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Re: fishless cycling
In a planted tank the plants -are- the biological filter, so I don't see the
need for cycling the tank at all. Just don't add all the fish at once at the
beginning. A few inches a week until the tank is stocked. I started out with
a dozen Cardinal Tetras in my 90 gallon, I doubt they ever had an affect on
ammonia levels. Then I added a couple of dozen every other week over the
next months. A school of small Tiger Barbs work well too, since they have
little impact on the tank but then grow in size as the tank matures.
But -do- plant as densely as possible from the start, mainly to get the
plants a leg up on algae. Fertilize lightly, if at all, that first week or
so, because the plants will take that time to adjust. Water changes should
take care of any mistakes.