quarantine tank, bare bottom or not? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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quarantine tank, bare bottom or not?

I am setting up my quarantine tank, I have always read it should be bare bottom, but I am reading conflicting information, some people put some sand or gravel on the bottom to make fish feel more at home. I do plan to leave tank setup all the time.

What everyone thoughts on this?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 01:17 PM
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Mine have always been bare bottom with a few pvc pipes in the tank for cover.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 01:28 PM
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I have sand and plants in my quarantine tanks. I don't think there a wrong or right here just do what you like.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 01:29 PM
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As bare bottom as you can. Less places for disease organisms or parasites to hide. Easier to vacuum.

Yes, fish may not like bare bottom.
You could set the tank on a dark surface (dark furniture, or put something black under it).
I put barely 1 layer of small gravel over the bottom. When I am vacuuming the debris tends to stay in place better, less swirling around into the water column.
I toss in plant trimmings, which pretty much all float.
If it is a bottom dwelling fish that would feel safer with something to hide under I will add a few rocks. The fish is still visible, but can at least hang out near the rocks. A couple of rocks are easy enough to move to see the fish all over, if needed.

Anything used in the q-tank is either throw away or can be sterilized, just in case...
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana View Post
As bare bottom as you can. Less places for disease organisms or parasites to hide. Easier to vacuum.

Yes, fish may not like bare bottom.
You could set the tank on a dark surface (dark furniture, or put something black under it).
I put barely 1 layer of small gravel over the bottom. When I am vacuuming the debris tends to stay in place better, less swirling around into the water column.
I toss in plant trimmings, which pretty much all float.
If it is a bottom dwelling fish that would feel safer with something to hide under I will add a few rocks. The fish is still visible, but can at least hang out near the rocks. A couple of rocks are easy enough to move to see the fish all over, if needed.

Anything used in the q-tank is either throw away or can be sterilized, just in case...
Thanks for the info. I added some rocks/wood and plant trimmings. Nothing on the bottom at this time. I was thinking it would make a mess, but not sure. I have 2 bags of petco sand, I was thinking I could use so I did not have to buy anything new.

Also I painted the back, sides and bottom of the tank black.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 02:22 PM
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All I have in my 10gal Q-tank are 3 rocks I picked up around work for bacteria to colonize on and some plant trimmings, water sprite, java fern, and Christmas Tree Moss. Though I do treat the tank with salt when putting new fish in at first, I dilute this down with WCs over the 2 weeks they stay in the tank. I have not had to medicate fish since setting this tank up.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 02:29 PM
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If your going bare bottom it's a good idea to paint bottom black it won't reflect and spook fish as bad as a clear bottom does I've had mine set up both ways gravel & bare bottom bare bottom is much easier to keep clean and see stuff like if fish poop is stringy and stuff like that I run 2 sponge filters in mine it's never failed me and a true asset to the hobby having one set up & ready to roll
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2014, 03:10 PM
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As long as the bottom is painted so that the fish don't try to swim down, I see no real point in anything other than hiding places with a bare bottom. As far as trying to keep the cycle up and ready, there are some questions to ask. If you are dealing with one fish who may be sick or not eating for some reason, there should be little waste and lots of water changing, so why is the bacteria needed?
Second is when you get a group of fish and put them into a tank that has a filter running but there has been no ammonia or waste to keep the bacteria colony up. If you have a fully cycled tank and no food, you wind up with a tank that won't support a group of fish anyway. The bacteria build or drop off to feed on what they find so unless you are planning to feed them, you are wasting time to build them up only to let them die off.
I don't maintain a full time QT. If a fish needs help, I pull it out and start it. The fish is not fed or producing waste that can't be handled with the more frequent water changing I do for stressed or sick fish.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-22-2014, 01:06 AM
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IMO bare-bottom is the way to go. Easy to clean and maintain. I will add a couple rocks big enough to hide behind, though. In my QT I ran spare airline tubing about an inch off the bottom across the back and side glass of the tank with suction cups. I loop trimmings off plants under the airline for cover (my QT also doubles as a ramshorn breeding tank).

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-22-2014, 11:30 AM
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a) Buy a small quantity of fish that are not going to cause an ammonia spike.
b) Grab a bit of cycled media from a long established tank. The sponge over the filter intake is quick and easy, or anything out of a HOB filter. Stuff in a can works just as well, but takes longer to get (opening the canister, getting it running again)
Plenty of bacteria for an under populated Q-tank. Plants help out, too.
c) Keep the Q-tank cycled by feeding it, even when empty, with whatever amount you would normally feed the fish that you would put in there.
d) Keep the Q-tank cycled by feeding ammonia to the bacteria.

I have done all 3 methods, and combine them with point a) and they work just fine.
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