New tank, New everything need help setting up

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Bangerang103 created the topic: New tank, New everything need help setting up

very bad spelling!

Hello,

I am new to the oscar sceen. I just bought a 55 gallon tank I would like to know what would be the best situation to go on here. I am looking at getting 3 fish so far. a 3 inch Tiger oscar, A green terror and another fish which I forgot the name but will post as soon as I can. I would like to know if they will go good together. I know the tank is the smallest I should have but im buying the oscar at the small size. I would not like to stunt the growth of them but I Will upgrade to my 210 I used for my iguana, later on

The new table I built for the tank will be setup tomm. I heard about the new tank problems Should I really wait two weeks untill I put the oscar in the new tank?


also at the nearest petco there is a HUGE tiger oscar, that is very pretty looks to be older about 12 inches long in a cramped tank. He is up for adoption but I already paid for the 3 inch oscar and named him. WHAT SHALL I DO!

Matt 19, Long Island NY!
tank setup, 3 weeks count down! (june 3rd)
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OFL replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

Welcome to the site

55 gallons is only big enough for one Oscar and nothing else. I certainly wouldn't recommend putting a green terror in. If you do put three fish including an Oscar in your 55 gallon tank, you could end up with serious water conditions in the future. I would advise you to wait until you've got the larger tank running and then think about adding a few more fish.

I may not always be right, but I am always the BOSS :-)
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

Your new tank will not "cycle" in two weeks time.
in fact, week one will remain pretty good and then week two, the water will degrade to the point where fish health will be compromised. Week three you will wish you had never put your fish in so soon and you may have unexplained death in the tank.

You need to cycle the tank completely before adding any keeper fish. You need a full test kit so you can monitor the water test results for yourself. Most important, you need to have patience before adding any fish at all...;)

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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Bangerang103 replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

ok thanks for the info So I should fully cycle the tank before entering the fish I.E 4 weeks becuase you should remove about 25% a week?

well If I Do how many oscars should I get if I dont get the green terror. the oscar I already bought lives in harmony with the green terror's at the pet store.


and the only thing I have not bought is the vacuum and water test systems ( money is no object ) can anyone tell me whats the best to get?


this site is very helpful!

Matt 19, Long Island NY!
tank setup, 3 weeks count down! (june 3rd)
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

My suggestion?

Set the tank up and get it going.
Immedietely add a small school of zebra danios, say 6-8 fish. Not giant danios, smaller 1-1/2" zebra danios. These are hearty fish, will help get your tank established and will later become feeder fish.

Do no water changes at all for the first 2 weeks.
At the end of week 3, do a very small 10% water change.
begin to test the water, and learn how to use your new test kit.

Once ammonia and nitrites are zero and after you do have a minimum reading for nitrates, then and only then, add your ONE Oscar of choice. (This should take at least 4 weeks but could take a week or two longer even.) Ammonia and Nitrite will be zero in the beginning too so don't let that fool you. The tank needs to go throuh a cycle of high ammonia (generated by fish waste among other things)then begin the conversion to Nitrites which will then rise to finally Nitrates but only after the other two rise and fall again. Begin doing regular weekly partial water changes of 25-35% before you add the Oscar in there.

Your 55 is not big enough really for anythnig but one Oscar all by himself. By adding the danios initially, you may be able to shave off a week or two off the normal 5-6 week cycle period. You can't RUSH this without risking disasterous results, trust me.

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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OFL replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

You mentioned a tank that was 210. Was that 210 gallons?

Okay, if you are going to set your 55 gallon tank, don't even think about any tankmates, you only have room for one Oscar. If you start piling in tankmates, I can guarantee you will end up with problems with water quality. If you are planning on this larger tank, why not just wait until that is set up, then you are left plenty of room for tankmates.

Do not get an Oscar until your tank is cycled. Oscars are not suitable for cycling a tank. If you try and cycle a tank with a fully grown Oscar, it will produce far too much ammonia and you will probably end up killing it. The reason it take so long to cycle the tank when using fish is because you can't let the ammonia buildup too much. If you do, all the fish will die, or their immune system will be seriously damaged. Alternatively, you can do fishless cycle. Doing it this way means you don't have to worry about any fish dying, the ammonia can get to very high levels which means the bacteria will build up much quicker.


If you look on the helpful articles on this site, it will tell you how to cycle a tank. There really isn't any point in us repeating all the information that is already on the site.

Go and get yourself a water testing kits, you cannot cycle a fish tank without one, unless you take samples of water to the shop. However, I trust my own judgement over any shop so I would advise you to do it yourself. Don't worry, you don't have to be a chemist to test the water for these toxins, it's very easy, I promise you.

Now, you mentioned cleaning the tank. Have you got a window near your tank? If so, I would recommend siphoning the water straight out the window, using buckets is a pain. This is how I do it, I use a normal hosepipe and a gravel vac on the end. It really does work extremely well. You can buy something called a Python. I have got one and it does work, but only if you've got a very strong water pressure. I have my own opinion on this piece of kit, a complete waste of money. That is my opinion, I don't want to upset anyone by it.

I may not always be right, but I am always the BOSS :-)
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Bangerang103 replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

Are there any other types of hearty fish like that I could buy to speed along the process? ( ive never heard of those and checked my been to the pet stores around my area dont see anything like that )

It doesnt really matter to me im very patient and want the best for the fish, but also like what else to put in there that he will eat. So even the longer I wait the better? too put in the oscar?

Matt 19, Long Island NY!
tank setup, 3 weeks count down! (june 3rd)
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

Guppies are fine too. These initial fish will undoubtedly be stressed by the rise in ammonia needed to get the cycle initiated. Danios seem to handle that well and guppies are a good second choice. Avoid Tetras and Barbs though. (look for common minnows as a third choice)

The difference between Danios and guppies is that the danios that survive (which should be most if not all) will be great dither fish and harder for your Oscar to catch and eat, although over time he will catch and eat them all whereas the guppies are slower and will become a banquet in short order.

I'm glad you have some patience as that is vital. Putting your Oscar in too soon could stress the fragile biological process and his additional load of ammonia could cloud your tank and create a mini cycle to occur causing spikes in harmful ammonia or nitrites again. (Putting him in before the cycle is completed could result in his death sentence.) Let the filter get fully developed and plan to wait at least a full month with starter fish in there, or a full 6 weeks with no fish at all. If you go the "fishless" route, please read the articles to your left to understand the process. Ammonia needs to be introduced one way or another, via food, fish or waste. If you have the type of filter that has a seperate container for carbon, leave the carbon out totally too. Dont use it with Oscars and carbon eats some amount of ammonia which delays the cycle process anyway.

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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Bangerang103 replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

I wont do guppies so regular minnows? anything else like any other fish? and I should get the same amount right 6-8?

Matt 19, Long Island NY!
tank setup, 3 weeks count down! (june 3rd)
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:New tank, New everything need help setting up

6-8 should be fine. (6,8,10)

You seem to have an affection for the guppies. Any fish that is minnow like will suffice, small in size.
You can try Tetras but they aren't as hearty and you will lose some as water conditions degrade. If a fish dies, leave him in the tank for a day (not more) before removing him as the extra ammonia won't hurt the process.

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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