New to Aquariums and I Made a Rookie Cycling Mistake
Alright, so a week ago we bought a smaller 6.6 gallon aquarium with the intent to keep a few guppies in there. 4 max. In the week we've had the tank we have decided it is much smaller than what we wanted. We found a 15 gallon tank that fits our spot perfectly, so we want to transfer things over from the small tank to the new tank.
We weren't really 100% clear on the cycling process. We misunderstood the (vague) girl at the pet store. Surprise. We were under the impression that once our water was all balanced out (good pH, no ammonia, proper temp, no chlorines, etc) that the cycling was done.
So we still have our guppies in the small tank. When we bought the new tank we were planning on setting it up that night to start it cycling properly. The person where we bought our new tank told us to put a few fish in the new tank to kickstart the cycling before putting our guppies in it. So we came home with 3 tetras, only to find out that our tank pretty much NEEDS a stand, so we couldn't set it up. And the store was closed to boot. So we decided to just put the tetras with the guppies so they wouldn't be stuck in bags.
So we just got the stand set up last night and tonight we can set up the new tank.
What should I do? Is it smart to put the tetras in the new one along with the Tetra SafeStart stuff, then move the guppies over once it is good?
I don't want to leave them all in the small tank because it is way too many fish for a 6.6 gallon. I don't want ammonia levels to get high. Currently we are at a 0.5 for ammonia after almost a week of the guppies and tetras together. I've been testing the water like mad.
Should the guppies go to the new tank? Since the old one has been around longer and might cycle first?
I have the SafeStart Bio-Spira stuff, we have pH Up and Down, we have Dechlorinator stuff, we have the Fluval Maintenance stuff. I'm planning on getting Ammo-Lock tonight. I have a few other small bottles of stuff that came with my tank too. Do I need to get anything else??
What is my best way around this?? I don't want to lose any of my guppies! I don't want to lose any fish in the process, but I will be less sad about a tetra than a guppy!
Thanks in advance!
I would return the fish, and complete a fishless cycle on the larger tank before purchasing more fish....you don't need the Bio-Spira or anything that changes ph
Fishless cycle here: http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...ead.php?t=5640
I'm thinking seeing as you are cycling with fish no matter what you do, you might as well put all the fish in the new tank.
Move your filter from the old tank over to the new tank as well as the substrate, as it will have some bb in it as well.
You'll want to change out your water when it reaches 0.5 ammonia so it reads more around 0.25. You will likely have to do daily water changes so as to keep ammonia down to non-fatal levels.
Don't use any of the additives you have except dechlorinator.
What filters do you have? I assume you got a filter with the larger tank, but you should get a filter rated for twice what your tank volume is, so chances are you may need to purchase a bigger filter.
What kind of test kit are you using? Its great that you are testing ammonia, but you also need to test nitrites and nitrates. A liquid test kit is better than the strips.
Welcome to AC - most folks come here directly after buying their first tank with the same basic story. It's unfortunate that they asked you to compound things by buying the tetras, but hopefully you actually wanted tetras so they haven't messed up your stock plans. If you keep your ammonia between 0.25 and 0.5, you'll have a cycled tank in about a month, give or take.
20gal long planted community
Since your 6.6g is not cycled, I would move all the fish to their new tank with the old filters. This will increase the water volume so that ammonia and nitrites don't build up to beyond 0.5ppm as fast as the 6.6g.
You need to do a 50% water change when either ammonia or nitrites hit 0.5ppm. You are using a liquid test, right?
Never use PH Up or Down during the cycling process.
I would get Seachem Prime over the Ammo-Lock if available.
I'm not sure on the filter exactly. It came with the tank, which is an Aqueon 15 Gallon Column tank.
And I have the liquid API Freshwater Aquarium Master Test Kit. So I've been testing everything and the only bad thing was 0.5 ammonia.
The pH was a bit high at first so it was lowered. I also put in a bit of the Tetra SafeStart bacteria in when I added the new fish.
Thanks. The suggested a few fish to put in the cycling tank and I was thinking I wanted some tetras anyways, so that is why we picked them. So it doesn't mess up plans. It's just a bit of an inconvenience since we weren't aware the tank needed a stand. So they got introduced with the guppies in the small tank.
Another question.. Since it has been a week with all of them in there I was planning on doing a gravel filtering. We JUST did a water change, but it was only like 15%-20%. For the daily water change how much should I be changing in it?
Also, in regards to Ammo-lock. Is it even a good idea or should I pass on it?
Generally, you want a filter that will handle 2X the gallon amount of your tank, so something rated for at least 30 gallons
You should be doing enough water changes to get the ammonia down to .5 ppm or less.
Don't buy the Ammo-Lock, get some Seachem's Prime, as has been mentioned...it is a superior product.
The Ammo-Lock is not needed. You need to test the ammonia and nitrite daily and the readings will tell you how much water to change. For example since you said you currently have .5ppm ammonia and it is recommended to keep them around .25ppm or less when cycling with fish you should do at least a 50% water change. A slightly bigger one would be better to give some breathing room on the ammonia levels.
You don't need anything but Prime for your water and don't use old tank water, there is nothing beneficial in it. I would also suggest you get another filter rated for at least the size of your tank and run it at the same time you use the old filter or, buy one filter rated at least 150GPH.
Last edited by mommy1; 04-17-2014 at 07:33 PM.
When I go fishing I just place a sharp rock in the water and sit there waiting for all the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
Brutal honesty will be shown on this screen.
I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
Tolerance is a great thing to have, so is the ability to shut up.
I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.
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