tiger barbs, cycle, plants...oh no...suggestions please - The Planted Tank Forum

 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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tiger barbs, cycle, plants...oh no...suggestions please

so after all my reading and research on this site and others about doing
a fishless cycle, i decided to take my LFS advice and use tiger barbs to cycle.
im new to this hobby, so id i didnt go with my gut feeling on this. so my
problem is i just recently set up my tank with my new plants and the tiger
barbs, and the barbs are tearing my plants up. nipping at them, eating
them, plants get pulled out of the substrate, pulling moss of the driftwood. i
started to feed them a bit more but, doesnt seem to make a difference.
since im in the process of cycling should i take out my plants and put them
in another tank in the mean time, or just leave it as is and hope for the best
and return fish to LFS after cycle?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 07:03 AM
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Return the barbs to the LFS, and fishless cycle. Putting animals through stressful, potentially harmful, conditions when you don't have to isn't really right. People get stuck having to fish-in cycle sometimes, but if you can avoid it you really should

Upside is that you will save yourself a ton of stress, testing, and water changes. Fishless is so much easier, it's really the only way to fly.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 09:55 AM
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Get the barbs out and just do a fishless cycle.

Aside from putting the barbs through the stress of cycling, tiger barbs (at least in my experience) like to nip at plant leaves, roots and other fish. If you're planning on a planted tank with other kinds of fish or inverts, I'd return them.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 01:38 PM
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Return the fish and go through a fishless cycle. All it takes is a test kit, cheap bottle of pure ammonia, and patience.

My barbs never touched plants and rarely went after other fish. You really need a group of about six of them.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 02:23 PM
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Fish stores sell fish. They don't sell ammonia. Of course they are going to recommend selling fish to do something a bottle of ammonia can do without harming anything.

Best case scenario for them? All of your fish die and you have to buy new fish. Worst case scenario for them? Your fish live. They did not even try to sell you something cheap to cycle with. If I were you, I would return the fish and make it a point not to do business with them again. They obviously took advantage of you.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 04:50 PM
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I'm wondering if this behavior is from the stress of the cycle... None of my tiger barbs have ever ripped up my plants. They do peck at the leaves at times, but I have never seen damage.

As everyone else said, fishless is really better anyway. It does take a few weeks, but just be patient, it's not too bad and in the end you know it's done right : )


EDIT: Woah, HALT. I've just noticed your signature. If the tiger barbs are in the 15 gal unfortunately this is not going to work anyway, they should have 25-30gal min, and as someone said above, 6+ school. So now you def will have to take them back and find other fish to stock later : (

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Last edited by K8xp; 06-18-2013 at 04:55 PM. Reason: ADD
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 05:18 PM
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I'm sure this has been mentioned, but it sounds like the easiest thing to do would be a fishless cycle. Return the barbs and wait it out.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2013, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the advice, ive returned the fish today. but having trouble
locating pure ammonia. i was reading in a thread they carry it at ace
so going to try that tomorrow.

i did a water test today and the parameters were:

ph-6.4 Ammonia-0 nirtite-0.25 nitrate-10ppm

now that im going to be using ammonia, will i be starting over, or just
continuing from where i left off?

Quote:
Originally Posted by K8xp View Post
I'm wondering if this behavior is from the stress of the cycle... None of my tiger barbs have ever ripped up my plants. They do peck at the leaves at times, but I have never seen damage.

As everyone else said, fishless is really better anyway. It does take a few weeks, but just be patient, it's not too bad and in the end you know it's done right : )


EDIT: Woah, HALT. I've just noticed your signature. If the tiger barbs are in the 15 gal unfortunately this is not going to work anyway, they should have 25-30gal min, and as someone said above, 6+ school. So now you def will have to take them back and find other fish to stock later : (
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-19-2013, 12:05 AM
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Keep on feeding virtual fish while you look for ammonia. Fish food has protein that will get broken down to become ammonia. It can make a mess of the tank, but it will keep the bacteria going until you get the ammonia.
Try Ace Hardware and the Dollar Tree and similar stores. They are the ones that sell the cheaper ammonia with no fragrances or surfactants.

Just keep on going from where you are now. The only reason I would start over is if the Tiger Barbs brought in some parasite and you needed to kill it off.
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