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50g Freshwater tank underway, am I doing everything okay so far?
Hello all, my name is Max and I am new to this forum. I am 22, from Minnesota, and two days ago I purchased a 50 gallon tank to start my new hobby.
Like I said, I bought a 50 gallon tank, put the 50 lbs of gravel in, filled it up with water from my bath, got my heater and canister filter going (Fluval 206), and put the following ingredients (and the proper levels of it according to the back of each bottle) into the tank: API Aquarium Salt, API Stress Coat, and Top Fin Bacteria Supplement.
After doing this, I added 4 minnows to the tank, as suggested by the employee in the fish department at Petsmart, he said that doing that would help with the bacteria cycle in the tank.
This was all yesterday, today I worked all day and when I got off, went to Walmart (only because it is open 24hrs, trust me) and got 8 gold fish and some gold fish pellets. I originally only went there to get a little food to feed to the minnows (I got floating gold fish pellets for them, do minnows even eat those?), and for some odd reason thought that by getting more 12 cent fish it would help my tank..
Anyways it is 1:30am now and I am just curious if I am doing everything right so far.
I haven't done any water changes, and I don't have a water test kit. I can bring water samples into Petsmart and have them test my water, but it would be a pain to have to drive across town over there each time I wanted to test my water, so I will probably buy a test kit tomorrow.
My roommate has a 55 gallon salt water tank, he has some equipment for it such as a gravel vac and a net etc., is it okay for me to use those things as long as I rinse them out first, or no?
Also, I am very interested in having live plants in my aquarium, and I believe because I have fluorescent lights that is something that I will be able to do? When should I get/put the plants in the aquarium? And what kind should I get?
I doubt that it matters right now, but I plan to have a semi-aggressive tank.
Here are some pictures I thought might help.
Any thoughts or comments would be very appreciated, I am new to all of this and not totally sure what I am doing!
welcome to the forum. Awesome setup to begin with.
1 mistake is listening to the guys at petsmart/petco etc. I'd first take your fish back and get a refund for now and look into fishless cycling in an aquarium.
Though the 55 gal is big enough and won't kill those fish immediately, you might want to do a bit more research before getting fish yet.
There are articles on this site that will help you out and make better decisions soon enough. Good luck =) on this hobby it's awesome seeing someone new get into this.
I have looked at the articles regarding cycling and everything, and I am just a little confused with it all. What exactly does the bacteria supplement I purchased do? It says it:
"Helps to stabilize your aquadic environment"
"Introduced beneficial bacteria"
"Reduces ammonia spikes"
"Aids in Nitrogen cycle to reduce "new tank syndrome"
Have I already begun this important cycle, am I on my way to registering 0 ammonia and nitrite?
I know tomorrow or the next day I will probably have to do a water change. Can I use my roommates gravel vac (which he uses for saltwater, can I rinse it off and use it for freshwater?)?
Also, when can I plant living plants?
Also, just curious, is it possible to add gravel to a tank that already has water in it, or would that just create a huge, dusty mess?
Bacteria supplements are generally a hoax IMO. There are good bacteria that grow in your tank and in your filter especially. To 'cycle' your tank means to establish a good bacteria colony. If you have a heater and like the fish you have now, take it out because they are cold water fish. But don't get rid of it because you may change your mind like all aquarists do at some point. The best way to cycle an aquarium is to add a couple of fish, feed lightly for a month, and iff the fish make it great if not, cycling a tank with fish is expected to kill the IMO. Plant greatly reduce the process of cycling a tank by using the fish waste as food.
I would recommend getting a test kit to see the water parameters in the tank and see where you are at.
It is not the best way to cycle a tank with fish in. I would as the fish cost so little, take them all back and do a fishless cycle.
You NEED a test kit, there is absolutely no way to fully gauge what is going on in your tank without one. I would take any information your pet store gives you and discard it.
Profit first - fish health last - they dont offer good advice and are just after your money (with some exceptions).
I would personally get yourself a gravel vac and leave your room mates one alone. It will save you and him any heart ache in case one of you introduces something to each others tank. They are not expensive at all.
With regards to adding gravel to a tank...provided you rinse it well and make sure any free floating debris is out before adding to the main tank...if you are only a bit then use a plastic cup or something that has never been in contact with soap and add it slowly. It probably wont cause much of a storm in the tank.
Good luck and hope it works out for you.
Also ditch the salt. I don't know if any one has said it yet.
the rest of it take it back,
Here's what I use for my aquarium (90 - sold, 5 gallon office tank - thriving)
Kordon Amquel (not plus)
EasyLife Easy Start (Best i've used yet -- better results than stability)
For cycling fishless - feed tank the amount of food you will feed your fish once each day for approximately 3-4 weeks. Water change at the end of your cycle (you'll know by testing the water conditions) and then add 1-2 small fish to test the water.
Not an expert here but won't 8 gold fish be too much for a 55 gallon?
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