Tropical Fish care

Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by Satch, Apr 20, 2010.

  1. Satch

    Satch Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I have asked to become custodian of a tank full of fish, freshwater tropical, I am told. Since I know damn all about keeping fish they need all the help they can get.

    Any decent websites/info guides?

    Something along the lines of "Eejit's Guide to keeping some bloody fish you never wanted to look after in the first place alive until the owner gets back from extended enforced exile" would be ideal.
     
  2. LTD

    LTD MB Club Veteran

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    Yep, one of THOSE !!!
    How long for ?

    Get to know your local aquatics shop in case of any big problems.

    Do not overfeed.

    Remember that you are looking after water - not the livestock.
     
  3. GRAV888

    GRAV888 MB Club Veteran

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    PM Howard. He is a member of a fish forum.
    I've got tropicals too, but am no expert. (Never had any probs though;))
    Main thing is to keep the water at the specified temperature and have an air pump feeding air stones.
    Good filtration is also important.
    Do regular ph tests. Kits are readily available and easy to use.
    Feed sparingly.

    What breeds are there?

    NEVER put 2 siamese fighters in the same tank;)
     
  4. rees_A

    rees_A Banned

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    I have tropical fish. It's quite easy to look after them, you just put the lights on in the morning, feed them at that point, don't put too much food in, it should last a couple of mins at most. In the evening you can feed again. Before you go to bed turn the lights off.

    Depending on what type of pump/filter is in use, this needs cleaning every couple of weeks or so. You can also remove 15 % of water and replace every few weeks if you really want to. I always replace the cotton wool type(White) filter and clean the others using warm tap water(Blue) After cleaning, make sure you put the filters back the same way as you took them out as they allow different sized particales through as part of the cleaning process.

    You can also replace the Black carbon filter every month or so if the filter has one. Mine has black balls so do not need changing as often.

    Let me know if you want any further info..
     
  5. Howard

    Howard MB Club Veteran

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    Hi Satch

    Join FISHKEEPING FORUM

    I am an advisor there ( admittedly for marines ) , but their tropical advisors are very good , and the site is aimed primarily at the 'newbie' .

    There isn't lots of technical speak to un-nerve you , and they will talk through in laymans terms with you what you need to do.

    Tell them Howard sent you ;)

    P.S. don't ever wash the filter media under tap water as the chlorines and chloramines instantly kill the beneficial bacteria that live in them , and you end up cycling your tank over and over again , the distress this causes your fish is huge. Always rinse your filter media in the bucket of old tank water , this gets the detritus out of them but allows the bacteria to survive.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2010
  6. Swozza

    Swozza Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Alright.

    I'm a big fish keeper. 4 large tanks all 100 Gals plus. 2 Tropical and 2 Malawi. Always happy to help.

    Before I can advice I need to know a few things. Size of tank, kit filters etc and the fish your keeping.

    Swoz
     
  7. rees_A

    rees_A Banned

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    hmmm...I always use tap water to clean my filters and it does not seem to have a detrimental affect on my tank...
     
  8. LTD

    LTD MB Club Veteran

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    Yep, one of THOSE !!!
    You've been lucky
     
  9. rees_A

    rees_A Banned

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    In what way am I lucky? how does cleaning filters using tap water affect the tank well being(Other than Bacteria build up needing to occur again) Just interested...Is the bacteria not in the water as well?

    I have an external canister filter that I empty, clean all filters, fill with tap water and put back in action
     
  10. LTD

    LTD MB Club Veteran

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    Yep, one of THOSE !!!
    Read Howard's post - it's explained there.
     
  11. Howard

    Howard MB Club Veteran

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    Rees , you'll be having large spikes after you clean your filters , first ammonia , then nitrite , then nitrate as the tank cycles itself.

    Do you have a test kit ? if so , you will spot the spikes.

    This will be doing your fish no good at all . They will be suffering , rest assured.

    The bacteria enables the nitrogen cycle to take place .

    Read this , it is written for kids really , but explains it nicely , how the nitrogen cycle works.

    http://www.fishkeeping.co.uk/articles_51/fishless-cycling-article.htm

    Every time you fill up with tapwater , or wash your filters under the tap , you are effectively taking your tank back to day 1. The fish will be excreting ammonia and no bacteria will be present ( because you have killed them ) to break it down , and your fish will be living in ammonia laden water , which burns their gills and makes them uncomfortable.

    It's tough i know when someone tells you you are doing it wrong , but you are , and you are harming your fish and reducing their lifespan. Their quality of life will be poor.

    There is not enough bacteria in the water to make a difference , the stuff that does the work is in the filter media .
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2010
  12. rees_A

    rees_A Banned

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    I already did read Howards post, surely the bacteria will grow again and all will be good or is it that the bacteria takes months/years to grow????

    I don't have to cycle my tank often, in fact, I've only performed 1 complete empty/clean since owning it in 6 years. I keep it clean its looks good, the fish seem happy and are growing well...Can someone explain in more detail how the bacteria is beneficial and how long it takes to grow back.
     
  13. Howard

    Howard MB Club Veteran

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    Read the link in my post above.

    Cycling is not stripping everything down and rebuilding , but getting the bacteria to build up , the nitrogen cycle , hence 'cycling'

    Buy yourself a test kit ( a decent one , not dip strips ) , and do some tests , you'll be surprised.

    Test the levels the day before you wash your filters , and then 3 days later , it'll open your eyes to what you are doing to the fish.
     
  14. neilrr

    neilrr MB Club Veteran

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    Are you really meant to feed them twice a day? I thought it was every second day!?!?
     
  15. Howard

    Howard MB Club Veteran

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    Little and often is better , i feed my marines 5 or 6 times a day.

    No more than can be eaten in 2 mins ( ish )
     
  16. OP
    OP
    Satch

    Satch Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Arrrghhhh now I have an even greater dread of finding a tankful of dead fish!

    Fish types: no idea.

    Tank size not huge, about 50/60 litres at a guess

    Lights, pumps heaters all work, water looking clear, something green and fine growing in a layer above gravel though and thin layer of gunk on tank walls

    But there is a smaller tank (sort of a cube about a foot square) that contains some little red flappy finned bugger that would I am told try to kill all the others if in the main tank and the water in that looks a bit gungey. Not much water flow from the pump so may be clogged.

    How much food should I give the ones in the main tank and the single fish?
     
  17. 6pot

    6pot Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Im going to pop over there and have a read i think! I also keep tropical fish, the're very soothing to watch, and the habits are interesting! I have a 60 ltr jewel with a selection of guppies, tetras, kuli loaches, and a couple of frogs (ive forgotten the names) and a few silver hatchets.
    In my other small tank 55ltr hagen, i have Puruvian puffers and a couple of crabs for company, i do have a persistant fine algae problem in this one though despite treatments. Perhaps i can get some advice:thumb:
     
  18. Howard

    Howard MB Club Veteran

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    I've kept fish all my life , currently i have a 300L reef tank.
     
  19. 6pot

    6pot Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Jealous much i am, im still learning though, would love a tank like that!:thumb:
     
  20. bouncer

    bouncer Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Interesting. . . . Any photos

    sTeVe
     

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