Want to gain from the 'experienced ones'! Help

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by tonyl, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. tonylNew MemberMember

    :;tmi 2 weeks old Elite 65l tank complete with heater, stingray underwater filter and nutrafin cycle supplement and aqua plus tap water conditioner.
    29 inhabitants, (5 fancytailed guppies, 3 black widow tetras, 3 scissortails, 1 catfish, 2 ghost catfish, 2 glowlight tetras, 3 swordtails, 5 serpae tetras and 5 zebra danios).
    Ammonia 4, ph 7.2, nitrite 0, nitrate 0 according to api tester.
    Has had 2 x 30% water changes since set up.
    Getting lots of conflicting advice on best way to cycle, what chemical additives , if any, to use. Which fish mix best, correct feeding (live, flakes, frozen) etc.
    I am fully aware that there are no hard and fast fixes but I'm sure that there must be some simple early stage rules to follow that the more experienced amonst you would advise all newbies to follow.
    Any comments on my profile would be gratefully received, tonyl
  2. bass masterWell Known MemberMember

    sounds to me like you are severely over stocked :( especially for cycling with fish.... Most people do not recommend every cycling with fish, its very hard on fish and many people believe its cruel. I would either return or re-home as many of your fish as you can, if you can get down to 3 zebra danios total in your tank, you might be able to get away with cycling with those guys. If your going to add anything to your tank for cycling, really the only additive recommended is tetra safe start, it contains the necessary bacteria for your cycled tank. The nutrafin cycle supplement you have is not the right type of bacteria and therefor will not sustain itself on its own in your aquarium. Also your ammonia is very high and really any amount of ammonia can be lethal to fish. You need to start daily water changes of 30-50% and treat the new water with amquel+ or prime water conditioner

  3. MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    I would respectfully disagree with bassmaster about the zebras. If you can rehome the fish while the tank cycles, you should rehome ALL of them. Why pick 3 danios to be inhumane to?

    Welcome to FL Tony.

  4. bass masterWell Known MemberMember

    ^very true about fishless cycling, like I said he should get rid of as many fish as he can, but if its just not possible (which seems reasonable cause its pretty difficult to rehome 29 fish, especially with the variety he has bought) he could probably technically get away with keeping three of the hardier fish as long as he stayed on top of daily water changes and such, not that I am suggesting he SHOULD keep three of the fish, sorry if I didnt make that clear

  5. tonylNew MemberMember

    thanks for your prompt replies, ignorance is no defence and more research should have been done first, but the large pet shop retailers make it sound so easy and straight-forward, buy a tank, fill it with water and plants, buy some fish and away you go. I will try to take on board all that you have said. Is the nutrafin aqua+ no good as a tap water conditioner as that was not mentioned. My wife may have a contact with whom I may be able to farm out my fish until my tank has cycled. They have a large aquarium that may be able to foster for a while, thanks for the help. tonyl
  6. MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    No experience with Aqua+, but it should be fine...
    And don't be so hard on yourself. Ignorance has been a defense for almost everyone on this forum. :whistling:
  7. ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    welcome to fishlore!!!!!!!!
    allot of us started out as you are :( got to love the info from pet stores
    +2 GREAT advice!!!!!!....although if its not possible to rehome the fish, getting some prime or amquel+ with daily water changes, will get the cycle completed and keep the fish safe...it will take a few weeks though so be patient :) ..you need one of those to detox the ammonia/nitrites but still keep it avail for the cycle process.....the product cycle, as bass advised, wont do it :(

    good luck and hope things work out!
  8. phishyitisValued MemberMember

    the nutrafin water conditioner is fine,the nutrafin cycle is the wrong type of bacteria and will die off ,its a waste of money.
    to give you perspective,there is a much out dated rule that states you should have no more than 1 inch of fish per gallon.That is adult size not present size.you have about an 18gallon tank with 29 fish.your biggest fish for example, the swordtails will reach 3 inches easily.
    your main problem at the moment is ammonia, very toxic to fish.you need to get some Prime or Amquel and do 50% water changes every day until ammo and nitrite read zero.
    I would go back to the fish store and ask them to take the fish back or lose my future business.even if they give you a minimal credit.look at it as a learning experience.
    read up on cycling fish tanks your fish will thank you for it.
    welcome to fishlore
  9. gef21Valued MemberMember

  10. bass masterWell Known MemberMember

    thanks shawnie :), glad to know Im on the right track

    and dont worry tony, many people have done many of the same things you have when starting out. So many pet stores are unfortunately just out to get your money and will have no problem selling you fish and plants that really wont work in your tank. Its good to hear that you are fully willing to do what it takes to make sure your fish end up ok, Im sure once you have your tank fully in order you will definitely enjoy the hobby. This forum is a great source of info so dont hesitate to ask any questions you have :)

    best of luck
  11. JrobberWell Known MemberMember

    I agree with the statement above, if you can get some Tetra SafeStart, I would add that. I use it after overfeeding my fish for a couple of weeks during the cycle and it cleared my tank up in about 5 days.

    Hopefully, you'll be able to return all those fish because they shouldn't have sold you that many with a new tank.

    Good luck.
  12. tonylNew MemberMember

    ???called in to a large retailer to puchase TSS as advised and was queried by the sales assistant if he could be of help. Explained what I had done and what I was after and he told me the following.
    1. As has been said, 29 too many and will probably lose most if I cant foster them out.
    2. TSS is good but I can do just as well with a 3 day course of nutrafin cycle and then weekly courses at each 10% water change.
    3. No need for daily water changes as any useful bacteria is being flushed away with the water.
    4. Do not re-stock until at earliest end of may.
    Would be grateful for any input, thanks tonyl.
  13. ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    allot of our members gave some great advice...and we give it for FREE...your pet store is good in some points, not so good in others

    cycle will NOT cycle yoru tank ....daily water changes ARE needed to keep the fish alive and there is no good bacteria in the water to keep the cycling going ......the rest is great :)
  14. ppate1977Well Known MemberMember

    Shawnie nailed it spot on. All the advice given here is quite sound. Good luck with the tank. I can't stress enough; if you keep any fish in there daily 50% water changes are needed to try and prevent irreversible damage to the fish' gills from ammonia. 50% daily water change with prime. Hang in there.
  15. Prince PowderWell Known MemberMember

    My responses are in blue. :)

    Keep in mind, if your plan is to return or rehome ALL the fish then you will be doing a fishless cycle in which case the water changes will not be necessary. TSS will also not be necessary with a fishless cycle, although I know at least one member who cycled fishless with TSS. All of the rest of the advice is based upon you still having at least some fish in the tank. With all the fish still in the tank I would definitely recommend the daily water changes. Being so overstocked your ammonia levels will rise very quickly.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2010
  16. jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    The problem with Cycle is that it contains a land based form of the bacteria, and dies off in about a week or so in an aquatic environment. So you are forced to add Cycle weekly for the life of the tank.

    TSS on the other hand contains an aquatic form of the bacteria (the same bacteria that would form naturally in your tank). This bacteria is self sustaining, so you only need to add the SafeStart once. It very much like using used filter media.

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