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Old 11-04-2011, 08:24 PM   #1
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Used 30 gal Tank

I have been out of the aquarium for 25 yrs and my kids want to get one so I bought a used 30 gal tank today. Tanks will be set up for kids after Christmas.
So I have a few questions.
1. The tanks has gravel in it with a gal of dirty water. What should I do about it.
2. Going to use well water to fill it. I have access to free testing.
3. Do I need a aerate the water for Tropical fish with a I have a filter running (going to used plastic plants to start with.)

My ideas for #1 scoop out gravel wash tank down with tap water and rags and rinse gravel with tap water. I will have to replace filter element since there was not one.

Things I have been told that I do not agree with:
Put Goldfish in it for a week then flush them when I buy Tropical.

Things I was told that panned out.
1 gal of water per one inch of fish.
Put algae eater in about 2-3 weeks after fish to allow for algae growth to feed it.

Fish I plan to have in tank:
Tetra 3-5
Mollies 3-4
Angel's 2
Mickey Mouse fish 3
Algae eater(after 3 wks) 1

Any advice to help.
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:52 PM   #2
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Your 30 G Tank

Hello Big...

You posted a lot of information and I only scanned it. I'll pick out a thing or two that may be problems for you.

Mollies aren't the best choice for someone new to the hobby. They're nice fish, but not tolerant of newly set up tanks. These fish are very picky about water conditions and temperature. Mollies are "Livebearers" and need brackish water. I'd forget the Mollies for now and go for Platys, Danios and White Clouds instead. These are very hardy fish and tolerant of mistakes in tank management.

This is all I had time to notice so far. I'll get back to you as time permits or you can PM me anytime.

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Old 11-04-2011, 10:14 PM   #3
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The one gallon per inch of fish is outdated at best and doesn't work well for most fish species. It's a fairly common misconception that mollies are brackish fish, they do not need brackish water, especially if they were born and raised in freshwater. Mollies can adapt to live in fresh, brackish, or saltwater but they do not need salt in their water.
First of all you should read up on fishless cycling, there are some very good articles on the topic on this site.
Tetras are schooling fish so the more the merrier! 5 fish plus would be a good number.
The two angels would also do well in your tank. I also would skip the mollies, especially sailfins, as the get quite large and are livebearers. Your 3-4 mollies would not stay 3-4 mollies for long. The mickey mouse fish are platys and are also livebearers, but are smaller than mollies and would be a better option. If you do get them be sure to get more females than males.
So my suggested stocking would be:
5+ tetras
2 angels
3 mickey mouse platies

Aaand, what kind of algae eater were you planning on getting?

As for your other questions:
1. Suck out the remaining water with a gravel vac. If you're going to reuse the same gravel give it a good washing.
2. Well water works perfectly as long as it's been treated with some water conditioner to get out all the bad stuff. It's what I use.
3. It really depends on how much your filter disturbs the water's surface. Throwing in an airstone can't hurt.
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