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Old 03-31-2006, 01:03 AM   #1
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QT Tank Set up (For new fish)

I have a 30 gallon QT tank that will have 2 HOB filters, heater, 1 small powerhead and PVC in the bottom. Im going to seed my HOB biowheels in my sump for 3 weeks. When Im ready to put a new fish in the QT tank, I will do a water change from my main into my QT. I will then move the biowheels and put them into action. What else would I need to do in order to prevent a cycle? Im only going to QT 1-2 small fish - IE firefish, then maybe a small yellow tang by itself, etc.
I thought about buying a small 5 lb of LR that is uncycled and put it in there. However the QT tank has had copper in it before so I would have to keep the LR in there and up and running once the QT time is over or pull it out and use it as base rock the next time I set up a QT tank.
Any suggestions? Each time I have set up a QT tank, I have not had good luck as it wants to cycle. I also have some polyfilter ready in the event my levels start rising and also some Prime.
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Old 03-31-2006, 08:28 AM   #2
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To setup a "cycled" QT tank properly you will need some filter material that has been in the main tank for some time. What kind of hob filters are you using? I am assuming you are using a Penguin or Emporer, due to your biowheel description. If so then you would be well advised to put the standard filter material in the filters as well as the biowheels. The filter material will hold more beneficial bacteria. You do not need to take water from your main tank. There is no beneficial bacteria free floating in the water. All you will be doing is introducing nitrAtes into the qt tank. Just use new water that is very close if not the same parameters of the main tank. You can skip the LR in the qt tank.

Be sure to acclimate your fish to your qt tank just as if you were adding it to you main tank. I use the drip method.

Good Luck,
Brian
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Old 03-31-2006, 11:52 AM   #3
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Be sure to acclimate your fish to your qt tank just as if you were adding it to you main tank. I use the drip method.
Actually a much easier/faster/safer way is to test the parameters of the shipping water and manipulate the QT water to match. It greatly speeds up acclimation time. If the item is from an online source, ammonia and low O2 will be a rather large concern. Getting the fish out of that shipping water should be done quickly. Temp and pH being the two biggies, if the salinity in the bag is high, it's fine to add a fish to a lower salinity. It should never be added to a higher salinity.

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Old 04-01-2006, 01:07 AM   #4
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Macrosill
Im using 2 Penguin HOB filters (Like a 150 and 170). I have tried in the past using the filters that go inside the HOB and they collect a lot of stuff! I attribute a lot of my levels being elevated to these. Theres no way to clean them other than rinsing them off with tank water - but this Im sure also cleans off some of the good bacteria. I know I dont need to take water from my tank when setting it up, but since I have 0 trates, theres no reason not to in my mind. And yes I will acclimate using drip as well. I just am having a hard time understanding why my past QT tanks have had so many problems...not with just trates but ammonia. I had levels of like .50+ and never could get it down.

Steve
Long time no talk to! Glad to see your still around. I think you and I went through the whole QT tank issue when I was doing hypo last year. All is still well with my fish that went through that. And again I thank you!!
I want to try and avoid the drama I had last time. For 8 weeks I battled ammonia all the way to trates, and then back again. I want to have a good bacteria base for the QT tank. Granted I will only have 1 fish in there at a time and MAYBE 2 very small fish at most. Any thoughts as to making sure I have a good bacteria base? How can I make sure the tank is cycled? I started seeding my biowheels tonight. Will leave them in the sump for like 3-4 weeks? I also have a load of polyfilterfor my QT tank.
Also did you tell me that if you use prime, you need a special test kit that wont be thrown off by Prime?? Any and all suggestions are appreciated!
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Old 04-01-2006, 02:32 PM   #5
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Any thoughts as to making sure I have a good bacteria base? How can I make sure the tank is cycled? I started seeding my biowheels tonight. Will leave them in the sump for like 3-4 weeks? I also have a load of polyfilterfor my QT tank.
Polyfilters work amazingly well for helping with nitrogens. You just have to remember not to let it become a biofilter in the process (rinse regularly in RO) and be sure it's removed if medicating.

The best means of seeding any biomaterial is for it to be "in use". Simpley placing it in a seeded tank is not always sufficient and rather slow. If the HOB can actually be set up and run in the sump or what have you, it will seed all that much faster. Same goes for air driven sponge/corner filters. A biowheel gets my vote every time for QT's though.


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Also did you tell me that if you use prime, you need a special test kit that wont be thrown off by Prime?? Any and all suggestions are appreciated!
Certain dechlor/nitrogen binders can skew readings for ammonia especially for some time unless using carbon. Basically you end up with a false possitive. The best kit for this is usually Seachems ammonia kit or their ammonia alert badge. The kit being the more accurate of the two. I think the one topic we where discussing was the Cupramine which is amine based. The amines in the copper can fool many ammonia test kits reading it as ammonia.

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Old 04-04-2006, 10:43 AM   #6
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Steve

I have a problem with putting the HOB filters into "use". The 2 HOB filters I have on my QT tank have been exposed to cupramine (copper). So I would not think I would want to use these in my main tank and then rotate them back to my QT. If I just keep the wheels in the sump, how long will they take to see without being in use? Any other suggestions?
Yes I remember the test kit and ammonia badge. I had more luck with the actual test kit.
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Old 04-04-2006, 10:54 AM   #7
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If the HOB is not usable, then be sure the wheel is placed in a high flow area. Either where the water exits into the sump or the outport of the skimmer. As long as it's not placed passively in the sump, it should seed much faster. Time frame would depend on the nutrient level of the tank but a week would be a good starting point.

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Old 04-04-2006, 12:02 PM   #8
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Yes I have 2 wheels in the return section of my sump. Meaning where the water drops down from the tank and begins its travel from one end of the sump to the other. So its in the highest flow area possible. How long would you leave them in there before using? Also what do you think about using rubble rock from my sump to go into the QT tank? OR a say 4-5 lb of LR and once Im done with the QT tank just discard it for next time...
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Old 04-04-2006, 06:20 PM   #9
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How long would you leave them in there before using?
At least one week but preferably two.


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Also what do you think about using rubble rock from my sump to go into the QT tank? OR a say 4-5 lb of LR and once Im done with the QT tank just discard it for next time...
Nope, they will interfer to some degree with most meds, especially copper.

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Old 04-04-2006, 06:28 PM   #10
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Oh...well I wasnt going even going to think about starting the QT for another 2-3 weeks at least..so this should work.
Also once I set it up and running and want to make sure I have enough bacteria in the QT tank, can I test it without adding a fish first to make sure it will carry the bioload of the fish?
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