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Old 01-14-2014, 02:36 PM   #1
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A mom and a 5 year old said lets get some fish!

Yep, it's true, we are new to fish keeping and thankfully (?) I'm completely spastic about taking care of animals properly. So we are in the process of doing a fishless cycle on our new 10 gallon freshwater tank (the marineland kit tank + a small airstone, some gravel and a few fake plants for now) using Ace Ammonia and API test kits. We're currently on day 5 of "forever," but I know we'll get there. The tank lives in my daughter's room and the fish will be hers (with her calculating/water testing/food moderating/tank cleaning mom looking over her shoulder).

Telling a 5 year old about the nitrogen cycle and why we can't get fish NOW is certainly a test of patience and repetitive conversation. Thankfully, she is very understanding of the need to give our pets the most proper care and we spend our time talking about what kind of fish we want to stock when the time is right.

Aq Advisor fish/tank calculator has been a fun tool to play with to figure out what kind of fish we want to gradually put in our tank. We're going to start small and work our way up as we learn and make sure we keep healthy fish all along the way.

I've been lurking around for a few weeks using the search to answer my questions so I feel pretty confident we're doing ok right now, but I figure I'm going to have some questions eventually that the search won't adequately answer so here we are.

We're in North East Houston if anyone knows of any private LFS that would be nice to visit. Pretty much the only place I know to get fish is Petco and Petsmart.
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:41 PM   #2
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You don't want a five year old feeding fish, changing water, testing water, etc. No five year old can measure out the correct amount of food to feed the fish evenly every day. The chemicals used in test kits are of a varying toxicity and you don't want them getting in your child's eyes, mouth, or nose. Water changes involve heavy buckets that can easily be spilled.

Have your five year old watch the tank and enjoy it, but do all the maintenance, feeding, and testing yourself.
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:45 PM   #3
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Welcome! Sounds like you two are on the right track!
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:59 PM   #4
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mistersprinkles, I think you missed the part that said I would do all that. I think she's perfectly capable of feeding the fish, as long as I dose out the proper amount.

Thanks greenlily, we're excited for this adventure.
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Old 01-15-2014, 04:40 AM   #5
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Start with some fairly hardy livebearers like guppies or platy's, a 10 gallon is really limited for stocking options.
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Old 01-15-2014, 02:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cattrah View Post
mistersprinkles, I think you missed the part that said I would do all that. I think she's perfectly capable of feeding the fish, as long as I dose out the proper amount.

Thanks greenlily, we're excited for this adventure.
Oh, sorry about that. Yes its definitely no problem if she feeds them as long as you're measuring out the proper amount.

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Originally Posted by toddnbecka View Post
Start with some fairly hardy livebearers like guppies or platy's, a 10 gallon is really limited for stocking options.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:01 PM   #7
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:30 PM   #8
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BTW not sure if you're aware of this but if you seed your tank you can get fish right away. Get a good amount of cycled biological media from your local fish store or another hobbyist and you can add a couple of fish right away. Just keep on top of water testing to make sure you don't get ammonia or nitrite spikes.

Endler's livebearers or Mosquito fish would be ideal for that 10 gallon. You can expose your daughter to the 'miracle of life' as new generations are born in your tank. Obviously it'll get over loaded quick so you'll constantly need to bag up young and sell or trade them to your pet store.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:46 PM   #9
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When having a new aquarium, maintenance is key. It is important to do weekly partial water changes to remove all algae and dirt chemicals so the fish can be happy and healthy. Having a aquarium siphon vacuum really helps take out all dirt particles in the gravel or sand. Following these tips will let your fish live in a happy, healthy environment. 🐠👍
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Old 01-15-2014, 10:41 PM   #10
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