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Old 06-25-2013, 08:08 PM   #16
Jahn
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well with a 5 gallon bucket for my 20 gallon tank, i used to keep a cheap one dollar floating thermometer in the bucket while i filled it up with tap, prime a bit and swish it around, and just dump it in. these days i don't even bother with the thermometer because with planted tanks you'll find yourself with "hands in the tank" so much that you'll get a feel for the right temperature coming out of the tap, haha! but yes just a thermometer is fine if you like, or slightly cool to the touch water. i'd worry more about toxic levels of ammonia and nitrite than if a tank has new water introduced that is a few degrees off. last night i dumped 20% of water in that was closer to 76-77 degrees hoping to cool it a bit, and the tank brought it back up to 80 really quickly, bah. it's hard to shift tank water temperature unless it's drastic in temp difference or amount of water relative to what's in the tank.
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:15 PM   #17
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i guess i could take the fish out for a bit and put them into a bag like the shoppes do and wait till the water warms up?? seems silly but I will definitely get my spouse to assist me with this tonight, I certainly dont want to kill any of my fishy babies!
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:20 PM   #18
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oh i definitely wouldn't take the fish out, that would stress them out more than a water change would for sure.
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:20 PM   #19
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so what do you do if you need to do a 99% water change??
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:28 PM   #20
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Default 2 week old tank, what next?!

That's called "breaking down a tank" and you'd definitely take the fish out of that scenario- but you'd only break a tank down if something serious happened in your tank like a mass incurable infection that requires a scrub down. In that case you'd lose all of your bacteria too, but it all may be infected anyhow so you scrap it all or sterilize it all and start again.

But unless something really bad happens you won't have to go that far!
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:35 PM   #21
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oh ok, that makes sense then. I will post pictures after we put the plants in tonight! i wish i could get a picture of our little rasboras but they move so fast! for now here is how it looks currently.

We did put the least cheezy background in as we could since I couldn't stand the ugly ivory wall behind.. I also kind of hate the big plastic rock thing on the right side that fills up with water but i might try and cover it with the java moss if it will grow on there...

I did not realize how harsh our light is O.o I'll have to try another photo later
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:40 PM   #22
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i'm surprised no one has said anything about that planned single angel fish that is going to be miserable all by itself in a tank that is too small for it.
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:44 PM   #23
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we were told at the aquarium store that we could not put two angels together as they would become a mated pair and hunt the rest of the tank... clearly this is wrong? and its a 24 g tank for an angel that would not grow more than 4-5 inches correct??
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:45 PM   #24
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yep, i'd do a water change that siphons out water right to the top of where that intake filter tube flares out - that way your filter keeps running. make sure you turn your heater off during the water change though, since exposure to cold air may make your heater kick into overdrive and possibly explode!

your fish are tiny for such a big tank so any ammonia in there may be pretty diluted even after two weeks - but yes, a water change is a good idea until you get your test kit and really know when you should do your water changes. better safe than sorry.

-

we're just trying to sort out the cycle first - let's not get into stocking more fish yet, haha! this isn't an exact calculator, but in the future it couldn't hurt to use this as a rule of thumb when stocking your tank:

http://www.aqadvisor.com/
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:55 PM   #25
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we hadn't planned on adding the angel fish until the rest of the community was well established, so like january? (and after our baby is born too) We were also advised that the angel should be added as a juvenile so that it doesn't go on a killing spree when we put it in. I'm really worried about this now since we planned our whole tank and plants around our future Angel!

When I say seven fish I do mean seven TINY fish not more than seven inches of fish in a 24 g tank. We really did know not to over load the eco system in the beginning, it was hard to reign in but we did get a very small school. They won't get much bigger than that, and will likely go into a nano cube for my spouse in his basement room for later.

The heater is in front of the filter intake and two seperate units, so I'll make sure that we don't remove more water than the heater coils in there. We needed a heavy duty one, as sometimes we get drafts in winter that are -30 to -50 C here where we live. (we also have a large dog who enjoys winter, so our backdoor is always opening and closing, and not far from where this tank is)
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Old 06-25-2013, 10:21 PM   #26
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http://www.aqadvisor.com/

Here is a great stocking GREAT GUIDE. If you do a Single angel, With nothing else you'll need at least a 29 gallon or a 20 High. They are huge fish and grow to the size of 6+ inches, They are taller than they are longer. They will bump their fins, also tank mates have a habit of biting and harassing a fish like that. Angels are also Cichilds and have aggressive genes. Also I read you want mollies, they are HUGE fish when grown, depending on the size they will sometimes reach 5 inches a piece. I had 5 platys and 2 Mollies in a 29. I was OVERSTOCKED. Some fish make a lot of waste! Mollies will also eat every single plant they can, They LOVE eating hornwort! It will be a pile of needles by the time they hit the water.

Water Changes, if you don't have a test you should be doing 20% daily, to keep your fish safe. NRite burns, and Ammonia burns are hard to treat in cycle. You'll still be doing 50% Weekly water changes once you are done cycling which will take 4-6+ weeks. With testing and daily water changes. If you are worried about temp flotations during water change, than you can adjust to room temp in a bucket then dump it in or add hot water to temp. Make sure to add Prime to new water.

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Old 06-25-2013, 11:49 PM   #27
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what a fantastic link, and great info on the mollys, its tough to say how big some stuff will grow without experience, even looking on wiki and such doesn't really give you a good idea, and there is almost always juveniles in the aquarium shoppe, so they are always so little. Thanks for your advice!
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Old 06-26-2013, 12:05 AM   #28
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I'm in full agreement that an angel wouldn't be the best fit for a tank that size but just to give you a few ideas or options definitely take a look at some of the gouramis that are out there. Quite a few are beautiful fish that don't get too large and you could easily do 2-3 with your school of rasboras so you would still have a "centerpiece fish"
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Old 06-26-2013, 12:52 AM   #29
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I would not return to that store for information. They are way behind the times about the nitrogen cycle, stocking and water changes.

Stocking: The 1" per gallon guide works ONLY for fish under 2" long, and says nothing about the social needs of the fish at all. Look up each fish you are interested in. Make a chart that includes the optimum water chemistry (soft water, hard water, moderate) and temperature (low, mid or high 70sF or 20sC).
Start eliminating fish that do not fall in the same areas of the chart. In a tank your size I would not keep any fish that get longer than 3", and then only slow moving fish that size. Much better to keep smaller fish so their activity level suits the tank size. This small a tank is too small for territorial fish like Gouramis (maybe one Honey or Dwarf, but not 2 or more). Look into the social needs of the fish.
Mollies are hard water fish, not compatible with the other fish in this thread so far.

Water changes: Until you get really good at knowing what is going on in the tank DO water changes. You do not need to do large ones, but try simple ones like 10% to get to know how to use the equipment. When you get the test kit you can decide about frequency and volume.

Nitrogen cycle:
It used to be thought that certain bacteria were the ones in the tank that removed ammonia and nitrite. They were wrong. But the aquarium companies used the wrong species of bacteria because they were easy to deal with, they entered a dormant phase that made shipping and handling easy. They could even be dried out and would come back to life.
Among other things, these dried bacteria were glued onto certain filter media and you were told the tank would cycle right away because these bacteria were already on the media.
Unfortunately those bacteria are the ones that live for a few days, a couple of weeks, then die off. The real work horses of the nitrogen cycle are slow growing, and do not enter a dormant phase, so they are hard to package, hard to ship, and will not live if they are dried out.

What I would do now:
1) Order one of the products with the real nitrifying bacteria. Look for Nitrospira on the label. Some products with the right species:
Tetra Safe Start
Dr. Tim's One and Only
Microbe Lift's Nite Out II
There may be others, but do not waste your money on something anyone says '...is just as good...'.
If you need to order it on line pay for fast shipping.
Also, get a test kit. You will need ammonia, nitrite and nitrate for sure.

2) Daily 10% water changes until you get a test kit.
Use the test kit to determine how large and how frequent water changes should be.

3) Research the fish: Running a heater is usually necessary for tropical fish, but it sounds like you have it way up there. Harlequin Rasboras originated in water that is not really too warm, and will do just fine in a tank at 22-25*C.
http://www.fishbase.org/summary/Trig...eromorpha.html
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Old 06-26-2013, 01:10 AM   #30
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we are mid water change right now, plants are in the tank and the Rasboras are already really enjoying them!

Diana we had the temperature set up at 26, which is midrange and average for other fish we had planned to put into the tank. Clearly that has changed and until we decide what we are doing we are not going to mess with the temperature as that can stress the fish in other ways. They were quite happy in the tank as it was prior to the water change and were very active, choosing to swim into the stream of the filter output i suppose because it simulates river currents to them.

If we do get any gourami it will only be three (minimum) and they will be dwarf species for sure. I think we have changed our minds though as we want a really beautiful "centre" fish and have decided to try a betta tank, I did a lot of reading today about that type of a tank and it looks like our Rasboras are A-OK with a betta, and we can get away with some corydoras Julii to clean up our algae. We've decided against mollys and platys, but will likely have a swordtail or two in there as they are also compatible. At least according to the online betta community. We certainly are not interested in breeding, and so we will have to find a reasonable average for the temperature, as if anything requires a higher temperature our Rasboras are likely to make some babies, they breed at 28 C

Anyway, back to finish my water change!

Thanks again I will post pictures soon with my plants in there!
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