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Old 01-07-2011, 11:33 PM   #1
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New Owner please help

Hey everybody I'm a college student and just purchased my first tanks they are very small 3 and 1.5 gallons but the three gallon tank went extremely cloudy and started to stink all of a sudden. They both have appropriate filters and the fish in both are fine what happened???
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:37 AM   #2
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Welcome to AA!

First, I'm going to move this to the Getting Started forum.

The cloudiness is likely a bacteria bloom. Please have a read over the article, linked in my signature, about the nitrogen cycle to get an idea of what's going on.
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:46 AM   #3
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Ok well if it is bacteria what can I do to clear it up? Would adding ghost shrimp help any?
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:54 AM   #4
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You didn't establish the nitrogen cycle in the tanks before adding the fish.

This is the process that establishes beneficial bacteria in the aquarium that will eliminate ammonia produced by fish waster. It creates a safe water environment for the fish.

The cloudiness is an harmless bacterial bloom common to new aquariums that usually occurs during the cycling process.

Even small tanks need to be cycled before you can safely add fish.

. While your tank is cycling, the wate will produce ammonia and nitrites, which will eventually harm or kill the fish. Even if seem okay now.

If you can, take the fish back to the petstore until the tanks are cycled and read this.

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/forums/f15/fishless-cycling-for-dummies-103339.html

After you have properly cycled the tanks, read the post on stocking tanks that is at the top of the "getting started" forum.

If you think you must keep the fish, you'll probably need to do 50% PWC (partial water changes) daily until the cycle is established.

You will need a liquid drop test kit to determine when the cycling process is complete and to test the water periodically after the nitrogen cycle is established.

There is also a good chance you were sold fish that are too big to safely live in such small tanks for very long.

What kind of fish did you get and how many?

P.S. I love small tanks and have quite a few.



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Old 01-08-2011, 01:01 AM   #5
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In the three gallon I have a male and female guppy a pair of neon tetras a corydora and a freshwater fiddler crab, in the 1.5 gallon I have three glofish a pleco and another fiddler any advice or suggestions?
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Old 01-08-2011, 01:52 AM   #6
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Yes. Unfortunately, you are grossly overstocked.

To make matters worse, the environment is not proper for some of the stock. I really, really encourage you to return the fish and inverts, then study up a little before you buy anything more AFTER the tanks are cycled.

First, fiddler crabs are not freshwater at all. Fish stores often sell them as aquatic freshwater inverts, but they are actually brackish and semiterrestrial. They are brackish and require a fair amount of salt in the water to maintain health. If they survive the cycyling process, which is doubtful, they will die within a month or two if kept in freshwater. Also, they require a habitat that allows them to completely leave the water at times.

Lemon tetras are a schooling fish. They should be kept in groups of six or more and require a large swimming area, 10 gallons minimum.

Guppys also require a larger swimming area than either a 1.5 or 3 gallon can supply.

I'd take all these critters back and see what you can humanely house in small aquariums.

For the three gallon, a male betta is a popular choice. They come in a wide variety of colors and have a great deal of personality. You can only keep one at time, but they are a very interactive pet.

For the 1.5, red cherry shrimp, maybe some amano shrimp are about all that will thrive in such a small tank. Except for limitations on fish, you can do a lot with a small tank like that, especially if you plant it with lowlight plants.

Like I said, I have both sizes that you have, and they can be excellent tanks.
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Old 01-08-2011, 02:28 AM   #7
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Wow ok well I highly doubt that I can return the fish but I'll see if anyone else has a cycled tank I can donate too... Oh well maybe someday I'll be able to get a good 10 or twenty gallon so I can breed guppies it sure sounds like fun
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:23 AM   #8
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It is the kindest thing you can do.

However, if you can rehome all these critters, you can do a lot with these little tanks after they are cycled.

If you keep the numbers low, (two) African Dwarf Frogs are great pets. They are 100% aquatic and really fun to watch and would be okay in the three gallon.

Breeding guppys is a lot of fun. You can start with tanks as small as 10 gallons but should go bigger if you really want to breed them. They will breed whether you want them to or not.
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:32 AM   #9
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I do sympathize with your situation.

I pretty much did the same thing (only worse) years ago when I was in school. It was the only kind of pet allowed in student housing.

Aquatics is a great hobby and I really encourage you to be patient and stick with it.

I blame the retailers in general and manufacturers in particular for situations like this. They are totally irresponsible in marketing and retailers are just ignorant or just don't care. Your money gets wasted and the fish either die or live a terribly shortened life.
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:42 AM   #10
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I agree there I love marine biology and I've been a certified diver since I turned ten I've always loved fish and desperately want to enjoy a good aquarium or two I'd love a good twentyg but space is so limited in my apartment I'm not sure I can
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:07 AM   #11
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Those little tanks can a lot for you as long as you understand the limitations.

I love my 1.5 g as much as my much bigger ones.

Plus, you can get bigger tanks in the future as you get bigger accomodations.

I felt really bad telling you the problems with the tanks, but I'm glad to hear you understand what I said and are willing to do the right thing by the fish and crabs.

I don't know what type of goldfish you have, but your typical 1 inch goldfish you can buy almost anywhere will grow to 16 inches long. Plus, they are a dirty fish and produce tons of ammonia. You and they will be better off if you rehome them and start over with clean, cycled tanks.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:13 AM   #12
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Ight thanks that's what I'll try to do but the "goldfish" are actually "Glofish" a genetically fluorescing variation of zebrafish lol they max at like an inch each
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:24 AM   #13
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My bad. I was wondering why I didn't mention the goldfish thing in the first post.

A zebra danio (minnow) if I remember right. They do get bigger than one inch, but not a lot.

I remember when I first read about them. I was appalled by the idea, but when I actually saw them at an LFS I was definately intrigued.

They are no longer on my "no way" fish list, like tattooed/dyed fish.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:32 AM   #14
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They are actually really active and the gene that makes them glow is actually a naturally occurring gene than was activate in the original generation and passes down when they breed, beautiful fish and alot of fun to watch
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:02 AM   #15
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Big-J, I'm sorry this has happened to you, but Mudraker is right to tell you what he did. That set up is all wrong for these little guys and it'll only end up badly.

But I'm also a fan of nano aquariums. They can be done and they are worth it. Have a read around the InterWeb about nano aquariums and you might see something you want to try.
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:19 PM   #16
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Have any of y'all heard of tetra safestart? Supposedly it introduces the ammonia and nitrite reducing bacteria directly does anyone use it?
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:28 PM   #17
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Welcome to the hobby and AA Big-j. You have gotten some great advice so far. I am a big fan of small tanks. Getting ready to start another one in the next week...

Best of luck.
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:23 PM   #18
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Safestart and other products that claim to speed or stop cycling are pretty much worthless.

In the same category as the bad marketing I was talking about last night that leads to situations like yours.

It's unfortunate.
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