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Old 11-18-2012, 10:43 AM   #1 
Syriiven
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Prepping for a tank change

Hi...back again. It's been a long two weeks. I attempted a fish-in cycle with a new 10g tank, and all it did was seriously stress my little guy out, and now he's developed what I believe is velvet. The small red spot is shiny, and on his gill. So, to be safe, I removed him from the 10g, sanitized his old tank as best I could with lots of boiling water and salt, and am now treating him with AQ Salt and 100% daily changes. His fins were being bitten a lot, and I thought I saw some black on the edges of his tail, so I'm hoping he doesnt have finrot AND velvet, but if so...I hope I've caught them both early enough.

I don't have a third tank big enough for him, so once the 10 day treatment is done and he hopefully looks healthier (like no red spot on his gills...) I'll return that tank as his home and wait until I can get to the city to get the proper supplies to do a fishless cycle on the 10g....after sanitizing the hell out of it after stripping it to doubley-make sure to kill off any diseases.

I feel terrible that I've made my Phycondrias sick and so stressed, and I want to give him the best. I don't want him to be the fish that dies because I was still learning things. I'm not a scientist researching crap, I honestly give a damn...

So I'm asking for help now on what I should do for the 10g after sanitization to set it up. I'll be getting new gravel, will strain it extra-extra this time. The decorations and tank will be boiled and cloroxed and then rinsed and rinsed and rinsed again will be set in sunlight to kill the bleach. Same for the tank. And the filter.

When I go to the city, I hope to find the right medications I need to help him properly if he gets sick again. Stress Coat is definitely on my list, but I'm not sure what else would be a definite addition to a 'betta first aid kit'.

Also, I plan to get some live plants. After a lot of stuff happening and me continually revisiting here, they seem like a really good idea for him. Unfortunately I'm nervous about plants that need a lot of care, I'm not really a green thumb. I heard about Anacharis being easy, but needs trimming. I can do that, but what else is good for the fish? I heard about lucky bamboo working too. he's a tail-biter, so if I have plants should I add AQ Salt, or will it kill them? Should I use just Stress Coat? I mean with weekly 50% changes, which I would hope would be enough to keep his water safe for him (after it's been cycled).

And...fishless cycle needs what to start it? Some sort of ammonia in a bottle?

I'm sorry that I keep posting problems here, tons of questions...I'd really rather be able to help others, but honestly my knowledge is very little right now. I want what's best for Phy though, and this is the best place on the internet to get answers to all the things I don't know.

So, thank you all for helping me this far, and many thanks to those who read this and reply.

p.s. - Sorry for the long read.
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Old 11-18-2012, 10:57 AM   #2 
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Red on the gills usually comes from ammonia, not velvet... velvet you will see him scratching/darting against objects, lethargic, and a gold-rust dusting on his head.

When cycling a tank you will need to keep a close eye on the chemistry, checking it with a test kit regularly and doing multiple small water changes per week.. otherwise you do run the risk of ammonia/nitrates spiking, which is probably where the red on his gills came from.. they are inflamed/irritated.

AQ salt, Epsom Salt, General Cure are a good start.. the Maracyn I & II products are good - those will cover just about everything that may happen to him.

But if all he has is a red gill then you don't need to do anything to the tank other than do small water changes during the week when things spike. It will take 4-8 weeks for the tank to fully cycle.

There are a ton of low light/hardy plants out there.. This site may help you pick some out.. there are a lot of plants that don't need a whole lot in the way of ferts and c02 that you can choose from. They will also help keep the ammonia/nitrates down while the tank is cycling.

This guide will help teach you the different cycling ways. You can use just his food to help the cycle process. I've only done fish-in cycles, so can't really help you out in the fishless dept.

You can keep him in the AQ salt for a couple of days to help heal his gills if you wish.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:03 AM   #3 
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Red on the gills usually comes from ammonia, not velvet... velvet you will see him scratching/darting against objects, lethargic, and a gold-rust dusting on his head.

When cycling a tank you will need to keep a close eye on the chemistry, checking it with a test kit regularly and doing multiple small water changes per week.. otherwise you do run the risk of ammonia/nitrates spiking, which is probably where the red on his gills came from.. they are inflamed/irritated.

AQ salt, Epsom Salt, General Cure are a good start.. the Maracyn I & II products are good - those will cover just about everything that may happen to him.

But if all he has is a red gill then you don't need to do anything to the tank other than do small water changes during the week when things spike. It will take 4-8 weeks for the tank to fully cycle.

There are a ton of low light/hardy plants out there.. This site may help you pick some out.. there are a lot of plants that don't need a whole lot in the way of ferts and c02 that you can choose from. They will also help keep the ammonia/nitrates down while the tank is cycling.

This guide will help teach you the different cycling ways. You can use just his food to help the cycle process. I've only done fish-in cycles, so can't really help you out in the fishless dept.

You can keep him in the AQ salt for a couple of days to help heal his gills if you wish.

He was darting and rubbing against some smooth rocks a few times...like three times that I saw over the last two weeks. No dust on his head, just the red on his cheek(?) and then to the gill. But seeing him in his 'hospital' tank, the red's just on the gill now, though he's making me feel bad with his stress-stripes again. :(

I don't have a master test kit (I will), but I do have an ammonia test kit and it's been very low all week. Not even .25 yesterday, but I still changed the water. But that's when he had another stress fit and the red started to show...

I really appreciate the links, sooo much! Thank you!

And if it's really not velvet, then that makes me feel so, so much better. I do think I'll keep him in the AQ Salt water for a few days, at least to help his fins and his gill.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:16 AM   #4 
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He would be "scratching" quite a bit - similar to a dog with fleas. His gills may of been irritating him which had caused him to do the ones you had seen. Definitely a master kit, since ammonia isn't the only danger that happens when cycling.

Once you have his home set up, plants in there, it's done cycling he should calm down.. it can take some a lot time to get used to water changes and larger tanks.

Good luck :)
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:20 AM   #5 
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He would be "scratching" quite a bit - similar to a dog with fleas. His gills may of been irritating him which had caused him to do the ones you had seen. Definitely a master kit, since ammonia isn't the only danger that happens when cycling.

Once you have his home set up, plants in there, it's done cycling he should calm down.. it can take some a lot time to get used to water changes and larger tanks.

Good luck :)
Oh my gosh, thank you! And that plant site really helped me pick which ones would be best for me! I feel so much better about all this!
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:22 AM   #6 
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Glad to help :) There are other sites.. that is just one that I recently purchased from and I knew it had a list of hardy and beginner plants for a reasonable price. Hornwart, Naja grass are also good - but they don't have any on that site.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:24 AM   #7 
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Glad to help :) There are other sites.. that is just one that I recently purchased from and I knew it had a list of hardy and beginner plants for a reasonable price. Hornwart, Naja grass are also good - but they don't have any on that site.
I may have to wait until I can get to PetSmart in the city. Where I bought him they had tanks of just plants, and I think I recognize some from the site. I live in rural Canada and lots of sites wont deliver to a po box, and my apartment building doesnt have its own mail boxes - but I'll have to try and see!
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:28 AM   #8 
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Oh.. ick. Have any friends/family nearby that are willing to let you ship to them?
Do be careful, as sometimes Petco/Petsmart will sell "aquatic" plants that aren't aquatic.. yeah I'm looking at you, Peacelilly!
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:31 AM   #9 
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Oh.. ick. Have any friends/family nearby that are willing to let you ship to them?
Do be careful, as sometimes Petco/Petsmart will sell "aquatic" plants that aren't aquatic.. yeah I'm looking at you, Peacelilly!
Lol, I'll make a list of ones from the site and make sure I get aquatic ones =) And I'm going to check for snails, since I don't think I'll need them and don't want to mess up my bio-load after getting everything settled.

I could possibly have them shipped to my boyfriend's mom's place...how do they keep plants alive anyways? I mean in shipping? I see these sites selling live fish and plants (its also winter here, so how would they keep it warm in the trucks?) and I'm just boggled by it.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:46 AM   #10 
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Plants don't need a lot.. usually just kept in bags with moisture. Fish is a whole other thing.. bags, padding, foam, heat packs.. lol

I would pick up at least one snail.. will help keep the algae down. I forget which snail species doesn't breed in fresh water - can probably ask in the tank mates section of the forum.. those you can have multiple. But a single apple snail, or a single any snail would be just fine - a 10 gallon with live plants will easily be able to handle fish and a snail - can easily hold a few more fish if you wanted.

Live plants make a world of difference when it comes to water quality.
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