Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Need assistance on starting up!
Hello everyone, nice to meet you.
As you can probably tell this is my first post on this website as after lurking the forums + other sites for a while, learning the ropes of this wonderful hobby, I finally feel ready to jump on in and start up my 50 gallon tank and 2.5 gallon tank.
For the 4ft tank I already have heating, a canister filter (Eheim Professional), and also vast array of driftwood + rocks. I want it to be a nicely planted tank starting off with cheap, prolific plants (budgeting) and make my way towards the more exotic and nicer species over time. I want the tank to serve as a community tank, having things like dalmation mollies which look epic, other livebearers (guppies, platies etc), otos, possibly corys and other good community tankmates, I am open to other suggestions as well. I would also like to breed some of these species by perhaps when I spot a fish close to giving birth, transport it to the 2.5 gallon and then move it back so the young can grow bigger in the smaller tank and then furthermore, moved back later as well. Overall I need; plants, adequate lighting, substrate, freshwater testing kit and who could forget the fauna!
However! However I am have a couple of obstacles in my way surrounding the cycling process which I hope you guys will be able to enlighten me so I can overcome them.
The first issue is that I can't get any substrate in (eco complete) as the local shop has run out but will re-stock in one week. So, I was wondering, am I able to start the cycling process now without the substrate but just the driftwood + rocks, and add it in later with the water in the tank. I propose this simply because cycling apparently takes ages and I really don't want to waste time.
Secondly, my mother had this tank set up about a year or so ago and the filter which was hooked up to it still has water from that tank in it (lol). The filter has just been sitting in storage for a while with the water and I want to know should I use that water in the tank and also not clean the filter media and parts all out because it will have bacteria from aged water in it? If its fine I would imagine this would speed up the cycling process quite a lot as once again apparently filters hold a lot of these good bacteria. Instructions on what I should do would be great.
Thirdly, what plants are prolific and cheap that I can put into my tank to speed up cycling? The local fish shops are all so expensive, for absolutely everything it is ridiculous.
That's about it for now. Any overall advice for my situation would be greatly appreciated.
Cheers guys, really appreciate any help you can give or advice.