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Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 11:52 AM
Hi, I haven't posted here in quite a while due to illness, but I am back in action and need some help. I have been taking care of fish for over 40 years, but starting a new tank is always a trick for me :-)

OK, it is a 40 gallon tank, and I started it out with only one Pleco because they are a good tough fish to handle the cycling process.

I got about a pound of gravel from the LFS and I also used one dose of Stress Zyme for what it's worth, and when I put in the dirty gravel and Stress Zyme, I got a cloudy effect in the water like New Tank Syndrome after only one hour.

Of course there is no sign of ammonia yet, but there are signs of nitrite and nitrate already. I have 2 questions

Should I leave the Pet store gravel in there for a while? It is ugly :-)
Also, will this clear up on it's own or should I start water changes yet?
Thanks!

Sharon
01-19-2009, 01:07 PM
I'd leave it...you may have a bacterial bloom, which is a good thing, and will clear on it's own. I'm not quite sure why you didn't get Ammonia, though...I would have thought some would be present, if you have Nitrites and Nitrates....

Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 01:13 PM
I'd leave it...you may have a bacterial bloom, which is a good thing, and will clear on it's own. I'm not quite sure why you didn't get Ammonia, though...I would have thought some would be present, if you have Nitrites and Nitrates....

There is only one tiny Pleco in there for one day so I don't think he could generate enough ammonia to show a reading yet.

Unless, by adding the gravel from the pet store, the tank may be just going through a mini cycle and the ammonia is being "eaten" up by the nitrites already? I dunno :-), but I will let it run it's course.

Lady Hobbs
01-19-2009, 01:51 PM
You can not cycle without a source of ammonia........fish or pure ammonia and you have a pleco so you can not now use ammonia. Get some fish in that tank and get that cycle going or take the pleco out and use ammonia.

New tanks are terrible for pleco. They will starve to death in a new tank so get some algae pellets for him.

Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 02:07 PM
You can not cycle without a source of ammonia........fish or pure ammonia and you have a pleco so you can not now use ammonia. Get some fish in that tank and get that cycle going or take the pleco out and use ammonia.

New tanks are terrible for pleco. They will starve to death in a new tank so get some algae pellets for him.

I am feeding him shrimp pellets. He is doing fine.
My question was why I got an immediate biological bloom when I added the pet store gravel and the stress zyme. The Pleco has to be adding the ammonia source, but a little at a time.

I was just a bit concerned as to why the tank went from crystal clear to slightly milky looking in only one hour. It usually takes a while before you get the cycle going.

Lady Hobbs
01-19-2009, 02:56 PM
The stress zyme, I think. It has a slime coating in it. Could be the bacteria in it along with the bacteria in the fish stores gravel combined but it will clear up. Whatcha gonna put in your new tank? I would leave the stores ugly gravel in there for awhile.

Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 03:45 PM
The stress zyme, I think. It has a slime coating in it. Could be the bacteria in it along with the bacteria in the fish stores gravel combined but it will clear up. Whatcha gonna put in your new tank? I would leave the stores ugly gravel in there for awhile.

I believe what you say is true. I trust your opinion greatly on this forum.
As for what to add to my tank?

I just went to the store and added 2 Bahla's. They about a foot each, plus the Pleco, I don't know if I should add anything more

Lady Hobbs
01-19-2009, 03:50 PM
That is plenty. Be prepared to test that water because you have some big fish in there. I wonder if your fish store took them from someone on a trade. Unusual they would have them so large for sale! I am concerned now about the size of those fish in a 40 gallon tank. Bala's need a lot of room for swimming.



You can take the used filter media from your other tank to get a faster cycle too. Or some from the fish store if they are nice enough. Most of that bacteria is right in the filter.

Northernguy
01-19-2009, 03:52 PM
A 40 gallon tank is way to small for foot long fish.They will barely be able to turn around.They may even die just from that.
Take them back or get a bigger tank! Sorry but it sounds like you are setting yourself up for disaster.

Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 04:13 PM
Hobbs,
I think you misunderstood me a bit.
The Bala's are babies and so is the Pleco.
I just mentioned that they do get large.

NORTHERN GUY..
The 40 gallon tank is the same size as my 75 was in height and widht, it is just not as deep.

It all depends on how I set this tank up whether or not I'll have a disaster.
If I add a bunch of rainbow sharks and a clown loach, that could decrease the growth of the Bala's. We'll see. There is plenty of room for them to turn around.

I have a friend who has an arrowana in a 90 gallon tank and everybody told him it was way too small. He has had that fish for 9 years now.

Fish will adapt to their environment.

I am more concerned with the cycle and the bacteria bloom I have right now

karbomb
01-19-2009, 05:04 PM
It all depends on how I set this tank up whether or not I'll have a disaster.
If I add a bunch of rainbow sharks and a clown loach, that could decrease the growth of the Bala's. We'll see.
Fish will adapt to their environment.

i don't think anyone on this forum supports stunting the growth of a fish. it is cruel and should be avoided at all costs, if you want big fish get a big tank.

Cichlid_Man
01-19-2009, 06:24 PM
i don't think anyone on this forum supports stunting the growth of a fish. it is cruel and should be avoided at all costs, if you want big fish get a big tank.

I don't support stunting the growth of fish either. Sorry my post came across that way.
Truth is, I have had fish for over 40 years and my experiences with Bala's are that they will grow to a foot in their true habitat. So, if anybody is cruel, it is the pet shops that sell these fish. They will normally grow to 8 inches in a 40 gallon tank and they will be just fine.
As for the Pleco, He WILL, in fact grow to his full size no matter where he is, and he too will be just fine.
I never had a fish die on me from getting too big.

As I stated before, my original post was regarding cycling the tank, which I now have under control.
Thank you for your input and have a nice day :-)