Feeling guilty

LotteH

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Hi all.

im in a rather bad situation as my mother bought a biorb fish tank (the small one) and we currently have one fancy goldfish and four minnows. I got thrown into fish keeping after the first lot of fish died. she bought the ones i listed above yesterday and honestly i had to step in. I myself know not much about fish care but am hoping i can give these fish a better life than she would have. I cannot afford another tank at this moment so the biorb will have to do and i hope eveyrone respects this.

im going to list the things i do have so you can grasp my situation better and hopefully help me :)

1. pure aqauarium balls for healthy water
2. API goldfish protect
3.gravel tube that came with the tank.
4.one year combo alert for ammonmna and PH

after my own research i obviously feel rather guilty at these fish being thrown into a tank which did have around a month of on and off filtering before they entered but was not tested. i am still waiting for the PH and ammonia to settle as they where only placed in the tank yesterday so readings may be in accurate. i am going to buy the API master test kit which is widely reccomended as the combo alert is reviewed to be in accurate. i will also be purchasing API PH down as i think my PH is too high

now here comes the questions. i do hope someone can help.

1. when should i i do my first water change and how much water should i take out
2. how often should i completly empty the tank and clean the gravel etc
3.any tips for my current situation?

i do hope you are all kind to my situation as i am truly trying to do whats right with my given circumstances. If anyone can help id be truly grateful so please be kind.

edit- id like to add i really have fallen in love with my fish and the world of fish keeping even if it is over whelming so i really want to ensure the sustainability of my tank for years to come.
 
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Iggypuffer

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You should do a 20-30 precent water change once a week you can vacuume out the gravel with a suction hose when you do this. You do not need to completely empty the tank.
 
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Iggypuffer said:
You should do a 20-30 precent water change once a week you can vacuume out the gravel with a suction hose when you do this. You do not need to completely empty the tank.
Great thank you
 

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Welcome to Fishlore! :)

Unfortunately, your tank is uncycled. You will need to do 50% water changes every day. In the long run, you will need to rehome the goldfish, because they need a 20 gallon minimum. You will also need a test kit. I highly recommend the API Freshwater Master Test Kit. It is very reliable, cheap, and will last you a long time. Please do not buy test strips, because those are more expensive in the long run and are often inaccurate. What are you using to condition the water? I highly recommend getting a bottle of Seachem Prime, which is a conditioner, but it also detoxifies ammonia and nitrites in the tank for 24 hours. I'm not sure how big the biorb tank is, could you please include exact measurements? Include pictures, if possible. Also, what kind of minnows are they? Are they white cloud mountain minnows? If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. We will gladly help! :)

mattgirl , we may need your help here.
 

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Hugooo said:
Welcome to Fishlore! :)

Unfortunately, your tank is uncycled. You will need to do 50% water changes every other day. In the long run, you will need to rehome the goldfish, because they need a 20 gallon minimum. You will also need a test kit. I highly recommend the API Freshwater Master Test Kit. It is very reliable, cheap, and will last you a long time. Please do not buy test strips, because those are more expensive in the long run and are often inaccurate. What are you using to condition the water? I highly recommend getting a bottle of Seachem Prime, which is a conditioner, but it also detoxifies ammonia and nitrites in the tank for 24 hours. I'm not sure how big the biorb tank is, could you please include exact measurements? Include pictures, if possible. Also, what kind of minnows are they? Are they white cloud mountain minnows? If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. We will gladly help! :)

mattgirl , we may need your help here.
OP mentioned "the small one" so I think they have the 4 gallon biorb.
 

mattgirl

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Please don't beat yourself up over this. We were all where you are at one point in this hobby. I can tell that you are going to do all you can to give these fish a good home. We do need to know the size of this tank. Once you get your test kit and can share the readings with us it will make it much easier for us to help you. You may need to be doing daily water changes for a while. Once the tank is fully cycled you can go to weekly partial water changes but while cycling both ammonia and nitrites will have to be kept down with water changes.

If this is a tiny tank I highly recommend you change out no less than 50% of the water every day until you are able to test the water. Be sure to both temp match and dechlorinate the water you are replacing before pouring it in there.
 

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Deku-Cory said:
OP mentioned "the small one" so I think they have the 4 gallon biorb.
Thanks. In that case, unfortunately, neither the goldfish or the minnows can live in their long term. Again, the goldfish needs at least 20 gallon, and the minnows need at least a 10 gallon. They are also schooling fish, so you will want to get at least 2 more.
 
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LotteH

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Hugooo said:
Welcome to Fishlore! :)

Unfortunately, your tank is uncycled. You will need to do 50% water changes every other day. In the long run, you will need to rehome the goldfish, because they need a 20 gallon minimum. You will also need a test kit. I highly recommend the API Freshwater Master Test Kit. It is very reliable, cheap, and will last you a long time. Please do not buy test strips, because those are more expensive in the long run and are often inaccurate. What are you using to condition the water? I highly recommend getting a bottle of Seachem Prime, which is a conditioner, but it also detoxifies ammonia and nitrites in the tank for 24 hours. I'm not sure how big the biorb tank is, could you please include exact measurements? Include pictures, if possible. Also, what kind of minnows are they? Are they white cloud mountain minnows? If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. We will gladly help! :)

mattgirl , we may need your help here.

hi thank you so much for your great answer! at the moment ive been using the API goldfish protect to detoxify the tap water however if you think it would be better to get the seachem prime i will get that. my biorb is the four gallon one, i actually think it is just under this. In the fish community ive noticed these tanks are highly unfavourable and ive had to replace a few parts since the last fish. im unsure what minnows they are as i wasnt the one who purchased them and my mum didnt ask. ill attempt to get a picture of the tank and you may be able to see the minnows in the picture and be able to tell although im not sure of the differences.
 

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At the risk of being contrary, I would return the goldfish and 4 minnows and get something more suitable for a 4 gallon bio orb.
 

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Hi Lotte, welcome to the hobby (even if it wasn't entirely voluntary). Like others have said, your new tank is going to be cycling (growing beneficial bacteria which convert ammonia (toxic) to nitrite (also toxic) to nitrate (not toxic). This can take up to 2 months, and until then you want to keep a close eye on the ammonia and nitrite levels. Your API test kit has all you need for this. You might start up a log to help you keep track of the levels, I recommend daily testing. Anytime you see ammonia or nitrite levels above 0.5-1ppm, do a 30-50% water change to bring them down.

When you do a water change, you can use tap water but be sure to 1) treat it with a de-chlorinator like Seachem Prime or the chlorine in it will kill your fish, 2) be sure it is a similar temp to the tank or the thermal shock will stress/kill the fish. Fish do not generate their own body heat, they just match the water around them. Add it into the tank gently so you don't stress the fish with the "washing machine" treatment.

You'll want to feed the fish very lightly during the cycle to minimize ammonia production until the bacteria catch up. Small bits once a day are fine, you can stretch it to every-other day and the fish will be fine.

Like others have said, the fish will need a bigger tank for long-term health. The good news is whenever you get around to setting up a larger one, you can use some of the filter/gravel/decorations from you established tank to seed the new tank and speed up the cycle!

Lastly, if you end up deciding the hobby isn't for you & you can't provide a good home for the fish, you can absolutely reach out to other hobbyists or local fish stores (not Petsmart/co) and someone will take them off your hands. I hope you succeed in giving them a good home and find great satisfaction in it, but the option is there.
 
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LotteH

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mattgirl said:
Please don't beat yourself up over this. We were all where you are at one point in this hobby. I can tell that you are going to do all you can to give these fish a good home. We do need to know the size of this tank. Once you get your test kit and can share the readings with us it will make it much easier for us to help you. You may need to be doing daily water changes for a while. Once the tank is fully cycled you can go to weekly partial water changes but while cycling both ammonia and nitrites will have to be kept down with water changes.

If this is a tiny tank I highly recommend you change out no less than 50% of the water every day until you are able to test the water. Be sure to both temp match and dechlorinate the water you are replacing before pouring it in there.
thank you so much this is really helpful. going to order the API master testing kit today and then ill share the results. I will do a water change today and use my golfsih protect to declorinate to hopefully keep the tank healthy until i get results. i really do want to look after these fish the best i can so thank you

Fisheye said:
At the risk of being contrary, I would return the goldfish and 4 minnows and get something more suitable for a 4 gallon bio orb.
no i think this is a great point however the place my mum got them from would not accept and i would really like to do this now. i think with the right advice this can work. I will be purchasing a new tank soon so just needing to hang on till then.

LightBrownPillow said:
Hi Lotte, welcome to the hobby (even if it wasn't entirely voluntary). Like others have said, your new tank is going to be cycling (growing beneficial bacteria which convert ammonia (toxic) to nitrite (also toxic) to nitrate (not toxic). This can take up to 2 months, and until then you want to keep a close eye on the ammonia and nitrite levels. Your API test kit has all you need for this. You might start up a log to help you keep track of the levels, I recommend daily testing. Anytime you see ammonia or nitrite levels above 0.5-1ppm, do a 30-50% water change to bring them down.

When you do a water change, you can use tap water but be sure to 1) treat it with a de-chlorinator like Seachem Prime or the chlorine in it will kill your fish, 2) be sure it is a similar temp to the tank or the thermal shock will stress/kill the fish. Fish do not generate their own body heat, they just match the water around them. Add it into the tank gently so you don't stress the fish with the "washing machine" treatment.

You'll want to feed the fish very lightly during the cycle to minimize ammonia production until the bacteria catch up. Small bits once a day are fine, you can stretch it to every-other day and the fish will be fine.

Like others have said, the fish will need a bigger tank for long-term health. The good news is whenever you get around to setting up a larger one, you can use some of the filter/gravel/decorations from you established tank to seed the new tank and speed up the cycle!

Lastly, if you end up deciding the hobby isn't for you & you can't provide a good home for the fish, you can absolutely reach out to other hobbyists or local fish stores (not Petsmart/co) and someone will take them off your hands. I hope you succeed in giving them a good home and find great satisfaction in it, but the option is there.
this was really helpful thank you! how would i get the tap water to match the water in the tank? are there any tricks for this? thanks!

Hugooo said:
Thanks. In that case, unfortunately, neither the goldfish or the minnows can live in their long term. Again, the goldfish needs at least 20 gallon, and the minnows need at least a 10 gallon. They are also schooling fish, so you will want to get at least 2 more.
that sounds sensible thank you. what size tank would you recommend for all of mine then if i added two more minnows?
 

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LotteH said:
that sounds sensible thank you. what size tank would you recommend for all of mine then if i added two more minnows?
I would get a 29 gallon at least. 40 is better, keep in mind that at some point its possible that your goldfish will eat the minnows(although white clouds are pretty fast).
LotteH said:
Hi all.

im in a rather bad situation as my mother bought a biorb fish tank (the small one) and we currently have one fancy goldfish and four minnows. I got thrown into fish keeping after the first lot of fish died. she bought the ones i listed above yesterday and honestly i had to step in. I myself know not much about fish care but am hoping i can give these fish a better life than she would have. I cannot afford another tank at this moment so the biorb will have to do and i hope eveyrone respects this.

im going to list the things i do have so you can grasp my situation better and hopefully help me :)

1. pure aqauarium balls for healthy water
2. API goldfish protect
3.gravel tube that came with the tank.
4.one year combo alert for ammonmna and PH

after my own research i obviously feel rather guilty at these fish being thrown into a tank which did have around a month of on and off filtering before they entered but was not tested. i am still waiting for the PH and ammonia to settle as they where only placed in the tank yesterday so readings may be in accurate. i am going to buy the API master test kit which is widely reccomended as the combo alert is reviewed to be in accurate. i will also be purchasing API PH down as i think my PH is too high

now here comes the questions. i do hope someone can help.

1. when should i i do my first water change and how much water should i take out
2. how often should i completly empty the tank and clean the gravel etc
3.any tips for my current situation?

i do hope you are all kind to my situation as i am truly trying to do whats right with my given circumstances. If anyone can help id be truly grateful so please be kind.

edit- id like to add i really have fallen in love with my fish and the world of fish keeping even if it is over whelming so i really want to ensure the sustainability of my tank for years to come.
First off, don't feel guilty about it. Everyone has started at some point. Your fish are cramped in your tank, although you can make it work temporarily. Others have explained everything really nicely :).
 

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LotteH said:
thank you so much this is really helpful. going to order the API master testing kit today and then ill share the results. I will do a water change today and use my golfsih protect to declorinate to hopefully keep the tank healthy until i get results. i really do want to look after these fish the best i can so thank you
As long as you can keep the ammonia and nitrites down to negligible levels with water changes your new water pets should come through this. We will help you all along the way. Once we know the numbers we can advise you better.
this was really helpful thank you! how would i get the tap water to match the water in the tank? are there any tricks for this? thanks!
Use the hot water from your tap to get the water to the same temp as the tank. Lots of times it can be done by feel but I use a thermometer to be assured of getting it where it needs to be.
 

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LotteH The simplest thing for "matching" your tap water to the tank water is temperature, where you run the water from the tap until it warms up to temp you want it. You should have one thermometer for your tank to keep track of its temp, and if you don't want to buy a 2nd one for checking the new water, just stick your finger in the fish tank and then in the bucket full of change water to see how close they are. If you don't like the temp of the new water, dump it and refill from the tap (tap water is cheaper than replacing the fish!)

Beyond that, I'd use your API test kit to check your tap's pH/ammo/nitrite/nitrate levels once or twice so you have an idea of what your city is providing. You want your tank water pH of 7.0-7.5, so if your tap is significantly outside of that get a conditioning chemical like Neutral Regulator to adjust the new water before adding it to the tank. Also be aware that the nitrogen cycle tends to naturally lower pH over time, not by a huge ammount, but if you test the tank and observe the pH going down over several days that's what's going on.

That should be enough for your situation. If you want to be more informed, you can get a hardness test kit and compare you tank to the tap. This shouldn't be something for you to worry about at this stage though.
 
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LotteH

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i live in england and have a pretty small budget for a tank. is their any tanks people suggest? i’ve been looking on ebay etc but none seem to come with a filter and lights

LightBrownPillow said:
LotteH The simplest thing for "matching" your tap water to the tank water is temperature, where you run the water from the tap until it warms up to temp you want it. You should have one thermometer for your tank to keep track of its temp, and if you don't want to buy a 2nd one for checking the new water, just stick your finger in the fish tank and then in the bucket full of change water to see how close they are. If you don't like the temp of the new water, dump it and refill from the tap (tap water is cheaper than replacing the fish!)

Beyond that, I'd use your API test kit to check your tap's pH/ammo/nitrite/nitrate levels once or twice so you have an idea of what your city is providing. You want your tank water pH of 7.0-7.5, so if your tap is significantly outside of that get a conditioning chemical like Neutral Regulator to adjust the new water before adding it to the tank. Also be aware that the nitrogen cycle tends to naturally lower pH over time, not by a huge ammount, but if you test the tank and observe the pH going down over several days that's what's going on.

That should be enough for your situation. If you want to be more informed, you can get a hardness test kit and compare you tank to the tap. This shouldn't be something for you to worry about at this stage though.
ok thank you that’s very useful
 

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Hi Lotte welcome to Fishlore.
Have a look on Gumtree, there are also buy/sell fish groups on Facebook have a look for one in your area they’re often great places to get a bargain
 
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LotteH

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Coradee said:
Hi Lotte welcome to Fishlore.
Have a look on Gumtree, there are also buy/sell fish groups on Facebook have a look for one in your area they’re often great places to get a bargain
will look now thank you never thought of them!
 

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Canacullus said:
Yes, I would post on facebook that you have fish that need to be rehomed.
Hi, you can’t trade fish, or any animals on Facebook anymore
 

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Oh. I don't have a facebook account(what a weird teenager I am) and IDK anything about it other than the basics.
 

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