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Old 09-25-2004, 10:16 PM   #1
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Beginners Site?

Does anyone know of a beginners freshwater web site? I think I may be too green for this site. I have a huge (or at least to me it is huge) problem with my fish and now one relpies. Maybe I'm redundant. I'm sorry -Lots of experience on this board - I can go else where just point me in a direction

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Old 09-25-2004, 10:34 PM   #2
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I just read your other post...why are you using distilled water? Also ammo lock is useless....don't use it. It doesn't actually remove ammonia but tricks ammonia tests. To remove ammonia you must change the water.
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Old 09-25-2004, 11:15 PM   #3
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Hey guppie, welcome to aquarium advice...
Don't worry, sometimes people are a little slow at replying... it depends on who's online at the time and stuff like that. People will answer your questions though, sometimes you'll get more information than you asked for. I'm sorry that you haven't had the replies you expected yet but you will find this to be one of the best sites there is. The people here are quite friendly, really care about fish, and are quite knowledgeable. Anyway, just hang in there and don't feel overwhelmed... there are pleanty of people here that are just starting with the first fish... pleanty of people that found this site because they were mislead by a pet store and were stuck with something they shouldn't have... people from just about any experience level you can imagine. There are times when people answer with more than you want to know or in words you don't understand or who knows... But the majority of people here are very understanding and though sometimes you will have to speak up and say something, they will answer any question you have step by step as simple as you might need it. Try not to get too impatient but also feel free to remind people when you are still looking for answers. I think I speak for everyone when I say I hope you don't go find another site. Give us all another chance, I am sure you will not regret it... again, welcome...
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Old 09-25-2004, 11:20 PM   #4
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thanks

thanks fsh for the advice I just started and I didnt know thats why Im here and thats why I asked if there was a beginners site
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Old 09-25-2004, 11:29 PM   #5
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Welcome!!!
Sorry I Know nothing about FW, but when you get ready to try saltwater, I will be there for you.

Also the FW forum on this board has some of the greatest people you will meet online. Stick here, you'll get help!

PS. This whol forum has great people, and now we have another. Welcome.
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Old 09-25-2004, 11:33 PM   #6
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Thanks Millepe

I Agree Millepede
This site is awesome. I look over the information and its really -- honestly like a new world -- since I'm new to the whole thing. It's seems like a lot of people are pretty advanced. I understand that can be a pain in the butt when dealing with newbies so id just like to learn so I can eventually understand what everyone is saying. There is so much conflicting info out there for beginners - change your water - don't change your water - use ammo lock - don't use that -- use a bacteria something. I just don't want my fish to die. Thats pretty much it. I changed some of the water today (25% but should it have been 50% and how often?) today and added some biological water clarifier (bio-clear). My local fish lady (love her) said that should do it but to give it a few days. The fish have moved away from the top of the tank (thankfully not trying to escape anymore!) but I still have 3 tetras in hiding and the tank looks like 3 mile island.
I'm afraid to do anything more to it so at this point I'm leaving it for a few days to see what happens.
It doesnt smell anymore so thats positive
Please understand I complete respect everyone's knowledge on this board - BEAUTIFUL TANKS - I just don't want to be a pain in the butt - and I hope I get there
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Old 09-26-2004, 12:12 AM   #7
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My tank also had a smell like someone pissed in it (ammonia). It went away after the tank was cycled and ammonia levels dropped. Did the ammonia readings went down after you did a water change? I did large water changes often when my tank was cycling, mostly because my tank was overcrowded & I wanted to keep the ammonia levels down. I would suggest using as few chemicals as possible. I only use dechlorinator.

Oh and take it easy with the antibiotics! Sometimes "newbies" worry too much & suspect that their fish is sick even when they aren't. This is one the mistakes I made. I think I used too many antibiotics that actually harmed my fish then helped them. Use it only when you are very sure.
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Old 09-26-2004, 12:43 AM   #8
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Guppie,
Dont worry about asking to many questions, thats what alot of us are here for,
to answer questions and even ask some.

We are here to help you learn and even learn from you.
Hope you get things stright with your tank.
Good Luck and ask away..
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Old 09-26-2004, 02:16 AM   #9
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Guppie,This link is about my favorite aquarium book for newbies.
The Simple Guide to Fresh Water Aquariums by David E. Boruchowitz.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...35237?v=glance

It explains extremely well the multiple problems that you encountered and how to avoid them.
While I don't agree with absolutely EVERYTHING said in this book, I found it to be a valuable resource when I was just starting.
That, and AquariumAdvice, of course!
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Old 09-26-2004, 02:43 AM   #10
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QTOFFER - do you keep mice yourself? I was looking for some mice forums but wasn't able to find any at all....maybe you could help me with a problem I have?
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Old 09-26-2004, 06:09 AM   #11
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Hi Guppy and WELCOME to Aquarium Advice.

The key to this Hobbie is patients, Stay with it and stay with this site. It does'nt matter how silly the question sounds just ask it, we have all been there, and we will do our best to help you. The folks here are the best. I have been keeping fish for 25yrs and i now have an aquarium store and i am still learning. You will never learn everything in this hobbie and with Aquarium Advice you know that you will learn something new every day. You are in the best hobbie in the world and you won't meet a nicer group of people.

Good luck and stay with us, we are here to help.
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Old 09-26-2004, 09:32 AM   #12
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Thank you all very very very much. Fsh I'm gonna take your advice and stay away from the chemicals and go with the water changes.
My ammonia is at 8. I only have 9 fish all tetras - 15 gallon stake and its about a month old.

You made a comment about distilled water -- the water near my house isn't that hot - it discolors my shower to blue because its so hard. I thought it would be easier to simply use distilled
Is distilled a bad thing?

And qtoffer - I'm getting that book today. Thanks!
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Old 09-26-2004, 09:50 AM   #13
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Guppy, i am new to this too. My tank is about 7-8 weeks old and has completed its cycle and (knock on wood) all is fine so far. I agree with QTOFFER that book is excellent for a beginner, I'd think about picking it up. Also I have found sometimes the response here can be slow sometimes and other times people really jump on a thread. Just use this board as reference as you would the books that are out there and if you have an expert at your local fish store (LFS) use them too...I'd just be careful of the "sellers" ones that want to sell you something every time your in there. In my experience (IME) and from the advice on this forum here is what i learned:
1) have patience
2) don't over feed
3) do regular water changes
4) clean gravel regularly
5) don't over crowd your tank
6) enjoy your tank
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Old 09-26-2004, 10:35 AM   #14
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fsh, you should sign up at www.petadvice.net All the other sites are a part of the pet advice network. That site doesn't have a ton of activity like this one yet but there are some people there and there are places to talk about your furry little pets like mice and rats and stuff. QTOFFER does raise his own rats and he is a member at www.petadvice.com so feel free to sign up over there and ask away...
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Old 09-26-2004, 11:11 AM   #15
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Hi everyone
Ok I did a water change (50%) this morning because the ammonia level was at 8 and deep yellow. No more chems - done withthat - the tank is already looking alittle better but lets see what happens.

Buying that book today - thanks for the recommendation

Can I ask one mor4 thing? Distilled or not distilled and why?
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Old 09-26-2004, 01:10 PM   #16
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Hi guppie,
I don't have tetras. That's the only fish in your tank, right? But this is my opinion on distilled water. For right now, I would do your water changes with the distilled water. I say "for right now" because your ammonia is so high, and your pH is low -- from your last post it was 6.0. Ammonia becomes more toxic at higher pH levels. While you still need to get the ammonia down, at least your pH is low, and the ammonia is not as toxic to the fish. If you start raising your pH now, while the ammonia is high, that will harm the fish even more.

Distilled water is generally not good to use as the only water in your tank. There are no minerals in it that the fish need. I did do some searches on different kinds of tetras, and their preferred pH range is as low as 5.5 to 7 pH. I would say to get through the cycling first, then someone who has tetras can tell you how they handle the pH for them. Good luck!
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Old 09-26-2004, 01:55 PM   #17
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I haven't read the other post so won't comment on the distilled water (except that it is bad - you'll need to doctor it to prevent pH swings & other porblems).

However, I would suggest reading the KRIB FAQ - a copy is here:
http://fins.actwin.com/mirror/begin.html

You'll find beginner info in the beginning, & all the way up to advanced topics.
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Old 09-26-2004, 04:41 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millipede
fsh, you should sign up at www.petadvice.net All the other sites are a part of the pet advice network. That site doesn't have a ton of activity like this one yet but there are some people there and there are places to talk about your furry little pets like mice and rats and stuff. QTOFFER does raise his own rats and he is a member at www.petadvice.com so feel free to sign up over there and ask away...
Yes, we need more rodent-people at petadvice!
I keep 11 mice. No rats, tho - I'm SO allergic to them!
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Old 09-26-2004, 08:49 PM   #19
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I can say that I never tire of helping people new to the hobby get through the initial pitfalls - that is why I am here!

We all get busy and sometimes some threads don't get the attention they deserve as quickly as they deserve, but I would say that is the exception. Many of us will report that often posts get answered in mere minutes, and problems get solved lickety-split.

For the most part, tetras are very adaptable, and it is SO much better to just go with the water that comes out of your tap. Once you get some experience under your belt you can try your hand at manipulating pH and whatnot, but this is fraught with dangers. In general, the fish you get at your LFS are kept in water very similar to yours, so they are already adapted.
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Old 09-27-2004, 12:18 PM   #20
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HI everyone - just wanted to give you the update!
Went to my LFS and she told me to stop with the distilled for the same reasons outlined above (thankyou).
The tank is looking better! but the ammonia level si still high. I did another 25% change this morning and I'm steering clear of the ammo-lock (scared of that stuff now)
the fish are tetras - specifically:
3 - Srapae tetras
3- Glowlight Tetras
3 - Color Skirt Tetras
Its a 15 gallon tank so I was going by the 15 1" fish rule of thumb.
I'm gonna get the tank spanky again then let it sit for a week so I don't mess up.

BTW - Tank Girl - your tanks ROCK! Great web site - Congrats
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