Cloudy Tank Water. Question

  1. Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    My brother (who lives away) had a fancy goldfish in a 10 gallon tank with a filter but no chemical media, it was just a sponge in the filter tray and yesterday he upgraded him to a 20 gallon long.

    He said added chemical media of charcoal and something else I can’t recall the name of to a filter bag and popped it into the filter tray along with the same sponges from the 10 gallon, same deco and substrate. He sent me a message this morning saying the 20 gallon water is misty/cloudy.

    He’s got no API kit so he can’t test the water. Is this normal or something else?
     
  2. FishGirl38

    FishGirl38 Valued Member Member

    It's normal and a very good sign. Cloudy water after setting up a tank is a sign that the initial bacteria colonies are establishing. It should go away in the next 4 days.

    If it doesn't, I'd add ammonia in the form of fish food or an ammonia supplement. You CAN play the cycle by ear, but it would really help him if he had a test kit.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    And the fish will be ok? He’s sold the 10 gallon so he can’t put the fish anywhere else.

    He’s had him two years.
     
  4. Fashooga

    Fashooga Fishlore VIP Member

    He probably has to treat this as mini in fish cycle. Since there more space the B.B. has to establish in the extra 10 gallons. So it will take a few days.

    However he should look at the fish to make sure it’s ok. If it appears lethargic I’m betting that ammonia would be the problem and water changes will be needed. Again he needs to watch the fish.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    I thought it’s better not to do water changes during a cycle that already has B.B. in it?
     
  6. FishGirl38

    FishGirl38 Valued Member Member

    So, in ideal cycling situations you shouldn't do a water change while cycling because it could set the cycle back a-bit. BUT, because your brother has a fish that he wants to keep healthy already in the tank, its better to do a water change if needed to help with the spikes than to let the tank spike and go back down naturally, because the spike will stress the fish and weaken the immune system. Also, he's not very likely to 'set-back' the cycle because there is a fish already in the tank. The tank will cycle eventually, how long it takes is the factor. (and with fish-in, it's usually slightly quicker)

    The stress from cycling shouldn't be enough to harm the goldie though. You heard my goldfish cycling story. He'll probably be fine. (MOST likely he'll be 100% fine) as long as your brother doesn't let ammonia or nitrite get too high for too long a period of time. (which could stress the fish, stress in and of itself isn't a horrible thing, but it can open the door for further illness and disease because the fish's immune system is weakened).

    It probably won't get this bad (1 fish in a larger sized cycling tank isn't likely to cause this), BUT fish can die from spikes. Though usually it's like, a VERY excessive spike. These usually occur in tanks that are not maintained well (or at all), or tanks that aren't cycled properly and then over-stocked immediately. BUT...since your brother doesn't have a test kit...

    Let him know to watch the fish, if he notices that goldie is staying at the top of the water 24/7 and gasping or choking/eating air at the surface. Then he should do a water change. A test kit would help 10-fold. But I'm betting you'll be okay.

    Also, when you do water changes, you're not disturbing the BB as much as you'd think. The majority of BB lives in the filter pad. Some of it lives in the gravel bed. Less of it lives in the water column. So, it's not all bad.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    Thank you.

    I feel a bit responsible for this fish now because I was the one who told him to upgrade. But if you’d seen the fish trying to swim in such a small tank when the fish is pretty big it was just ridiculous.

    So far though he says the fish is acting normal, eating, swimming, exploring. The cloudiness has cleared up too.
     
  8. FishGirl38

    FishGirl38 Valued Member Member

    Great, it sounds like everything is going well. Him adding the 10G sponge to the 20G tank is going to help 10x too and you were right to have him upgrade. It'll boost his cycle. If he had a test kit he would know for sure, but in the next 3 weeks the tank is likely to be finished cycling.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    Lagertha

    Lagertha Valued Member Member

    He sent me photos today and it’s completely clear. The fish is acting normal but I’ve told him to feed sparingly for a few weeks until the B.B. establishes itself in the bigger tank.