Cycling with gold fish - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 22 Old 03-19-2017, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
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Cycling with gold fish

Hi, im new to this group, I just started a 35 gal freshwater tank. I don't have any live plants just plastic ones and fake Driftwood. My local fish store provided me with six small goldfish, less than two inches, to help cycle my aquarium. I'm also using a beneficial Bacteria booster as I've read multiple articles and posts where people advise using one. The store said to just bring them a water sample in two weeks to see if the levels are right. Should I be doing water changes in the meantime? If so how often or how much? Should I get my own test kit or just trust the store? My heater and filter are both running as well. Any advice is greatly appreciated for this newbie!

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post #2 of 22 Old 03-19-2017, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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I apologise for the orientation of the pic, still getting used to using this app.

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post #3 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 06:32 AM
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Cycling with gold fish

No if you are using a bacteria in a bottle to cycle your tank than there are no water changes during that time, and no water testing either. I'm not familiar with every product on the market (since you didn't mention which one you are using), but the best one, TEtra safe start - no water changes or testing.
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125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
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post #4 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 07:55 AM
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I don't know if they store explained it all to you but here is a quick run down.

The fish will produce ammonia in their waste, ammonia is very toxic to fish but the beneficial Bacteria will change that to Nitrite then to Nitrate where it is safer for fish. The bottle of beneficial Bacteria Booster will kick they "Cycle" off and keep the ammonia from getting to high to harm the fish. The bacteria need food to live so putting in the gold fish will give it the food it needs from their waste. After the 2 weeks your filter should be seeding well and the tank will be pretty stable.

It sounds like the store got you setup nice and your tank is well on the way to being great. You can let them test your water or you can buy a test kit it all depends on how you feel about it. I let the store test my water for years but now I do it all my self because I like to know now and not drive to the store.

When you start adding more fish just do so slowly, something like 4-5 fish per week would be good. As you add more fish the amount of waste in the tank goes up but the bacteria will grow to keep up. Just don't want to go too fast because it will take a day or so for it to catch up. Same thing if you remove fish the extra bacteria will die off because it has less food but it corrects it self quickly.

Welcome to the group.


You can follow Old Fort Exotics on You Tube and on my Fish room thread.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5l...KdIa-pb3K2zb7A
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/d...h-room-517930/

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post #5 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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No if you are using a bacteria in a bottle to cycle your tank than there are no water changes during that time, and no water testing either. I'm not familiar with every product on the market (since you didn't mention which one you are using), but the best one, TEtra safe start - no water changes or testing.
I appreciate the input! I'm using Seachem prime and just following the instructions on the bottle so far. I haven't done any water changes yet so I'll just keep it that way. Today is day three and the water is just a tad cloudy but I'm assuming that will correct itself. Also they suggested that if the fish do die to just buy them under the gravel. I'm guessing that's to continue to supply the bacteria with a food source.

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post #6 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 08:31 AM
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Cycling with gold fish

Don't have time to say more than prime is not a bacteria supplement. You want tetra safe start, and you would need to follow the instructions to the letter. At work, gotta run.


To keep your fish alive in the meantime do water changes. Cloudiness is bacterial bloom which indicates the presence of a large amount of ammonia in the water, so that's a big problem that needs to be addressed immediately. Can't just use water conditioner without water changes - not for more than a couple of days.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #7 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 08:33 AM
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I have never heard of burying the fish in the gravel but it would give the bacteria more ammonia. I think when you are cycling the tank that isn't bad info I would never do it in a cycled tank but I know I have lost fish in my tanks that I didn't remove so it shouldn't cause any issues long term.
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You can follow Old Fort Exotics on You Tube and on my Fish room thread.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5l...KdIa-pb3K2zb7A
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/d...h-room-517930/

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post #8 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 08:42 AM Thread Starter
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Don't have time to say more than prime is not a bacteria supplement. You want tetra safe start, and you would need to follow the instructions to the letter.
I misspoke, I'm using stability, which is their bacteria supplement.

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post #9 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 08:47 AM Thread Starter
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When you start adding more fish just do so slowly, something like 4-5 fish per week would be good.

Welcome to the group.
What about a quarter time tank, I don't currently have a smaller tank available for quarantine, should that be my next investment or is there a shortcut/substitute I could use in the meantime?

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post #10 of 22 Old 03-20-2017, 09:17 AM
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What about a quarter time tank, I don't currently have a smaller tank available for quarantine, should that be my next investment or is there a shortcut/substitute I could use in the meantime?

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Quarantine tanks are very useful and always worth the investment. Always take your time picking fish at the store, I will look at the fish I want and all the other fish in the store. If any show signs of being sick there is a strong chance they all are even if they don't show it. I was at one of the stores this weekend and they had a great deal on German Blue Rams, i would have bought 6-7 but looking at a tank two rows higher I could see Ich on some fish. The water is all connected so I'm sure the german rams had it too just where not showing signs yet. I asked the employee and he said they came in with Ich and they would be treating it. And yes I can treat ich but I have too much invested in my room to bring that any where near my fish. Fish being sick doesn't mean the fish store is bad just that it got some sick fish most will deal with this quick.

Back to the quarantining issues. If you buy all the fish from the same store at the same time you don't need to quarantine them, they will have all the same stuff so no much point. So you could put in 4-5 fish (maybe more depending on what fish and how big) and be good to go. Now in a month or so if you wanted to add more fish those should be quarantined from sure. If the new fish are sick they will infect the current fish. I quarantine for 30 days to be sure the fish are healthy before adding them to a tank.


Setting up a quarantine tank is very easy the size will depend on the size of fish but often a 20g will work. The tank needs a heater, filter, and a little decor. I find bare bottom works well because I can clean it out easy. I have also used rubber maid tubs it doesn't have to be a aquarium.

Heater--It is always nice to have a spare heater in case the one in the main tanks fails.
Filters-- I always run spare filters on many of my tanks. If it was me I would get a second filter running on the new tank so the media in that filter can cycle at the same time. You can move this filter to the quaratine tank when you need to set it up and after the fish have proven clean you can move it back.
Decor-- You can use normal fish stuff, PVC pipe fittings or every cheap coffee mugs

The 30 days gives you time to see if the fish are sick and if they are some times they will die here not in the main tank. If you have any die the 30 days restarts and really check them well. If you do have issues you can take the filter throw out the media, clean the filter, heater, and decor allow it all to fully dry for a week before adding any new fish.

Lot if info I know tried to keep it simple so if you have questions let me know.


You can follow Old Fort Exotics on You Tube and on my Fish room thread.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5l...KdIa-pb3K2zb7A
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/d...h-room-517930/

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