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Old 08-22-2009, 10:05 PM   #1
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hi. Im extremely new to keeping fish

Hi, i live in Australia in university accommodation therefore am only allowed to have fish.. but i've always wanted to have pet fish and thought now is the time to have a go

i have bought a tank that has a capacity of 30litres (7.9 gal.) for my betta who is currently in a 3 litre vase/bowl ( i didn't realise how small the vase actually was at the time but he seems to be very happy blowing bubble nests every night and i keep the water very clean).

NOW i am so new to fish keeping so i appologies for the silly questions but thought i'd really like to do this right.

i have had the tank for around 5 days. It has a couple of plants and gravel. i have had the filter and heater running and have been adding a liquid that "establishes the bio-filter" every day because a lady at the pet shop said it would speed up the cycling of it. i was wandering if this is correct? and how long it would take before i can add my little guy in it?.

here r more questions sorry:

How often do i have to do water changes and how much for my size tank?

what do i have to do weekly and monthly?

what should i check with my water? (im going to buy a water test kit)

how do i maintain my filter? (it took me ages to set it up haha). im not exactly sure what kind it is either because the intructions seem to be very general. it says its a "internal filter, supplied with easy cleaning and disposable cartridges" do i have to replace the cartridges monthly?

also i feel that the filter is a little too strong (probably find out when my fish finally get to go in there). i've tried to position it all sorts of angles and ways to minimise the current. right now its on an angle sort of facing the back of the tank and the holes are half out of the water.. it seems the more in the water its less strong?. does anyone have any suggestions on how to position the filter?

i think that is all for now. sorry about all the newbie questions i've gotten so fond of my fish and want him to be happy. I've also tried researching religously on the internet on these questions but thought i'd better ask this forum for more specific info for my set up and to also be reasured im doing the right thing


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Old 08-22-2009, 10:16 PM   #2
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a picture would help. we love pictures here.

I'm not sure with a tank that small but testing especially when it is new is important. Maybe daily testing till the little tank is stable. If the numbers are off do daily water changes.

The plant will help some of the nitrates. And the filter almost sounds like an internal or a hang on back filter.

Once the tank is established test once a week and hopefully will only need to do a monthly water change, as it is just one fish.

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Old 08-22-2009, 10:43 PM   #3
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Welcome to AA. might want to try and read the stickies about cycling to better understand whats going on in your tank.

water changes should be done weekly 25-50% should be good.

you should know the ammonia nitrate nitrite and ph level minimum. they sell liquid test kits with all the ones needed in one box.

filters you dont need to replace the sponges. just every couple weeks wash the sponge in old tank water.

what kind of filter do you have? most likely its prob not too much. often filters are over rated.
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Old 08-22-2009, 11:53 PM   #4
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thanks for the replies everyone! i've read up more about the cycling so i spose i'll just need to get a water testing kit to test how my levels r going.

here are 2 pics.. with the plants i sort of just popped them in anywhere for now to get an idea of how they'd look.. i've done some trimming and saw some roots on some so decided to keep them in the tank to see what would happen... the roots have grown so fast! is this how you get more plants?.. i'm also eyeing off a nice looking anubias plant on some driftwood at the LPS. r they easy to look after?

oh and the vase next to the tank is where my betta is waiting for the tank to be cycled. The vase is green because of meds.

and this is where i've positioned the filter.. are there better ways of positioning it?

and to answer the question about what filter it is.. im not sure.. the instructions say "filter with 2 media: special filter sponge and activated carbon and oxygen-generating function.
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Old 08-23-2009, 01:08 AM   #5
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I have been reading over this thingy too much, "reduce your water changes to 20% a month".

Help me out on this folks, to me looks like an internal power/canister filter, looks like a nice flow rate in such a little tank.

My plants always die on me. Your tank isn't that big so hopefully you will have betetr luck with the plants than have had.

That heater looks huge.... But I have heater overload as I was looking at them all day.

Definitely invest in the test kit. I can't tell you how much it has helped the health and color of my fish.
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Old 08-23-2009, 02:32 AM   #6
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oh im glad the flow looks alright.. i tried positioning it in all sorts of ways and this way seems to have a little corner of still water surface my betta would like (hope he blows bubbles in this new tank like he does in his vase ).

aw that sucks about the plants dying.. i hope mine don't, i've tried to get really hardy plants. do u know y they die?

the heater does look huge! its a 50 watt and i didnt realise how big it was until i brought it home. lucky it JUSTS fits.
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Old 08-23-2009, 11:56 AM   #7
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Welcome to AA, Annie!

You have a great tank going. I agree with JPK. Maybe since the tank is still young you can do 20% every week. But 20% PWC every 2-3 weeks after the tank has matured is fine. Invest in a test kit. Try to clean out the filter every month or so, but that's not really a big deal.

Most importantly: HAVE FUN! IMO aquariums are the most rewarding and relaxing hobby to get addicted to.
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Old 08-23-2009, 01:14 PM   #8
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Welcome to AA. I think that you should do 25% water changes weekly, even after the tank has cycled. This will ensure a clean tank and a healthy, happy fish!
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Old 08-23-2009, 01:52 PM   #9
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welcome to AA~freshwater fishes r good for dorm since you won't get salt all over hehe
your tank looks cute, keep it up! yeah~^^
depend on wt fish u will add, if that fish like to poop/messy eater, u will need to do water change and the filter cartridges more often (such as puffers, and gold fish OoO)
so actually is better to adjust the need as you go.

hope u have fun with your tank~ u will get addicted to it and probably get a bigger thank when u r not living in your dorm hahaha
I have 1~10gal 1 n a half year ago, and now I have 6s OoO haha
Thanks to AMD, HN1, Zero, partypalooza, thincat, and thominil who helped me in almost every questions. Thanks everyone!!!!!
46gal Reef
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Old 08-23-2009, 02:11 PM   #10
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