04-06-2007, 11:29 PM
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small tanks cycle really fast, so in a week the tank will be cycled. did you buy a filter and heater for the tank?
First,you should take the tetras back to the store, they need to be in schools of 6+ fish to be happy.
Second, not many fish can live happily in a 3 gallon. If you purchased a small heater with the tank, you can keep a couple guppys in it. if your tank has no heater, buy a beta, very beautifull fish that do somewhat ok in such a small tank. while betas thrive in water 70+ degrees and the space of a 5 gallon or more, it is safe to keep one at room temperature and in a 3 gallon tank like the one you purchased.
Setting up the tank:
buy some polished or natural river rock and place about .5" to 1" of gravel on the bottom. if you dont have a heater buy the smallest one you can find, because then you can keep guppies, and not only can you keep two or three instead of one beta, they will be happier.
now, put some fish food in there and let it rot for a week with your filter on. after the tank has cycled for a week, use a gravel vacuum(found at anywhere they sell aquarium supplies) and vacuum up the rotten food. remove one gallon of water(a third of the tank),add treated tap water or RO water from a fish store. you can also use filtered water from the store, just make sure you buy some water dechlorinater if you use store bought or tap water.
So, after you get a beta or a few guppies, next its time to maintain the tank.
Every week take out one third of the water and replace it with new water. this helps keep the aquarium healthy.
make sure you have a filter on your little tank. it doesnt matter if the filter holds charcoal, and if it does i wouldnt even use it because the charcoal has to be replaced once a week or it will leak poisons back into the water. fill your filter with sponge material. buy a filter for a 10 gallon aquarium if you havent bought a filter yet. over filtering is better than under filtering. keep in mind a few guppies and a small heater would be better, because betas dont like strong currents and a 10 gallon filter on a 3 gallon tank makes for alot of current,lol.
besides weekly water changes, buy a ammonia or nitrate testing kit and make sure ammonia levels are down. if you can find a heater, guppies would be best. then you can add them one at a time, adding one a week will make sure you tank doesnt have a mini cycle and spike ammonia and nitrate levels.
now, on to feeding. feed some flakes, drop a small portion in the tank once a day, overfeeding in a small tank is disastrous, most fish survive on very small amounts of food. the more they eat, the more they poop. the more they poop the more the nitrate build up, and the worse your tank. i would say for one beta or 3 guppies, a pinch of flakes in you thumb and index finger would be enough once a day. more than that and you are headed for disaster.
hope I helped! the tetras will be much happier back in the store :)