Finished Cycle?! Yay!
So the other day I went to get my water tested, and I FINALLY got an ammonia reading of 0! It had been dwindling between .25 and .5 ever since I got it. It had never occurred to me that the old filter that came with it needed its motor (I think that's what it is) cleaned- there was a lot of gunk built up in it.
The nitrate is between 0 and 20, and the nitrite came back as 0 as well! I was so excited to get that result. The water is still a hard? @ 150. And the alkalinity is 180. Ph was 7.8, and the chlorine was (of course) 0. Does Aquarium Salt add to the hardness?
Me being the dumby that I am, didn't know about cycling. Thank goodness the tank I got was already established. The previous owner kept it filled up until 5 mins before we picked it up, and some of the water remained in the gravel- which I think helped. Especially since I started adding fish (fairly quickly) to the tank.
I am getting another water test done this weekend to make sure it wasn't a fluke. But I just wanted to (maybe prematurely) celebrate my first cycled tank! There was only 1 casualty (very sad) during the process, which was a Zebra Danio. I think he either got bullied or had some other incident though.
Oh! and I know that the test strips are not that reliable, but I should be getting a job very soon, and a master test kit is high on my list of things to get. Along with an air pump (I was told that they are not needed for smaller aquariums, but I think thats BS and that the fish would be happier with one).
Congrats, Mulocs! Always fantastic when your tank is finally cycled!!
Sounds like you've got it under control but keep an eye on those levels to make sure that they're properly stabilized. :)
I'm not sure if aquarium salt increases hardness but I believe it might. Have you been adding it?
What sized tank is it and what do you have in it already?
Any idea what you'll stock now that it's all cycled??
Thanks! I've been getting it tested like a fiend since I got it, and plan to continue doing so until I'm 100% sure that its stable. After that I plan on getting it tested once every 1-2 weeks. I hear changes can occur quickly in smaller tanks, though.
I was adding 2 tablespoons per 5 gallons while I was treating for potential Ich (horrible mess with some of the tetras I had in there- I learned my lesson about not quarantining). I have just started to do water changes to bring the salt down.
It is a 25 gallon. My first real tank.
Unfortunately it is at its stocking capacity I believe.
I have 6 neon tetras, 1 male betta, 4 zebra danios, 3 indian glass fish, 3 glass catfish, 4 guppies, 2 mollies, 2 cory catfish.
Rest assured, I have realized that that's an awful lot of species for 1 small tank, and I plan to rehome the guppies and mollies, or wait until I get a larger tank, and just keep some of the species in the old tank, while moving the other fish that need bigger schools to the new tank, so that I can have more adequate numbers.
I plan on eventually having 10 neon tetras, 7 of both Indian Glass and Glass Catfish. And maybe a couple more Cory if the tanks are big enough?
For the most part though, I did some quick research and found that the water parameters are fairly similar for the species, I think. But I am willing to learn more to make sure the fish are happy.
I think you're spot-on about rehoming the guppies and mollies. :) That would give you the room you need to increase all your schools to a suitable size.
I have a 30g with heaps of neons and they look so good in big numbers. They're also a lot happier. I used to have Zebra Danios in there too but I sold them on TradeMe (kinda like craigslist, I think) and got more neons. It's nicer with less species and bigger schools IMO. :) I also have a Dwarf Gourami as "centrepiece" fish and some Kuhli Loaches for bottom dwellers.
Have you considered keeping only one specie of Glass fish and rehoming the others? With 7 of each thats a pretty heavy stocking, you'd need to be pretty vigilant with water changes. That would enable you to have:
- 12 Neons
- 8 Glass fish
- 6 Cories
Cories are a schooler and they will be MUCH MUCH happier and more active if you add 4 more. :)
Also have you considered real plants? You can get some real tough ones which survive on ordinary gravel/sand and normal tank lights. My tank is pretty overstocked by regular standards but my nitrates never exceed 5, even after a week without a water change (I do 30% once a week) because my plants suck all the nitrate up for fertilizer.
Last edited by Amelia; 06-15-2012 at 10:37 AM.
Would I need to rehome one of the species of glass fish if I upgrade my tank to a 60 gallon? I know its stupid, but I've sort of grown super attached to all the species. T_T Although, the mollies are my least favorite. I like the shape and size variety they add to the mix, but they eat everything, and I'm guessing produce a bunch of waste.
My betta, Esquire, is a good centerpiece I think.
I do have 2 live plants in there so far. I have a wisteria (which is a pain due to the fact leaf pieces are always falling off), and a java fern (I read that both betta and glass catfish enjoy it). I also purchased those assorted bulbs from Petsmart- so far the only thing growing out of those is onion.
For the cory, does it matter on the type, or can I get 4 different colored ones?
Here is what it looks like so far. Sorry if it is blurry.
Your tank is cute. :) Is that artificial gravel? Might be why your plants aren't doing too well. If the leaves are falling off that's a sign it's not getting enough of something. Try Ambulia or cabomba. Not sure what the scientific names are but they're FAST growing, kinda "fluffy" plants. As long as there is SOME source of light in your tanks they'll grow. They don't even have to be anchored, will grow floating.
Look like this:
You SHOULD be able to find one of them somewhere (you don't need both). I like the Ambulia best. From 1 original plant I now have 6+ BIG plants from cuttings. It just grows like mad and EATS nitrate like nothing else once it's properly established. Brilliant stuff.
If you upgraded to a 60 you'd be able to keep all your fish and then some. :) Would you keep BOTH tanks or just have the 60?
You're correct on the mollies -- livebearers make a lot of mess. I have swordtails and I'm planning on rehoming them soon. So messy!!
I like bettas too, I have one in his own tank beside my bed. :)
If you were gunna have both tanks (YES!) I'd keep the neons and the betta in the 20, add a couple more neons and some cherry shrimp or Kuhli Loaches and then call that tank done.
AND THEN... you could do so much with the 60!! Ramp your glass fish school to 15 and the glass catfish to 10. Then you could increase your cories to 8-10 (they'd thank you for it!), and look at some interesting feature fish like dwarf cichlids, gourami, or angelfish. :)
And on the cories, they need to be in groups of their own species, 6+ is best, the more the better. What species have you got? You can keep multiple species together as long as they have at least 6-per-species. So if you wanted you could have, for example, 6 Albino and 6 Sterbai (in your 60 of course, not the 20).
Last edited by Amelia; 06-15-2012 at 11:14 AM.
Thanks for the wonderful advice! Those both look like very fun plants, and I will definitely look into them.
I would like to keep both tanks once I upgrade, however it is going to be difficult enough just to make room for a bigger tank in my bedroom (leopard gecko and bearded dragon cages take up alot of space!).
I am in the process of rehoming the guppies and mollies- got a lot of interest in the guppies, but the mollies have yet to show promise. One person wanted to take them all, but I didn't like the fact that his tank was not heated (I am very picky when it comes to placing animals). There is another lady who wants the males, I just sent her pictures so we will see what she says.
Would a female guppy be okay on her own until I find her a new home? or will she get stressed?
And as for the corys, I currently have 1 albino cory and 1 peppered cory.
Perhaps a store may take them and give you a credit toward a liquid test kit?
If you have good enough filters, you do not have to use an air pump. The filter does need to be breaking up the surface water is all. You never know what "mood" your Betta may have. Some prefer to be left alone and others do well with other fish.
If you think perhaps your filter is not supplying enough oxygen, you keep lower the water level a bit to get more flow from the filter at the surface.