I would try to avoid using tap water if at all possible. The best method is to use RO
water - Carey has a link to a good inexpensive one from ebay.
If you can't find "pods
" try looking up copepods. That is the "good" type that we all stive to cultivate for our picky eaters. Isopods - not that beneficial.
Also, not sure what you had planned for a tank size, but I would recommend a 75 gallon to start.
That size will give you a very nice selection for fish and also be big enough to absorb some of the mistakes one may make.