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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

After having my betta in a 1 gal for a week or so I have decided to upgrade his tank and get planting. I found a pretty decent deal on an aqueon evolve 4 gal and I have to say im pretty impressed with the product. As everyone knows, the flow from the stock pump is far too much for a betta, so one must modify. I have searched the web but there is not much information available. From what I have gathered people are stuffing aquaclear foam inserts into the tube which connects the pump to the outflow. My question is should I punch a whole in the tube below where I stuffed the foam so it will not stress the pump?

My second question is concerning eco-complete substrate. I was wondering how long I should wait before adding my betta and the plants I currently have to the tank.

Thanks for any help
 

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A 4g sounds really wonderful for your betta ^.^ With pumps, it is definitely a good idea to diffuse the air so it doesn't over stress the pump... I've heard of people poking a hole or two in the hose so it could let out some pressure, so it is doable. I've read elsewhere that you can use things like an air control valve so that you can relieve your pump as well as let however much air flow you need to make it functional/suitable to your needs.
I assume you're not using live plants so it's better that you cycle the tank; It's hard to have a cycled tank if it's 5g or smaller, but it's still doable. You might want someone else to recommend whether or not you should wait as I've never tried to cycle anything smaller than a 5g... but I can say that in my opinion I think you should try to cycle your tank; how you cycle it, though, is up to you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi thanks for the reply.

Currently I have a java fern, christmas moss and an anubias in my tank with the betta. Why do people consider it hard to cycle a tank smaller than 5 gallons? I have some reefing experience and never had difficulties cycling pico tanks...but that was with live rock. Right now my tank is sitting full of water with the heater and pump running but I'm not really sure the next step.
 

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Oooh, so you are going with live plants. Might I suggest turning it into a heavily planted tank so you can do a silent cycle? Maybe a few plants that really eat up ammonia; if you get a good amount of plants they'll help filter the tank once they've established themselves.. and you can pretty much add your betta, like.. right then and there >.> with your plants, of course. Make sure your plants are good and free of parasites and/or diseases that they could possibly have; I suggest quarantine for at least a week. After that, it seems like it would be a good idea to add your fish ^.^ I'm not sure if it's necessary for the one week, but you might want to make sure your plants have a source of nutrients/ammonia to feed off of until you have your fish with them. Adding a bit of fish food will help; it'll rot in the tank, but in turn it becomes food for the plants.
It's usually considered hard to hold cycles smaller than 5g because the cycle becomes less and less stable with little room for the bacteria to grow on. In my opinion, it seems like tanks that have filters are able to hold cycles and there have been success stories with 2.5g and I believe 1g (keep in mind, though, these had filters). Most people don't filter their smaller tanks, and to me that's why the whole 'smaller tanks can't hold a cycle' comes into play- not to mention doing the frequent water changes can throw off a good cycle... The main good bacteria that supports your tank is in the filter itself; it provides the conditions it needs to thrive and helps to keep the rest of your tank cycled. Of course if you have enough plants to keep your perameters in check you don't really have to worry about this.
Sounds like once you figure out whether you want to go the plant cycle route or not, you'll be able to make the next step and have no problems at all ^.~
 

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The main good bacteria that supports your tank is in the filter itself; it provides the conditions it needs to thrive and helps to keep the rest of your tank cycled. ^.~
This ^.^

Basically do not replace the filter media unless it's tearing apart. If the filter media is getting too clogged for water flow, rinse it in a bucket of tank water and place it back in. Don't rinse it under the faucet as it will kill off all the bacteria on the filter.

Yes the boxes on filter media suggest you to replace it once a month but it's merely for them to make $$$$
 
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