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

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Old 28th January 2009   #1
vikki7
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Red face Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Hi all,

Just need another bit of advice. I set up my new tank today (already have an established one). I washed play ground sand in a pillow case until clear and I'm just waiting for the water to clear. It is still quite murky but getting better by the hour. When do you think would be a good time to turn on the filter? Or is this only necessary once I have my axolotl in the tank?

I was also thinking of adding some water from my established tank (which is half the size) to the new one to establish some bacteria as my existing tank runs perfectly and has good levels, to be honest I only just found out about cycling from this site recently .

Sorry full of questions tonight.... I think I read somewhere that keeping 'unfed' fish in your tank (meant as food for my axie) helps keep down toxins, is that correct? And any thoughts on ghost shrimps for the same purpose?

Any help would be great, become a bit Axie obsessed since joining the site.

Thank you

Vikki



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Old 29th January 2009   #2
Eva
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Hi Vikki,

When are you expecting to get your axolotl? (Sorry if you have written this elsewhere.)

Water from the established tank may help a bit, especially if it is dirty water you are taking out (to give the bacteria in the new tank something to eat), but if you are looking to carry over bacteria, it woud be better to take plants, decorations, etc., from the old tank. The bacteria will need something to eat in the new tank, though, which is why I ask about when the axolotl is expected to be in the new tank.

Fish as well as any other animal will not keep down toxins; quite the opposite, they will add to the "bio-load" - the amount of toxins in the water that the bacteria have to cope with for you. Live plants help to keep down toxins but mainly you just have to wait for enough bacteria to settle and set up their chain (cycle).

Hope this helps - do ask if you need more detailed info.

Good luck to you,

-Eva



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Old 29th January 2009   #3
vikki7
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Cheers Blueberlin,

I've swapped a couple of decorations over, hopefully that helps.

I have a 10 month old Axie (7 inch) and I am hoping to get two youngsters who are about 4 1/2 to 5 inch. I know this is probably the wrong answer but I wanted to get the new ones in two days.

My idea is to put my older axie in the new tank (which is 1.2 metres) and keep the new ones in the old tank during the quarantine (and feeding up process, to get them to a similar size). What do you think of this idea?

Thank you



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Old 29th January 2009   #4
Eva
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Hi Vikki!

Oh my, there is no such thing as a wrong answer! Just tell it like it is. It's all about making a happy home, right?

So. First thing I will note about the size difference is that it will take a few months for the little ones to grow. Trust me on this one - my one aquarium became 4 because I raised larvae and the youngsters became sexually mature (i.e., needing to be separated by sex) before being large enough to put with their parents. Since I just moved in October, that basically means that I have 4 tanks cycling right now, so I'm with you on this one!

I think it is a good idea to put the older axolotl into the new tank because s/he should be hardier than the younger ones.

As to the rest, you know it's just a waiting game. If you are going to put the older axolotl into the new tank in two days, there isn't really much you can do to speed up the cycle. In my humble experience and opinion, I'd say that the best way to get the cycle started in your situation is to put the axolotl into the new tank and wait a week, then start with your daily water changes.

It should be enough not to clean the old tank to provide the bacteria with enough food for the couple of days until the new axolotls come. If it looks like you will need a lot longer before getting new axolotls, leave the older one where he is, and put a pinch of fish flakes (or something like that) into the new tank to get the bacteria started. Maybe even your feeder fish - but please do feed them, too. I hate to think of anyone or anything going hungry!

-Eva



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Old 29th January 2009   #5
Jay
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blueberlin
As to the rest, you know it's just a waiting game. If you are going to put the older axolotl into the new tank in two days, there isn't really much you can do to speed up the cycle. In my humble experience and opinion, I'd say that the best way to get the cycle started in your situation is to put the axolotl into the new tank and wait a week, then start with your daily water changes.
I have to agree with Eva on this one. You're better off cycling the new tank with the new axolotl.

But, if you are still keen on the original idea, I would strongly suggest that you introduce the older axolotls the same way you would introduce any newly acquired animal into the aquarium.

That is, place the older axolotl into an aquarium safe bag (containing old tank water), and float the bag for at least 20 minutes, to equilibrate the temperature. You may want to use a thermometer to check the temperature of the bag and the new tank. When the temperature has reached an equilibrium, roll down the neck of the bag to form an air-filled collar. The air in the collar should keep the bag afloat. Next, slowly pour in some new tank water into the bag to fill at least half the bag. Lastly, you can scoop the axolotl out of the bag with a net (ensure that you have two separate nets), and introduce it into the tank. Remember to discard the old tank water.

Sorry if that all seemed some what mundane, but the idea of the mixing water (and such) from the quarantine tank with old tank is a risky business. Also, this precaution should minimise your axolotl(s) going through any unnecessary stress due to a drastic change in water chemistry.

Good luck with the rest!

Jay.



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Old 30th January 2009   #6
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Hey,

Sorry I'm confused Blueberlin said it would be a good idea to cycle my new tank with my old axolotl because he is hardier and Jay said i'm better to put my 2 babies in the new tank first.

I have checked the pH levels, Nitrate and ammonia levels of both tanks which are fine. Obviously the established tank has very low levels of nitrate but nothing dangerous. I'm new to cycling but I think this is right.

Currently my two little ones are being kept in plastic trays so I am keen to get them in their homes. The sand has pretty much settled in the big new tank now.

I know about floating the bag so that is fine, i'm anxious to resolve this tonight because I am at uni all day tommorow for an exam.

Thank you

Vikki



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Old 30th January 2009   #7
Neil Ellis
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Default Re: Just setting up my new tank, waiting for the sand to settle.

Hello vikki you will want to get that filter turned on right away as it will stir the water and I suggest if you have and live plant to add some as this will help cycle the water. That way if you stir the sand up planting it the filter can remove the suspended sediment before you add the axolotols. Try adding a little substate from you old tank will help along with the water to kick start the cycling. I know all this cycling seems complex but it is not, all you are trying to achieve is a balanced ecosystem with bacteria feeding on waste then plants using nutrients from the waste with the axeis at the top providing the waste good luck and take it slow watching carefully every day after you have added them to the tank and you will be fine



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