getting a 120 gallon tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 19 Old 04-01-2009, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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getting a 120 gallon tank

This is my first post here!
I am new to all of this.

So... back to business. I am getting a 120 gallon tank and plan on it being freshwater. I plan on having some figure eight puffers in my planted aquarium. (about 3-5 puffers)

I will set up everything (filters, pumps, lights, ect) add declorinated water, and the plants.
I will then cycle it using the fishless way.

I will add "pure" ammonia until my test kit reads 4-5, and will keep on doing that till nitrites start registering and add half of what I added before. Now, when nitrites are 0, I will do a 50% water change and then add to figure eight puffers.

Is this all right? I new and I don't want to screw up...
BTW. will the puffers get along?
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post #2 of 19 Old 04-01-2009, 10:33 PM Thread Starter
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umm... any comments would be nice?
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post #3 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 07:12 AM
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Hello and welcome to the forum.
Your tank will be cycled when you bump your tank up to 4ppm ammonia and get a zero reading for ammonia and nitrites 12 hrs after the introduction of ammonia. Its best to get that reading a few days in a row before adding fish, to ensure it is truly cycled.
The big water change before adding fish, is to lower your nitrates. Take a nitrate reading before the water change to determine how much water you need to change out. You want the nitrates under 40ppm when you add your fish. My last fishless cycle, I changed out about 80%, that lowered my nitrates to 20ppm.
I have not kept figure 8 puffers, but everything I have read, says its best to only have one. Maybe it willl work out since they are going into such a large tank. They are high maintenance fish, they need snails and other hard food to help trim their teeth. From what I understand, you may have to trim their teeth about every 6 months, even with the snails in their diet. That does not sound like allot of fun!
Good luck to you!
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post #4 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 07:54 AM
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I don't know anything about puffers, I just wanted to say welcome!!! and congrats on the big tank!
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post #5 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 08:30 AM Thread Starter
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For the water change, I just take some out and add declorinated water correct? We don't do anything to added water besides that right?
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post #6 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 08:44 AM
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Yep, just declorinate.
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post #7 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 09:31 AM
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yep. Prime is a great product to use during your water changes! Also, do your self a favor and pick up an API Master LIQUID Test Kit, you'll thank yourself later!
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post #8 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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thanks, any other tips?

Instead of figure 8 puffer, what else can I get?
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post #9 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 07:54 PM
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Pffers are pretty aggressive fish, except for the South American Puffer, which is fresh water and has been known to school in the wild. Unfortunately those fish are really prone to grow teeth and need dental work.

Some puffers will get along...but the trouble is that as juveniles they may get along as they become mature, they will become more territorial and may be more aggressive. They are very messy eaters and need lots and lots of water changes. So there are a lot of stories about fish that got on just fine, and then one eaten or wounded.

I initially wanted a puffer tank but decided I would rather have some groups of more peaceful fish rahter than trying to patrol a tank....

A 120 gal freshwater tank could have a wide variety of fish, and might even support a pair of puffers..... One think you could do is go to a good LFS, or if there is none, at least look on a site like which will give you an idea of what is out there and what you may like. Theres alot out there....if you are looking for unique you can always click on the oddball fish, and see whats there. I'm not going to make any suggestions as I am still new to this too...
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post #10 of 19 Old 04-02-2009, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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I am thinking about a group of angels or even a couple of oscars?
Any comments, idea, or anything?
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