I currently have a 10G Goldfish tank and I am setting up two new tanks:
- 20G tank that will eventually be my quarantine tank
- 90G tank that will sit in my living room for our enjoyment. This will be a planted freshwater tank with beautiful fish (that I am yet to decide on)
I will use this post to journal my experience in setting up the 20 G tank and will look to your expert advice for help. Thank you in advance for reading!
- Bought off craigslist: 20 G Aqueon tank, a HOB filer that has "5-15" written on it and uses Tetra filters, a 50W heater, a 25W heater, GLO T5 HO fixture with broken bulb
- T5 HO bulb ordered from Amazon (6400K) (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B018WIOFUC/
- A digital thermometer bought from Amazon (Pack of 3) (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B016WFTLKG/
- API MASTER TEST KIT Aquarium Water Test Kit from Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000255NCI/
- Swimming pool filter sand bought from Ace Hardware ("white sand")
- Some Black Diamond Blasting Sand bought from Tractor Supply Co ("black sand")
- I washed the white sand 4-5 times in a bucket and poured it into the tank. In retrospect, I forgot to wipe clean the tank with a damp paper towel. Oops! Hope it doesnít come back to hurt me in the future.
- Set up everything and filled tank to about 80% with tap water. I am only cycling this now, fishless, so I didn't bother putting dechlorinator in it.
Feb 13: Set this up. Got everything running except the light. With my two heaters, the temperature was running around 82F, so I switched one of the heaters off (the 25W one) and adjusted temperature to around 76F using the 50W heater.
I threw in some goldfish flakes for ammonia production.
Lesson learned: The black sand and white sand don't work well together unless there is a physical barrier between then. Once I put water in, they started to mix a little - I can only imagine it getting worse. Bad idea. Should have used a separator.
Feb 14: Tested the tank for Ammonia. Got 0-0.25ppm reading.
Feb 15: Bought some plants from a kind seller. Planted them all:
- Anubias that I tied onto a couple of tank decorations from my Goldfish tank
- Flame Moss that I tied onto a couple of rocks from my goldfish tank
- Bacopas that I stuck into sand substrate
- Crypts that I stuck into sand substrate
- L. Cardinalis that I stuck into sand substrate
Since my T5 HO bulbs are not here yet, I installed my Finnex Planted plus 24/7 cc light 48 inch instead and let it run for about 12 hours daily.
Vacuumed some of the plant matter away, and I think I also vacuumed the fish flakes away accidentally.
Feb 19: Ran water test: Ammonia: 0-0.25ppm, no nitrites or nitrates. Ammonia production has not begun. Now I am considering buying DrTim's Aquatics Ammonium chloride 2 oz bottle from Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/DrTims-Aquati...dp/B006MP4QG6/
). I don't want to put dead shrimp in my tank, and the flakes either didnít work or I accidentally removed them. Any other suggestions on how to get ammonia going for a fishless cycle?
Also, given that I used the decorations from my Goldfish tank to plant the anubias, is there a chance I could have brought something "bad" (e.g., some illness) from that tank into this tank? For the record, the goldfish I have are 4 feeder goldfish that I've now had in the tank for 8-9 months. They look healthy and I have no reason to believe that they are sick. Its just general apprehension that I allowed feeder fish in my tank and that they may be contaminating it.
More to come Ö I'll update you all as often as I can and will throw in any questions here as well. Looking forward to your feedback.