Thanks Fighter! I got my tank set up yesterday, I added a few elodea from our pond as well as a minnow + handful of rocks from my larger tank. (I call him a minnow, but he's like the size of my thumb) I'm hoping this will get the cycle started. I wasn't able to get into the filter... its big and fancy + dad said its a beast to put back together.
So I woke up this morning and there are tons of bubbles against the side of the tank at the surface of the water. Did alpha already make his first bubble nest? They last for a while and he keeps coming over and blowing a few more into it. I almost don't want to do a water change for fear I will destroy it.