Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Bluewind 11-13-2012 11:42 AM

Warm Water Now or Cold Water Later?
 
Hello all! I have a 10 gallon tank that I am having to cycle with fish (Betta rescue and then got a bunch of free shrimp and a free mystory snail. I also bought a Julii Cory Cat because he was alone in a tank with a half-dead cory). I have well water, so no clorine. It's clean and free of heavy medals. It's getting cold here, so we keep the house a bit cool, especially at night. My question is...
Should I put my treated water in while it is still warm or let it sit the traditional 24 hours and pour it in my tank cool?

Also, how do I tell if I have Ghost Shrimp, Albino Shrimp, Macros, or Prawns? They are supposed to be Ghost Shrimp, but I did get them from PetSmart (a bonus after an employee made a mistake that I had to come back and exchange). The have a slight brown hue, like the Ghost Shrimp that I do have only dirty. I don't really see any markings of any kind or pincers, but they are babies.
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Geomancer 11-13-2012 12:20 PM

The Julii may not make it, they are somewhat sensitive and a tank that isn't cycled will be very harsh on them. They are also a schooling fish and should be in numbers of 6+ or they will be even further stressed.

For water changes, the replacement water should be as close to the tank temperature as possible, again to reduce stress that a rapid change in temperature would cause. If there is no chlorine in your tap water, there is no need to let it sit for 24 hours. The only reason some people do that is chlorine will out gas within a day's period (while a water conditioner works instantly). There is no other benefit from letting water sit out.

For the shrimp, does PetSmart sell anything other than ghost shrimp? Most likely that is what it is.

I don't mean to sound harsh and this is more an in general thing that directed at you so please don't take offense, but when people 'rescue' a Betta from a retail store that keeps them in poor condition, all it does is tell the store that they can continue to make money doing that. It doesn't save anything, in fact the opposite is true and it just ensures more will suffer the same fate. If no one bought them, they would no longer carry them.

1077 11-13-2012 12:46 PM

We do not do fish any favor's by placing them in uncyled tank's.
Nobody can force you to adopt fish,or buy more fish especially,, if they are to be placed in uncycled aquarium's.
Best bet now,for fishes sake,, is to monitor the water parameter's every couple day's for ammonia,nitrites and change water perhap's daily at 35 to 50% until such time as ammonia and nitrites read zero all day ,every day.
Would feed fish very sparingly for next few week's .
My opinion may not be popular,,but it is the truth.

Bluewind 11-13-2012 07:56 PM

I hear what yall are saying. :)

As far as my "rescue", he really was! He was half dead, I yelled at management about the dispiciable conditions they kept them in, called corporate WalMart and fussed at them, and ended up basically getting him for free! When I bought some supplies from PetSmart that nearly killed him, I fussed at them too! It's how I got all these Ghost Shrimp and the Snail! Never wanted a snail in the first place, but she is a cutie :)

And every couple of days doesn't cut it for me. I am doing DAILY 1.5-2 gal water changes with Tetra Plus. They get fed only what they can eat in a set time. Of corse, I give Magic a little extra time. She is a snail after all ;)

The reason I was asking about the shrimp is because some are beyond what Ghost should grown too. One is 2 inches! And PetSmart is nutorious for selling other shrimp as "Ghost Shrimp" because they are sold as feeders. My friend says mine look like her Albino Shrimp, but not sure.
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Byron 11-13-2012 08:41 PM

To your initial question on the water, use water from the tap at approximately the same temperature for water changes. A degree or two cooler (I use my hand to guage) is fine, this replicates a tropical rain storm and can invigorate the fish. There is no reason to leave water out [not sure how you are treating this, aside from just leaving it out?]. If a conditioner is needed, they work instantly. I fill my tanks via a hose (the "Python") attached to the faucet. Squirt conditioner in at the start obviously. But the point is, that unless there is something seriously wrong with your tap water, it can go directly in the tank [with the conditioner if needed].

Byron.

Bluewind 11-13-2012 09:31 PM

Oops! *face palm* I forgot that part -_-'

I use Tetra AquaSafe Plus. I have Easy Balance too, but I have no clue when and where to use it! I mean, right in the tank? Just in the water change water? Deluted and then added in? And how often?

Also, I thought I HAD to let it sit because...
1. Every place I looked recomended it
2. My pH goes up 0.6 points or more after sitting 24 hours with a bubbler! I have tried several different things and found that it happens as the water oxygenates.

I would love some tips on making the prosess less stressful on my fish and how to stabilize my pH

Here are my stats
Amonia: Ocasional spikes of 0.5 (not bad for uncycled)
pH: Tap is 6.2. Tank ranges from 7 to 7.6! Have had spikes ocasionally above that to 7.8.
Alkalinity: 40 mg/l
Hardness: 25 mg/l
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Tolak 11-13-2012 09:44 PM

You don't need either of those products with well water. The slight pH increase over 24 hours is harmless. As stated, match temperature by feel, add it to the tank.

Bluewind 11-13-2012 09:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tolak (Post 1309757)
You don't need either of those products with well water. The slight pH increase over 24 hours is harmless. As stated, match temperature by feel, add it to the tank.

That's slight?!? I thought it was huge! My API test kit only goes from 6 to 7.8. Is that a bad one? What's a better pH tester?

Either way, temp > small pH change

Woot! I learned something! :)
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Byron 11-14-2012 01:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bluewind (Post 1309739)
Oops! *face palm* I forgot that part -_-'

I use Tetra AquaSafe Plus. I have Easy Balance too, but I have no clue when and where to use it! I mean, right in the tank? Just in the water change water? Deluted and then added in? And how often?

Also, I thought I HAD to let it sit because...
1. Every place I looked recomended it
2. My pH goes up 0.6 points or more after sitting 24 hours with a bubbler! I have tried several different things and found that it happens as the water oxygenates.

I would love some tips on making the prosess less stressful on my fish and how to stabilize my pH

Here are my stats
Amonia: Ocasional spikes of 0.5 (not bad for uncycled)
pH: Tap is 6.2. Tank ranges from 7 to 7.6! Have had spikes ocasionally above that to 7.8.
Alkalinity: 40 mg/l
Hardness: 25 mg/l
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There are some issues here that need exploring.

First, on the additives. A good water conditioner is wise, unless you can be absolutely certain of the quality of the source water (out of the tap, here it is well water). Heavy metals can still be present, and while safe for humans might be high enough to be toxic to fish. Live plants help here, as they can take up metals. But if this is not an issue, and if it is not being treated with chlorine or chloramine, and it is safe to drink as it comes out of the tap, chances are it is fine for fish. Nitrates is another issue with some well water, so test yours out of the tap for nitrates; if present, we can discuss further.

If you continue with the AquaSafe, add it to the water before adding it to the tank, at the amount indicated on the label. You mention a 10g tank, so presumably water changes will use a pail, and you can add the AS to the pail after filling it from the tap with the mix of warm/cold water. AS works instantly, so I usually get the temp where I want it and then begin to fill the pail and add the conditioner as you start to fill. It will mix instantly as the pail fills. Then into the tank.

Easy Balance according to the Tetra website has "benefits" including reduction of phosphate, stabilization of pH and KH, and replenishment of essential trace elements and minerals, and reduces nitrates [the one with Nitraban does this, not sure how new this may be]. While this might be of some value in other circumstances, here it seems unnecessary. The less chemical stuff entering a fish tank, the better.

To the pH. When testing tap water pH, either let a glass of water sit overnight before testing, or shake it briskly for several minutes. This outgasses the CO2 which can affect the pH level. I suspect you will find the pH higher after doing this.

This is important because we want to know if the pH is fluctuating at all in the aquarium. Several things affect pH, and water chemistry is frankly rather complicated. Which is why it is always safer to not add chemicals unless essential; changing this or that can have wide-ranging consequences. I'll leave this here for the present, until we have a confirmation of the exact pH of the tap water.

Except to mention that small pH fluctuations over say a 24-hour period are fine; this occurs in natural waters. But changes from 6.2 to over 7 is not small, and this is dangerous when it occurs in a short space of time. The normal diurnal (day to night) fluctuation in pH is anywhere from .2 to .4 or maybe .5, say from 6.4 to 6.8 or 6.9, but not up to a full degree [6.2 to 7.2 is one degree].

Byron.

Bluewind 11-14-2012 09:11 PM

I will give the other stuff a try. I don't have any kits but Amonia and pH, so I will have to wait until my next trip for a test on the rest. I'll be back with the pH test you talked about...
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