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Old 01-04-2013, 05:23 PM   #1
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Freshwater test results questions

Hi,

I have a 10 gallon tank that has been set up for a week. I have 1 male betta and 3 cory cats in it. I used API Quick Start and a handful of gravel from the betta's 3 gallon tank when setting up the 10 gal. I have been testing the water with the API Freshwater Master Test Kit. The ammonia is .25 ppm, the nitrite is 0 ppm and the nitrate is 5.0 ppm. Since I used the Quick Start and some old gravel will it still take 5 more weeks to cycle completely or will I be able to add a small fish or two sooner?

Also, during the cycling process, do I go through the gravel when doing a water change? I don't have an undergravel filter, just one that hangs on the back of the tank with a bio-wheel.

Thanks,
Andrea
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:29 PM   #2
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Cory's don't belong in a 10g, and they need to be in groups of 5 or more. There's no set time frame for when you will be cycled, your cycled when your readings are 0 ammonia and nitrite and less than 40ppm.
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:07 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mrs.h2012
Cory's don't belong in a 10g, and they need to be in groups of 5 or more. There's no set time frame for when you will be cycled, your cycled when your readings are 0 ammonia and nitrite and less than 40ppm.
I agree that there's no set time. You just have to keep checking your water parameters and doing those water changes. I would not add anything until your tank is done cycling. Hopefully you have a good liquid test kit to keep track. You don't have a very large tank, so there aren't too many more options. But I think you can have cories, at least the smaller species like pygmies. A shoal of 5 is a good amount.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:09 AM   #4
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I do have an API Freshwater Master Kit and I will be checking the water daily. I know my options are limited so I might not even be able to add anything else (maybe I will try an apple snail). People seem to have different opinions about cories in 10 gallons. Mine are peppered cories...I wanted pygmy cories but can't find any. The peppered seem happy...constantly active, sometimes all together and sometimes by themselves. Thanks for the responses.

Andrea
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:14 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by meviva View Post
I do have an API Freshwater Master Kit and I will be checking the water daily. I know my options are limited so I might not even be able to add anything else (maybe I will try an apple snail). People seem to have different opinions about cories in 10 gallons. Mine are peppered cories...I wanted pygmy cories but can't find any. The peppered seem happy...constantly active, sometimes all together and sometimes by themselves. Thanks for the responses.

Andrea
I have peppered cories as well. Just to show you the full size of a peppered cory.... LFS got these in this week and I got this one because I wanted it to have more room than the 10g it would be in until it was sold, this one is female and is full of eggs so that's why shes so fat, but they do get this big, so I would try and upgrade as soon as you can.
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:20 AM   #6
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1 week isn't much time, you're just getting started. Most of the bacteria starters don't work. The gravel might help some but probably not too much; filter media would have been better if you had some.

Yes vacuum the gravel very well a few times a week. Get the siphon deep into the gravel to suck up waste and leftover food. You don't have to do it with every water change but do it often. Corys do better with sand. Is the gravel rounded or sharp? If the gravel is not kept clean the Corys barbels can become eroded or infected. If it's sharp gravel I'd change it out for something smoother for the corys.

Have you tested your tap water for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate? If not do so so you can see what you're starting with (some tap water might have ammonia or nitrates in it, for example).
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:07 PM   #7
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Mrs. h....It's hard to tell how big she is from the picture. But I understand now that I shouldn't have gotten the peppered. As for upgrading the tank, I probably won't be able to do that for a while....my husband upgraded my 3 gallon with the 10 for Christmas..lol. I would love to have a 40-55 gallon someday.

librarygirl....thanks for the info. I know one week isn't much time, but I had read somewhere that if nitrates were showing up that it was getting close, so I was just curious to see if it was true. The gravel is smooth so I think the cory's barbels will be ok. I wasn't sure about going through the gravel because I didn't know if it would disturb the cycling process. I will check my tap water to see what the readings are.


Andrea
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:46 PM   #8
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I think your cories will be fine for a while in there. There are lots of fish in less than ideal tanks. But at least you're doing your best to give them good water, etc. When you're starting in this hobby it's very hard not to go wild and buy every fish we see that we like. We all make similar mistakes at first.
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