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whiskeyblaine

Hey everybody! I’m new to
This site and fairly new to the freshwater scene as well. I’ve ordered a Coralife 32G BioCube that I very excited to get set up! Any tips or advice you have would be greatly appreciated - filtration, hearing, cleaning, types of plants and fish. Any and all advice, bring it!
 

StarGirl

Make sure you cycle your tank before adding fish. Get a API liquid test kit not strips. Heaters and Filters are totally your choice. Everyone will have pluses and minuses for both. Research what you have questions on. Pictures of your final scape is ALWAYS encouraged!!! Love to see every ones tanks! Welcome!
 

whiskeyblaine

Make sure you cycle your tank before adding fish. Get a API liquid test kit not strips. Heaters and Filters are totally your choice. Everyone will have pluses and minuses for both. Research what you have questions on. Pictures of your final scape is ALWAYS encouraged!!! Love to see every ones tanks! Welcome!
Thanks for the response! I am very excited to get the driftwood added as well as plants, then begin cycling. I am partial towards Angelfish and Guaramis. Are there any others you’d recommend?
 

StarGirl

Thanks for the response! I am very excited to get the driftwood added as well as plants, then begin cycling. I am partial towards Angelfish and Guaramis. Are there any others you’d recommend?
I like German Blue Rams best. they are a higher temp fish though. What is the temp in your tank?
 

Salem

I absolutely love those aquariums- they always look so beautiful. I'll make a list of all the things I can think of that might help;

Filter
These tanks have filtration chambers that work fine on their own but can definitely be better. They come with these cartridges that you're meant to replace every so often but I'll be honest I don't use them.
You can use 100% polyester stuffing (exact same as filter floss but not expensive) for some mechanical filtration or use some aquarium foam (I believe you can use some normal types of sponges but you'd have to look into that).
There are lots of options for biological media you can use but you will likely want to put them in a mesh bag to keep them contained. You can easily sew one yourself if you don't want to buy one.
You don't have to change your media unless it's charcoal or it is literally falling apart. You can rinse debris off of sponge or floss/stuffing by just squeezing it in some old aquarium water.
I like to keep plats in my filter. I keep the lid of it off and have lucky bamboo in it as well as some pothos.

Heating
You can get preset heaters that will almost always be less expensive than ones with a dial but it's always best to be able to change your temperature. I've heard good things about the hagen and aqueon heaters though I have only ever tried tetra presets and the topfin adjustable one. Both work fine for me and were inexpensive but not everyone has that experience.
Seeing as these aquariums have that filter section you can actually put the heater in there to save on space. It also helps make sure that if your heater happens to be one that gets hot to the touch no fish will actually be able to get to it.
Always keep a thermometer even if the heater itself has a temperature guage on it.
Always keep a spare thermometer just in case the main one breaks.

Cleaning/ Maintenance/ Setup
The best siphon you can get is probably the python, it comes in many different sizes and has the option to hook directly up to your tap. They are really expensive though so I just made my own siphon. There are lots of diy tutorials online that are very helpful.
I personally find sand substrate to be extremely easy to clean. The waste forms a thin layer on the top that is very easy to see and suck up with a siphon. That being said if you choose sand you will need to rinse the absolute blazes out of it and even then it will fog up the aquarium when filling it the first time. Just let it settle then suck out the top layer that forms.
Just rinse everything before you put it in basically.
If you're adding sand add it while there is water in the tank so you can avoid funky little air pockets.
When filling or refilling the aquarium it helps to pour water into a strainer or some sort of cup with holes in it so you don't disturb the substrate as much.
If you're planning on doing some aquascaping try arranging things before adding water and fish so you have a general idea how you want it to look.

Plants/ Decor
You may want to stick to more lower-light plants just because the light the cube comes with may not be strong enough for others.
Stem plants usually grow fastest and look really nice in the background.
Java ferns are a personal favourite of mine- just make sure not to bury their rhizome.
You may need to dose fertilizer to make sure your plants all grow healthy and happy. I personally like SeaChem's flourish line.
Some terrestrial mosses can grow and thrive in aquariums- just keep them in their own qt before adding them.
I absolutely adore floating plants like duckweed and salvinia- they provide cover and are really good at sucking up nitrates.
Speaking of sucking up nitrates you can hang some pothos from the top of the tank so the roots grow into it. They also just look pretty in my opinion. However, they will make pets like cats and dogs sick.
Some plants will need root tabs or some sort of substrate that provides nutrients. You can diy root tabs for fairly cheap and there are several tutorials you can find online.
If you're buying plants you will almost definitely end up with some sort of pest snails. This isn't really a big deal to everyone (like me) but can be avoided by rinsing the plants off and doing a bleach dip. You may want to quarantine them as well.
In my opinion the absolute best decor option there is is terracotta pots. You can add a whole pot, break it up and sand it down, use multiple pieces to create a wall or hide or cave, you can attach plants to it and they will root to it and stick, and their extremely cheap and easy to find.
Always rinse driftwood before placing it in and sand down any sharp parts.
You can boil driftwood before placing it in to make it sink faster and get rid of some of the tannins but it's not completely necessary.
Sometime driftwood will develop a white fuzzy layer- this is normal and will go away eventually if you don't clean it off.

Livestock
Always always ALWAYS research fish before you get them- research if they're compatible with any other fish you want to add. Research if they need to be in groups or alone. Research everything they need and like. It seems obvious but you'd be surprised how many people don't.
Try not to add every fish at once because it will probably cause an ammonia spike.
Many people say there is no difference between drip acclimating or float acclimating. Research before hand if you don't already know which you prefer.
If you want a snail to help with algae a nerite or two are probably the best options. They will lay eggs on everything but will not actually reproduce unless they're in brackish water, and they absolutely just suck back algae. Just remember they poop a whole lot so don't go wild adding snails.
Shrimp are also good at keeping algae at bay and can be very entertaining to watch. Just make sure to keep them fed and healthy if you plan to keep them.
Always quarantine fish before adding them to the tank to avoid sudden breakouts of illnesses.
 

Wolf010

Welcome to fishlore!!!
 

whiskeyblaine

I like German Blue Rams best. they are a higher temp fish though. What is the temp in your tank?
They are gorgeous fish. I’m not sure what temp I will run the tank at yet. That will depend on what fish and plants we stock it with.
 

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