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Nephelie 05-18-2009 12:28 AM

A guby aquarium for starter

I always wanted to have a fish tank and recently (2 hours ago) i got the seal of approval from my mom to let me have a fish tank (she always afraid of me not taking care of it and end up taking care of it for me, but that won't happen since i know im really serious about this). Im in college right now and this is my final week so im thinking of starting to make one like a week from now so this week, beside from study and playing WOW, imma gather information of how to make, and maintain one. I been doing a lot of research on it and i have a some questions, answers and advices are always welcome and appreciate.
For me, taking away life is a very bad thing (i never kill an ant in my life after i know things) so unless the guby died of aging, otherwise if it die, i would feel really bad and blaming myself so i need to know what the heck im doing here so any advice is deeply appreciate.

1. I planning to have a 3 - 4 gallons aquarium and my fish of choice is guby, so how many guby is a good number for the tank?
2. Algate control, how many time in a week do i need to clean the tank and what are some other method to control algate like fishes that eat algate and go together with guby?
3. The only spot in the house that i can put the tank is damn close to a heater and there is no way to change this around so is there any problem cause i know guby is sensitive to temperature and what is the right temperature for a guby tank? (if the problem is critical, then i will consider to place the tank at a different spot).
4. I need to know how test the ph in water and what is a critical ph level for guby and what is an ideal ph level for guby?
5. The place where i place the guby tank is the living room so it kinda high traffic place so will the guby gonna have a lot of stress?
6. How long is guby life expectancy?
7. How do you tell the difference between female and male guby?
8. I planning to go very far with this like to the day i died and after im good with all the basic stuff, i want to breed guby.

Thank you for reading

Nephelie 05-18-2009 09:12 AM

Uhhhhh.....i spelled guppy wrong the whole time. Lol!

SinCrisis 05-18-2009 10:52 AM

cycle your tank. Should be the first thing u do. As for guppies, they breed so either you get a bigger tank or only get same sex guppies. In a 3-4 gallon tank, u can gave a max of 4 with no algae eaters or anything else. Algae can be controlled with water changes and live plants. As mentioned above, if u get 4 guppies u cant have any algae eaters. Go with 3 guppies and u can have 1 oto but otos prefer to live in groups so its a tough balance. AS far as i know guppies do fine between 76-80. whats the room temprature of the place ur living? there are mini heaters that add 3-4 degrees to ur water on top of ur room temprature. Unless ur water out fo ur tap is ridiculusly high or low over 8 or under 6, your guppies should be fine as long as u acclimate them properly. High traffic is fine as long as nobody stomps around, or bangs on the glass continuously. Life expectancy is completly dependent on water conditions. Males and females are usually sperated at the sotre for you. IF you want to breed guppies, thats a whole other tank setup. You will need at least 15 gallons, two tanks, one with a spong filter for the babies and, in all likelyhood, breed your own baby food, since buying it really adds up. Good luck. But the most important thing, if you dont want to harm any guppies, is make sure you cycle ur tank. Look up fishless cycling.

JohnnyD44 05-18-2009 11:24 AM


I'm glad you cleared up the "guby" thing, I was beginning to wonder, lol. SinCrisis has gave you some great information to get you started. Like he said, the most important and crucial aspect to keep fish healthy and happy for a long time is to cycle your tank from the start. If you cycle you tank, you will make things easier for you in the future. Trust Us.

Sin's post was great, i just wanna add a "check list", if you will, of things which are neccessary to maintain a healthy aquarium.

Make sure you only get one sex guppies, or you will see babies everywhere, like everywhere.

Dechlorinator (Prime or Stress Coat are highly reccommended)
"cycle" (a bottle of this stuff will help jump start your cycle)
Gravel, or other subtrate for the bottom of your tank
Ammonia (this is used in the cycling process, JUST MAKE SURE IT IS PURE AMMONIA)
Small heater
Hood and Lights
API Master Liquid Test Kit (this will be the best $25 you spend on your tank will save you daily trips to the fish store during your cycle stage, make sure it's the liquid drop kit, not the strips)
Any decor you may want (can be cleaned by using a diluted water/vinegar solution)

The only thing I could be aware of with a tank in a living room is sunlight. If the tank is in a spot where sunlight will hit it throughout the day, algae will be a problem. See if you can keep it out of sunlight

There's some more basic information for you....if you have more specific questions, feel free to ask!!!

Nephelie 05-18-2009 01:51 PM

Thanks Sin and John for your information, it was very helpful to me.

For Sin: im thinking of getting the tank around 5-10 gallons now since i want to have more guppies but i think 10 gallons tank is too big for the space i have so i have to go to my lfs to see what is the biggest tank i can fit there (i probably gonna do this this Saturday). My room usually at around 70-80 but during the summer it could be a little problematic since my ac is really bad, so the room temp can rise up to 90+ which i guess is a bad thing.

For John: Thanks for the tip, i know what equipment i need to buy for the tank now. And im a night person, i don't really like sunlight so i keep the curtain closes 99% of the day and the tank is not place under a place where sunlight can hit so i guess i saved with this.

For algate control, i probably gonna do some research on fresh water plant seem it sound more ideal then algate eater and it make the tank look nicer too.

Oh, petco sells guppy ranging from 3-5 dollars each depend on species so is that a reasonable price or not? and they are fancy guppy.

froglady 05-18-2009 02:09 PM

I think everyone is giving great ideas. for your setup for your guppies. I have a ten gallon tank. for breeding mine. but with limited space you might have to go smaller. keep us posted on your tank.

SinCrisis 05-18-2009 02:41 PM

oh wow 90 and up? opening the id to a tank helps cool it but then you water evaporates like crazy. I know people who do water changes on hot days and put in slightly cooler water to regulate temperature. However, if the temp change is too much it might shock some of the fish. As for pricing, 3-5 dollars sounds standard for pet store costs. However, if you can find a breeder, the fish will probably be healthier and be a bit cheaper. Also note, bigger tanks are less affected by room temperature. Meaning a 10 gallon tank will not heat up as much on a hot day than a small 3 gallon one. as for plants, since you probably don't want to spend a bunch of money on getting superb lighting and higher level substrates, go for low light ones that are hardy. Plants like Java Moss are both good for keeping nitrates down and serve as a good plant for guppies to spawn on. Also note, i believe guppies have the tendency to eat their young occasionally so for the highest yield in babies, the parents need to be removed. Also whatever filter you decide on, put filter foam or floss on the intake so the babies don't get sucked in. You probably don't want to breed immediately, but if you decide on getting mixed sex guppies, there is a good chance you'll get them.

froglady 05-18-2009 02:49 PM

My house gets up to 100 degrees in the summer. without an ac. I float ice water bottles in the tanks. and they do pretty good. I hope we can get a ac this summer. or I;ll be adding bottles thru out the day. the fish are worth the care we give them.

Nephelie 05-18-2009 03:21 PM

Thank you all for your helps!

I just did some research on fresh water plant and here are what i probably gonna get for my tank, cabomba, java moss and pearlweed.

For the 90 degree stuff, at first i was thinking of putting ice down to cool the tank but Froglady hit me ice bottle and it just better so thanks here for the icy tip.

I have decided to postpone the guppies breeding program to whenever i have a bigger place to fit a 30+ gallons tank so in the mean time, i will get all male guppies.

Another thing i consider is i probably gonna get a snail for algate control and they can eat off the plant so they don't grow too big too.

SinCrisis 05-18-2009 04:39 PM

cabomba is a moderate light plant. As for pearlweed, i dunno. BUt with Cabomba, you will need to invest in special bulbs for your hood. If the snail you get is a herbivore, it will decemate your plants. Snails should not be used to control plant growth. They are also usually terrible algae eaters unless you find nerite snails. Trumpet snails will also munch on algae, especialyl useful for thread and hair algae, and will not eat your plants but are still not huge eaters of algae. a 10 gallon can hold around 8 guppies and 2 otos. THe Otos are excellent algae eaters and, after cycling, will consume the brown diatom bloom that many tanks experience. Also think about using amano shrimp for algae control. Shrimp have a smaller bioload than fish but amano shrimp are harder to find. ALso with any invertibrates make sure the food you feed do not have copper.

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