120 gallon cycling stocking question

Penguin225

So my 120 is fishless cycling currently but I have had tons of extra biomedia so it is going fast obviously waiting to stock until it's fully cycled I have 6 fish in another tank I am goung to move over but my question is how many fish can I add at a time? My LFS is 2 hours away so I can't go every week I'm just trying to figure out the best way to fully stock my tank without harming my fish and tank
 

Seasoldier

Hi, depends on how big the fish are & what species, also what filtration you have running. What you don't want to do is add too much of a bio load all at once & overwhelm the bacteria colonies in the filter which could lead to an ammonia spike.
 

FishDin

If you want to stock a heavy load all at once you will want to cycle your tank to a higher ammonia level, say, 4ppm. So when your tank can clear 4ppm ammonia in 24 hours along with the resulting nitrites you should be safe. You still need to be very diligent with checking parameters daily for a bit to make sure all is well.

A 2 hour drive costs me more in gas than the shipping for an overnight online order. I let UPS do the driving.

As for the number of fish, that's like asking what is blue, true or false?
There is no answer.

You need to research the fish you want before buying them.

You should first know what your water parameters are so you can choose fish that will do well in the water that you have. Most fish can fit into a middle ground, but some do require specific conditions. If you don't have the test kits you need you can bring a sample with you to LFS for testing.
Best to know pH, KH and GH. You also want to test your tap water for ammonia and nitrate.

You need to know if the fish you are mixing are compatible with each other or with others of their own species.

You need to know what kind of scaping the fish prefer or need. Some like open water, some like heavily planted, some like sand, some like gravel, Some like cool, some like very warm, some like dim light etc

Maybe you come up with a list of fish you want, a collection of several options. You could call the LFS to see what they are stocking from your list.

It's not good to show up at the fish store without a plan unless you have a good knowledge of the fish and your able to make educated decisions on the fly. Fish store employees are not a good source of information. You don't want to be relying on them when you get there.

BTW, what are the fish you already have? Start with them and look for fish that will go well with them. That may include increasing the numbers of the ones you already have.
 

Seasoldier

What FishDin says above is really good advice, follow that & you won't go far wrong.
 

Penguin225

If you want to stock a heavy load all at once you will want to cycle your tank to a higher ammonia level, say, 4ppm. So when your tank can clear 4ppm ammonia in 24 hours along with the resulting nitrites you should be safe. You still need to be very diligent with checking parameters daily for a bit to make sure all is well.

A 2 hour drive costs me more in gas than the shipping for an overnight online order. I let UPS do the driving.

As for the number of fish, that's like asking what is blue, true or false?
There is no answer.

You need to research the fish you want before buying them.

You should first know what your water parameters are so you can choose fish that will do well in the water that you have. Most fish can fit into a middle ground, but some do require specific conditions. If you don't have the test kits you need you can bring a sample with you to LFS for testing.
Best to know pH, KH and GH. You also want to test your tap water for ammonia and nitrate.

You need to know if the fish you are mixing are compatible with each other or with others of their own species.

You need to know what kind of scaping the fish prefer or need. Some like open water, some like heavily planted, some like sand, some like gravel, Some like cool, some like very warm, some like dim light etc

Maybe you come up with a list of fish you want, a collection of several options. You could call the LFS to see what they are stocking from your list.

It's not good to show up at the fish store without a plan unless you have a good knowledge of the fish and your able to make educated decisions on the fly. Fish store employees are not a good source of information. You don't want to be relying on them when you get there.

BTW, what are the fish you already have? Start with them and look for fish that will go well with them. That may include increasing the numbers of the ones you already have.
We have 4 harlequin rasboras and 2 neon tetras I do have a plan of what we want to add and the lfs has them we'd Iike to add more neons, and rasboras, some cory cats, and we have been looking at a few silver dollars but have not fully decided
 

Blacksheep1

Great advice above.

Could you use your current tank that’s set up to quarantine the fish you will buy once you move the others over ? that way you’re not risking a disaster
 

Penguin225

Great advice above.

Could you use your current tank that’s set up to quarantine the fish you will buy once you move the others over ? that way you’re not risking a disaster
It's only 10 gallons however that is a possibility for a few fish at a time
 

Azedenkae

It depends on how you cycle the tank.

Filter media, which one is better? | Aquarium Filter Forum | 525558

This thread has a good method to estimate how much ammonia a fully stocked tank may produce. I use a similar method to estimate maximum amount of ammonia likely produced.

Even for a fully stocked tank that is well fed, leas than 1ppm ammonia is produced. It is only for very heavily fed tanks that ammonia would even hit 2ppm/day.

So if you cycled your tank to ensure at least 1ppm ammonia can be consumed a day, then you are gold and can fully stock a tank immediately. 2ppm if you are very certain you will be feeding a lot, and I mean A LOT, far more than the average fishkeeper would feed. 4ppm is really a stretch goal, just to add buffer so that the tank can readily handle fish deaths, etc. but nah yeah 1ppm is perfectly fine for 99% of setups out there tbh.
 

Penguin225

It depends on how you cycle the tank.

Filter media, which one is better? | Aquarium Filter Forum | 525558

This thread has a good method to estimate how much ammonia a fully stocked tank may produce. I use a similar method to estimate maximum amount of ammonia likely produced.

Even for a fully stocked tank that is well fed, leas than 1ppm ammonia is produced. It is only for very heavily fed tanks that ammonia would even hit 2ppm/day.

So if you cycled your tank to ensure at least 1ppm ammonia can be consumed a day, then you are gold and can fully stock a tank immediately. 2ppm if you are very certain you will be feeding a lot, and I mean A LOT, far more than the average fishkeeper would feed. 4ppm is really a stretch goal, just to add buffer so that the tank can readily handle fish deaths, etc. but nah yeah 1ppm is perfectly fine for 99% of setups out there tbh.
I've used fish food and a ton of extra biomedia from other tanks
 

FishDin

We have 4 harlequin rasboras and 2 neon tetras I do have a plan of what we want to add and the lfs has them we'd Iike to add more neons, and rasboras, some cory cats, and we have been looking at a few silver dollars but have not fully decided
That's a good start. In a tank that big you could have a large group of corries. Perhaps a couple different kinds... The neons and rasboras definitly want to be in bigger groups. A couple dozen neons would look nice. I haven't kept silver dollors, so others can weigh in, but if they fit your tank setup etc. I think that would look good.

Also, you could add fish over time. You have a long drive, so maybe every 6-8 weeks (or whatever works for you) you could add to your tank. For example, get a dozen corys, a dozen neons, 6 rasboras on your first trip. over a few weeks you will get a better sense of what to add, if anything. More of those or something else or both.

You might consider gouramis. The Pearl Gs are quite nice and there others.
 

Penguin225

That's a good start. In a tank that big you could have a large group of corries. Perhaps a couple different kinds... The neons and rasboras definitly want to be in bigger groups. A couple dozen neons would look nice. I haven't kept silver dollors, so others can weigh in, but if they fit your tank setup etc. I think that would look good.

Also, you could add fish over time. You have a long drive, so maybe every 6-8 weeks (or whatever works for you) you could add to your tank. For example, get a dozen corys, a dozen neons, 6 rasboras on your first trip. over a few weeks you will get a better sense of what to add, if anything. More of those or something else or both.

You might consider gouramis. The Pearl Gs are quite nice and there others.
We decided on getting some chiclids as someone local has them available so when the tank is ready we will be getting them
 

FishDin

Cool. What are you getting? Make sure you know their needs. Cichlids come in tons of types and most have specific requirements.
 

Penguin225

A local guy has some yellow top hybrids and I researched a ton I'm not to experienced with chiclids so still unsure if I can add any other types of them to the tank or just the same kind?
 

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FishDin

Do you have another name for them?
Labidochromis sp. perhaps?

If that's the one, be sure to use a lot of rocks to create many caves for them. They live in dim light, so no need for bright lights on the tank. More aggressive than their relative, the yellow lab, but still not bad. Yes they can be kept with some, but not all of the Malawi cichlids.

"Keep it in a typical Malawi setup, with much of the tank filled with piles of rock arranged to form lots of caves and crevices. Ideally use sand as substrate. Lighting can be quite dim with this species as it lives in deep water in nature, although if you’re keeping it with other Mbuna you can use the usual bright lighting with no adverse effects. As with all Rift Lake species, filtration and tank maintenance should be excellent as it’s sensitive to poor water quality."-Seriously Fishy


This site is a good resource: Labidochromis sp. "Mbamba"
 

Penguin225

Do you have another name for them?
Labidochromis sp. perhaps?

If that's the one, be sure to use a lot of rocks to create many caves for them. They live in dim light, so no need for bright lights on the tank. More aggressive than their relative, the yellow lab, but still not bad. Yes they can be kept with some, but not all of the Malawi cichlids.

"Keep it in a typical Malawi setup, with much of the tank filled with piles of rock arranged to form lots of caves and crevices. Ideally use sand as substrate. Lighting can be quite dim with this species as it lives in deep water in nature, although if you’re keeping it with other Mbuna you can use the usual bright lighting with no adverse effects. As with all Rift Lake species, filtration and tank maintenance should be excellent as it’s sensitive to poor water quality."-Seriously Fishy


This site is a good resource: Labidochromis sp. "Mbamba"
The guy also had yellow labs so it's possible he meant to tell me yellow lab hybrids
And thank for the advice I'll be sire to get a lot of caves and rocks
 

FishDin

Yellow labs are closely related and that is probably what they hybridized with.

I'm guessing that your current fish stand a good chance of becoming snacks for your cichlids once they are big enough. Keep that in mind if you want to add other fish. If you add other fish, make sure they are not small enough to fit into your cichlids' mouths.
 

Penguin225

Yellow labs are closely related and that is probably what they hybridized with.

I'm guessing that your current fish stand a good chance of becoming snacks for your cichlids once they are big enough. Keep that in mind if you want to add other fish. If you add other fish, make sure they are not small enough to fit into your cichlids' mouths.
Oh yeah I'm definetly not addingy current tetras because they will become snacks
 

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