Need help! Setting up Amazon/Tetra tank! - Page 3
Tropical Fish

Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources » Freshwater Fish and Aquariums » Freshwater and Tropical Fish » Characins » Need help! Setting up Amazon/Tetra tank!

Need help! Setting up Amazon/Tetra tank!

This is a discussion on Need help! Setting up Amazon/Tetra tank! within the Characins forums, part of the Freshwater and Tropical Fish category; --> So it doesn't matter if I get the worng genders, or will it be a nightmare in the amazon? I am a little bit ...

Check out these freshwater fish profiles
Roberts Tetra
Roberts Tetra
Barred Pencilfish
Barred Pencilfish
Like Tree1Likes

Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools vBmenu Seperating Image Search this Thread vBmenu Seperating Image
Need help! Setting up Amazon/Tetra tank!
Old 12-04-2010, 07:20 PM   #21
 
small fry's Avatar
 
So it doesn't matter if I get the worng genders, or will it be a nightmare in the amazon? I am a little bit worried about aggression, as this tank is a 55 gallon tank.

48" bulb is the full length of a 55 gallon tank. Are you saying I should get 2 half-lengths, 2 48" fixtures, or a double 48" fixture? Will the flouresent work in the hood as long as it fits, or will I have to get a hood fixture with a 6500k+ rateing? Can I run to Lowes (the local hardware store) and pick up some lighting, as long as it is "daytime" and has a 6500k rateing? I am looking for a full hood fixture that will probably cost me $80+! I think the lighting link I posted on an earlier post is just a lighting strip, so I am probably not getting, due to the fact that I need the hood to keep the hatchets in. BTW, HO stands for High Output, right? Sounds expensive to operate.

As far as filtration...I can't afford a canister filter. With the almost (or more than) $100 lighting, the plants, etc., I just can't afford it. I know it is the best, but I can't afford the best in every area. And it isn't even because I am getting anything else, it is fish that have driven me to bankrutpsy (which really isn't that big of an issue me being 15 and a nice collodge savings acount).

How much surface do the plants need to cover to be effective? I am probably looking at almost $100 worth of live plants, aren't I?

Due to short budget, it could be months before I can afford all the equipment nessasary for a "low-tech" method. I really want to have fish in the tank before Febuary, if all possible with water chem stability and budget. Don't meant to complain, just reporting the budget issues.

Thanks!
small fry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2010, 11:35 AM   #22
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by small fry View Post
So it doesn't matter if I get the worng genders, or will it be a nightmare in the amazon? I am a little bit worried about aggression, as this tank is a 55 gallon tank.

48" bulb is the full length of a 55 gallon tank. Are you saying I should get 2 half-lengths, 2 48" fixtures, or a double 48" fixture? Will the flouresent work in the hood as long as it fits, or will I have to get a hood fixture with a 6500k+ rateing? Can I run to Lowes (the local hardware store) and pick up some lighting, as long as it is "daytime" and has a 6500k rateing? I am looking for a full hood fixture that will probably cost me $80+! I think the lighting link I posted on an earlier post is just a lighting strip, so I am probably not getting, due to the fact that I need the hood to keep the hatchets in. BTW, HO stands for High Output, right? Sounds expensive to operate.

As far as filtration...I can't afford a canister filter. With the almost (or more than) $100 lighting, the plants, etc., I just can't afford it. I know it is the best, but I can't afford the best in every area. And it isn't even because I am getting anything else, it is fish that have driven me to bankrutpsy (which really isn't that big of an issue me being 15 and a nice collodge savings acount).

How much surface do the plants need to cover to be effective? I am probably looking at almost $100 worth of live plants, aren't I?

Due to short budget, it could be months before I can afford all the equipment nessasary for a "low-tech" method. I really want to have fish in the tank before Febuary, if all possible with water chem stability and budget. Don't meant to complain, just reporting the budget issues.

Thanks!
Hey, we all have to live within our budget. In this hobby there are areas in which we can "cut corners" and save, other areas where this is not wise.

The heater is one area I would never go cheap, a faulty heater can kill a tank of fish overnight. You should have two in a 4-foot, one at each end, and I would suggest 200w heaters. The higher wattage heaters work less hard to do the job, esp with two of them, and thus last longer.

On the light: the least expensive that will be effective and successful over a 4-foot 55g tank will be a single tube T8 (normal) fluorescent fixture. You may get one used, online (Craig's list etc), some stores have used equipment, maybe a local aquarium club will have ideas. I would go with a single T8 fixture for a 55g, as I had one back in the 1980's. Once you have the fixture, the expensive part, the tube you can buy at hardware/home improvement places for a few dollars. A regular T8 fixture will take any T8 tubes of that length (tubes are 48 inches). A daylight with a Kelvin around 6500K, they are made by GE, Phillips and Sylvania; I use Phillips now, have used Sylvania, perfectly good light.

The least expensive setup would be a glass cover and a light strip. The glass covers are made for the tank sizes and sit down on the lip around the inside of the frame; there are plastic rails and the front glass panes (they will be divided in two) slide back for feeding. Not very expensive. Then the single tube T8 fixture which sits on the frame. This is what I use on all my large tanks, except I have double tubes because they are larger tanks (115g, 90g, 70g).

A sponge filter rated for a 55g will work fine. I use sponge filters in my tanks under 4 feet, but there is no reason one won't suffice in a 55g. You won't need a lot of water movement with forest fish and plants, so this is fine.

Plants: I would select what you want first to get a good mix, then check prices at local fish stores, or online. Depending where you live, some members may be nearby and be willing to sell/trade/give plants. As you are thinking along the lines of my Amazon setups, for a 55g I would get 3 Echinodorus bleherae (the "common" sword), 1 Echinodorus cordifolius; 1 pygmy chain sword [once settled, they will send out runners and the tank will be covered--all those pygmy chain swords in my 90g came from one plant after a few months. For floating, 1 Ceratopteris (though not "Amazonian" if you want to be truly authentic); or a stem of Pennywort which makes a lovely floating plant and is Amazonian. Even duckweed. That's it. It will look sparse at first, but once the plants settle, usually 6-8 weeks, they will start growing. You will need a good fertilizer, Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement is the one I recommend.

On the Bolivian Ram, a pair (male/female) would be more interesting; a single male works well as I previously explained. In a 55g two males or two females would not be troublesome, they would have space for their territories.
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2010, 10:00 PM   #23
 
small fry's Avatar
 
Hey, what about this for my one and only filter??

Found this on ebay, will it work?
AP 2300 - Aquarium Sponge Filter Fish Tank 55 75 Gallon - eBay (item 250226566075 end time Dec-31-10 18:42:49 PST)

Is there anything I would need to know about if it did work (e.g. extra equip, special supplies, etc.)?

Thanks!
small fry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2010, 05:53 AM   #24
 
small fry's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post
The heater is one area I would never go cheap, a faulty heater can kill a tank of fish overnight. You should have two in a 4-foot, one at each end, and I would suggest 200w heaters. The higher wattage heaters work less hard to do the job, esp with two of them, and thus last longer.
In aquariums, isn't there a recomended 50W per 10 gallons? For a 55g tank that would be 275W, right? Could I get 2 150W and have a total of 300W? I am trying to keep my budget low as posible, I don't have as much (money) as I originally thought (just a slight miscalculation...its ok though, still fine). Perhaps 400W of heater would not be necesary in Texas? The fish room (my bedroom is getting a little cramped "aka fishroom") never gets cold and my other tanks never drop below 75 (set to 76). I can still do 200 Watt heaters, I was just wondering what the minimum is.

Don't y'all steal my deal or anything (lol), but is this a joke!?

200 Watt Thermostat Heater Tropical Aquarium Fish Tank - eBay (item 280593739664 end time Dec-23-10 11:32:11 PST)

How does that work? "14 day exchange?" Sounds unreliable to me. What do y'all think?

I am still looking for a fixture. Do y'all think $80USD is at the top of the typical range, or the bottom of the range (e.g. range is $30-$80 (i wish!), $80 is top of the range...range is $75-$300, $80 is near the bottom of the average price range). And do I have to get a high-rated fixture, or will any fixture burn 6500k "daytime lights? Just wanted to know, as I am still shopping.

In the order of things, can I get the soil in and the filter in first and run it until I can get plants and lighting? Just to make sure there isn't some kind of cloud of doom? I have heard people say that a paticular method works fine for water stability.

I have a quick question. Should ever there be a parasite that infects the amazon/tetra tank and the way to cure the parasite would be to get all the fish out and put them in buckets for an hour, and drain all the water and add new water...would the tank be stable after adding new water (assuming the parasite died without a host)? Just wondering if the plants would just instantly re-cycle it.

As for the water chemistry, are there any stable ways to control the pH and softness? I have heard a number of ways to lower the pH and softness includeing (don't use unless you run it by the forum, methods mught be un-reliable, I don't think they are not reliable, just a warning), RO, distilled water, aged peat moss, rainwater (which I will not be useing), etc. Is there a method that would work stabily for my tetra tank? I know the fish can live with slightly basic (but not the embers? uh oh!), but I want the water to be soft and acidic so they can display truer colors and live healthier lives.

So basically (about the rams), I can have 2 no matter what gender, or I can have 1 if it is a male. If my lfs can order some of these guys (if they are still in buisness), would I be able to tell the difference, at a young age, between the genders? I want to get my full 3 1/2 years out of these beautiful fish. If I introduce a more mature BR, will it be more territorial?

Thanks!
small fry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2010, 05:02 PM   #25
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by small fry View Post
Hey, what about this for my one and only filter??

Found this on ebay, will it work?
AP 2300 - Aquarium Sponge Filter Fish Tank 55 75 Gallon - eBay (item 250226566075 end time Dec-31-10 18:42:49 PST)

Is there anything I would need to know about if it did work (e.g. extra equip, special supplies, etc.)?

Thanks!

won't work, you need something that is not air driven for a planted tank.
Mikaila31 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2010, 05:11 AM   #26
 
small fry's Avatar
 
I don't really know what a sponge filter looks like. I guess this is trial and error?

How about AQUARIUM FILTER CLEANER BIOCHEMICAL SPONGE 750L/H PUMP - eBay (item 320603018538 end time Dec-12-10 01:07:55 PST) this?

I don't know what tank size it is built for. Says that the water flow capacity is 750L/H. I don't know how that compares to regular filters though.

Please give the link a look and tell me what you think. Thanks!
small fry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2010, 11:11 AM   #27
 
I REALLY don't suggest soil now if you intend to stock the tank and not plant it till a later day. You are asking for major algae and/or bacterial blooms which are going to hit your water quality. With the method I suggested it you need to heavily plant right away with a lot of stems and fast growing plants. If you can not afford everything at this time, I personally would not stock the tank much at all. You can set it up with regular gravel, but you will have to remove that down the road when you can get everything together. You can really do it what ever way you want, but what you suggested to me is risky since lots of places were things can go wrong. Planted tanks are most stable when you set them up completely the first time, give the plants good light, give them 3-4 days to adjust. If growth is good you can start adding fish and gradually increasing stock.

Also that method for dealing with parasites would not work, parasite treatments take at least 2 weeks. ALL your fish MUST be quarantine for at least two weeks before going into your main planted tank. This is very important. A number of plants are effected by medications. I never treat my fish in planted tanks, even mild medications like melafix effect some of my plants. You could do the procedure you mentioned and it wouldn't harm the tanks biological ability, would stress the fish out and won't get rid of the parasite.
Mikaila31 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2010, 11:24 AM   #28
 
redchigh's Avatar
 
True, soil is a bad idea if you want to stock before you plant. (Fairly often, you have to do massive w/cs after you plant your first soil tank cause you disturbed the substrate)


I normally swear by soil, but in your case it's not the best idea.

I would probably just go with flourish comprehensive (it's cheap and lasts a while), some root tabs, and decent lighting.

My LFS has heaters for about $50-60... If you're getting two, then you don't need to get two 50 gallon heaters. 2 30's or 40's would probably be a good idea.

Look at byron's tanks, and copy them :P

As for filtration, I think an air-driven sponge would be fine. Not ideal, but it would do.
I'd use a HOB or canister personally.

Last edited by redchigh; 12-07-2010 at 11:27 AM..
redchigh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2010, 02:09 PM   #29
 
Byron's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by small fry View Post
Hey, what about this for my one and only filter??

Found this on ebay, will it work?
AP 2300 - Aquarium Sponge Filter Fish Tank 55 75 Gallon - eBay (item 250226566075 end time Dec-31-10 18:42:49 PST)

Is there anything I would need to know about if it did work (e.g. extra equip, special supplies, etc.)?

Thanks!
This happens to be the exact sponge filter I have in my 20g, except a smaller version obviously. Buy it, it is good. I have very few fish in this tank, and it is thick with plants that are growing out of control--see the attached photo taken just the other day for proof; the filter is in the right rear corner on the end wall, if you can see it through the plants. I wanted to get one of these filters recently for my 10g but couldn't find them, so I got a Hydor instead. But I prefer this one.

To answer your heater questions/issues from subsequent posts. Forget the "rating" of the heater, and buy two that are 200w (each). I have a 150w in my 10g, and a 200w in my 20g and 33g. I have never had heating issues or problems. A 50w heater in the 10g and 20g gave out several times, due to the fact that the lower wattage heaters are simply not made as well, and/or they have to work harder and longer to do the job so they don't last as long. Whatever, believe me, the better heaters are worth it if you value your fish. You can live without a filter for a time, or without the light if these should fail; but no heater can be death to the fish overnight from failing to heat or failing to turn off and overheating.

Byron.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSCN0058.jpg (106.1 KB, 65 views)
Byron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2010, 05:32 PM   #30
 
small fry's Avatar
 
Nicely planted tank, Byron! I am always impressed with how well your tank are setup! Where do you get all your plants?

I will try to see if the PayPal works, and I will do all in my power to get that filter. I hope that issue is resolved.

Can I understock the plants in the tank for the first month? Will that cause problems? I think if I go with a 48" fixture/hood, I will be somewhat short on cash.

Do I need to add the rams last, to reduce the chance of territorial issues? I was thinking as far as school adding goes;
Lemon Tetra
Corydoras
BR?

Just curious. I am still very flexible.

I will probably add the plants and substrate at the same time, right when I am establishing the tank.

Thanks!
small fry is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Amazon Tank? Deku Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 23 06-14-2014 07:24 AM
My amazon tank FordMan Freshwater Journals 4 02-14-2009 10:21 PM
amazon tank update porksnorkel Freshwater Journals 1 02-18-2008 08:54 PM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:22 PM.