In need of advice.

FriendsNotFood

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Aug 19, 2018
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Hey all. Recently I purchased my very first tank (second hand) and this past week have been busy researching everything I could find about keeping tropical fish - I'm looking for some advice on whether or not my equipment is enough to handle my set up and which fish I should buy for my first time around. I've decided I'm going for a fishless cycle to get the tank started and have a list of fish I am interested in purchasing - seen in lfs however I am open to other suggestions as I only looked at a few places. I currently have a 100cm x 40cm x 40cm tank (160L) ,a used fluval 206 (unfortunately the filter media was washed when I bought it) and a new Eheim thermostat 125w heater, in the hood of the tank came 2 lamps one of which has "for reptile use only" on and is nonfunctional and the other takes about 5 seconds of flickering then eventually comes on. I've purchased the API master test kit and some "kleen off" ammonia for the cycling. I've read mixed opinions on planted tanks. I'm most likely going for real plants although I am not sure which plants I should choose so any recommendations would be appreciated. Also recommendations for a suitable/cheap substrate would be helpful too :) Here's the list of fish I liked - I didn't include a "cleanup crew" so that would be helpful too. I'll also include my water hardness information as of december last year (provided by the local water company)

Neon tetra
Honey gourami
Flag tail prochilodus
Glowlight tetra
lampeye killifish
Black phantom tetra
Kribensis
Guppies :)
tiger barb (although I've heard they can be aggressive D: )


Hardness Level : Hard
Hardness Clark : 16.98
Hardness French : 24.26
Hardness German : 13.59



Thanks for taking your time for reading all of this and a HUUUGE thank you to anyone who replies with advice :)


EDIT: Sorry If this is in the wrong section I am new to MFK, simply point me in the right direction and I'll happily move it.
 

duanes

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Most of the fish on your list are soft water fish, except the guppies and tiger barbs.
That doesn't mean you can't keep them, but it can be trickier keeping them healthy, and showing true colors.
You have water similar to what I had in the US (250 grains) considered moderately hard.
I found I was better off choosing fish that fit my tap water than the other way around.
Species from Central America are generally considered hard water fish, which include many live bearers and a few tetras (such as Astyanax)
Cichlids from the rift lakes of Africa are also hard water fish, although those from western Africa such as Kribensus are soft water species, as are many from the fish from the Amazon.
 

tlindsey

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Welcome aboard


Did you fill aquarium aquarium and check for leaks? Also suggest soaking aquarium with part regular bleach part water since it was used for reptiles.
 

FriendsNotFood

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Aug 19, 2018
12
8
3
Most of the fish on your list are soft water fish, except the guppies and tiger barbs.
That doesn't mean you can't keep them, but it can be trickier keeping them healthy, and showing true colors.
You have water similar to what I had in the US (250 grains) considered moderately hard.
I found I was better off choosing fish that fit my tap water than the other way around.
Species from Central America are generally considered hard water fish, which include many live bearers and a few tetras (such as Astyanax)
Cichlids from the rift lakes of Africa are also hard water fish, although those from western Africa such as Kribensus are soft water species, as are many from the fish from the Amazon.
Thanks for the reply, suiting my fish around the hardness of my water would probably be a better idea, any you could recommend for the hardness of my water as well as a cleanup crew which would be suitable? I also forgot to mention the pH of the water which is 7.41 as of december 2017.
 
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FriendsNotFood

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Aug 19, 2018
12
8
3
Welcome aboard


Did you fill aquarium aquarium and check for leaks? Also suggest soaking aquarium with part regular bleach part water since it was used for reptiles.
Thanks for the reply :)
Sorry for the lack or clarity, the aquarium itself wasn't used for reptiles (as far as I know), only one of the lights within the hood had "to be used only for reptiles" printed on it the previous owner was using it for goldfish and one tropical fish (although they were keeping it in cold water :O ) as the filter came with the tank when I bought it. I have cleaned it out with salt and vinegar as I read not to use any kinds of chemicals as they could cause damage to the fish. The tank had water in before I emptied it and took it back to my house however I'll fill it up again this week to make sure it is still leak free after cleaning it out.
 
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tlindsey

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Thanks for the reply :)
Sorry for the lack or clarity, the aquarium itself wasn't used for reptiles (as far as I know), only one of the lights within the hood the previous owner was using it for goldfish and one tropical fish (although they were keeping it in cold water :O ) as the filter came with the tank when I bought it. I have cleaned it out with salt and vinegar as I read not to use any kinds of chemicals as they could cause damage to the fish. The tank had water in before I emptied it and took it back to my house however I'll fill it up again this week to make sure it is still leak free after cleaning it out.

Good to hear that don't forget to have dechlorinator on hand. Most of us use Seachem Prime .
 
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skjl47

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May 16, 2011
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I didn't include a "cleanup crew" so that would be helpful too
hello; welcome to the hobby and good luck. I am going to "assume" by cleanup crew that might mean some fish that eat and /or remove other fish waste. If that is the thought let me say they do not exist. The closest you might come to such a crew might be snails. Even the snails will not exactly "clean-up" the waste. They will prowl around in all the nooks and such to find and eat excess bits of food and organic material. The snails will consume the portion of fish waste if that waste has any undigested food value left.
In the end you are to be the "clean-up crew". That means you will have to do water changes (WC) using a siphon attachment that digs into the substrate.

I'm most likely going for real plants
Hello; Two suggestions. One is to put the lights on a timer. Timers help plants. Another is to have plenty of substrate. I like around four inches of small gravel. You will not need CO2.

the hood of the tank came 2 lamps one of which has "for reptile use only" on and is nonfunctional and the other takes about 5 seconds of flickering then eventually comes on.
Hello; Sounds like fluorescent tubes. They pretty much need to be replaced every year or so anyway so no big loss. There should be tubes for plants around.
 

FriendsNotFood

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Aug 19, 2018
12
8
3
hello; welcome to the hobby and good luck. I am going to "assume" by cleanup crew that might mean some fish that eat and /or remove other fish waste. If that is the thought let me say they do not exist. The closest you might come to such a crew might be snails. Even the snails will not exactly "clean-up" the waste. They will prowl around in all the nooks and such to find and eat excess bits of food and organic material. The snails will consume the portion of fish waste if that waste has any undigested food value left.
In the end you are to be the "clean-up crew". That means you will have to do water changes (WC) using a siphon attachment that digs into the substrate.


Hello; Two suggestions. One is to put the lights on a timer. Timers help plants. Another is to have plenty of substrate. I like around four inches of small gravel. You will not need CO2.


Hello; Sounds like fluorescent tubes. They pretty much need to be replaced every year or so anyway so no big loss. There should be tubes for plants around.
Hello! Thanks for the response, I have purchased a substrate cleaner to clear the bottom of the tank and was not expecting the snails to do all the work, however I have read that they can reduce the bioload on the filter and thought they may be a good addition to the tank. I was thinking of buying some shrimps, snails and a pleco however I am not sure which would be best for my tank and water quality. I in no way expected the tank to look after itself and knew I would have to make water changes (every week?) I was just thinking they could help to clear up uneaten food, algae etc. For the fluorescent tubes, are there any recommended brands/ certain types I should be going for? Or are they all pretty much the same. Thanks again.
 
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tlindsey

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Hello! Thanks for the response, I have purchased a substrate cleaner to clear the bottom of the tank and was not expecting the snails to do all the work, however I have read that they can reduce the bioload on the filter and thought they may be a good addition to the tank. I was thinking of buying some shrimps, snails and a pleco however I am not sure which would be best for my tank and water quality. I in no way expected the tank to look after itself and knew I would have to make water changes (every week?) I was just thinking they could help to clear up uneaten food, algae etc. For the fluorescent tubes, are there any recommended brands/ certain types I should be going for? Or are they all pretty much the same. Thanks again.

If you plan on growing plants buy bulbs rated for fish and plants. Aqueon brand is ok but there are better brands.
 
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