New 10gal planted tank setup... will it work?

luluvontepes
  • #1
these are the items i will be getting to setting up my new lowtech planted tank. please let me know if this is a sufficient setup. (pics of specific items attached)

-aqueon 10gal led aquarium kit includes:
-50w preset heater
-led full hood with 9 led lights (no wattage given)
-quietflow 10 power filter (will modify filter media with)
- marineland bonded filter pad (cut to size)
-fluval aquaclear media kit (includes biomax, carbon, and sponge)
-jnw direct 9 in 1 test trips (hardness, chlorine, nitrite, nitrate, carbonate, alkalinity, ph, iron, copper)
-seachem prime

-will stock with low maintenance plants (java moss, java fern, anubias)
-not using substrate, only gravel

-fish stock:
-male halfmoon betta (current)
-otocinclus (current)
-will eventually add school of tetras (6)
- are the betta an tho oto sufficient for plant water? or are more fish needed?

ive never had a planted tank before so im wondering if my current online shopping bag (will be purchasing on the 1st) is sufficient. are there any chemical additives that are necessary? im aiming for low tech planted (no co2). is there anything im missing or need to change? thank you for reading, have a nice day
 

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mattgirl
  • #2
One thing I would change is the testing kit. I would get an API Master Freshwater Test Kit. In my humble opinion it is more reliable and also contains one of the most important test that is missing from the test strips. That is one that tests for ammonia. I truly do not understand why the test strips don't test the ammonia level since it is one of the most important things there is to keep an eye on. Other than that your shopping list looks pretty good.
- are the betta an tho oto sufficient for plant water? or are more fish needed?
I am not sure what you are asking here. I will recommend you read up on cycling this tank if you aren't clear on both the importance of cycling and how it is accomplished. Do you already have these fish. If so where are they right now?
 
Mouska
  • #3
One thing I would change is the testing kit. I would get an API Master Freshwater Test Kit. In my humble opinion it is more reliable and also contains one of the most important test that is missing from the test strips. That is one that tests for ammonia. I truly do not understand why the test strips don't test the ammonia level since it is one of the most important things there is to keep an eye on. Other than that your shopping list looks pretty good.

I am not sure what you are asking here. I will recommend you read up on cycling this tank if you aren't clear on both the importance of cycling and how it is accomplished. Do you already have these fish. If so where are they right now?
I think they’re wondering if the ottos and betta will be enough to give the plants nutrients.
 
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luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
One thing I would change is the testing kit. I would get an API Master Freshwater Test Kit. In my humble opinion it is more reliable and also contains one of the most important test that is missing from the test strips. That is one that tests for ammonia. I truly do not understand why the test strips don't test the ammonia level since it is one of the most important things there is to keep an eye on. Other than that your shopping list looks pretty good.

I am not sure what you are asking here. I will recommend you read up on cycling this tank if you aren't clear on both the importance of cycling and how it is accomplished. Do you already have these fish. If so where are they right now?

yes i currently have the oto and betta. they are in a 2.2 gal tank with a topfin element power pump (absolute trash imo). i need to upgrade because the current tank cant handle the bioload (obviously). i inherited te current tank from my mother when she moved last month and they definitely need more room. i heard otos really like live plants and having live plants is good for the water. my question was that ive heard that planted tanks need x amount of fish to survive, not too little not too much. i do plan on cycling the tank for 2 weeks before transferring fish (to their dismay).

I think they’re wondering if the ottos and betta will be enough to give the plants nutrients.
YES!! thats what im asking. thanks for understanding. are 2 fish enough in a 10 gallon tank to sustain a few plants? i do plan on adding a small tetra school a month or two after the tank is set up with no issues. or do i need to buy tetras sooner?
 
mattgirl
  • #5
If you plan on putting a lot of plants in this tank you may need to consider getting an all in one fertilizer to feed them instead of just depending on fish waste to give them all they need.

It takes longer than 2 weeks to cycle a tank. Cycling a tank simply means you are growing bacteria. The first bacteria is one that removes the ammonia the fish produce. The waste from that bacteria is nitrites. The second bacteria is one that removes the nitrites. The waste from that bacteria is nitrates. Those are kept down with water changes. This process doesn't happen quickly. It isn't unusual for it to take a month or more to fully cycle a tank.

How long have you had these fish in the tank they are in right now? If you have had them for at least a couple of months there should be both types of bacteria growing in the small tank as long as you haven't been over cleaning it and removing the good bacteria. You can speed up the cycle in the 10 gallon by moving EVERYTHING from the small tank over to the bigger one. When I say everything I mean water, fish, substrate, decor and most important the filter or at least the filter media.
 
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Mouska
  • #6
YES!! thats what im asking. thanks for understanding. are 2 fish enough in a 10 gallon tank to sustain a few plants? i do plan on adding a small tetra school a month or two after the tank is set up with no issues. or do i need to buy tetras sooner?
All those plants are pretty low maintenance and don’t require a lot so I think it should be fine. I’ve never kept any of the plants you want besides java moss. The first plants I got were hornwort, Anarchis, moneywort, Amazon sword, and jungle Val which grew really fast in my old setup with a low light and no fertilizers.
 
BullyBee
  • #7
I would start out with easier fertilizer to use.

You can add “co2 in a bottle” (I think it’s called Flourish Excel from Seachem).

planted tanks are great I love them
 
Mouska
  • #8
I would start out with easier fertilizer to use. Something like aquarium co-op sells.

You can add “co2 in a bottle” (I think it’s called Flourish Excel from Seachem).

planted tanks are great I love them
I don’t think fertilizers would be great especially since it’s not a great light so it might cause algae.
 
BullyBee
  • #9
I had a low-tech tank that used fertilizer and it worked great.

I have AI prime lights so I would just adjust it as necessary.

idk it worked for me. But again I used very basic fertilization.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
If you plan on putting a lot of plants in this tank you may need to consider getting an all in one fertilizer to feed them instead of just depending on fish waste to give them all they need.

It takes longer than 2 weeks to cycle a tank. Cycling a tank simply means you are growing bacteria. The first bacteria is one that removes the ammonia the fish produce. The waste from that bacteria is nitrites. The second bacteria is one that removes the nitrites. The waste from that bacteria is nitrates. Those are kept down with water changes. This process doesn't happen quickly. It isn't unusual for it to take a month or more to fully cycle a tank.

How long have you had these fish in the tank they are in right now? If you have had them for at least a couple of months there should be both types of bacteria growing in the small tank as long as you haven't been over cleaning it and removing the good bacteria. You can speed up the cycle in the 10 gallon by moving EVERYTHING from the small tank over to the bigger one. When I say everything I mean water, fish, substrate, decor and most important the filter or at least the filter media.
ive had the tank running for about a month now. im trying to get this done asap because the tank theyre in now is waaaaaay too small. this tank had been running for about 2 years before i got it (went through alot of dead fish). ive heard that putting fish in new uncycled tank is risky. ill only have 2gal of water to transfer to a 10gal tank. im not going to lie, i really dont understand the cycling process. i know the steps but dont understand them. (i wasnt good at science in school). can i keep removed water from water changes in a jug to keep for cycling? or is that the stupidest idea ever?
 
coleh11
  • #11
This isn't super relevant to everything but gravel is a substrate. Pretty much anything that would cover the bottom of the tank would be considered substrate.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
ive had the tank running for about a month now. im trying to get this done asap because the tank theyre in now is waaaaaay too small. this tank had been running for about 2 years before i got it (went through alot of dead fish). ive heard that putting fish in new uncycled tank is risky. ill only have 2gal of water to transfer to a 10gal tank. im not going to lie, i really dont understand the cycling process. i know the steps but dont understand them. (i wasnt good at science in school). can i keep removed water from water changes in a jug to keep for cycling? or is that the stupidest idea ever?
can i use api quick start? and transfer over?
 
mattgirl
  • #13
ive had the tank running for about a month now. im trying to get this done asap because the tank theyre in now is waaaaaay too small. this tank had been running for about 2 years before i got it (went through alot of dead fish). ive heard that putting fish in new uncycled tank is risky. ill only have 2gal of water to transfer to a 10gal tank. im not going to lie, i really dont understand the cycling process. i know the steps but dont understand them. (i wasnt good at science in school). can i keep removed water from water changes in a jug to keep for cycling? or is that the stupidest idea ever?
The bacteria we are growing doesn't live in the water so no, keeping the water won't help cycle another tank. The bacteria grows on all the surfaces in our tanks but he majority of it is going to be on our filter media. That is where the most food is going to be.

Yes, putting fish in a new uncycled tank is risky but transferring everything from a less than ideal tank over to this one will be better for your fish. When you do water changes in the tiny tank how do you do them? If we start there it might be easier for me to help you.
can i use api quick start? and transfer over?
You can but if there is bacteria in the tiny tank it will do as much or maybe even more good than anything that comes in a bottle. Since these fish have been in the tiny tank for at least a month there should be some good bacteria in there. Whether there is or not will depend on how you have been doing your water changes.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
The bacteria we are growing doesn't live in the water so no, keeping the water won't help cycle another tank. The bacteria grows on all the surfaces in our tanks but he majority of it is going to be on our filter media. That is where the most food is going to be.

Yes, putting fish in a new uncycled tank is risky but transferring everything from a less than ideal tank over to this one will be better for your fish. When you do water changes in the tiny tank how do you do them? If we start there it might be easier for me to help you.

You can but if there is bacteria in the tiny tank it will do as much or maybe even more good than anything that comes in a bottle. Since these fish have been in the tiny tank for at least a month there should be some good bacteria in there. Whether there is or not will depend on how you have been doing your water changes.
ive been doing water changes about every 3 to 4 days, sometimes every other day if its baaaad. i get alot of protein scum and the water is NEVER clear. but when i got it it was an algae ridden mess and had to get a 75% water change and deep clean. when i change the water i try to stir the water before taking any out to try and get at least some of the solid waste out. the i just use a coffee mug to take out about 25% to 50% water. i rinse the filter media out in the drained tank water and stick it back in. with the new tank i will have a gravel syphon (better imo) so ill be able to get out more solid waste. this tank is so old i cant find replacement filter media so i have one that doesnt even fit and have been reusing it for about 1-2 months. before i got the tank my mom ran it with it with no filter media (killed like 30 fish over 2 years) but the oto living in it seemed fine -shrug- would adding a small live plant (java fern) help the biome in the meantime?
 
mattgirl
  • #15
What you have been doing in the tiny tank is going to help get the bigger tank cycled. Set the 10 gallon tank up. Add 7 or so gallons of treated water. Just leave enough room for moving everything from the other tank to this one.

You don't have to purchase cartridges for the filter. The aqua clear filter media you have in your cart will be perfect. With it all you have to do is rinse it as needed. Unlike the cartridges this media should last for a very long time. You will want to either run the filter you are running in the tiny tank on this tank or at least move all the media from it to the filter on the 10 gallon. That is where a lot of the bacteria is going to be so you want to preserve it.

Once you get the 10 gallon set up move EVERYTHING from the tiny tank over to the bigger tank. Don't rinse anything off. Not even the muck in the bottom of the tiny tank. Move as much of it as you can over to the bigger tank. There is going to be a lot of bacteria in that muck and it will help get this tank cycled much quicker.

Please let me know if any thing I've said is confusing and I will try to clarify.
 
RayClem
  • #16
I have a 10 gallon tank with a divider down the middle. In the tank I have two male bettas, four Otos , a couple of Nerite snails and some pond and bladder snails. The tank is planted with a variety of plants. Some of the plants grew so rapidly that I had to move some to another tank.

I do add 1 tsp of Aqueon Plant Food to the tank on a weekly basis after I do my water change.

My tank has a Hygger 26 watt LED light, so it probably provides a lot more light than your starter kit light. You can always upgrade later if you need more light.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #17
this is the tank. betta behavior seems fine, sleeps, but also swims around alot, very responsive to me, eating ferociously. oto stays on the glass at least 80% of the time. used to hang on the bottom alot before betta was added. water is the clearest ive gotten it in a while. the filters gph is probably barely the tank amout (2.2gal).ive been doing my best with the hand-me-down lol.

What you have been doing in the tiny tank is going to help get the bigger tank cycled. Set the 10 gallon tank up. Add 7 or so gallons of treated water. Just leave enough room for moving everything from the other tank to this one.

You don't have to purchase cartridges for the filter. The aqua clear filter media you have in your cart will be perfect. With it all you have to do is rinse it as needed. Unlike the cartridges this media should last for a very long time. You will want to either run the filter you are running in the tiny tank on this tank or at least move all the media from it to the filter on the 10 gallon. That is where a lot of the bacteria is going to be so you want to preserve it.

Once you get the 10 gallon set up move EVERYTHING from the tiny tank over to the bigger tank. Don't rinse anything off. Not even the muck in the bottom of the tiny tank. Move as much of it as you can over to the bigger tank. There is going to be a lot of bacteria in that muck and it will help get this tank cycled much quicker.

Please let me know if any thing I've said is confusing and I will try to clarify.
EVERYTHING youve said has made SO MUCH sense. thank you for all your knowledge. i will follow your instructions to a tee and will reply back when its set up with pics for sure im so excited!!!

projected stock list:
1 male betta
4 otocinclus
5 galaxy rasboras

aqadvisor says at my specs thats 94% stocking limit and i still will have 135% filtration capacity. does that seem right? also i AM upgrading to marineland penguin 100 hob.
 

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mattgirl
  • #18
projected stock list:
1 male betta
4 otocinclus
5 galaxy rasboras

aqadvisor says at my specs thats 94% stocking limit and i still will have 135% filtration capacity. does that seem right? also i AM upgrading to marineland penguin 100 hob.
The upgraded filtration is a great idea. If you find the water is too turbulent for your betta you can baffle the flow. I have a much too strong filter on my pleco grow out tank. I attached a piece of foam over the outflow to decrease the water flow. The filter is still just as strong but the water has to go through the foam so it doesn't feel like a rushing river in there.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
tank and everything is ordered!!! will be here sunday or tuesday last thing is to pick up plants. how many should i get? 2 java fern, 2 anubias, and 2 java moss? is that enough to start to keep the algae at bay?
 
RayClem
  • #20
tank and everything is ordered!!! will be here sunday or tuesday last thing is to pick up plants. how many should i get? 2 java fern, 2 anubias, and 2 java moss? is that enough to start to keep the algae at bay?

The plants you suggest are a good start. The should do well without high level lighting.

The java ferns might outgrow the tank eventually. If conditions are good, the java ferns will sprout baby ferns at the tips of their leaves which you can break off and replant.

When planting the ferns and anubias, remember that the rhizomes should not be buried in the substrate.
 
mattgirl
  • #21
Your plant list sounds good. As RayClem said, you don't actually plant the anubias or java fern. I actually glued mine to the side of tiny terracotta pots. I used a gel super glue. Should you decide to glue yours to something it just takes a drop of it. Put the drop where you want the plant and using a toothpick mash a couple of the roots into that drop of glue. Run water over it or dip it in water and the glue will be set and ready for your tank.

Keep in mind, both of these plants grow pretty slow, specially the anubias.
 
HolyKamikaziBetta
  • #22
tank and everything is ordered!!! will be here sunday or tuesday last thing is to pick up plants. how many should i get? 2 java fern, 2 anubias, and 2 java moss? is that enough to start to keep the algae at bay?
Another really great plant that’s near impossible to kill... and will feed from your gravel... is crypt. I bought one when I first started, had it in gravel, sand.... when I did a tank with soil it obviously did “better” and is like 20 different plants now... but you can put it in gravel and it will live.
 
mattgirl
  • #23
Another really great plant that’s near impossible to kill... and will feed from your gravel... is crypt. I bought one when I first started, had it in gravel, sand.... when I did a tank with soil it obviously did “better” and is like 20 different plants now... but you can put it in gravel and it will live.
I agree. Mine are planted in sand and are thriving. I started with 2 and just guessing, because they are so thick, I have at least a dozen of them now. I've had them in there for a couple of years.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #24
ok. revised list... 1 cryptocoryne parva, 1 anubias congensis, 1 anubias nana petite, 1 anubias golden coin (barteri round), and 2 java moss. after looking up plants sizes these seem like they wont outgrow the tank. java fern said it would grow too tall.
 
mattgirl
  • #25
ok. revised list... 1 cryptocoryne parva, 1 anubias congensis, 1 anubias nana petite, 1 anubias golden coin (barteri round), and 2 java moss. after looking up plants sizes these seem like they wont outgrow the tank. java fern said it would grow too tall.
I wish my java ferns would grow too tall. My tallest ones are only 5 inches tall. Maybe they do for some folks. My crypts are actually taller than the java ferns. Personally I think planted tanks look better if it has background plants that will grow almost to the top of the tank.
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #26
HELP!!! my betta in the small tank has ick!!! just found it this morning. what do i do? ive never had a fish with ick before..... i dont want my baby to die.......

i THINK its ick..... im not 100% sure. its white like white spots on his gill but it also looks hairy?
 
RayClem
  • #27
HELP!!! my betta in the small tank has ick!!! just found it this morning. what do i do? ive never had a fish with ick before..... i dont want my baby to die.......

What is the temperature in your tank? Although low temperature does not cause ich, it often stresses the fish allowing ich to attack. A temperature around 25 degrees C (78 degrees F) is about right for bettafish.

Before treating your fish with meds however, be certain that it has ICH. Bettas often have spots on their fins that can be mistaken for ICH, but which are only variation in coloration. If you can post some pictures of your betta showing the spots, forum members might be able to help diagnose the disease. Because male bettas live the early part of their lives in solitary confinement, it is rather unusual for them to get diseases like ICH. However, if other fish in your tank are infected, then they can certainly spread disease to any betta in the same tank.

If you do have ICH, raising the temperature even higher, 82-86 degrees F can help with the treatment process.
Unfortunately, lots of the less expensive heaters do not have adjustable thermostats that will allow you to raise the temperature. Raising the temperature speeds up the life cycle of ich allowing the cysts on the fish to hatch. Raising the temperature also decreases the dissolved oxygen in the water. Thus, be sure to maintain adequate filtration and aeration. If you add medications, any carbon or other chemical filter media in your filter must be removed. Otherwise, the medication will be removed before it does any good.

There are a number of medicatrions that can be used to treat ich, but many have malachite green which can be harmful to scaleless catfish such as Otocinclus. One recommended medication is ICH-X by Hikari . It does contain malachite green, but the manufacturer claims they have designed the medication such that it is not harmful to scaleless fish. However, if the betta is the only fish affected at this point, it might be best to treat it in a hospital tank. Dyes like malachite green may also be harmful to plants in the aquarium
 
luluvontepes
  • Thread Starter
  • #28
the more i look at him the more it looks like columnaris. ive added salt to the tank, but only a little as to not kill oto. (1 tsp for 2.2gal). i cant get a good picture of him (only have camera on phone)

ok. oto pretty much kicked the bucket. have it in a cup to die.... shone a light on betta and under the mouth (chin) theres a reflective gold patch. now im thinking its velvet... either way, cant make it to store for medicine for a few more days, so just treating with salt for now... i hate this part of the hobby...
 
RayClem
  • #29
ok. oto pretty much kicked the bucket. have it in a cup to die.... shone a light on betta and under the mouth (chin) theres a reflective gold patch. now im thinking its velvet... either way, cant make it to store for medicine for a few more days, so just treating with salt for now... i hate this part of the hobby...

If your Oto was infected, he could easily have passed that infection on to the Betta.

Do hot try using herbal medications like MelaFix or PimaFix with your Betta, however, as labaryith fish do not do well with essential oils.
 

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