well lets see..............manufacturers recomendation.................Brings the salt content back to normal instantly instead of over the course of hours. But whatever floats your boat, if it your way works for you cool. With my mbuna's, anything I drop in the tank they will try to eat including salt.

plow
04-20-2008, 03:50 PM
With my mbuna's, anything I drop in the tank they will try to eat including salt.

well there ya go, there is a reason, well done.

Ive never had problems with dropping salt directly in the tank, its all dissolved in a few minutes, so I dont see why it should be dissolved just cos a manufacturer says so. If there is sound logic then fair enough. There is no harm in querying manufacturers reccomendations, perhaps someone might learn something from it. Especially in this case wher there is debate about how salt can be introduced to a tank.

ILuvMyGoldBarb
04-20-2008, 04:48 PM
The reason you don't just chuck salt in the tank without dissolving it first is simple actually. If you dissolve the salt first and then add the salt water then you end up dispersing the salt more evenly and more quickly. By simply putting the salt directly into the aquarium you create areas where there is a very heaviy salt concentration, those areas can actually burn the gill tissues of the fish. Is basic understanding of the function of osmoregulation will reveal just what high concentrations of salt does to the fish.

plow
04-20-2008, 05:20 PM
The reason you don't just chuck salt in the tank without dissolving it first is simple actually. If you dissolve the salt first and then add the salt water then you end up dispersing the salt more evenly and more quickly. By simply putting the salt directly into the aquarium you create areas where there is a very heaviy salt concentration, those areas can actually burn the gill tissues of the fish. Is basic understanding of the function of osmoregulation will reveal just what high concentrations of salt does to the fish.


great that is what i was looking for..

thanks a lot. :thumb:

ILuvMyGoldBarb
04-20-2008, 05:22 PM
not a problem. Glad to see you don't do things in your tank just because some manufacturor tells you to. Do the research.

sanddigger
04-21-2008, 01:09 AM
Salt is not neccessary in any Malawi, SA, or in any FW tank, other then BW or SW, then Marine salt applies. Cichlid salt, FW salt, lake salt, is a waste of money. Whatever it's sold as now.??? Money watered down the WC.

You are "chucking your money away". Most use salt (in the so called rock form) in FW to combat illness such as ich.

ILuvMyGoldBarb
04-21-2008, 01:15 AM
sanddigger, Rift Lake salt is not simply NaCl, and it not the same as plain aquarium salt, there is far far more to it than that. The multitude of other elements in it are very benificial to the health of Malawi Cichlids. It's not meant as a preventative method at all, it's for improved help in order to closely match the conditions of Lake Malawi. Is it necessary, no, but it is highly recommended for a Rift Lake setup for good reason.

kitten3326
04-21-2008, 10:54 AM
sanddigger, Rift Lake salt is not simply NaCl, and it not the same as plain aquarium salt, there is far far more to it than that. The multitude of other elements in it are very benificial to the health of Malawi Cichlids. It's not meant as a preventative method at all, it's for improved help in order to closely match the conditions of Lake Malawi. Is it necessary, no, but it is highly recommended for a Rift Lake setup for good reason.


Well said :)