Well my 55 gal tank looks pretty filthy and it's only two weeks old. I have 9 Tiger Barbs and 9 Serpae Tetras, one Marineland Emperor 400, one Whisper Power 60, and still no clue how much to feed the fish. I know the idea of not giving more food than they can finish in a couple of minutes, but that only works when they actually eat the food that I put in the tank. I'm feeding flakes, pellets, and freeze dried bloodworms. I catch myself putting a bit of each two to three times a day. I put extra charcoal media in the 400 because the water started to stink, but it didn't seem to help and that's when I put in the 60.
So this is my idea, feed only 2 times a day, flakes in the morning and pellets in the evening. Do a 50% water change, a filter change in both filters, and a charcoal change in the 400. If I continue on this route, do you think I will achieve crystal clear water? Is this, cloudy, how the water is supposed to look during the first cycle?
Any questions or comments?
during the cycle your tank will go through a phase where its like milky white. This is just a boom in bacteria population which is normal and nothing to worry about. Try to limit the amount of time your lights are on to around 10 hours a day, and your water will clear up on its own. You just need to be patient during the cycle and try to resist the urge to add chemicals which really wont do any good, infact they can potentially do dmg to the cycle making it take longer!
SeaHog: Welcome to a new hobby that can be a lot of fun.
You said that the very short time needed to eat the food was something you could not see because they don't always eat it. This means you are feeding way too much. Try only feeding one time per day and only one of the foods. If they don't eat it all you are still feeding too much. From what you have said, I think you will be very surprised at how little the fish will eat. If they don't eat anything you give them today try one of your other foods tomorrow and don't try to feed enough for their missed meal. They won't starve themselves but sometimes don't like a particular food. The rule about only feeding what they eat in a few minutes is a good one that will keep you out of trouble but its up you to follow it.
Sorry if this sounds like lecturing you but I am hoping to help you be successful with your new friends.
Thanks for your input folks, I really appreciate it. I'm going to try the twice a day feeding, but with a great deal less flakes than I was originally feeding them. If it turns out that they don't eat still, then I will either try different food or reduce feeding to once per day. I am also not worried so much about the milky water, thanks for the tip beetlebz because I don't remember reading that in my research.
Question, is it possible to have too much bacteria in a freshwater tank? Just asking because I am using two bio-wheels in the 400 and two sponges in the 60. What do you'll think?
you will only have enough bacteria,
if there is not enough food the bacteria will die off.
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