How do you keep your hospital tank cycled?
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How do you keep your hospital tank cycled?

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How do you keep your hospital tank cycled?
Old 10-03-2010, 08:51 AM   #1
 
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How do you keep your hospital tank cycled?

Or do you even bother? I set up a 10 gallon a few weeks back for one of my monsters (green tiger barb). He's happily back home in the 75 gallon.

The 10 gallon hasn't cycled yet but I'd like to keep it running just in case. I'll be seeding it with some of my healthy tank filter medium to get it done.

I think I saw in a thread that snails were used to keep the cycle going. If so, which type?

Thoughts?
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:05 AM   #2
 
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Good question and I will be happy to see others answers. I thought about that too and what I was going to do was have several plants and a few mystery snails so, it will be interesting to see what others do. I too used the old filter media from an existing tank to start the new one.

Glad your Green Tiger is better now. :)
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:45 AM   #3
 
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If you have to treat a bacterial infection with medication, you'll end up killing your bacteria, won't you? Maybe it's not worth it?
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:05 AM   #4
 
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Hmmmmm.... so far I've used meds that claim not to kill off beneficial bactera but I'll bet that's not true every time.
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:07 AM   #5
 
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Originally Posted by tanker View Post
If you have to treat a bacterial infection with medication, you'll end up killing your bacteria, won't you? Maybe it's not worth it?
Good point. Also, in thinking more about it, the snails probably wouldn't work either as they are supposed to be so sensitive to medications as well. Hm, maybe you just have to set up a new tank each time and do daily water changes? Then, wouldn't that stress the already ill fish too?
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:15 AM   #6
 
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I read a bit about this and considered it previously. If you keep snails or little fish in there to keep it cycled, you'd have to take them out either because you wouldn't want the fish to get sick, or snails wouldn't like salt or other treatments, so you'd have to have somewhere else to put them. I'm hopeless at getting fish out of tanks. Then, any antibiotics might kill the filter anyway. After you've treated, you wouldn't want to keep the filter material because it might transmit pathogens to the next lot of patients and you'd want to clean the tank thoroughly for the same reason. I'd figured that it would be easier just to set up my spare tank as required. The only downside would be the time it would take to fill and heat it - this could be overcome by leaving a tank running. Maybe I'm optimistic, but I hope I won't have to treat many fish, so I chose not to do it. I've got a spare tank which I can pull out if I need to quarantine a sick fish. Also, if your fish get ich, you have to treat the tank they are in, so a hospital tank isn't much use.
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:27 AM   #7
 
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Snails is the way to go, i have a nano that i keep just for the sake of keeping it and i just use snails.
A good 5-10 snails will do the trick and to keep the population from exploding i use 2 assassin snails.
Once a week i drop some fish food just to keep the snails happy and there you have it, the perfect fishless tank.
OR you can just keep it empty and use it only when it is needed. In 24 hours tops the chlorine from the water is gone or if you use an oxigen pump you can get it out in a few hours(even faster with water aditives).
Put a heater and there you go.
Best part about not using a filter is that you do not need to worry about killing the bacteria... And if you do a daily water change(50% i'd say) you're on the safe side.
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Old 10-03-2010, 11:09 AM   #8
 
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Great suggestions all. I'm not worried about losing the cycle after the fact, more concerned about having a good base to put a sick fish into.

I've been pretty lucky and have only had to use a hospital tank twice. Both times for my green monsters (barbs). The bettas are already in their own tank so no other tank needed :)

I would remove the snails from the hospital tank before putting in a sick fish or meds iif I decide to try that route. Then I'd break down the tank, seed it with some media from my 75 gallon and add the snails back in.

Appreciate all of your input
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Old 10-03-2010, 12:25 PM   #9
 
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I also use MTS in my hospital tank to keep the cycle going. I can verify that Metronidazole and Furan-2 are meds that do not "kill" the cycle, nor do those meds kill the snails.
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Old 10-03-2010, 12:52 PM   #10
 
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Originally Posted by aunt kymmie View Post
I also use MTS in my hospital tank to keep the cycle going. I can verify that Metronidazole and Furan-2 are meds that do not "kill" the cycle, nor do those meds kill the snails.

Good to know for future reference. I used Furan 2 :)

Thanks.
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