I got an unexpected present.....and a couple questions
So my mom calls me and says someone was going to throw away an entire 30 gallon set-up...with wooden cabinet stand and all. They are moving and didn't want it. She salvaged it and and it's mine. My planned 75 gallon set-up is on hold now since 90% of the costs for a new set-up are eliminated via this gift. Here are my two questions:
1.) I have a 10 gallon that should be completely cycled (for the second time because of a dumb error, more on this later) any day now. I'm in in the nitrite stage, have been for almost two weeks now. My 30 gallon will be set-up long after this tank is well and cycled. The question is:
How much substrate from the 10 gallon exactly would you recomend placing in the new 30 gallon once it's up and running to speed the cycle? A hand full? Two hand fulls? less? Would some substrate and perhaps one of the decorative ornaments inside the other be good?
2.) The reason I got a second cycle in the 10 gallon was because after it was done originally, ( I had two glowlight tetras in there to cycle the tank with) I went ahead and added 5 more to give me 7 which is what I wanted originally. Since I know they are schooling fish and like to be in groups of at least 5 I added them all. Well, this lead a huge ammonia spike which triggered another cycle.
For the 30 gallon I plan to have more schooling fish. I want three schools: 6 Harlequin Rasboras, 6 Black Neons and 6 Pristella tetras. I will add them one species at a time. So I don't get this spike again and cause another cycle, should I add them like 2 at a time with at least a week in between additions until I have one whole species done? Only reason I added the glowlights all at once before is because I knew they weren't happy being just 2 or three so I put the whole species in. Big mistake.
Thanks for any help.
neon 1 One cup (not big gulp cup) should be sufficient of substrate from ten gal. If I could I would wait as long as I could stand it before gathering it. Your ten gal. will still be relatively young bacteria wise. Were it me I would choose hardiest fish for cycling the 30 gal. If you choose to cycle with fish. It would probably be best to use at least six SMALL hardy fish . Two fish would not contribute enough to nitrification process(ammonia) to be of much help. Beneficial bacteria on decorations ,driftwood, filter media etc. Could help speed the cycling process. The more the better.
If I did it I would use about the same gravel amount and spread it aorund the entire 26 gallon. If oyu can, put some fliter floss in the filter for the 10 gallon so you can add that to the filter of the other tank.
As for cycling fish, nothing is really hardier than Zebra danios. 6 of them should work well to get a good cycling base started. You could always try a fishless cycle.
Now, your mileage may vary here, but the very first tank I set up was a 10 gallon that I put a clown pleco in after running the filters for a week. Then a week later I added 6 black neons. A week later, 5 albino cories. Should have killed every fish in the tank, but no one even clamped fins. Why? Lots and Lots of Plants.
That said, I'd go Harlequins, Back Neons, Pristellas in that order, two weeks apart. If you are not planning on planting the tank, get three to 5 bunches of anachris and plant them in there temporarily to help with your cycle.
Also, are you planning on an algae eater of some kind? Bottom dwellers?
First off, I forgot to mention this will be a FISHLESS CYCLE. I will do it the pure ammonia way, adding drops till I get the required level and doing small water changes.
Ok, you mention the order in which to add the species, but how many. All 6 at one time, then wait a week or so and the next 6?
2nd: to answer the question of what other fish besides the three schools I mentioned....Here is the list of all the inhabitants I have planned in total:
1- Yo yo Loach
1-Red Tail Shark
1-regular grey crayfish
3rd: This will be a 30 gallon set-up that will pretty much mimic my 10 gallon, I.E. set-up to look like salt water with artifical corals and caves and such, no plants.
After your tank has cycled (fishless) I would add six of the tetras. I would then wait ten days and maybe add two more small fish .Then after another ten days ,a couple more and so on until tank is stocked. You do not want to stock too quickly and possibly have to repeat cycling process due to too many fish too quickly do you? :wink:
I'd go ahead and add the whole schools (6 of each) 2 weeks apart, but I would hedge my bets with some fast growing low light plants until I was stocked up at the least - anachris and/or wisteria would work.
A RTBS is a great fish for a 30 gallon, but if you want one, I would make that the only bottom dweller. They can get testy as they get older.
Now, a yoyo loach, by itself, would fit and might do just fine with the RTBS, but bear in mind that Yoyos get about 6" long, really do best in groups of 5 or more, and will scare the bejeezus out of your tetras (it's like a big, fluffy, friendly dog loose in a kindergarten - it means no harm, but there will be tears.) I'd go with, if you can find them, striped loaches - Botia striata. They get half the size, do the same number on snails, and will be much happier in a smaller tank than the yoyo. And you could stick 3 in there. 5 if you skip the RTBS. (If you're in the greater DC metro area, I could even hook you up with a shoal at a reasonable price - I have 8 of the little devils). Burmese Border/Angelicus/Polka Dot loaches (B. kubotai) are good too, only slightly larger than B. striata (available at Petsmart for $10 each - down from 20 in the last 2 years.)
I don't know what a regular grey catfish is. Either you're talking about some sort of cory, in which case you should skip the other bottom dwellers and get 5 cories, or you are talking about something that will get too big for the tank (a channel cat, a columbian shark) or something I've never heard of.
That's is the beauty of the fishless cycle. Once it is done and as long as you don't let the bacyeria starve then you can add pretty much a full "normal" load of fish to the tank. Don't overstock as you can possibly see a mini cycle but the fishless cycle is designed to support a full normal bioload at the end.
There is another way to do it that you do not do any water changes and it supposed to be faster. Adding a certain amount every day. I will try to find the link again or get the one who told me about it to post it.
After doing that, yes you are supposed to be able to add a full load at once, since 4ppm is way more than it will ever reach with the fish. I'd would stil probably add them all within a few days of eachother anyways.
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