Advice for starting a second tank using filter media to help the cycle

Lauraaac

Member
Hello!

I just ordered a small filter and can't wait to cycle my 6 gallon for a future betta fish :) I'm fairly new to the hobby, so I've only ever set up one tank, a guppy tank which I have had for 7 months now. The guppy tank is fully cycled of course, and I'd like to know the best way to transfer filter media/gravel/water ect to help cycle this tank.

I want to make the 6 gallon a planted tank but need to wait until shops reopen to get those, for now I've taken a few rooted stems off of my java ferns to grow in there and ordered a few marimo balls to have in there/ QT while I cycle.

I'd like to know what the best way to get some beneficial bacteria in there would be, as I have never done it before, so sorry if its a silly question.

I'd also love some betta advice! I'm planning on growing java ferns and some other leafy plants for the betta to sleep on, put those almond leaves in, have a heater of course and hopefully grow a short carpet for a really natural scape! Thanks :)
 

Lucyn

Member
If you're positive the filter media is fully cycled, as soon as you transfer the media over it'll be cycled and ready for fish. Just make sure to feed light for the first week, your tank only establishes enough BB (Beneficial Bacteria), to handle the current bio-load. Just make sure your bio-load isn't higher than the previous tank that it was in. If you were to add half the media, then you'd have half the bio-load of the tank it was in etc. Of course there's some on aquarium decorations and in the substrate, but I'd say 90-95% is in the filter. Make sure not to wait too long before adding in the filter media, if you wait too long, the BB will eventually die out since it has nothing to sustain it, so try to add in whatever fish you would like within around 24-48 hours.
If you didn't already know, since you'd like to grow Java Fern, make sure to never immerse the Rhizome in the substrate. It will most definitely kill the plant, so try and attach it to something or set it somewhere, I usually just use super glue or nudge it between some rocks.
 
  • Thread Starter

Lauraaac

Member
Lucyn said:
If you're positive the filter media is fully cycled, as soon as you transfer the media over it'll be cycled and ready for fish. Just make sure to feed light for the first week, your tank only establishes enough BB (Beneficial Bacteria), to handle the current bio-load. Just make sure your bio-load isn't higher than the previous tank that it was in. If you were to add half the media, then you'd have half the bio-load of the tank it was in etc. Of course there's some on aquarium decorations and in the substrate, but I'd say 90-95% is in the filter. Make sure not to wait too long before adding in the filter media, if you wait too long, the BB will eventually die out since it has nothing to sustain it, so try to add in whatever fish you would like within around 24-48 hours.
If you didn't already know, since you'd like to grow Java Fern, make sure to never immerse the Rhizome in the substrate. It will most definitely kill the plant, so try and attach it to something or set it somewhere, I usually just use super glue or nudge it between some rocks.
Yes, I have all my java ferns attached to rocks. Just to clarify, If I attach the new filter with the cycled media, I should add the fish in the new tank within 48 hours? Thanks!
 

Lucyn

Member
Lauraaac said:
Yes, I have all my java ferns attached to rocks. Just to clarify, If I attach the new filter with the cycled media, I should add the fish in the new tank within 48 hours? Thanks!
Yes, that's right. BB needs something to sustain itself, for example waste the fish produce and the food you feed to them fuel it. Ammonia is created in this process, which as you probably know converts to nitrites, then a lot less toxic nitrate, which is water changed out. Without anything to fuel that BB, it will rapidly die out.
 
  • Thread Starter

Lauraaac

Member
Lucyn said:
Yes, that's right. BB needs something to sustain itself, for example waste the fish produce and the food you feed to them fuel it. Ammonia is created in this process, which as you probably know converts to nitrites, then a lot less toxic nitrate, which is water changed out. Without anything to fuel that BB, it will rapidly die out.
Thanks so much! looks like I can safely have a betta sooner than I thought
 

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