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Advice about cycling and plants please

Mazan

New Member
When I used to keep fish many years ago we didn’t read anything about cycling and I never tested the water or waited one or two months to add fish. Now everything seems more complicated ! Anyway I first filled my tank just under a week ago and added stability and a dead prawn (can’t get pure ammonia easily). I didn’t put in plants as the guy in the fish shop said to wait at least a week, but then I was reading more and seems like I should have planted the tank straight away and maybe didn’t even need the shrimp. After three days I still didn’t see any ammonia and decided to get plants. I emptied most of the tank, added plants (probably not enough yet) took out the dead shrimp and refilled the tank. I continued to add stability. I am unsure how to proceed now. Also my tank still is quite cloudy, not sure if it’s due to the substrate (fluorite mixed with river sand) or bacteria? Any advice please?
 

Red82

New Member
Hi sounds like sediment i found wsyet clarifying with clarity from seachem works keep your filters running if the fiter pad is old and guzzy it works better
 

Mazan

New Member
Thanks, I was thinking of getting clarity if it doesn’t clear soon. The tank is about 230 liters I have a canister filter with matrix and purigen. Also I wondered if I should fertilize the plants straight away?
 

Mazan

New Member
Also should I keep adding stability and will I need to add a source of ammonia for the bacteria/plants or if I fertilize the plants and they start growing should I just add a few hardy fishes?? On the stability instructions it doesn’t mention adding ammonia, only using it in conjunction with prime. Our tap water does not have chlorine added and I don’t have any fish yet so I don’t think I need prime yet?
 

Red82

New Member
If you wait the 3 weeks and do a fishless cycle you shouldn't loss any fish due to swings of ammonia and nitrate and nitrite prime has saved me in tight spots between water changes it changes ammonia to ammonium that the plants can use as food
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
I didn’t put in plants as the guy in the fish shop said to wait at least a week, but then I was reading more and seems like I should have planted the tank straight away and maybe didn’t even need the shrimp. After three days I still didn’t see any ammonia and decided to get plants. I emptied most of the tank, added plants (probably not enough yet) took out the dead shrimp and refilled the tank. I continued to add stability. I am unsure how to proceed now. Also my tank still is quite cloudy, not sure if it’s due to the substrate (fluorite mixed with river sand) or bacteria? Any advice please?
Just ignore what shops (and forums) tell you (I know this is a forum).

You just need to plant the tank and wait until the plants have grown in, you don't ever need to add any ammonia.

I like a lot of plants and at least six weeks growing. Not all plants are suitable, and I would recommend buying the ones that Tropica includes <"in its "Easy" range">, you don't need to buy them from Tropica

You want some plants with access to atmospheric CO2, Diana Walstad caused this the "aerial advantage" and it means those plants can respond to changes in nutrient level rapidly because they aren't growth limited by lack of CO2. I like a floating plant.

Have a look at <"UKAPS: Bedside Aquarium">, page 4 has the bits you need.

If you are in the UK? PM me and I can send you suitable plants (for p&p).

cheers Darrel
 

Mazan

New Member
Many thanks for your reply Darrel, in fact I have been reading some of your earlier posts and was already coming to that conclusion, about plants and no ammonia. I am from the uk originally but now live in Ecuador, but thanks anyway for the offer of plants! I have already obtained quite a few plants, all supposed to be “easy”, including a small portion of floating plants. I did put in some liquid fertilizer today. I will read the UKAPS article you suggest. Fingers crossed....
 

Mazan

New Member
It was a very interesting and useful thread, many thanks. My plants seem to be doing fine and many small snails are appearing, also the water is now crystal clear without using any chemicals, as Red82 said, just needed the filter to be a bit gunged up to trap the finest particles..,
 

Larry Rogers

Member
5 Year Member
Darrel is correct, I never add any chemicals to a new tank. To start a new tank today I would set it up the way I wanted to leave it, with all plants and driftwood and rockwork, fill it with clean water, set up the filter with a used cartridge from an old filter, and turn it on. Over the next week or two I would get the pH where I wanted it and the temperature. Then I would slowly start adding fish.
 
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