For the tiki statue, is it an actual aquarium ornament? Is it real wood? Wood like that used for building and a lot of house decor (nick-nacks) is made with chemically treated wood and should not be placed in an aquarium. If the decoration is made for an aquarium, you should scrub it with vinegar and water mix and boil it (I scrub all of my new decor with a mix of one gallon hot water and 1/2 cup distilled vinegar, then boil for at least 20 minutes, longer with larger objects, but people have different methods, so I would look around.)
Some tips for saving money:
If you can't get dechlorinator, leaving water to sit for 24 hours (Longer is better) is just fine. I would start off doing this: Clear out your tank. Scrub it, sides, bottom, everything. Those outdoor rocks can be dangerous. Remove the fish and put him in something small that can float in his big tank for a day or two. Add clean water, whatever chemicals you have, and then let the tank sit for 24 hours. Set the heater up and float your fishy in the water til it's ready, so he stays warm :) After that you can let him go in the water and it'll be safe.
For decoration, you can use most silk plants. I pick up plants from the thrift store all the time. Make sure you wash them very well and then boil them. If you notice any colors bleeding at all, do not use the plant. Some silk plants have metal in the stems. This needs to be removed. Most simply strip away, some you will need to cut. No metal in the fishie water! :)
There are some decorations you can use. Marbles are a favorite. If you find clear glass decorations without paint on them you can clean them well (as above) and use them. I get a lot of my decorations from thrift stores and yard sales. it saves money, but you have to be ready to clean whatever you buy very well, and watch closely for sharp edges on decor and plants. Any you find should be cut off and smoothed over.
Your fish will be fine in a bare bottom tank, it won't do any harm, but a happy fish likes hiding places and areas to explore. When you can afford better accommodation, go for it! But don't stress about it yet.
For cycling, I would look up the process on these forums. It takes about a month to cycle a tank properly. When you're ready to do this, put him in his smaller tank for a few weeks while your big tank cycles. But for now, do water changes and keep the water clean on your own.
Good luck with your fishy friend. We love pictures, and you ask all the questions you want, we're here to help!
Bettabettabetta [~] Corrin [~] Mega [~] Rinji [~] Red Robin [~] Jr. [~] Billy [~] Opti
Tidbit [~] Princess [~] Little [~] Spazz [~] Rosie [~] Sakura [~] Cocoa [~] Pylia
So many fish, so little sig room :)
Miko - forever kitten [~] Cain & Tyrael - twin cats [~] Sadie - RN Pitbull; Proud new mother!! 1-21-13
Gwen - Perfect Daughter!