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Author Topic: New Tanks  (Read 1891 times)
obsidianembrace
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New Tanks
« on: January 14, 2012, 07:41:14 PM »

Hello,

I've been dreaming about having a tank with happy goldfish in it for years. I'm 18 and decided to do it since I won't be able to have a dog in my college dorm for years. I have the monetary means to purchase bits at a time and I've been scrounging for deals on ksl (akin to a more classy craigslist).

I want a small tank with a pair of goldies in my room and a large tank for the tv room.

I found a 5-6 gallon tank with lighted hood for $10 so I grabbed that. I'm think of keeping two teeny orandas or moors in it and using it as an isolation tank for new fish (the fish in the larger tank will be much more expensive, so I will be isolating new fish for a long time). But this time I want to do things right. I've been reading lots of things that talk about tank cycling. How do I do this, really? I don't know enough about it to figure out exactly what I need to do for my situation.

This tank just has large black rocks (.5-1" in diameter) and an Aqueon Quiet Flow 10 power filter. It circulates 100gph. I don't have any plants or decorations in it for now.

To outline my plans further (I'm hoping to get as much advice as possible), I'm looking at a 25 gallon tank with stand and some kind of filter and air compressors for $40 (hopefully) which I'm hoping to get within the week. Attached is a picture of this tank.

I want this tank to be very pretty to look at with live plants and large fancy goldfish. My favorites are black/panda moors and lionheads (I think?). I want the fish to be as active and happy as possible. I'd like to be able to get a new fish every year or so and upgrade tanks maybe every three because I think part of the fun is getting a new fish sometimes! I think that's all I have planned out, really.

So my questions are: how do I get the small tank to have good chemical balance, etc? Any tips/warnings for the large tank as well as a timeline to when I can add fish to either of these tanks.

I would love help and I'm very willing to take advice! I really want this to go well and be something I can enjoy.

-obsidianembrace
« Last Edit: January 15, 2012, 07:51:46 PM by obsidianembrace » Logged
sparkly-puffball
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Re: Tank Cycling
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2012, 08:41:17 PM »

Welcome to the Pet Goldfish forum!   Grin
Ok, something I want to clarify is that based on proper water dimensions, each goldfish is recommended to have at least 10 gallons worth of space. There are different recommendations based on what type of fish you have, but this is the bare minimum. I'm not really sure what you mean by an 'isolation tank', but I hope this means those fish will only be there less than a week.

Always buy a filter that has more gph than recommended because goldfish are very 'messy' and need lots of proper aeration and cleaning. Here's a link for stocking aquariums.
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Also, we recommend at least 100 gph per goldfish, and I personally recommend an Aquaclear Power Filter because they have an adjustable flow and you don't always have to buy new filter floss/media.

Before you start your tank, you must cycle your tank. Cycling a tank can be almost instant to taking up 2 months. Search around the internet for a technique that works best for you. Some include a cycle using fish, a fishless cycle, a cycle using special products, and using filter media from an already established tank.

Based on this, please do not keep 2 goldfish in your 5-6 gallon tank for longer than a week. It's much more beneficial if you finish cycling your 25 gallon tank, then buy your goldfish. I would personally keep that 5-6 gallon tank as a quarantine tank in case your fish get sick or if you want make sure your fish aren't sick before adding them.

Some other people on this forum have much more information on keeping fish, but I kind of wanted this to be a 'Goldfish 101' instead of 'Be a Pro Goldfish Keeper' by Nossie or someone who has an expertise with goldfish.  Smiley
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2012, 09:02:17 PM »

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I would personally keep that 5-6 gallon tank as a quarantine tank in case your fish get sick or if you want make sure your fish aren't sick before adding them.

This is exactly what I mean by an isolation tank. I'd use it in this way for live plants as well.

Yeah, there are lots of techniques to cycling but which way is the best/easiest/fastest/cheapest?
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2012, 05:15:27 AM »

Don't put a single goldfish into that tank!! Please don't. Even if you cycle it, the filter bacteria will be shocked from the sudden overload and the fish will be dead from their own waste.
Get the 25 gallon asap and have no more than two small fancy goldfish, such as moors or fantails. Orandas can grow up to a foot in length so a 25 gallon is not appropriate for them.

Next you need an external power filter for the 25 gal, one that pumps at least 250gallons per hour. At least, the more the better, since it's such a tiny tank to keep goldfish in.
I personally don't want to tell you any particular cycling techniques until you have the 25 gallon. Your fish will be unnecessarily stressed and most likely badly harmed by the waste in the 5 gallon.
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2012, 04:59:29 PM »

Thanks for the responses!

I don't have any fish yet and the first round would be going straight in the 25 once it's ready. I'm starting with probably 3 goldfish. They'll be smallish. I would never put a foot long fish in a 25 gallon tank Tongue I plan to upgrade tank size as the fish grow and actually need it.

I'm going to have just snails and/or a sucker fish in the 5 gallon most of the time. In the future, new additions will be in the 5 as an iso until I'm sure they aren't sick or going to contaminate the large tank. I would love to have the 5 gallon cycled and balanced properly though, so any help with that would be much appreciated.

I'm hoping get the 25 this week, get it cycling. Add live plants in february when i get paid and can purchase a CO2 regulator (if that's the best way to do it?) and add fish once the tank is stable after adding the plants. I kind of have to do this is stages as I get paid each month.

I'd also like someone's opinion on air bubbles in the tank. Is it necessary or just aesthetic?
« Last Edit: January 15, 2012, 05:02:09 PM by obsidianembrace » Logged
Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2012, 06:45:10 PM »

In a 5 gallon tank, I would say stick with the snails.
I have a 5 gallon tank here, that I am moving my goldfish out of and I am thinking about having snails and perhaps introducing shrimp or a betta later on. But at the moment I'm quite happy to just let my snails roam the tank as much as they like!

I do not think a pleco would be at all suitable, given how large some of the breeds can grow.
This article has some great information with regards to stocking small tanks and might interest you (Link is not visible to guests. Please register to view.)

Another factor you've mentioned, keeping a small tank stable.
As I previously stated, I have a 5 gallon, that originally housed 2 goldfish and due to my inexperience, the ammonia spike in my tank claimed one of them and I lost Star.
It was quite a bit of work to get the tank fully cycled and care for my remaining fish, who is soon going to be moved to a 29 gallon tank, but I wouldn't say the small tank is entirely stable either, while the water quality remains fairly good because I keep an eye on it and change out 80/90% of the water every week. Even doing this isn't enough, as today ammonia unexpectedly appeared in my tank again, the reason for it appearing?
Simply because I am keeping a goldfish in un suitable conditions at the moment.

I think it is entirely plausible to keep a small tank stable, if you have a marine animal suitable for the tank size  Wink
I found stress zyme a very useful product, it helped me a great deal as after the ammonia spike, I had to deal with the nitrite spike right after!

But with cycling, I'm afraid there is no short cut really, just daily water changes, one or two useful products and a lot of patience!

With plants, I'm not sure if you are aware, but goldfish will eat anything.
In fact the plants, I've been recommended by other members here are Java fern and Anubais. Two fairly low maintenance plants, that will not need a CO2 regulator.

As for the bubbles, I find opinions vary. I personally quite like them for aesthetic reasons, it creates something more interesting in my fish's environment and helps with gas exchange at the surface. I originally had the air stone, because I was having problems with cycling, so when I realised the bacteria involved with cycling are aerobic (they use oxygen) I thought why the heck not  Smiley
I felt at the time, my cycling 5 gallon tank could use all the help, I could give it! But this is just my opinion and what I did in my circumstances. It is entirely up to you, I doubt you will have the same issues as you will have a much larger tank!

What sized tank will you be hoping to upgrade to if you do get 3 goldfish? The danger with keeping fish in too small tanks or over stocked, is that they can get stunted. I have had my juvenile goldfish, Lucky, in the 5 gallon tank for just over 4 months now and scarily enough she has already stopped growing. Which is why I'm keen to get her out of there!
I just think for 3 goldfish, you may have to upgrade pretty quickly.

I think doing it in stages is a great idea  Smiley It'll give you plenty of time to think things over, anyway sorry if I've rambled a bit there!
« Last Edit: January 15, 2012, 06:50:27 PM by Skwishee » Logged
obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2012, 07:11:07 PM »

I'm actually looking at 55s right now as the seller for the 25 is being difficult to work with. Some of these setups are great. I think I may get one and just beg forgiveness from my parents for taking up more room Wink

About the plants, so Anubais and java ferns don't need the CO2 regulation and stuff? That would save lots of money.

What are these "useful products" for cycling/bacteria called and where can I get them? So for cycling aeration may encourage some of the bacteria?

Wouldn't the unstable conditions in the 5 gallon harm snails or shrimp too?

Let me know if I'm asking the right questions or d*mb ones, here Wink
« Last Edit: January 15, 2012, 07:15:39 PM by obsidianembrace » Logged
obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2012, 08:47:50 PM »

Okay, I'm looking at a used 65 and I need advice. Attached is a picture.

The guy says the top part is just wood with no lighting installed. I'd need to install lighting myself or (preferably) purchase a hood. What kind of hoods are most convenient for filter space, provide good light for plants, and show off the fish? Also cheap would be great... He says it comes with filters but I'd likely end up buying a better one soon enough anyway.

He's asking $100 obo, obviously I'd lower it a lot if I had to purchase lighting for it. But a larger tank is supposed to be easier in the long run and can have more fishers.

What do you guys think?
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sparkly-puffball
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2012, 10:02:53 PM »

Buying a separate hood for a tank can be a pain. You have to worry about the sizes, the prices, and I personally am not able to save money by buying a separate hood for a tank vs buying one with it. But if you can, go ahead.

As a comparison price, they sell a 75 gallon tank with a hood for $199.74 at PetSmart. So think about if it's really worth it to buy a used tank and go through the trouble of buying a hood.

Even though I just mentioned PetSmart, I recommend not to buy fish there because they keep some of their fish and other animals in horrible conditions.

You're most likely correct about the filters, I wouldn't ever trust a filter that used to clean an "unknown specimen's" tank. You could probably lower the price on the tank because you don't want the filters.
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2012, 10:36:07 PM »

Side note: Is this a reputable place to purchase quality goldfish? Or one of those scammy things?

Where do you get high quality goldfish from? I'm located in Utah (US), if that's helpful

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« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 12:38:10 AM by obsidianembrace » Logged
Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 05:17:26 AM »

Hey Obsidian, I don't think any of your questions are at all silly  Smiley

As far as I am aware, unless you are going into aquascaping and/or keeping particular plants a CO2 regulator is not needed.
Goldfish tend to eat a lot of plants anyway, so sometimes you may just be giving them a salad bar  Roll Eyes
In fact I have been keeping a Cabomba plant in my teeny 5 gallon, it has survived pretty well with just the natural lighting in the room, although the top half of it is pretty much bald now because Lucky's eaten a lot of it XD

The bacteria products I mentioned, I picked mine up at my LFS and again as I mentioned I picked up the air stones because I was having trouble with cycling the tank. It would probably have cycled fine without it, but I was trying to give the bacteria all the help I could give it, being such a small tank with an un suitable, messy Goldfish inhabitant.

If you cycle the tank, it should be fine. Keep in mind snails and shrimp are a lot smaller than my 3 inch goldfish Wink
What variety of snail are you intending to go for? I think some of them have slightly different requirements. The snails I keep are Bladder Snails, these guys breed like crazy and can survive in stagnant water, so I am not too worried with them, I will be more vigilant when I introduce other snail species though.
Oh also! I looked into shrimp myself, I am not sure if you are aware, but if you do want to get them, buy them much, much later on. The Shrimp need to be introduced to a mature system, you would not want them in a tank while it was cycling or having spikes, they would not survive. You may also need a specific filter such as a sponge filter, otherwise Shrimp could be sucked up, I'm sure there are other types of filter that are fine to be used alongside them I just haven't gotten very far in looking up about them yet  Wink

This place has a lot of information about shrimps, so you might find it useful;
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« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 05:19:41 AM by Skwishee » Logged
fantailer
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2012, 06:50:58 AM »

Goldfish Connection is in my opinion one of the best places to buy fish.
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2012, 11:35:47 AM »

I missed a lot @_@

You could keep a betta in the 5 gallon, if you intend to keep it. And snails and shrimp obviously wouldn't be as bothered as a goldfish would, living in a 5 gal.
You need to stop thinking about goldfish as the tiny 1 inch babies that are sold, and think more about the 6-10 inch adults available Wink

I'd leave the 65 gal to it's fate and get a full tank, 55 or larger. BUT REMEMBER: ONE FISH PER 10 GALLONS MINIMUM.

Goldfishconnection is a great place to get quality goldfish, but mind you, they can be pretty expensive while bidding.
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2012, 11:46:26 AM »

I was just looking at goldfish connection and shipping is really expensive too...

Yeah, I think I'm looking for a 55 now. So I could drop the price because I don't want the filters, decorations, probably not the gravel.. I'll let you guys know when I finally get the large tank.

I'm thinking larger species of snails in the 5. Like apple snails or something like that.

There's not an LFS around here. If I go to another aquarium store for bacteria or chemicals, what do I tell the person I'm looking for? Also what do I need in a test kit?

EDIT: So I can have five 5-7" fish in a 55 gallon tank, provided I have plenty of filtration?
« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 11:49:23 AM by obsidianembrace » Logged
walk23
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2012, 01:11:11 PM »

I have 3 fairly small Orandas, 2 1/2 to 3 " in a 29g, using a Fluval C3 and a Hydro Sponge 5.  Doing a 10 g W/C once a week keeps my Nitrates below 30-40 before and less than 20 ppm after W/C. I highly recommend adding the Hydro Sponge as a added filter. The tank also includes Anubas, ferns, and an onion plant. So far I haven't encountered much munching on the plants. Each fish gets 7 pellets a day of food and seem to be doing fine with growing wens.

The key is to not overfeed.
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Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2012, 04:17:57 PM »

With test kits you want something that can check for PH, Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates.
There are two types of test kit; liquid and strip tests.
The one I use, is called API Freshwater Master Test Kit and looks a little something like this;
[image]


It is a liquid test kit and has the appropriate things to test PH High and Low, Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates Smiley

As for the bacteria and things, I wouldn't worry too much about that right now, I personally use Stress Zyme by API, but there are other products that are available which other members here use and could probably tell you which ones Smiley

Yes I think 5 fancy variety goldfish would be fine in a 55 gallon tank  Smiley

I think snails in the 5 gallon would be lovely! I am not too sure what stocking rules apply to the larger snails, so I would double check and do the research on which ever snail breed you decide to keep Smiley

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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #16 on: January 16, 2012, 07:02:13 PM »

Is this a nice hood? I found it for $50, he says it's never been used and it's supposed to fit 40-55 gallon tanks.

What do you think? If I have the hood I can get a 55/stand from a friend for $25
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2012, 02:29:57 AM »

But the tank without the hood was a 65, wasn't it? This wouldn't fit.

However, most importantly isn't what it says on the product that it's for, the measurements on a 40 and a 55 gallon tank are quite different. First you need to measure how long your 55 would be, and then you ask for measurements on the hood Smiley
Don't rush it, and it's not always best getting the cheapest stuff. Look around carefully and think about it Smiley It would be pretty bad if this hood would be somehow broken when you get it and you'd have to find another one, slowing you setting up the tank quite a lot and forcing you to use more money than needed :/
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fantailer
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2012, 06:18:02 AM »

Yeah Goldfish Connection is super expensive!
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2012, 10:13:37 AM »

Now I'm just in "wait for a really good one" mode. Waiting is no fun.
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2012, 12:38:30 PM »

Oh, I know the feeling |: Not the most exciting thing in the world...
Maybe some shop would have a good deal on tanks? Smiley
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Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2012, 03:06:51 PM »

I know the feeling! I had to wait months before I could get my new tank here and then it took me another week or two, to get everything sorted out and completely set up!

It will totally be worth it, when it's done though  Smiley

What type of goldfish were you thinking of getting?
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #22 on: January 18, 2012, 10:42:26 AM »

I love moors and lionheads/orandas. I was thinking one docile oranda (because they can swim faster, they must be nice), a black moor, i would love a panda oranda so much, lionheads with massive wens. I want large fish.

I checked at an aquarium shop near me and just the glass on a (chipped) 55 was $60 and I'd still need a hood and stand. I think I'm sticking to used. They didn't have any apple snails or anubis or java fern that day. But they had those moss ball things that I was reading about the other day. Opinions on those? I know they're supposed to help keep down nitrates (or nitrites?) but do they actually work? I found this test kit at the aquarium and online slightly cheaper, is it a good one? Looks good to me. (Link is not visible to guests. Please register to view.)

EDIT: cheaper one : (Link is not visible to guests. Please register to view.)   ... and maybe I could order the filter I want from this website as well? What filter *do* I want?

When you're buying a younger fish, is there a way to tell if it will have nice wen growth?
« Last Edit: January 18, 2012, 10:47:39 AM by obsidianembrace » Logged
Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #23 on: January 18, 2012, 11:29:53 AM »

Sadly though, moors don't do too well being outnumbered, unless the moor you buy is a lot bigger than the rest of the fish, or you have mostly moors and then one oranda Smiley I'd go for the orandas and lionheads/ranchus if I was you, they are the biggest varieties of fancy goldfish, whereas moors end up relatively small, and have kind of poor eyesight.

The moss balls are like any plants, all plants (and algae) keep the nitrates down, but note that it won't free from the mandatory weekly water changes. I personally don't have experience with the moss balls, but I have seen videos and photos of people having these in the tank. It might be that the goldfish will eat them, but that's the best way to get plants for goldfish. You buy one kind and see if the fish will eat it or not Tongue

You first of all have to decide the size of the tank, or preferably, getting it Smiley After that, you just choose a filter that pumps 10 times the tank volume, so for a 55 gallon, you'll want something with a strength of 550-600 gallons per hour (gph). And in that case, external filters are superior. For such a big tank it would be a waste of money to buy an internal filter anyway since it wouldn't be strong enough.

Usually you can simply see the headgrowth on younger orandas and lionheads, and then be sure to feed them a diet rich in protein and vegetable matter, the protein being for their headgrowths and the vegetables for their digestive system Smiley
(Protein: Blood worms, brine shrimp, krill, tubifex etc. Vegetables: Peas, Squash, Lettuce, Spinach, Seaweed and Algae among other things.)
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #24 on: January 18, 2012, 11:37:29 AM »

I could do that; get a larger moor than anything else. I just think they're so pretty. Plus feng-shui says an odd number of goldfish, 1 black and the rest red/gold will bring me fortune Wink Roll Eyes A panda oranda like in my profile pic is becoming my dream fish.

I keep seeing those aquatop canister filters, they sound amazing. I'm considering just jumping for that filter. And using carbon to keep the water super clear. I would love a 75 gallon but I simply don't have space for it. It looks like 55 is the max I can get right now.

Any comments on the test kit?

About food: for the blood worms/shrimp/krill, do you feel live? Or store it frozen?
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #25 on: January 18, 2012, 01:24:33 PM »

Wow, it could be hard to get... Wink But one day, you'll have one for sure! Smiley
Oh, and for your info, I recently bought a black moor, she's much, much bigger than the rest of the fish Smiley I keep her in an 83 gallon with the rest of the fish being fantails Wink So 7 of them, and she's doing great Smiley

You should definitely go for the Aquatop!! I would, if I only had a credit card so I could get it from Amazon! xD

About the test kit, there isn't much to say, many people use this one, so just get it Smiley As long as there's a test for pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate inside, it's fine Cheesy

Live foods are available in frozen, freeze-dried and gel form Smiley I have a little bit of everything. Freeze dried and gel is the easiest to feed the fish since you don't have to thaw/prepare it in any way. Except for freeze-dried tubifex, which should be torn into smaller pieces, and soaked in a small cup exclusively for that purpose Smiley
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Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #26 on: January 18, 2012, 05:31:47 PM »

Sounds like the planning is slowly coming together  Cheesy

Oh one thing I would recommend with frozen food, if you do decide to try some out, is to buy frozen food in blister packs, like this one;
[image]

Of course it doesn't have to be that particular company, it's the only one I know about over here. I'm sure where you are, you may find more choice  Smiley
But with blister packs, you just pop out one cube, stick it in the fridge the night before and it should be defrosted by the next day. I have daphnia in this form and one little cube usaully lasts my goldfish around 3 - 4 servings, I just keep it stored in a little dish, in the fridge Smiley

With freeze dried food, instead of a cup, I get a little bit of water into the lid and soak the tubifex that way. Then I clean and dry the lid with a towel when I'm done Cheesy

I find gel is a little messy myself, so I prefer freeze-dried and frozen. So I guess just give things a go and see what you prefer Smiley

A panda oranda sounds pretty incredible.... I'd love to have a panda moor tank one day  Cheesy
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obsidianembrace
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #27 on: January 18, 2012, 10:19:44 PM »

I love everyone's responses! Thanks so much Smiley

I'm getting so excited. Just looking at fish yesterday got my spirits back up. I'm thinking I'll get the 55 tank and gravel for that, snails/plants for the little tank, and get the aquatop filter when I get paid in february. Then we're all go Smiley
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Nossie
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #28 on: January 19, 2012, 03:52:30 AM »

That is so awesome! Cheesy Later, whenever cycling comes up, don't be afraid to look around the forum, and ask about whatever you can't find Smiley

Also, you should at all costs avoid getting any moisture of any kind into the lids of the food jars. No matter how well you wipe it, it'll stay, and it will make your food deteriorate faster. Some people are incredibly picky with this and they buy flakes in tiny packages and make sure to feed all of it within a matter of a week or two!

Skwishee: I have these tiny measuring cups of 30 ml, they're plastic, and mom is bringing them home from work in little bags Wink She thinks it's a bit of a waste to leave so many of them there since they're awfully cheap and they're always thrown away after one use. I usually keep one green to soak their food, one blue for the water conditioner, and a yellow as extra Smiley
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Skwishee
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Re: New Tanks
« Reply #29 on: January 19, 2012, 05:15:29 AM »

Ah really? Didn't realise that Noss! Thanks for the tip.

I think I might just claim a plastic cup from the kitchen. I've already claimed one for paint water.
Then I can just give it a rinse after use and keep it under the tank. I'm quite lucky with my conditioner and stress zyme, because the cap has a little 10ml measuring cup on top of it  Cheesy
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