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Old 03-08-2011, 08:51 PM   #1
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Hi can someone offer some advice regarding my new tank?

I have a five gal freshwater tank. It has two plants, one snail, two fancy guppies, and one glo fish. My tank has been cycling for three weeks now and I still seem to be having trouble. Today my readings were: ph 7.6, ammonia less than .25 ppm, nitrite zero, nitrate zero. I did a 50% water change after that due to the ammonia and ph levels. I added water conditioner, stress coat, and some salt. The fish are still hanging out near the top of tank. They don't appear distressed and are not gasping for air. I have already lost one glo fish and one guppy in the past two weeks. I had a 20 gal tank 5 years ago and had no problems at all. It seems like the smaller tank is harder to cycle. Any advice on what to do? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:55 PM   #2
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What kind of filter do you have on the tank?

A 5 gal tank is much more difficult to maintain than a 20gal. Bad things (like ammonia buildup) happen much more quickly when the volume is reduced by 75%. It is not unusual at all for any tank to take more than 3 weeks to cycle, however.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:02 PM   #3
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Just a regular carbon filter that sits at top of tank. I'm just not sure what else I should be doing do prevent any further loss.....
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:05 PM   #4
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It sounds like you are doing the right thing... lots of PWCs is really all you can do until the tank gets cycled. It will take some persistence, patience, and time.

Welcome to AA, and good luck.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:15 PM   #5
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Thanks for the help
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:45 PM   #6
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glo fish died today. ph was 7.2, ammonia .25ppm, zero nitrite and zero nitrate. did a 25% water change today. guppies are active and doing fine. what else to do?
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:48 PM   #7
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Just keep the ammonia/nitrite below 0.25 ppm. Treat water with a good dechlorinator when doing PWCs. New Tank Syndrome claims a lot of fish... it happens every day on the forum here unfortunately. Don't think that your tank is cursed or really messed up. It is why we always recommend a fishless cycle... but unfortunately many folks end up here only AFTER they add the fish to a brand new uncycled tank. That limits options.

If you feel like doing some reading, these 2 links will present cycling with fish versus fishless cycling to you. It is important to have a basic understanding of the nitrogen cycle to be successful with an aquarium long term.

CYCLING WITH FISH
I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?!

FISHLESS CYCLING
Tips and tricks for your fastest fishless cycle!
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:49 PM   #8
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do you have anything besides a carbon filter, no floss or sponge?
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:37 AM   #9
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nope. Do I need one? I hope the fish make it. I've been doing daily water changes.
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:35 AM   #10
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I'm sorry your fish died

I just wanted to say that guppies do tend to live at the top of the tank. It's normal, it's natural.

Good luck!
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:20 PM   #11
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I've had other tanks in the past but i've never had guppies so I'm just learning about them. I haven't had a tank in 5 years and really missed having one. But this 5 gallon, which I thought would be easy is more difficult than any bigger tank I've ever owned.
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Old 03-10-2011, 01:59 PM   #12
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The smaller tanks have such a small room for an error you have to watch everything closely and be prepared for a water change. Bigger tanks are so much easier, if you have the room for one.
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Old 03-10-2011, 04:31 PM   #13
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It also is easier because usually you start off small, and learn the hard way first, so it's easier once you know what to do, and you feel like you can take on more!
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:03 PM   #14
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Moved to FW general discussion.
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