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New to African Cichlids

Lcasanova

CCA Members
Thank you.

I live in Mount Airy, Maryland. Is there anyone that can help me ensure that my tank can be ready for new fish?

Would daily or frequent water changes help once I add the fish?

Also, I had an established tank for 13 years with community tank. I still have that Bio material from the eHeim Professional 3 filter...but it's been removed and dry for almost 2 months now. So I"m guessing that won't work at all.

Thank you.
Steve
Steve, I'm in Frederick. Love to network with other locals in the area if you'd like to trade Instagrams or whatever. These guys on here are way more experienced than I am so maybe they will disagree with me but I'm fairly certain that with some decent bottled live bacteria and some uncooked shrimp in the tank from the grocery store your bacteria should have enough to eat off of. I'd do some sponge material or lava rock in the filter to house them and you should be good by the time you get to BFD....anyone disagree with that? I use API but I'm sure there is probably much better out there.
 

DiscusnAfricans

President
Thank you.

Could you please explain how to do this. Regular bottled ammonia? How much?

Should I go buy a bunch of gold fish for a week or so? Only thing I've had in there is the 5 small plecos.
Are the 5 plecos still in there? That would make a big difference. If not, adding one in the meantime would help.

Daily or frequent water changes in the beginning should be part of the plan though.

If you can meet up with someone local prior to the event though and seed your filters that's probably the ideal plan.

Are you taking the fish home Friday night? We could take one of the sponge filters from an auction tank and squeeze out some dirty water for you.
 

scogdell

CCA Members
Hi...this is a great website and I really appreciate all the advice.

Yes, I had planned to bring them home on Friday night. And the 5 plecos are doing great.

Also, my wife works with someone who has Tanganyika's in his tank. I might be able to put my bio in his tank for a week or so before I pick them up. And anything that can be provided to me for my tank is greatly appreciated. I can also grab some catfish tomorrow and have them in for 2 weeks before the other fish.

I've uploaded the test results I just took:

  • PH is ~8.2
  • Ammonia is ~2.0 or 4.0ppm...looks closer to 4.0 ppm
  • Nitrite is 0
  • Nitrate is 0

And I added the bacteria a few weeks ago.

Thank you.
Steve

Test1.jpg

Test2.jpg

Test3.jpg

Test4.jpg

Bio.jpg
 
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Lcasanova

CCA Members
Your nitrogen cycle hasn't started yet. Need some muck or and some more bacteria and you'll be on your way. The bacteria will just die without a food source. Ammonia should be 0 and nitrates should be 20-80 or so and you'll know you're there.
 

scogdell

CCA Members
Been doing a lot of reading and I think I understand the issue. If I put in a lot of fish...ammonia will be very high...and without the bacteria it will not get converted into nitrite and then nitrate. Is that right?

Should I not order the 86 fish from Dave?
 

scogdell

CCA Members
My old media was still damp as it was in the enclosed container...so I put it in a mesh bag and have it in the system now. May not help...but figured it can't hurt.
 

scogdell

CCA Members
Steve, I'm in Frederick. Love to network with other locals in the area if you'd like to trade Instagrams or whatever. These guys on here are way more experienced than I am so maybe they will disagree with me but I'm fairly certain that with some decent bottled live bacteria and some uncooked shrimp in the tank from the grocery store your bacteria should have enough to eat off of. I'd do some sponge material or lava rock in the filter to house them and you should be good by the time you get to BFD....anyone disagree with that? I use API but I'm sure there is probably much better out there.
Thank you for the advice. I'll try some fish or shrimp tomorrow. I've also started adding flake food that won't get eaten and hopefully it will also create some ammonia to feed the bacteria. I'll do another water test tomorrow night and see if anything is getting better. Thanks again.
 

DiscusnAfricans

President
The old damp media won't have any live bacteria so it won't really help.

Colonizing media in another person's tank is definitely a good plan.

The tests indicate what you read was right, the ammonia isn't being converted yet which is what needs to happen. As someone else mentioned, measurable nitrate is an indicator that the nitrification process is occurring.

I'd say continue with your plan with the bacteria and colonizing media and you should be fine to order the fish and take them home. Juveniles won't produce a ton of bioload and should be less sensitive. I'd also wait a few days before feeding them, they'll be fine for a little while.

I'd suggest a large water change prior to the event and plan for frequent smaller water changes in the days after adding the fish. Just keep an eye on the levels as you go.
 

Goonie

CCA Members
How long does it take to seed in a sponge filter I have a 185 malawi tank running has been up for months now but I just used all the media I was loading in my ac110 to start my 75.... it has 2 fx 6s running on it now and a 150 gallon rated sponge I have about 80 fish in there atm i took the media out last week and haven't replaced it yet, but if it only takes a week to load media that means I have an entire ac110 open to seed your media in sterling if people here think it will work.
 

Pat Kelly

CCA Member
Staff member
Having the plecos in there will help.
Do not put botted ammonia in there please.
Also do not go and buy gold fish. You could introduce a disease.
I agree with the sponge suggestion. If you cant find one locally soon, I can give you a small one at the BFD.
It would be very small though.
You def will need to do a lot of water changes for a while....
 

scogdell

CCA Members
How long does it take to seed in a sponge filter I have a 185 malawi tank running has been up for months now but I just used all the media I was loading in my ac110 to start my 75.... it has 2 fx 6s running on it now and a 150 gallon rated sponge I have about 80 fish in there atm i took the media out last week and haven't replaced it yet, but if it only takes a week to load media that means I have an entire ac110 open to seed your media in sterling if people here think it will work.
Thank you for the offer. I have an AC110 I can hook up with your sponge. I wouldn't be able to get to Sterling though until Sunday...I work in the Baltimore Airport area. Would Sunday work. That would give me about 5 days with it before I stock the tank.

Thanks again.
Steve
 

Goonie

CCA Members
I'm not sure on time frame some one else here would have to answer that but I dont mind letting you take a sponge hell if ya want we can swap ac110 sponges and call it a day :) my ac110 sponge has been in that tank since I set it up.... I have a softball size piece of lava rock that's been in that tank for over a month as well you could crush and use as media.
 

scogdell

CCA Members
I'm not sure on time frame some one else here would have to answer that but I dont mind letting you take a sponge hell if ya want we can swap ac110 sponges and call it a day :) my ac110 sponge has been in that tank since I set it up.... I have a softball size piece of lava rock that's been in that tank for over a month as well you could crush and use as media.
Thank you very much. I really appreciate it. I think with the shrimp I threw in yesterday...and your sponge for 5 days...I will be really good.

And I have a brand new AC110 sponge for you. I will be in Purcellville on Saturday and Sunday and can call you Sunday early afternoon when I leave to see if it is still convenient for you.
 

Goonie

CCA Members
Works for me I'll hold off ringing it out was gonna service it tonight but I think a "dirty" filter may be more help.
 

scogdell

CCA Members
Are the 5 plecos still in there? That would make a big difference. If not, adding one in the meantime would help.

Daily or frequent water changes in the beginning should be part of the plan though.

If you can meet up with someone local prior to the event though and seed your filters that's probably the ideal plan.

Are you taking the fish home Friday night? We could take one of the sponge filters from an auction tank and squeeze out some dirty water for you.
Hi...I have all the fish ordered from Dave's Rare Fish. Can you please let me know the plan for picking them up on Friday in Gaithersburg? Thank you very much.

Steve
 

DiscusnAfricans

President
Hi...I have all the fish ordered from Dave's Rare Fish. Can you please let me know the plan for picking them up on Friday in Gaithersburg? Thank you very much.

Steve
I'll message you for details.

Just a reminder that pre-registration is required for friday pickups.

Were you able to swap filter media for your tank?
 

scogdell

CCA Members
Just wanted to provide status. I received all of the fish 2 weeks ago and all are still alive and doing great. Well, all but 2 who jumped out (problem now fixed). I'll post pics soon.

Thanks go everyone...I really appreciate all of your support. And thanks to Dave at Dave's Rare Fish...he was awesome.
 

DiscusnAfricans

President
Glad to hear everyone is doing well, except for the escape artists. Dave is definitely a great person to deal with, and always willing to provide advice. Looking forward to seeing update pictures.
 
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