My New/first Tank(5 Gallon)

Confusion
  • #1
Hello! I am starting my first tank this week. I have been researching for the past month and I feel prepared, but I'm so nervous. I really want my fish to have a great life, but I know I will mess up somehow(as all humans do)and not know how to fix it. I am especially nervous about cycling my first tank.

I have a five-gallon and plan on using the Walstad method, so no filter and a lot of plants. This week I am getting duckweed, hornwort, and some other plants(some types of swords, anubias, vals, or anacharis). I am planting them in the tank the day I get them and want to leave them in the tank to cycle for at least a month and a half. I am simply placing them in dechlorinated water, dosing with flourish, and placing fish food in the tank daily.

Is this how I should cycle my tank? What else should I do to ensure the healthy growth of the plants? I have a desk lamp as lighting. What bulb should I use?

After my tank is cycled, if it cycles, I am getting...
>One Betta
>4-5 Shrimp(Ghost or Cherry)
>One Nerite
Are there any smaller fish that I can keep with a betta in a pair? Am I doing this correctly?
(Please send help, I'm stressed)(K. Done.)(Might have more questions later. Please answer. Please.)
 
BReefer97
  • #2
I wouldn't even keep shrimp with a betta fish in a 5 gallon. It should be the only inhabitant. Sure, others have kept betta fish with shrimp and/or snails in a 5 gallon, but with it being heavily planted - it just doesn't seem like a lot of space for more than a single betta. There's no way any other fish would work.
 
Mary765
  • #3
I'm not sure how happy betta are with a tonne of plants. I know dwarf puffers love lots of plants but I thought a long fin male betta would get stressed.

Do you know what sort of betta you are getting? It may have to be a female or a short fin male.

But I'm still super happy you are getting your first tank!! It's so much fun and I wish you the best of luck! Keep us updated.
 
Confusion
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
I wouldn't even keep shrimp with a betta fish in a 5 gallon. It should be the only inhabitant. Sure, others have kept betta fish with shrimp and/or snails in a 5 gallon, but with it being heavily planted - it just doesn't seem like a lot of space for more than a single betta. There's no way any other fish would work.

I’ve seen many heavily planted five gallon tanks with both shrimp and a betta. I don’t see why it wouldn’t work especially since shrimp usually hide in/around the plants.

I'm not sure how happy betta are with a tonne of plants. I know dwarf puffers love lots of plants but I thought a long fin male betta would get stressed.

Do you know what sort of betta you are getting? It may have to be a female or a short fin male.

But I'm still super happy you are getting your first tank!! It's so much fun and I wish you the best of luck! Keep us updated.

I’m getting a baby male betta. I’ve seen a bunch of happy, healthy long fin male bettas in Walstad tanks. I don’t think it will be a problem.
 
Lunnietic
  • #5
Ive never heard of it being called Walstad. Thank you I learned something new.

I do wish you luck, I've always had tanks with filters...wouldn't even know how to give you directions on how to help with that.
 
Bry
  • #6
Hiya! I just recently got my first Betta about a week ago. I made a page asking people to give me advice, one was that Bettas come from a river with lots of greenery. I don't have any experience of shrimp in with my Betta. But I thought I'd give that little tid-bit. Phantom loves to sit on the plants and swim around in them exploring. He seems much happier than the more sparse tank I had originally set up for him.
 
SegiDream
  • #7
I've never done it filterless so I can't really give advice on that. I just know that with walstad you want to keep the bioload very very small. I'm not sure if all those inhabitants will fit the bill. I use a sponge filter at bare minimum. If this is your first tank you are setting the bar really high right out of the gate so please consider backup plans.

I do want to recommend that you use water sprite or frog bit or water lettuce instead of duckweed. These plants are much easier to remove and control. Duckweed gets everywhere, can block light from reaching plants below, reduces surface agitation and gas exchange at the surface, and it just plain gets everywhere.

After adding plants I would add the snail, then later on the shrimp. I think dwarf shrimp are more suitable to the tank size. Just watch the water hardness. Let the population of shrimp kick off. Then try adding the betta. I wouldn't add anything else after the betta. There's also the risk it will go after snails and shrimp and your shrimp might hide all the time if not killed. If you want more than one fish in the tank then consider some of the other small nano fish out there instead of a betta.
 
Kiks
  • #8
Maybe there's something I'm misunderstanding, but you speak of not having a filter and lots of plants - but you also speak of cycling and what method to use. There's no cycling if there's no filter. What you cycle when you cycle is your filter. Adding fish food and whatnot to a tank with no filter won't do anything besides make the parameters rise.
 
Niki Rose
  • #9
Using wasteland method on your first tank is quite risky and would make things a lot easier with a filter since there is a lot of room for mistakes, also want to make sure your going to be using a heater as well. A good plant substrate would ensure nice plant growth but if you can't you'd need to pick up some root tabs as well.
 
California L33
  • #10
Personally I don't think I'd add the shrimp, but I don't see it leading to disaster. They have a pretty light bio-load. The only potential problem I see is that sometimes Bettas discover that shrimp are actually filled with shrimp meat, at which point they're always on the menu. In a heavily planted tank this might not be as much of a problem as in a bare one, but I have seen people who keep Bettas with shrimp here comment that they do have to occasionally add shrimp.

Edit: I think your life would be easier if you had a filter, even just a bubble filter, to help keep your cycle steady.
 
r5n8xaw00
  • #11
I suggest you watch this video on how to pick a Betta for a community tank, it might help you select your Betta.... Click >
Last night I had to capture my Betta and now he is inside a plastic breeder box floating inside my 10 gallon aquarium. He as been in my tank for a month with 3 Pepper Corys. For the longest time he was ok, but last night I watched as he attacked one of the Corys, showing way to much aggression. The Cory has a small spot on its back where my Betta hit it. So he is now in time out. At this point I am not sure if I will release him again or re-home him...
 
BReefer97
  • #12
This can be done filterless, but I'm not sure you fully understand the Walstad Method. I assure you, adding shrimp or snails in a 5 gallon bowl with a betta fish isn't going to work out in your favor. You know you will need a heater though, correct?
 
Confusion
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Maybe there's something I'm misunderstanding, but you speak of not having a filter and lots of plants - but you also speak of cycling and what method to use. There's no cycling if there's no filter. What you cycle when you cycle is your filter. Adding fish food and whatnot to a tank with no filter won't do anything besides make the parameters rise.

In a Walstad tank the plants are the filter. From the research I've done, you can cycle a tank with only plants although it will take awhile. When cycling a tank you wait for bb to grow and for that to happen a filter is not required. I have read a lot on personal experiences with Walstad tanks and many have been very successful.


This is a 20 gallon Walstad and I know that my experience will be difference in size, but similar in method.

For the other comments on this thread, I'm am aware of the risks involved for the shrimp and the betta. I have a heater. I have done a lot of research I am not completely unaware. I never asked for criticism on my stocking, I simply need help with plant lighting, advice on healthy growth for my plants. Sorry if I'm being aggressive it's just that everyone is repeating the same stuff acting as if I am ignorant on the Walstad method and the hobby in general. It is my first tank, but I feel educated and prepared for what situation I'm in.
Thank you for the help otherwise.
 
dinosaur act
  • #14
'Plants are mother natures filters'

I have never done any thing like this and pretty new to plants in general but this is what I'd do if I was trying it.

For blub wise I'd look in to led ones, they will get pretty hot tho. Not sure which wattage as iv never used bulbs. I don't see why a 35 wat wouldn't work, will most likely be over kill. May just be a matter of testing to see what works. Their a video on aquariumcoop YouTube whit a shop which uses then to grow plants, also a no water change tank in the same shop. Il try and link the video later if I get on to my computer.

For I guess maximum sort of growth, which by sounds of thing you will need, may be worth trying to have two photoperiods so some thing like 6 hours on 4 off 6 on. Problem whit this tho is your going to need to make sure your plants have the right nutrition in the soil and water column to flourish. If they arnt flourishing you will end up whit poor water quilty.

Do wonder about water movement tho not for oxygen exchange (your plants will be doing that, if they a growing super good) but for water going stagment. Do water changes happen in this type of set up?

May be worth looking for a plant specific forum for more help whit this tank.

Looking forward to seeing how this come outs tho, not to sure if I have helped at all.

Best of luck!
 
Confusion
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
'Plants are mother natures filters'

I have never done any thing like this and pretty new to plants in general but this is what I'd do if I was trying it.

For blub wise I'd look in to led ones, they will get pretty hot tho. Not sure which wattage as iv never used bulbs. I don't see why a 35 wat wouldn't work, will most likely be over kill. May just be a matter of testing to see what works. Their a video on aquariumcoop YouTube whit a shop which uses then to grow plants, also a no water change tank in the same shop. Il try and link the video later if I get on to my computer.

For I guess maximum sort of growth, which by sounds of thing you will need, may be worth trying to have two photoperiods so some thing like 6 hours on 4 off 6 on. Problem whit this tho is your going to need to make sure your plants have the right nutrition in the soil and water column to flourish. If they arnt flourishing you will end up whit poor water quilty.

Do wonder about water movement tho not for oxygen exchange (your plants will be doing that, if they a growing super good) but for water going stagment. Do water changes happen in this type of set up?

May be worth looking for a plant specific forum for more help whit this tank.

Looking forward to seeing how this come outs tho, not to sure if I have helped at all.

Best of luck!

Yes there are going to be partial water changes at least once every two weeks in this setup. Thank you for the help!
 
emerald6
  • #16
I would add in a small sponge filter for your tank, considering that you are a beginner and would like to have a safety net
 
GrayGray4231
  • #17
When you get the fish, make sure you buy really cheap ones because fish don't last long in a brand new tank with super clean water that don't have and fish business in it. My first fish where 15cent goldies from Petco and they lasted only 2 days. in a brand new tank.
 
Niki Rose
  • #18
When you get the fish, make sure you buy really cheap ones because fish don't last long in a brand new tank with super clean water that don't have and fish business in it. My first fish where 15cent goldies from Petco and they lasted only 2 days. in a brand new tank.
I think that would be due to not cycling a tank since you should never immediately add fish.
 
GrayGray4231
  • #19
I think that would be due to not cycling a tank since you should never immediately add fish.
I did cycle it for a week to be on the safe side and I also added the water conditioner and dechlorinater. Make sure you add that stuff.
 
dinosaur act
  • #20
Confusion

That video I was on about
got some lovely looking tank in this shop.

also just saw he has a new betta tank mate vid but did not post link as I haven't watched it.

Yes there are going to be partial water changes at least once every two weeks in this setup. Thank you for the help!

No problem at all, hopefuly some one comes along wiht more knowledge than me on this type of set up.
 
Niki Rose
  • #21
I did cycle it for a week to be on the safe side and I also added the water conditioner and dechlorinater. Make sure you add that stuff.
Cycling can take up to a month or more, you also need to be checking parameters to ensure its safe for fish beforehand
 
SegiDream
  • #22
For the other comments on this thread, I'm am aware of the risks involved for the shrimp and the betta. I have a heater. I have done a lot of research I am not completely unaware. I never asked for criticism on my stocking, I simply need help with plant lighting, advice on healthy growth for my plants. Sorry if I'm being aggressive it's just that everyone is repeating the same stuff acting as if I am ignorant on the Walstad method and the hobby in general. It is my first tank, but I feel educated and prepared for what situation I'm in.
Thank you for the help otherwise.

Sorry for the confusion! I took this (see quote below) to mean that you were asking for help on the things you had mentioned. Which I was trying to give based on my actual experience with my walstad-like tanks... with the exception that I use filters. However, it sounds like you have it figured out and don't need any further help. I wish your fish and inverts good luck.

After my tank is cycled, if it cycles, I am getting...
>One Betta
>4-5 Shrimp(Ghost or Cherry)
>One Nerite
Are there any smaller fish that I can keep with a betta in a pair? Am I doing this correctly?
(Please send help, I'm stressed)(K. Done.)(Might have more questions later. Please answer. Please.)
 
Absolute Aquatics
  • #23
Hmmm.......no filter sounds fishy. Cycling is a method which includes filtering. However, I praise you for doing that research! Since the betta is a baby , I wouldn't add any other fish as the betta will be so playful that it may chase and eventually hurt the fish. That said. if you knocked off some of the shrimp then maybe you could get some white cloud mountain minnows. Normally, one should adjust to its betta's preferences. It sounds good though! I would definitely add a sponge filter though, at least. They are very cheap. Make sure that your heater is on and that you have a lid! Bettas like to jump!
 
Niki Rose
  • #24
Hmmm.......no filter sounds fishy. Cycling is a method which includes filtering. However, I praise you for doing that research! Since the betta is a baby , I wouldn't add any other fish as the betta will be so playful that it may chase and eventually hurt the fish. That said. if you knocked off some of the shrimp then maybe you could get some white cloud mountain minnows. Normally, one should adjust to its betta's preferences. It sounds good though! I would definitely add a sponge filter though, at least. They are very cheap. Make sure that your heater is on and that you have a lid! Bettas like to jump!
Wouldnt recommenced wcmm since they are not temperature compatible, bettas liking 78+ and wcmm liking 60-70
 
California L33
  • #25
I did cycle it for a week to be on the safe side and I also added the water conditioner and dechlorinater. Make sure you add that stuff.

Maybe better for another thread, but your tank likely hadn't cycled in one week. It can take up to six, and goldfish produce quite a lot of waste (they have extremely high bio-loads for their size because goldfish are huge fish- they get 10-12 inches long and really belong in a pond- and they're eating to grow.) So you had the double whammy of an uncycled tank and high waste producing fish, which likely led to your unhappy results. I'm glad you didn't give up, though.
 
FishWithTim
  • #26
Hello! I am starting my first tank this week. I have been researching for the past month and I feel prepared, but I'm so nervous. I really want my fish to have a great life, but I know I will mess up somehow(as all humans do)and not know how to fix it. I am especially nervous about cycling my first tank.

I have a five-gallon and plan on using the Walstad method, so no filter and a lot of plants. This week I am getting duckweed, hornwort, and some other plants(some types of swords, anubias, vals, or anacharis). I am planting them in the tank the day I get them and want to leave them in the tank to cycle for at least a month and a half. I am simply placing them in dechlorinated water, dosing with flourish, and placing fish food in the tank daily.

Is this how I should cycle my tank? What else should I do to ensure the healthy growth of the plants? I have a desk lamp as lighting. What bulb should I use?

After my tank is cycled, if it cycles, I am getting...
>One Betta
>4-5 Shrimp(Ghost or Cherry)
>One Nerite
Are there any smaller fish that I can keep with a betta in a pair? Am I doing this correctly?
(Please send help, I'm stressed)(K. Done.)(Might have more questions later. Please answer. Please.)
10 gallon would be better. You could put the shrimp in with the betta in a 10 gallon. The one thing to be on the look out for is that every betta is different. Some may like shrimp as little buddies and some will not. In fact I have read that some peoples bettas just wanna be alone and will kill anything you add. A 5 gallon basically cost as much as a 10 gallon these days anyways. In fact most 3 gallon cubes are like 30 bucks. So I would just get a 10 gallon as you would have more success. You could do the plabts you want with no problem as well as get the shrimp with bettas. Introduce a few ghost shrimp as they do not cost as much. If your betta kills it or keeps attacking it shrimp will not be the move you will take. If it gets a long with the shrimp you can return the shrimp and get some other shrimp.
 
BReefer97
  • #27
In a Walstad tank the plants are the filter. From the research I've done, you can cycle a tank with only plants although it will take awhile. When cycling a tank you wait for bb to grow and for that to happen a filter is not required. I have read a lot on personal experiences with Walstad tanks and many have been very successful.


This is a 20 gallon Walstad and I know that my experience will be difference in size, but similar in method.

For the other comments on this thread, I'm am aware of the risks involved for the shrimp and the betta. I have a heater. I have done a lot of research I am not completely unaware. I never asked for criticism on my stocking, I simply need help with plant lighting, advice on healthy growth for my plants. Sorry if I'm being aggressive it's just that everyone is repeating the same stuff acting as if I am ignorant on the Walstad method and the hobby in general. It is my first tank, but I feel educated and prepared for what situation I'm in.
Thank you for the help otherwise.
Not to start any sort of "beef," but you asked if there were any small fish that could go in with your betta fish. I said no, I wouldn't even put shrimp or snails in with a betta fish considering the tank is only 5 gallons and will be running filterless. This in my experience is a stocking question. Also, this is your first tank. You could do weeks of research and still completely fail. A Walstad tank isn't a beginner tank, and overstocking it the first chance you get seems like a set up for immediate failure.
 
California L33
  • #28
Not to start any sort of "beef," but you asked if there were any small fish that could go in with your betta fish. I said no, I wouldn't even put shrimp or snails in with a betta fish considering the tank is only 5 gallons and will be running filterless. This in my experience is a stocking question.

I agree- a male Betta is the only fish that should be in that tank. I can think of no other fish that wouldn't cause a water quality and probably aggression issues, too. I also agree with the no shrimp suggestion. I'm not sure if they'll cause water quality issues, I just think that even with plants they may end up fish food.
 
BReefer97
  • #29
I agree- a male Betta is the only fish that should be in that tank. I can think of no other fish that wouldn't cause a water quality and probably aggression issues, too. I also agree with the no shrimp suggestion. I'm not sure if they'll cause water quality issues, I just think that even with plants they may end up fish food.

Not even that, but Walstad tanks take time to accomplish, and adding in more inhabitants than it could handle seems like a huge waste of time and effort.
 
CanadianJoeh
  • #30
Why not just get a Betta and a snail, have a couple plants and run a small filter with heater?

Much simpler, much healthier, and much cleaner.
 
Confusion
  • Thread Starter
  • #31
When you get the fish, make sure you buy really cheap ones because fish don't last long in a brand new tank with super clean water that don't have and fish business in it. My first fish where 15cent goldies from Petco and they lasted only 2 days. in a brand new tank.

I don't want to put fish in a brand new tank that is not cycled. I don't like the idea of buying fish knowing they will most likely die. It's kind of cruel actually.

Why not just get a Betta and a snail, have a couple plants and run a small filter with heater?

Much simpler, much healthier, and much cleaner.

If I could get a ten gallon with a filter and a heater and everything I would. I don't have space for much and the fact that I was even able to get a five gallon was amazing. My mother hates animals of all kinds so I can't really push any farther than a five.

From everyone's suggestions, I'm going to change up what I'm doing a little. I'm going to cycle my tank for at least 5 weeks then put 4 shrimp in the tank. Later on, I'll add the betta and see how it works out. If there is any aggression I'll move the shrimp out. Thanks, everyone!

Not to start any sort of "beef," but you asked if there were any small fish that could go in with your betta fish. I said no, I wouldn't even put shrimp or snails in with a betta fish considering the tank is only 5 gallons and will be running filterless. This in my experience is a stocking question. Also, this is your first tank. You could do weeks of research and still completely fail. A Walstad tank isn't a beginner tank, and overstocking it the first chance you get seems like a set up for immediate failure.

It's just going to be the betta and maybe the shrimp. Never asked about putting a pair of smaller fish with the betta in the five just if any fish could be kept in a pair with a betta...no tank size was mentioned in the question. Thanks.
 
CanadianJoeh
  • #32
I don't want to put fish in a brand new tank that is not cycled. I don't like the idea of buying fish knowing they will most likely die. It's kind of cruel actually.



If I could get a ten gallon with a filter and a heater and everything I would. I don't have space for much and the fact that I was even able to get a five gallon was amazing. My mother hates animals of all kinds so I can't really push any farther than a five.

From everyone's suggestions, I'm going to change up what I'm doing a little. I'm going to cycle my tank for at least 5 weeks then put 4 shrimp in the tank. Later on, I'll add the betta and see how it works out. If there is any aggression I'll move the shrimp out. Thanks, everyone!



It's just going to be the betta and maybe the shrimp. Never asked about putting a pair of smaller fish with the betta in the five just if any fish could be kept in a pair with a betta...no tank size was mentioned in the question. Thanks.
Without a filter, there is no cycle.

You can have a betta and a snail in a 5 Gallon, with a filter and heater.

Get a filter and a heater and just make a tank

GrayGray4231 excuse me for being curt, but do you even know what you're talking about or saying right now?

The price of a fish has NOTHING to do with their lifespan or how durable they are.

Your goldfish died because you didn't cycle your tank, you probably didn't acclimate them correctly, and their tank was too small.

Your "cheap" goldfish grow up to 14 inches and should be in a pond.

I'd recommend doing some research and educating yourself on fish species, as well as the nitrogen cycle.
 
Ladyshinigami
  • #33
I would do is do the Betta first. They are much hardier than a shrimp. I heard shrimp are much more sensitive to water parameters. My Betta is doing well even though I am currently doing a fish in cycle. It’s my own ignorance before I got into the hobby.

Good luck on your tank though. I’m sorry your mom dislike animals so much. I cannot live a life without them. They bring joy to my life.
 
BReefer97
  • #34
OP is set on adding shrimp. OP will find out shrimp are extremely sensitive to water quality the hard way I suppose. No one here is worried about aggression between the betta and shrimp. It's the fact that ANY 5 gallon is too small for a betta to have tank mates. Even if OP does manage to pull this Walstad tank off, it's just going to crash due to the overstocking and refusal to take genuine advice. Sorry to be blunt, I'm not trying to be rude, it's just the truth. I have a 5 gallon tank with a betta fish and I would never think of adding anything more in with him, even though my tank has a filter and would be able to process the extra bioload - it's just cruel to cram animals in to a space that is just far too small for them all.
 
Danjamesdixon
  • #35
I respect you want to try a Walstad - they're awesome tanks. However, they are by no means easy to set up and maintain, and require a very delicately balanced enclosed ecosystem to function correctly in the long term.

As mentioned, start simple with a filter and an easy stocking. Get to know the hobby and the problems that face you as a beginner (because there will be) without adding the complexity of a Walstad setup. Then, once you've gained some confidence in your abilities within the hobby, you can start trying out unconventional setups.
 
CanadianJoeh
  • #36
OP is set on adding shrimp. OP will find out shrimp are extremely sensitive to water quality the hard way I suppose. No one here is worried about aggression between the betta and shrimp. It's the fact that ANY 5 gallon is too small for a betta to have tank mates. Even if OP does manage to pull this Walstad tank off, it's just going to crash due to the overstocking and refusal to take genuine advice. Sorry to be blunt, I'm not trying to be rude, it's just the truth. I have a 5 gallon tank with a betta fish and I would never think of adding anything more in with him, even though my tank has a filter and would be able to process the extra bioload - it's just cruel to cram animals in to a space that is just far too small for them all.
I'd worry about the Betta aggression towards Shrimp less than the size restrictions.

You can easily keep roughly 10 Shrimp in a gallon tank. So a Betta with 2-3 shrimp is perfectly okay.

Whether or not those shrimp will end up as a snack.... that's up to the Betta to decide.

Personally, I would recommend a classic 1 betta, 1 Nerite Snail setup in a 5 Gallon.
 
GrayGray4231
  • #37
GrayGray4231 excuse me for being curt, but do you even know what you're talking about or saying right now?

The price of a fish has NOTHING to do with their lifespan or how durable they are.

Your goldfish died because you didn't cycle your tank, you probably didn't acclimate them correctly, and their tank was too small.

Your "cheap" goldfish grow up to 14 inches and should be in a pond.

I'd recommend doing some research and educating yourself on fish species, as well as the nitrogen cycle.
I know a lot about what I am taking about, most of the time when you buy your first fish and put it in a brand new tank they will die. That is why I recommend buying cheap ones and not really expensive ones, because if you but a $20 betta or n expensive fish and it dies really fast that is just a waste of your money.
 
CanadianJoeh
  • #38
I know a lot about what I am taking about, most of the time when you buy your first fish and put it in a brand new tank they will die. That is why I recommend buying cheap ones and not really expensive ones, because if you but a $20 betta or n expensive fish and it dies really fast that is just a waste of your money.
Your fish will not die when put in a "brand new tank" if you cycle it first.

It does not seem like you know of the Nitrogen Cycle, and I would bet my money on that being why your fish die.

What you are describing is called New Tank Syndrome. It's the #1 cause of death for fish and it is because people do not do their research before buying their fish and setting up an aquarium.

I would feel extremely comfortable adding a $600 fish to my "new" aquarium because I will have cycled it prior.

The notion of recommending people get "cheap fish" in the beginning for their tank is simply a cruel, cruel way to cycle a tank. It is called a fish-in cycle. Ever seen the scene in Deadpool where he gets suffocated just enough that he can survive? That's what it feels like to your fish.
 
BReefer97
  • #39
I spent $50 on my Betta Fish, if he died when I put him in the tank I would’ve revived him and strangled him myself
 
GrayGray4231
  • #40
Your fish will not die when put in a "brand new tank" if you cycle it first.

It does not seem like you know of the Nitrogen Cycle, and I would bet my money on that being why your fish die.

What you are describing is called New Tank Syndrome. It's the #1 cause of death for fish and it is because people do not do their research before buying their fish and setting up an aquarium.

I would feel extremely comfortable adding a $600 fish to my "new" aquarium because I will have cycled it prior.

The notion of recommending people get "cheap fish" in the beginning for their tank is simply a cruel, cruel way to cycle a tank. It is called a fish-in cycle. Ever seen the scene in Deadpool where he gets suffocated just enough that he can survive? That's what it feels like to your fish.
You are correct, I do not know of the nitrogen cycle. I DID DO 4 MONTHS OF RESEARCH BEFORE I GOT MY FISH!! And I don't care a what you think of me because I know how to get a life an live it...!!! So just leave my life alone and get one of your own!! (srry if I am being mean, I get that way when I get offended bout someone pretty much calling me stupid!)
 

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