Added fish without doing the nitrogen cycle..

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roxyrocky

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Ignorant mistake. Here's my super super long story..

I went to the pet store and not knowing anything but the most basics of fish-keeping, bought a 10 gallon fish tank. I ordered a Aqueon Quitflow Power Filter that supported up to 30 gallons, goldfish pellets, an air pump and air stone, liquid bacteria, and a water conditioner. The next day I bought 4 ryukin goldfish, two 3-inch ones and two 1.5-inch ones, (yes I know ) and some gravel and decorations. The pet store owner had told me I could fit 4-5 goldfish in my tiny tiny 10 gallon, and so I did. A few weeks later I noticed smelly, cloudy water in my 10 gallon and did some research. I found the basics of aquarium size my goldfish required and although I couldn't afford a 50 gallon+ sized aquarium, I did get a 40 gallon for temporary use (since they are still small). I immediately took my four babies out their toxic home and immediately placed them in my 40 gallon and got two snails. TERRIBLE MISTAKE. I've decided after I did this that I would do some research since now I realized that this hobby is a lot more than just fish and water! I read about the nitrogen cycle and got myself an API Master Test Kit. So now finally here is my information on my 40 gallon aquarium..

Filter: Tetra Whisper EX Power Filter for 45~70 gallons
Bare bottom aquarium to prevent waste getting stuck
4 Ryukin goldfish
pH: has been fluctuating, it went from 7.6 to 6.0 or below to 8.2....
Ammonia: from 0 to a 0.5 but 0.25 when water is changed
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: 0
The tap water I use to do water changes has 7.4 pH, 0 ammonia, 0 nitrate and 0 nitrite.
I've been doing 50% water changes everyday to keep the ammonia down..

My question is; Do I continue to do my 50% water changes or should I do smaller water changes? Is there anything I can do to speed up the cycle? Are my fish fine as long as my ammonia levels do not go beyond 1.0 ppm? Please give me any information you can on how to save my fish from my ignorant mistakes!
 

PlatySquad4

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Keep doing water changes and if you can't afford a tank large enough for all 4 goldfish, you might have to return one.


 
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roxyrocky

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PlatySquad4 said:
Keep doing water changes and if you can't afford a tank large enough for all 4 goldfish, you might have to return one.
Aren't they fine for now because they're pretty small.. I mentioned that I Wil be getting a bigger tank
 

bizaliz3

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"Aren't they fine for now because they're pretty small.. I mentioned that I Wil be getting a bigger tank"


I would say it depends on what you mean when you say "for now". If you keep them in there too long, it will stunt their growth and shorten their lifespan. That is the biggest problem when having the "for now" attitude (which I am guilty of having at times!!!)
 
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roxyrocky

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bizaliz3 said:
"Aren't they fine for now because they're pretty small.. I mentioned that I Wil be getting a bigger tank"


I would say it depends on what you mean when you say "for now". If you keep them in there too long, it will stunt their growth and shorten their lifespan. That is the biggest problem when having the "for now" attitude (which I am guilty of having at times!!!)
I was thinking until they were around 4-5 inches each
 

aliray

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Welcome to the forum. One suggestion for now is to go the the pet store and get a bottle for Tetra Safe Start or Tetras Safe Start plus. Get the amount you need for a forty Gal tank. Dump the whole amount in the tank when you get home. Then for the next two weeks just lightly feed your fish and count heads. At the end of the 2 weeks your tank should be cycled. They tell you not to test the water for those 2 weeks and not to change the water for the two weeks. You can add dechlorinated water to make up for the evaporation. It is called a fish in cycle and I cycled all three of my tanks that way with no problem. Alison
 

Dom90

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For goldfish the "rule" is 20 gallons for one fancy goldfish, and 10 gallons for each additional one. So that means you would need at least a 50-55 gallon tank.
 
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roxyrocky

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aliray said:
Welcome to the forum. One suggestion for now is to go the the pet store and get a bottle for Tetra Safe Start or Tetras Safe Start plus. Get the amount you need for a forty Gal tank. Dump the whole amount in the tank when you get home. Then for the next two weeks just lightly feed your fish and count heads. At the end of the 2 weeks your tank should be cycled. They tell you not to test the water for those 2 weeks and not to change the water for the two weeks. You can add dechlorinated water to make up for the evaporation. It is called a fish in cycle and I cycled all three of my tanks that way with no problem. Alison
Thank you so much! This is really helpful. I saw reviews on the product you mentioned and only positive reviews. I will be going to the store to buy this since I can not keep up with the daily water changes when school starts.
 

bizaliz3

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roxyrocky said:
I was thinking until they were around 4-5 inches each
I think it is more about how long you keep them in there....not how big they get before you move them. If that makes sense. It could take them a long time to grow a couple more inches....especially being in a tank that is too small....that can slow the growing process down. In a larger tank, they could grow to be 5 inches pretty quickly, but in a smaller tank, it will take more time. That has been my experience anyway. My daughter won a few goldfish at a carnival...and believe it or not, those fish at carnivals that they send kids home with to put in a bowl are fish that are ultimately meant for ponds! I didn't know that at the time. We put them in a 10 gallon thinking that was much better than a bowl. I had 3 of them. They barely grew at all in the 10 gallon. When I upgraded and put them in a 55 gallon tank they started to grow and they grew fast. I ended up giving them away in the end. This was about 4 years ago and I was brand new into the hobby. I don't keep goldfish anymore. I have all tropical tanks now.
 

Jsigmo

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Just one more vote for dosing the tank with a bottle of TSS or TSS+. Then no water changes for two weeks.

it's always worked well for me.
 
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roxyrocky

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Jsigmo said:
Just one more vote for dosing the tank with a bottle of TSS or TSS+.

it's always worked well for me.
What is the difference between Tetra SafeStart and Tetra SafeStart Plus?
 

Bijou88

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I believe 'plus' says it contains a higher number of bacteria.

 

alink

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I think the plus has more types of nitrifying bacteria. Not all bacteria can survive in all water systems so they put a bunch of different bacteria in these products so you have a better chance of there being at least 1 that will do the job in your tank.

Edit: Here's a link to a Q&A on TSS/TSS+ and just over half way down someone asked this and the response was
The difference between SafeStart and SafeStart Plus is the concetration level of the live bacteria within the solution.
 
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roxyrocky

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Thanks guys so much!
 

aliray

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From all of us your welcome. Good luck with the tank and fish and keep us posted on how its going....That link that alink posted is a good link to read. Alison
 
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roxyrocky

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Hey everyone! I just got my 250 mL SafeStart in the mail today. My ammonia is at around .4 ppm, my nitrites are at 0 ppm, and my nitrates are at 0 ppm as well. I will be pouring in the whole bottle after moving my fish to a temporary holding container and putting them back in an hour later. Sound good?
 

happygolucky

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Just shake it REALLY well, and dump it in. Remember, no testing or water changes for 2 weeks! Feed fish lightly.
 
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roxyrocky

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happygolucky said:
Just shake it REALLY well, and dump it in. Remember, no testing or water changes for 2 weeks! Feed fish lightly.
Alright, thanks for the info. I will update everyone soon!
 

Et tu

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I don't think you need to move them, just shake the bottle and pour directly in the filter. If you are using Seachem Prime wait 24 hrs b4 you add TSS.
 
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roxyrocky

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Et tu said:
I don't think you need to move them, just shake the bottle and pour directly in the filter. If you are using Seachem Prime wait 24 hrs b4 you add TSS.
If I add this product won't there be bacterial blooms and won't the water be unstable stressing out my fish? (like nitrites rising). Should I pour half into the filter and half into the tank?
 
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