Newbie Questions - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 15 Old 11-11-2009, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
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I will be testing the water of course while the tank cycles. How will I know when the cycle is complete? What can I do to keep the fish I'm cycling with alive? (I'd rather not kill them in the process.) What are the ideal NH3, NO3, NO2 levels for a tank?
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post #12 of 15 Old 11-11-2009, 02:56 PM
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Nitrite & Ammonia at a level of ~ 0.5-1 mg/l can already become deadly to some fish. Nitrate no more then 50 mg/l

In any case of having reading in these ranges, immediate big water exchange and it'll be OK

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post #13 of 15 Old 11-11-2009, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by La Reina View Post
I will be testing the water of course while the tank cycles. How will I know when the cycle is complete? What can I do to keep the fish I'm cycling with alive? (I'd rather not kill them in the process.) What are the ideal NH3, NO3, NO2 levels for a tank?
Angel's subsequent response was correct, but if you have enough plants as I mentioned previously you will not see a cycle to speak of; the plants use the ammonia and that's it, provided the plants are numerous and the fish are few at the start and gradually increased.

B.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #14 of 15 Old 11-11-2009, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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I got the tank all set up (a glass 20 gallon) and I'm very happy to say that it doesn't leak. I got myself a really good testing kit and checked the water, the levels are: pH- 7.6, ammonia, NO2, and NO3- 0 ppm.

Buuuuuut.... I need a filter. Can anyone reccomend a good one for me? And what kind of heater should I get?

I won't be adding fish until I get a heater and a filter up and running.
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post #15 of 15 Old 11-12-2009, 11:10 AM
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I got the tank all set up (a glass 20 gallon) and I'm very happy to say that it doesn't leak. I got myself a really good testing kit and checked the water, the levels are: pH- 7.6, ammonia, NO2, and NO3- 0 ppm.

Buuuuuut.... I need a filter. Can anyone reccomend a good one for me? And what kind of heater should I get?

I won't be adding fish until I get a heater and a filter up and running.
Yes, filter and heater running for a day before plants, then fish after the plants. On a 20g I would recommend a sponge filter. You can buy ones that hang inside the tank in a corner and are connected to an air pump, or there are small units contining the motor and sponge inside that also hang in the corner. That is adequate in a planted aquarium of this size.

Heater, get the best you can. A 75w is my preference; the smaller 50w heaters tend to be more frequent in breaking (staying on or not coming on). And buy the best, it will be better made and less likely to fail.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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