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Re: [APD] Restarting a tank -- Starting a planted tank
> > 4. How long should the new planted tank sit before I
> can start adding new
> > fish?
> The tank will need to cycle before adding fish (that you
> want to keep).
A Planted tank doesn't have to cycle at all. It's a myth of
sorts from the plastic plant days, when aquarists used
nothing but bacteria to use up nitrogenous products in the
water. Luckily, plants have been invented ;-) , so you can
rely on them to do a lot of the work. It would be better to
seed the bacteria with mulm to catch any excess nutrients
but if you can't get any, don't sweat it because you're not
going to add all your fish at once anyhow. Adding lots all
at once is not the kindest way to introduce fish :-) to new
surroundings. A few at a time reduces the stress of new
surroundings. And having lots of plants gives the fish
places to go (hide) that helps too.
In fact, I bet you'll find that starting a tank with plants
gives you much more reliable and consistent results than
the (plantless) cycle method.
Besides Flourite, Profile, Onyx Sand, another proven
commerical substrate for plants is Eco-complete, which is
available in more lfs than the others (almost anyone that
carries Aragamite and Carib Sea products. But check out
prices on line too.
Bigalsonline.com has a special on Flourite right now for
about $11 per bag plus shipping. Petsolutions.com is
probably not far behind. These commercial substrates can be
kind of expensive for larger tanks. Assuming your 55 is 4
foot by about 13" and you want 3" of gravel depth, you need
5 bags of Flourite or Onyx or Eco-Complete. 7 bags for 4.5"
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