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New to Axolotls, need to know about filters please!

This is a discussion on New to Axolotls, need to know about filters please! within the Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; I'm looking at getting 2 axolotls, and have got all I need except for a filter. (Am in NZ by ...

Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate Discussions on tanks, temperature, filters, gravel, lights etc.

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Old 2nd August 2008   #1 (permalink)
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Default New to Axolotls, need to know about filters please!

I'm looking at getting 2 axolotls, and have got all I need except for a filter.
(Am in NZ by the way)

First of all:

I've read online that having a filter means the tank won't get so dirty so quick but I will still need to cycle the tank, is that right?
If I have a filter, how long will I have to cycle for and how often weekly will I need to do water changes?


My tank has a glass lid, so what type of filter do you recommend for that setup?
And is there a minimum amount of water that needs to be filtered an hour? eg all the volume of water needs to be filtered in how much time...

Any other tips?

Thanks



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Old 3rd August 2008   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: New to Axolotls, need to know about filters please!

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Originally Posted by Sara88 View Post
I've read online that having a filter means the tank won't get so dirty so quick but I will still need to cycle the tank, is that right?
If I have a filter, how long will I have to cycle for and how often weekly will I need to do water changes?
Hi Sara,

Cycling a tank serves as a biological filter - it establishes beneficial bacteria that breaks toxins down to a non toxic form. A filter provides mechanical and chemical filtration and also provides a home for the beneficial bacteria that assists the cycle depending what sort of filter you buy - the best type of filter is one has filter media such as 'sponges' or 'clay balls' that can house a lot of beneficial bacteria.

On Cycling: http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/cyclingEDK.shtml

Appropriate filters for aquatic caudata like axolotls:
http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/filters.shtml

Cycling can take anywhere from one to three months to complete - without a filter it may take even longer. To monitor the progress of the cycle you will need test kits for Ammonia (most important), Nitrite, and Nitrate.

As you will be cycling the tank with the axolotls living in this water, you will need to do partial daily 20% water changes to make the Ammonia and Nitrite levels livable for the axolotls. Any reading higher than '0' is toxic to an axolotl. While the tank is cycling, these raised levels are unavoidable but with dilligent partial water changes should present no problems. If you find the Ammonia is spiking too high, you can do a 50% partial water change to bring it under control.

When the Ammonia and Nitrite read as a consistant '0' and the Nitrate reads 10-60 this is an indication of a completed cycle. When cycle is complete, you need only do 10-20% water changes about once a week.

Axolotls are very messy creatures, even with a filter running you will still also need to clean up after them as the filter will not capture bulky muck such as poop and left over food.

Most filters come with the same sorts of tubing for access to the tank. This article gives a good run down on adapting screen lids to accommodate filter tubes / pipes and on how to make the aquarium escape proof: http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/escape.shtml



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