First Timer LF Advice Question

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Marilius, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. Marilius

    MariliusNew MemberMember

    Hey all, been doing a lot of research and I've decided to get into fishkeeping. Never had any kind of experience with it before, and looking for some friendly advice.I've done some homework as to the nitrogen cycle, getting a new tank cycled, and various other startup/first time things. I've also decided on a 40 gal tank, and a community of various fish, no real desire for livebreeding, but still can't seem to figure out what specific fish I should get.

    My first question is about those quick start kits, with the requisite bacteria included, that get the tank cycled fast. Several guides warn me away from them, and yet I can't help but be attracted to them, and the promise of getting up and running faster.

    Secondly, did a rough tally for the initial equiment I was planning to purchase, 40gal tank, a nice stand, pump, heater, lighting, gravel, various knick knacks, all that stuff. Rough tally was aroun 1200 bucks (in fancy Canadian bucks). Is this indicative of an average setup cost? I didn't want to scrimp on a smaller tank, as I wouldnt probably end up not enjoying it as much as a nice big tank, with many fish. But it seems a little higher than I was expecting. If that IS an average cost, I don't mind, but I'd rather not get ripped off.

    Lastly, what kinds of fish would you guys recommend? I'd like a large variety if possible.

    Thanks for all your advice.

  2. jdhef

    jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    Welcome to FishLore!

    The only bacterial additive that works properly is Tetra SafeStart. The other products contain a land based form of the bacteria and die off in about a week or so in an aquatic environment. Hence you are required to add the product on a weekly basis for the life of the tank.

    SafeStart on the other hand contains self sustaining aquatic bacteria. You add it once along with 3 or 4 fish and you should be fully cycled in 7-10 days.

    I really can't comment on the price since your in Canada, so assume prices vary quite a bit from here in the U.S. But I do think I got my 36 gallon set up for around $500 U.S. Dollars.

    Lastly my signature lists what I have in my 36 gallon tank so that can start you off with some ideas.
  3. jetajockey

    jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

    In a few days im going to try the 'instant aquarium' kit with the bacteria-laden substrate in the bag, will definitely post results. Just like any other hobby, how much you are willing to spend on it is really up to you, just be sure to do your research and look at actual user reviews when making your decisions, it'll save you time and $$. Take care!
  4. Shine

    ShineWell Known MemberMember

    Not sure where you went to price compare but that seems a bit high. I've seen decent stands and 36-44 G tanks (comes with hood) at petsmart for 200-500$ depending on how fancy you want it to look. Pumps? depends... are you talking about simple air pumps (10-20$), or canister filters? I have aqua clear HOBs and those run to 30-70$ depending on size. Heaters... 20-40$, gravel 20$ for a 10kg/22lb bag... decorations? welll... depends on what you get :p my tally thats a lot less then the 1200$ you quoted; though I'm not sure what a good canister filter costs if that was what you meant by 'pump' ;)
  5. OP

    MariliusNew MemberMember

    Shoulda been clearer. Water pump, an air pump, and a canister filter.

    Actually I'll be even MORE specific:

    that. again with all the other things I mentioned.
  6. Shawnie

    ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    +2 ...great job again jdhef!!!
    welcome to fishlore Matt!!!
    jghef covered it all but just remember, LFS and MOST pet stores are out for YOUR money....we give advice for free :)
  7. TedsTank

    TedsTankWell Known MemberMember

    As for what to stock. Browse around all your local fish stores and make a list of what you really like. Then go online and do a lot of research....and of course ask here too!!

    You tell us all the ones you like best, and you will get wonderful advice based on experiences.
  8. bolivianbaby

    bolivianbabyFishlore LegendMember

    Welcome to Fishlore! Excellent advice from everyone above.
  9. OP

    MariliusNew MemberMember

    Hehe fish stores, plural. Theres one pet store here, there's no local shopping around. But I'll see whats available. Thanks for the help so far guys.
  10. Shine

    ShineWell Known MemberMember

    wow... where are you at? I regularly make the rounds between 6 different ones here, searching for the best prices and healthiest looking tanks
  11. OP

    MariliusNew MemberMember

    Yellowknife. Yeah not too much up here. I think there MIGHT be one other, its a kennel mostly, but they carry some pet supplies. I doubt they'd have a great selection, but it's worth checking.
  12. AlyeskaGirl

    AlyeskaGirlFishlore VIPMember

    I used the bacterial substrate last April and it worked. Took about 3 weeks with fish and I did no water changes during that time.
  13. Shine

    ShineWell Known MemberMember

    That explains the prices! You could probably buy a lot of the smaller stuff online; some of the online aquarium sites have free shipping if the order is more then 50-80$. The fun is finding the ones that'll ship to Canada. Plenty of them offer free shipping to 'continental US' but not anywhere else. I don't imagine that shipping a tank would be all that feasible though--breakage and size of the box might make it expensive.... and frustrating. Still... might be worth looking into.
  14. OP

    MariliusNew MemberMember

    No, I'm definitely getting the tank in town. And obviously the FISH. but everything else I can grab somewhere else. Sounds like I'd have lots of time for shipping given the time I'll need to cycle it properly.
  15. jetajockey

    jetajockeyFishlore VIPMember

  16. Aquarist

    AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Welcome to Fish Lore Marilius!
    I hope you enjoy the site and the hobby.