Do I absolutely have to have a tank filter?
I bought a new tank set and 4 Mixed Fruit Tetra fish the other day and the filter that came with the tank has such a strong current my fish are having issues swimming past it. Would it be possible for me to take the filter out and just make sure they eat all of their food and then net out what they don't eat after a few minutes and use a tank cleaning tablet every so often or should I keep using the filter?
What is a fish tank cleaning tablet? That sounds scary!
Well to answer you question. If I was you I would go buy another filter. What size is your tank? On small tanks you can use sponge filters. They work great and make little current. They are also cheap which is good. LoL These are best for tanks under 40 gallons though they do make sponges filters for bigger tanks (just not sure how well they work on a tank that size).
I'm not entirely sure what a tablet is but I saw them at walmart earlier today.
Would my tank be alright for a few days while I'm away on vacation without a filter before I can get the new filter or should I just have my fish stick it out with the stronger current until I get back? My tank holds about 1.75 Gallons.
Your tank is less then 2 gallons? Oh wow umm ummm Okay I am just going to to say this with all most respect. A 1.75 gallon tank is not suitable for any fish let alone 4 Tetra. You won't be able to find a sponge filter for a rank that small either (well at least I don't think so anyways.) Honesty I don't see your fish making it a couple of days in the tank with or without a filter unless you do water changes everyday.
Honestly every tank needs some sort of filter. A good alternative is a sponge filter, as they are pretty gentle in terms of current and offer a very good biological filter.
I would not leave the tank without a filter for a few days, as since it is so small, small changes in the water would be quite large as a whole. Think of it as when you toss a rock in a pond, nothing changes. However, take the same rock and toss it in a small cup, and the water overflows. The rock is the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates. The size of the tank makes it that the overall toxins are more concentrated, and very detrimental for the fish, to the point of death.
I say look into a sponge filter of some sort, especially if your tank is not cycled yet.
@unicornguts I suggest you try to return the fish to the store and acquire a larger aquarium. You can read the sticky at the top of this forum on how to cycle the new aquarium before you add fish to it. The fish will be happier, healthier, and in the end will be less work for you.
Any cleaning tablet is likely akin to liquid clarification concoctions that bind small particles (e.g. cloudy water) so they can trapped in a filter.
Water filtration is largely misunderstood as it does, or can do, several things, directly and indirectly. Mechanical to remove particulate matter, chemical to adsorb chemical impurities and biological to convert toxic ammonia and nitrites into less toxic nitrates.
Indirectly it circulates the water, breaking up thermal gradients and is very necessary for plants and overall tank biology.
Yes you need a filter!
I don't know how you get a heater and filter for a 1.75g tank. I hope these fish survive, but it will be a challenge. You might try a water bottle baffle.
Short term would be a sponge filter and frequent water changes. Long term, a larger tank with an appropriate size filter is a better answer.
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