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Old 12-23-2011, 04:25 AM   #1
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Fishless Cycling in YVR

Hello there!

I stumbled on this site, while searching for advice on cycling my first tank in a couple of decades. I thought I would join because AquariumAdvice.com seemed like a rather generous group of aquarium enthusiasts who were willing to share their experiences, good and bad. So for that! Plus - there are some really informative articles. I figured it couldn't hurt for me to find a place to record all of this new adventure down - so I have something to refer back to later and see what an idiot I was! LOL.

I am currently cycling a new tank, which is intended for some small tropical freshwater fish when complete:
- Fluval Edge 2 (12g/46L) sitting on a fluval nano stand (short)
- Stock aquaclear mini HOB filter
- stock LED lights
- 50w Fluval M submersible heater
- 3 to 5mm river rock/gravel substrate
- a few natural river stones
- I cheated and bought fake rocks and driftwood

However, I did spring for real plants:
- 1 anubias nana
- 3 cyperus helferi
- 2 bunches of star grass <<==== which I am certain were responsible for the massive outbreak of snails infesting my tank. 15 snails have been removed manually in the last 24 hours and I suspect there will be more to come

So why a tank now after all these years? Well, I was spring cleaning in October & stumbled across my old 29 gallon tank and unused Aquaclear 500 + a couple of unused ornaments. I remembered all the plans I had to set up an Oranda/Lionhead tank, but I didn't have a stand, couldn't pick a spot to put the tank, couldn't find a stand I liked... blah blah until I abandoned the idea completely. I tested the seals of the 29g - all were fine, but I was still a bit worried about setting up an older tank.

I had a chat with a local fish wholesaler I know a little through a coworker, asking him what LFS he would recommend in my area - since I didn't feel comfortable asking him for stock (again I don't know him well enough to ask for favors). During the conversation he suggested a tropical freshwater set up would be more interesting and actually easier to keep than a tank full of goldfish. Which kind of contradicted everything I had originally thought about freshwater fish. So why not just go for it!!?

The Fluval Edge 2 seemed to be a good fit space wise for my apartment, I like the sleek aesthetic (even though it means I sacrifice on ease of tank maintenance) and the $160 brand new sale price tag at the LPS was hard to pass up and I prefer the double height of the new Edge compared to the original.

I opted for Fishless Cycling, with live plants and raw shrimp because I don't know anyone with established tanks and felt really wrong about throwing living fish in an environment that would likely cause them harm or death - despite what the LFS said was okay.

The tank has been running with water, plants, decor, heater for 12 days. I finally dropped a raw shrimp in 4 days ago and cranked the heat to 30 degrees yesterday. And wouldn't you know it - today was the first time I had more than trace amounts of Ammonia, NitrIte and NitrAte levels. PH is still good, so I'll continue to check levels and figure am nearly due for a PWC soon. Seeing NitrAte levels for the first time today was satisfying and exciting... like okay this might actually be working. Time will tell.

Still trying to decide on what types of fish to house when the tank is finally ready - but due to size, my choices are limited. Sadly I don't think I'll be able to include a much coveted pleco - no matter how much I want one. Too bad because the not so local LFS (recommended by the wholesaler) said that the Edges are really prone to algae - so I guess I'll have to get a few otocinclus & dwarf corys to help manage the green. I could have kept the snails I guess, but pond snails multiply quicky and to me, I don't find them nice to look at.

Anyway - thanks again to all the generous posters at AquariumAdvice.com -I'm sure I'll have my fair share of D'oh questions.

I think I've rambled enough for now. Hoping my tank is in good shape and will successfully cycle without anything too major happening.

Cheers for now - Shea
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:52 PM   #2
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Welcome Shea! Thanks for joining AA!
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Please don't forget about the toxins in some corals (like zoas and palythoas)
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:53 PM   #3
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Happy Holidays! Welcome to Aquarium Advice!
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:57 PM   #4
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you could of just asked your LFS for a hand full of gravel from one of their tanks and called it a day.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:02 PM   #5
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Welcome to AA! We're glad you found us.

It sounds like you are off to a great start. If you have any questions about your setup, feel free to start a thread in the Freshwater and Brackish section.
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Old 12-27-2011, 03:01 AM   #6
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Thanks much for the warm welcome Hope you are all enjoying the holidays!
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Old 01-17-2012, 06:57 PM   #7
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**Tank Update** According to the numbers that started on Friday 01/13/12 my tank has completed fishless cycling... still conducting water tests this week for stability and if all goes well I'll start stocking my tank this weekend. Now I have to decide what fish to put in the tank.

I saw another fluval edge 12gal/46L with tetras and a couple of plecos. I was thinking about keeping:

3 assassin snails (have them already)

1 bristlenose pleco
2 cory catfish
8 neon tetras

and if the bioload allows for it, maybe 2 ram cichlids.

Any thoughts/advice on the potential list? I've been doing some reading on compatibility etc - but really the amount of opinions and information can be really confusing.

Thanks - Shea
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Old 01-17-2012, 07:08 PM   #8
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My cycled Fluval Edge 2

Oh here are some pics of my tank.... keep in mind that I haven't done the post cycle / pre-fish vacuuming and water change... that will be for this weekend.
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Old 01-18-2012, 10:31 AM   #9
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forget the bristle nose pleco. that will put a huge load on the bio-filter.
all the rest look good for a 12gal tank
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Old 01-18-2012, 11:11 AM   #10
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Tank looks great!
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75: blood parrots, featherfin cat, emperor tetras, turquoise rainbowfish, BN plecos, japanese trapdoor; 46: WCMM, gold inca snails, ghost, bamboo & amano shrimp, kuhli loaches, rummynose & ember tetras, endlers, platies, flame gourami, guppies; 16: pygmy, peppered, loxozonus corys, otos, assassins, RCS ... ~ Research PRIOR to purchase.... ~
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