Okay, I Seriously Screwed Up!

PepperidgeFarms
  • #1
I'm an absolute idiot. It didn't even cross my mind that while my tank is cycling my betta is in his 2 gallon bowl and I don't even have a heater in it!!!

I didn't think anything of it until I got a snail to see how he'll do with a partner and I saw the snail hitched to the glass on the top line of the water, barely even in it when I realized it's probably freezing compared to what it's used to!

My betta has always been in the 2 gallon bowl and I just bought the 16 gallon a few weeks ago. I'm mid cycle right now but am I better off just doing a massive water change and getting them into the tank so they can be in proper temperatures?!? I don't know how I didn't worry about this before but I feel horrible now.
My readings are basically 1 for ammonia, 0.25 for nitrites and nitrates are off the scale. It's gone down to 0 in ammonia and nitrites 3 times so far but tends to take about 3 days to level off on their own and not 24 hours so I just keep adding the ammonia to around 4 ppm until it will deal with them in 24 hours but again, I'm not there yet so...
Which is the better of my two options? Undo the cycling and basically do a fish-in cycle so the betta and snail are in proper temps or just let them wait it out another week or two so it's all done? He's managed for the last bunch of months in the bowl already, I just feel bad now
 
Nathan wu
  • #2
Doing a fish in cycle, to me at least, is pretty hard on the fish. If the ammonia and other things spike, they surely wouldn't enjoy it. Why don't you just buy a small heater for your 2 gallon? Then ramp up the temps slowly. that should be good as as a temporary home for your betta and snail for the time being. Your in a tough spot man, Good Luck!
 
wolfdog01
  • #3
I personally would put him the bigger tank. Whatever he produces is going to be so diluted in the larger tank that it shouldn't harm him. If a fish in cycle is done properly he'll be fine.
 
wrs2
  • #4
I mean he is living in an uncycled bowl that probably has spikes of ammonia and nitrates as well. Why not just put him in the 16 gallon tank?
 
mattgirl
  • #5
I agree. It would be much better for him to be in a filtered and heated tank. I would do a big water change on the bigger tank before you put him in there. If you don't have it I highly recommend getting a bottle of Seachem Prime. It not only dechlorinates your source water if you have chlorine in it but it also renders ammonia and nitrites up to a total of 1 less harmful to the fish.

Just be sure to very slowly acclimate him to the warmer water.
 
Small Tanks
  • #6
I would put him in the bigger tank, feed sparingly. He's way better off in an uncycled tank than an uncycled bowl.

I second the prime, big water changes and prime for your tank until it's stable.
 
Mom2some
  • #7
I agree. It would be much better for him to be in a filtered and heated tank. I would do a big water change on the bigger tank before you put him in there. If you don't have it I highly recommend getting a bottle of Seachem Prime. It not only dechlorinates your source water if you have chlorine in it but it also renders ammonia and nitrites up to a total of 1 less harmful to the fish.

Just be sure to very slowly acclimate him to the warmer water.

Copying the above so it can be repeated! There is no way one betta and one snail will produce as much ammonia as you are prepping your tank to cycle. I would guess that if you move them over you will see neither ammonia or nitrites. Just do 2 or 3 back to back Large (50-75%) water changes on the tank to get nitrates down before you acclimate them!
 
jdhef
  • #8
I agree with Mom2some, but if you were really worried you could do a large water change, put the betta and snail in the tank and then 24 hours after that water change add a bottle of Tetra SafeStart. Then do nothing for the next 14 days but lightly feed. On day 14 test your water and if all worked correctly, you'll be cycled.
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Thanks everyone. I'll move him over to the other tank tonight then... how can I slowly acclimate him to such a big temperature change? I feel like putting him in a bag and letting it soak for however long will still be way too fast of a change?
 
mattgirl
  • #10
Thanks everyone. I'll move him over to the other tank tonight then... how can I slowly acclimate him to such a big temperature change? I feel like putting him in a bag and letting it soak for however long will still be way too fast of a change?
How big is the difference between the bowl and the tank? If it were me doing it I would put him in a fairly large plastic container filled with his original water and float it with him in it
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
**
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
I guess with the water change I could have it relatively similar and just turn on the heater in the tank to slowly warm it up
 
wrs2
  • #13
Yeah I would unplug the heater, do the WC, and then put the fish in to acclimate him and then turn the heater on so that there isn't so much of a big gap in temperatures that he would go into shock when released.
 
mattgirl
  • #14
I guess with the water change I could have it relatively similar and just turn on the heater in the tank to slowly warm it up
This would work too You may be amazed by how much more active your little guy will be once he is in warm water.
 
TexasGuppy
  • #15
Also, 4ppm ammonia in 24hr is a lot. You may be close to cycled for single fish anyway.
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
I've never done a fishless cycle before and that's what I thought it said is kind of my goal. Did I totally misunderstand the instructions for the Add and Wait method? Ammonia instructions for a fishless cycle

Also quick question... I've heard of using pantyhose over the filter to stop moss from getting sucked up... I asked my husband to pick up a pair for this while he was at the grocery store and the kind he grabbed is 72% Cotton, 18% Nylon and 10% Spandex...
Are all these materials safe?
 
TexasGuppy
  • #17
Those instructions are pretty aggressive. 4-5ppm in 12 hours is crazy high.
I think those materials should be safe, but may block water flow too much if it's really fine. May find yourself cleaning that frequently.
 
wolfdog01
  • #18
To cover up my intake I use a TopFin filter media bag. It has ties at the top that I pull out and cut to the right length and the bag I cut in half. I tie it around my HOB intake.
 
83jase
  • #19
That cycle seems right a bit full on though going to 5-6ppm ammonia I'd go 4ppm at the most but I'd say this is for those who want a very large stock quickly don't want to wait until bioload adjusts to accommodate more fish then a few at a time but same in return your stocking large bioload now that will start dieing if it's not feed
 
Mom2some
  • #20
4-5ppm of Ammonia would be appropriate if you were going to heavily stock a tank immediately. I stand by my belief that you will see neither ammonia or nitrates when you move tour betta over. I second the 95-100% water change, let water come to room temp, add betta, then turn the heater on. Your fish (& you) are going to be so happy! Pictures please!
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #21
Thanks everyone! I also thought that the 5-6 ppm seemed high so I stuck with around 4 but oh well. I did probably 4 70% water changes as my nitrates were through the roof but it's all down now. I left the tank overnight to get to around the same temperature and this morning moved him from his bowl to the tank. It was so nice to see him swimming around! I'll add pics of it all soon but first had a question... My wood in the tank has white stuff on it since changing the water. I didn't see any before but now with the fresh water (I used conditioner too) some has come up. This is on the Spiderwood. Originally on my congo wood it grew "driftwood snot" but this piece is a different thing... Is it still just an organic growth that will go away? Here's a close up

Also I just got back after a couple of hours at the office... Pepperidge Farms seems so happy! He's swimming around and chilling by the heater and I feel like a jerk for having taken so long to finally realize everything I was doing wrong but it's such an immediate improvement.
Any idea what kind of bottom dwellers/clean up crew will fit into a 16 gallon tank that won't get in his way assuming he's ok with a bit of a community tank? I want panda cories but I'm not sure if it's too small of a tank
 

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TexasGuppy
  • #22
Fuzz will go away. Shrimp will eat it as will Otto's.
Looks like he might have a little fin rot in that picture?? If so, do extra water changes for the next week or so...
 
Mom2some
  • #23
Congratulations! You are now the poster child for everyone who says, “but the betta seems fine, it doesn’t need...”.
 
PepperidgeFarms
  • Thread Starter
  • #24
Haha thanks. Yeah he had fin rot before but they're growing back now. I'll keep checking on the water conditions but his fins were originally mostly clear and they've grown back bright blue, just the tips are clear again... I heard that was fin regrowth, is that correct?
 

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