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Old 06-19-2012, 06:26 PM   #11 
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: California
Originally Posted by bahamut285 View Post
It depends on if you decide to leave the filter in or not (as you stated below). If you put in the filter, you will initially have to cycle it which will take just about a month. After it is completely cycled, you will only have to do around 50% one to two times a week. If you DO NOT use your filter and don't cycle the tank, you will have to do 100% water changes (quite laborious in a 5 gallon).
Does cycling apply to all filter styles, or only the biological sponge type filters? This filtration system uses two removable media filters that according to the directions get replaced once a month.

From what I have read the biological filters are better, but since Dory is already in her new home, I am unsure about how we would cycle one and have it remain safe for her.

Last question (for now haha!) If we want to add to her home (more plants, new hiding places), is it best to wait until we do a water change, or can we carefully add things while she is swimming around?
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Old 06-19-2012, 08:03 PM   #12 
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Canada
As far as I know, it applies to all filters. The tank set you are using the exact same as mine, and beneficial bacteria (BB) will live on the fuzzy part of the filter cartridges. When you have to change them, change only ONE of them first, wait about a week for some bacteria to move to the new cartridge, then replace the other one. This helps to preserve the cycle while changing the media.

The guide I posted in my first response outlines fish-in cycling very well to make it safe for Dory :D

There are two methods that I use when I add new things to the aquarium. If it is a floating or (relatively) small object, I just wash it, wash my hands and carefully place it into the tank. If it's something large like a cave, or I want to redecorate, I usually cup my fish and take them out temporarily.
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