My attempts to get a fish tank and put fish in it and have it be a successful experience have been thwarted repeatedly by bad advice from pet stores.
Can someone guide me through the specifics of starting up a freshwater fish tank? I only plan to have fish.
I really don't have room for more than a 10 gallon tank - so assume that is what I will get. If that is too small, please let me know and I will forget the entire idea.
1) What do I NEED to buy for the tank?
2) What might I WANT to buy for the tank to make it more interesting/fun?
3) What is the detailed and complete process of setting up the tank?
4) What is the recommended timing of what needs to be done and when, before I put fish in the tank?
5) What is the recommended timing for maintenance of the water? Water changes? How much? When to vacuum?
6) What fish are recommended as hearty enough to survive a beginner fish-keeper?
7) About how many fish can I put in the tank, and what is the process of adding them?
8) How do I set up the biological filter?
9) How do I get the tank to "cycle" properly?
Please assume I am an completely ignorant to how to take care of fish, and assume I am a close friend for whom you want to help have a positive experience.
Your help is greatly appreciated.
P.S. I saw there were a bunch of beginner links on this web page that are supposed to bring me through the process, but for some reason none of the links seem to be working at this time; hence my post here.