“I would like to buy fish and an aquarium today please”
“Why Wont You Sell me That Fish!?”
Before we sell you any fish we will ask you about your aquarium including; type, size, what other fish you have and how long it has be running or cycling. This is because we need to unsure the fish we sell are going to a happy and healthy cruel free home. The follow explains how to cycle your first aquarium:
- All Aquariums need at least 3-4 weeks of running time before any fish are added to the aquarium. This is referred to as “Bio-cycling” the tank. This will promote the build up of de-nitrifying bacteria which break down waste products and is essential to setting up your new aquarium.
- It is important to monitor the aquarium during and after the cycle. This can be done with a test kit. A good quality test kit will be used through the life of your tank. It can alert you to early disaster and is an excellent investment that will end up saving you money.
- The cycling process will prevent any unnecessary loss or death of the aquariums first inhabitants.
- The Best way to cycle a tank is Fishless cycling and is the more correct way of cycling the aquarium. This is because cycling with fish can be seen as cruel as spiking ammonia levels can be damaging to fish health. Fish waste adds ammonia to the water which can kick starts the bacteria growth. This can be replicated by adding ammonia directly to the aquarium. Initially 2-4ppm of ammonia level should be added, with small amounts added each few days. After a week 2-3 you should stop adding ammonia and test (Test Kits) the water for both ammonia and nitrite levels. Then once ammonia levels are reading zero and nitrites levels are below 2.0ppm then very small number of fish can be added to the aquarium to continue the cycle process once again.
- The fish will probably be stressed as they carry the brunt of the cycling process. A good way to reduce the amount of ammonia is to do small water changes every few days. About 10-15% should be changed, any more and you will be taking away the ammonia and nitrite that the bacteria are trying to feed on. Ensure a de-chlorinator has been added to the water. Any chlorine/chloramines will kill the bacteria and ruin the cycling process. Feeding the fish should be done carefully and sparingly. Excess, left over food will add to the ammonia and nitrite that are already present. You should test the levels of both ammonia and nitrite every few days in Week 3 and 4 and water change if necessary.
- Ending the Cycle: This process will take anywhere from 3 – 8 weeks. The key here is not to over stock with fish. Completing the steps successfully will likely result in early cycle completion. The nitrite should spike around the second week of cycling. After this it will begin to convert to nitrates. When the nitrite has spiked and fallen to 0ppm (anywhere from 3-8 weeks) you are able to add more fish into the aquarium (very slowly). Ensure your ammonia and nitrites are 0ppm at this point in time. Do this slowly as there is limited bacteria in the filter.
- End of the Cycle: Once the nitrite and ammonia are stable at 0ppm, you can feel more comfortable purchasing more expensive or exotic fish. For intermediate enthusiasts, angelfish and gouramis are a good choice.
- If after 8 weeks the ammonia levels have not dropped you should contact us. It is likely due to inadequate filtration, overpopulation or over-feeding.