Many Questions: Could use a more seasoned "tanker"...

Mercutio727

Valued Member
Messages
53
Reaction score
0
Points
91
Experience
5 years
Hey everyone, so I tried other forums but they never got back to me so I'm here to get some help. Set up a 30 gallon freshwater, not planted, tank about 5 weeks ago and I had questions since this is a big step up from my previous 10 gallon. Attached is a photo of my tank prior to me putting fish in.

Here are my parameters:

pH: 7.0
Temp: 79 (its been hot, trying to keep it cool)
Ammonia: 0.0
Nitrites: <0.3mg/L
NitrAtes:Stupid test kit doesn't test for it
(Before I go on, these readings have been like this for a long time after I cycled the tank. I also used the Biospira or whatever its called now to introduce a lot more beneficial bacteria. Moving on...)

In the tank I have 10 Cardinal tetras that went in about 2 weeks ago and 3 Cory Catfish that went in 1 week ago. A volcano which serves as a good air supply, Tetra 40 Gal Filter, a good heater. I have sand substrate (which I shift around frequently to prevent gas and other bad stuff to accumulate.

So finally able to get to my questions.
1) Any Comments/Advice would be very helpful
2) The water is still kind of cloudy, is this due to the air pump I have?
3) Today I discovered algae growing on the back wall, I couldn't see it because of the black background; what can I do to get rid of it. Right now I am running the light for about 7 hours and then I leave it off.
4) What other types of fish could help keep the algae down

Thanks for looking, hope I can get some answers.
:;hurryb
 

Attachments

Jrobber

Well Known Member
Messages
604
Reaction score
3
Points
113
Experience
Just started
Your tank looks great. One suggestion I can give you is to get an API Master Test Kit. It will test pH, Ammonia, nitrite, and nitrates which should help you in understand your tank more. And possibly preventing any disasters, should you ever have one.

Cloudy water: https://www.fishlore.com/CloudyWater.htm. Water changes would help if you are getting a white cloudy water.

What color of algae are you getting? If it is brown, its probably diatoms, which is common on newer tanks and should go away with time. It should just wipe off with an aquarium sponge.

A Pleco could help with the algae, but you'd want to stick with a specie that stays small since it's only a 30 gallon tank. The only one I know of is Bristlenose (4-6" in length), but I'm sure there are more so someone with more experience can help you there.
 

Kunsthure

Well Known Member
Messages
1,633
Reaction score
32
Points
143
Experience
Just started
The cloudy water and diatoms are part if new tank syndrome. Once your tank is fully cycled, the cloudiness will clear up. But I guess the cloudiness could also be caused by your substrate if you didn't get a good kind (don't ask me what kind is good because I have *no* clue ).

You could also get some snails for the algae. Otos are good too because they stay really small compared to plecos. You can also scrape it off with a razor. Mollies also eat algae but not on a really large scale like an oto, pleco or snail.

-Lisa
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #4

Mercutio727

Valued Member
Messages
53
Reaction score
0
Points
91
Experience
5 years
Thanks for a start, any more advice would be great.

With regards to Jrobber: the algae was kind of brown/black but more on the brown side with a hint of green (sorry for the vague description)

At Kunsthure: 2 questions:
1) Will Otos be fine with Cory's and Tetras?
2) How many do you suggest I get?

I also wanted some advice on how many more fish could be added but still leaving the tank "comfortable"

I wanted to get some Glass Fish with the Neon colors. I saw on this site that you want to make sure they weren't artificially dyed. Please get back to me everyone.

Thanks so much


Does the tank actually look cloudy to you guys or am I just seeing residual air bubbles from my volcano?

Hello. I've merged your posts since they were back to back. Helps to save a little space on the forum. There is an EDIT key at the bottom of every post that you can use for corrections and additional thoughts.
Thanks!
Ken
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Jrobber

Well Known Member
Messages
604
Reaction score
3
Points
113
Experience
Just started
It does kind of look cloudy to me, but it could also be from the sand substrate kicking up if water flow getting into it.

Mercutio727, if it is brown and it wipes off when your rub your fingers across it, more than likely it is diatoms. I still have a little bit of it in my tank that has been setup for over five months. I've read that it should go away with time.
 

catsma_97504

Fishlore Legend
Messages
10,032
Reaction score
178
Points
308
A small group of Otos could keep the algae down, but I would not add them until you have 0 nitrites. Otos, in my experience, do not do very well if there is any measurable ammonia or nitrite.

If your algae is only small brown spots, then you most likely have diatoms which will go away on their own. I do not know of any fish that will eat diatoms very well.

Your cloudy water is not because you are using an airstone/volcano. In fact, the air stone will help to keep the oxygen level up, especially important while dealing with cloudy water. Do read the article linked in Jrobber's post above. If the cloudiness is cause by free-floating algae, it will cause the water to turn green over time. One thing that can help with this is to reduce the lighting. If that doesn't help, then you may want to completely black out the tank for 4-5 days.

You will definitely want to purchase a Nitrate test kit to ensure that you are keeping the nitrates low.

How often do you change the water? And, how much? When doing a water change, do you also clean the substrate? You stated that you stir the substrate only.

Good luck.
 

Kunsthure

Well Known Member
Messages
1,633
Reaction score
32
Points
143
Experience
Just started
It looks just like my 37g did for like two weeks after I set it up. It's still not as clear as my daughter's cycled 20g right next to it.

From what I understand about otos, they are really peaceful and keep to themselves. Since they pretty much exclusively eat algae they aren't competing with anyone for food. As for how many, I have no clue because I have no personal experience with them. I'm sure someone else will answer that one.

I'd add at least one more Cory since they're schooling fish, but you could probably go with 6. As for other fish it really depends on what you want. Do you want more small schooling fish? Two or three somewhat larger fish or maybe one bigger centerpiece fish? Another big question is do you want livebearers like platys or mollies? If you do, you'll have to deal with fry. Also, do you want a top-swimming fish to round out your tank? Active or chill fish?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #8

Mercutio727

Valued Member
Messages
53
Reaction score
0
Points
91
Experience
5 years
First off thanks so much for all the input, and please keep it coming cause I'm new to a 30 gallon.

@catsuma: the nitrite indicator on my testing, ,0.3 mg/L is the lowest it can go, so I assume thats practically 0.

I clean the tank once every 1.5 weeks, also when I clean it, I stir up the substrate and hold the gravel vacuum over it to suck up whatever is there (which usually isn't much). When I clean the water I usually do 10 gallons give or take. I will try decreasing the amount of light they get for starters.

With regards to free floating algae, I don't see much, I saw clear stuff but I assumed the was the beneficial bacteria which I poured in.

As for the Otos, I only wanted to get like 1 or 2, just enough so they keep the algae in check, so let me know what number is better.

What are your guys' opinion on Glass Fish?
 

Jrobber

Well Known Member
Messages
604
Reaction score
3
Points
113
Experience
Just started
Since you have sand substrate, it could just be the sand settling down that is causing your water to not look as "clear."

As for Glassfish, if you stay away from dye injected fish you will probably be good. They are a schooling fish, so six or more would be good. I've never seen them in my LFS, but I've read and seen that many are dyed, which is a no-no around here, as others will also chime in about.
 

catsma_97504

Fishlore Legend
Messages
10,032
Reaction score
178
Points
308
Otos need to be in small groups of at least 5. Does your test have a 0 nitrite level? I use an API nitrite test that measures 0, 0.25, 0.50, etc. It is very important for the health of your fish that you know the difference between 0 and almost 0. Some fish varieties are more susceptible than others.

There are many types of glass fish, some are even "painted" with dyes. I've had glass catfish. You'll need to research your options to determine mature size as well as if they can be kept individually or in small groups.
 

Kunsthure

Well Known Member
Messages
1,633
Reaction score
32
Points
143
Experience
Just started
An easy way to take care of your sand is to get Malaysian trumpet snails. They spend all day burrowing around in it eating bits of leftover food and junk they find. They'll also eat the algae at night. Some people consider them pests and there is a risk of a population explosion if you overfeed your fish, but I'm getting some for all of my tanks (I don't have sand but gravel can build up pockets too).

-Lisa
 

Aquarist

Fishlore Legend
Messages
39,608
Reaction score
313
Points
458
Experience
More than 10 years
Good morning and Welcome to Fish Lore.

Something you may want to consider is to let the algae grow on the back glass. I think it helps to add to the more natural look. Some algae in your tank is a good sign, meaning there is plenty of oxygen in the tank. Too, some fish may like to nibble on it. It's a personal preference

I let algae grow on the back glass of all of my tanks.

Some good information above from other posters. Great looking tank!

Ken
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #14

Mercutio727

Valued Member
Messages
53
Reaction score
0
Points
91
Experience
5 years
I just want to say thanks first off, all of your immediate help has been very beneficial. Thanks Ken, thats a good idea, Ill have to let the algae grow a little on the black background cause I cant notice it anyway. I was just fixing the volcano and then I noticed all these dots on the fake plants.

At Kunsthure: I was thinking about getting MTS and if they started over populating, move some over to my 10 gallon tank which is next door.
 

jerilovesfrogs

Fishlore VIP
Messages
6,439
Reaction score
65
Points
293
Experience
5 to 10 years
hi.....i recommend nerite snails for algae/cleanup. they r very cool......and can't breed in freshwater. otos can be pretty sensitive......maybe down the road would be better.
 

Prince Powder

Well Known Member
Messages
683
Reaction score
27
Points
123
Experience
More than 10 years
Hello and welcome to Fishlore!
You've received great advice so far. As mentioned already I would recommend investing in a more complete liquid test kit such as the API Master Test Kit. You will get more accurate results and will be able to also test for nitrate. The API kit will cover ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH (high and low range).

As for the cloudiness, it could be the substrate, sometimes we don't clean if as efficiently as we think and it can lead to cloudiness. Your volcano could also be kicking some of the sand up, keeping it in the water as opposed to letting it settle. You could try putting something flat between the substrate and volcano or lifting the air stone inside it so that it leaves some room between the stone and the substrate so it can't lift the sand so easily.

The algae you mentioned is most likely diatoms which is very common in new tanks, not harmful to your fish and will go away on it's own in time. It really isn't anything to worry about other than the aesthetics factor. There are some algae eating fish you can add if it really bothers you. Bristlenose plecos are algae eaters, but they add a very large bio load to a tank. Otos are good algae eaters, but they are very sensitive to water conditions and require well established, fully cycled tanks. It is generally recommended to wait until your tank has been cycled and stable for at least 6 months before adding otos. Snails are excellent algae eaters and might actually be your best option for your tank size and stock. Malaysian Trumpet Snails would be a particularly good choice for you since they will not only eat the algae, but they also enjoy burrowing in sand so they will keep your sand bed stirred up for you. Just keep in mind, any of these algae eaters will most likely destroy the little bit of diatoms very quickly, after which you will have to supplement their diet with algae wafers or fresh, blanched veggies such as romaine lettuce, zucchini, or cucumber to keep them well fed. Your other fish will probably munch on the veggies and wafers as well.

You have a lovely tank, best of luck with it!
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #17

Mercutio727

Valued Member
Messages
53
Reaction score
0
Points
91
Experience
5 years
regards to the algae wafers, should I break them into two pieces? The wafer won't mess up the water will it. Also just an update, I haven't turned the light on and the tank is looking more clear
 

jetajockey

Fishlore VIP
Messages
6,753
Reaction score
92
Points
293
Experience
More than 10 years
Just a few mts is ok, they will make dozens more in a weeks time if they are thriving
 

jerilovesfrogs

Fishlore VIP
Messages
6,439
Reaction score
65
Points
293
Experience
5 to 10 years
i have three mts in a small tank.....i wouldn't say start with too many since they do reproduce. though if you are careful not to overfeed, the population should be keep under control. actually last night i just discovered a tiiiiny little baby. i don't know if it was hitch hiking on some javamoss i got.....or one of the snails had eggs or ......but it's the cutest little thing!

i have four nerites in my 20g. i usually feed a wafer, (i have the small ones) every other day. but i have algae for them to eat....plus other debris. if you don't yet have algae, maybe feed once a day. and i give zucchini every few days. they love it. and it's good calcium for their shells. the ph shouldn't drop below 7.....and if it happened to, you'd need to pay extra attention to the calcium in their diet.
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom