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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i'm trying to set up a small aquarium to keep my bait minnows in between uses so i don't have to throw away what i don't use.

in the past when i've tried my hands on decorative aquariums, i always had a problem with the water being murky and was never able to keep it nice and clear like in the stores, or some nice setups i've seen in peoples houses.

my current setup is a 10gallon tank with a millenium3000 http://www.aquariumguys.com/mi30fi.html
a light layer of clean storebought gravel on the bottom, and a small rock on the side for the fishies to swim around.

the fish always seem and act healthy, but the water always looks like i just scooped it out of a pond. i've tried changing the water, and i also use those additives to take all the harmfull stuff out of the water. but why is it always cloudy/murky looking???
 

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How many fish are you talking?

Overfeeding, excess natural light, and too many fish (large bioload) are the most common causes of water problems.

Try and keep the tank away from windows in your house. Use bulbs that are out of the spectrum in which algea grows to like the tank. Coralife 50/50's are a decent bulb that come in all sorts of sizes. They have a small CF bulb that should screw into your hood.

Also don't overfeed or overload your tank. With that filter you can step up to a larger size tank if you need to.

On a fresh water tank your going to have very little natural filtration. So make sure you keep your charcoal changed frequently, and do 10-15% water changes every week. Use the tank water you pull out to rinse the filters in your tank.

Your going to find out that keeping a clean, healty aquarium costs more than just throwing the damn minows out.
 

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HURL SCOUTS
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your filter is plenty big to handle that small tank. I run a 3000 on my daughters 30 gal deep tank and it keeps it nice and clean. the bad thing about those filters is that the elements plug and get nasty fairly quick. here are reasons why your tank can be cloudy:
1. ammoina
2. ph balance
3. phosphate imbalance
4. too many fish
5. fish that mess up the tank/root around in the gravel
6. new unseasoned water

new tanks can take up to 3 weeks to initially cycle until biological levels will stabilize. I have tried every commercial product to ellivate this over the last 24 years and the only thing that will let you avoid this is getting seasoned water from another aquarium. get yourself a small water testing kit and some start right. the start right will help condition the water and protect the fish's natural slime coat. test your water frequently to make sure the levels are stabilizing in the right direction. keep the charcoal in the filters fresh as it removes the toxic ammonia and other impurities from the water mostly from fish waste. depending on the fish your water may need to be more base or acidic and temp control is important becuase some fish cannot handle warmer water and can develop many health problems. if the water is just remaining cloudy I would suspect the tank is cycling. if the water is cloudy and the fish seem lethargic, gasping for air at the top, or are dying off the problem is water balance.

get an air stone in there to circulate the water. THE BUBBLES FROM AIR STONES DO NOT PUT AIR IN THE WATER the bubbles create disturbance in the surface of the aquarium and allow oxygen to enter into the water. also watch your light if it has one, too big of a hood light can overheat the tank.

here is what I would do.
1. fill tank with water
2. use de-clorination chemical to make water safe
3. dose with start right
4. put 1/2 to 1 tsp of aquarium salt in there
5. hook up your filter
6. run filter for 48-72 hours in tank before putting fish in there
7. test water ph & acidity/base adjust if needed until it is where it needs to be
8. put fish in there

remember an aquarium is just a small scale marine ecosystem and can take a lot of work and don't usually get clear until the biological micro bacteria forms to give you biological filtration. a bio wheel will help with this but will not speed anything up.
 

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Cadillac pimpin
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Sometimes the tank just has to cycle/age and it clears up on its own.
Not just sometimes.... Always.

A new aquarium will need to cycle. It typically takes 3-5 weeks in order for the filter media to build enough beneficial bacteria to handle the bio load.

Once your nitrAte, nitrIte, (they are very different) and ammonia get down to safe levels...it should clear up and be good to go (assuming you dont overload it)

Never clean the filter media w/ tap water (the chlorine instantly kills your beneficial bacteria), and never change more than 50% of your water.
 

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If its strictly for feeder/bait minnows I wouldn't run a substrate at all. Basically run it like a quarantine tank. The twin biowheels on that filter should be plenty to clear ammonia from the tank, they probably just need to cycle first. Honestly what I would do is either ask a friend with an aquarium or a friendly mom and pop store if you can run your filter in one of their tanks to speed up the establishment of bacteria. You could even swap a biowheel from your new one with one of theirs if its the same brand.
 

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The guy Dale doesn't know
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wow, you guys put a lot of effort into your tanks. i have a 29 gallon eclipse tank, with a couple dempseys, three clown loaches, an oscar and a pleco. i clean my filter every three months whether i need to or not, and replace it about once a year. i add water when it needs it. i only feed my fish with other fish, a dozen. i have never tested my water. i have only lost two clown loaches, but that was because the oscar was hungry.

i think a lot of people worry too much about the ph levels of the tank. as long as you don't overload the size of the tank, and keep it out of direct sunlight, it'll take care of itself.
 

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wow, you guys put a lot of effort into your tanks. i have a 29 gallon eclipse tank, with a couple dempseys, three clown loaches, an oscar and a pleco. i clean my filter every three months whether i need to or not, and replace it about once a year. i add water when it needs it. i only feed my fish with other fish, a dozen. i have never tested my water. i have only lost two clown loaches, but that was because the oscar was hungry.

i think a lot of people worry too much about the ph levels of the tank. as long as you don't overload the size of the tank, and keep it out of direct sunlight, it'll take care of itself.
I actually do my tanks the same way. They're presently down now, but I have a 75, 40, 20, 10, and 10. I lost everything in the 75g because my kid put a cup of bleach into the tank. And I lost it a second time to a power outage.

Usually my deaths are the result of bloat, or tank catastrophe. I want oscars again though.
 

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Get Some
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I have a 30 gallon and do very little to it. I change the filter every couple of months, and add water when it is low. The water is clear and only lost fish after moving into the new house, the fish did not like the move.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
the water is only 2 days old. i used tap water and then put some tablets in that the pet store told me to use. it's supposed to change tap water into good aquarium water by removing/neutralizing a bunch of stuff.

it's in the living room on the far end away from windows. it's at the entrance to the hallway almost in the middle of the house.

no light bulbs on the tank. just whatever natural light is in the house (with white curtains pulled over the windows), or when we have the lights on in the evening.

i only have 2 little 2" crayfish in there right now.

i have a 20gallon aquarium sitting in my attic that i'm thinking about setting up with a divider, so i can have crayfish on one side and minnows on the other side.


A new aquarium will need to cycle. It typically takes 3-5 weeks in order for the filter media to build enough beneficial bacteria to handle the bio load.
i've been reading online alot and it keeps talking about the "cycling" and "bacteria growth" to properly clean the water. but on my millenium 3000 it says to change the filter every 21 days. so if i replace the filter every month, then won't i be throwing this "good bacteria" away??? i'm confused on this whole bacteria thing.

ovrlnd: you said ur running the 3000??? do you know what those 2 blue tubes up top are for. they sound like they adjust airflow in the water or something, but i'm not sure. i have them pointing straight up for "what sounds like max airflow".

i also have the water speed on the filter just under max flow. should i maybe slow it down a bit, or leave it at max flow???



i really would like to use the aquarium, because i like the way aquariums look. and i thought i could accomplish 2 things at once. have an aquarium, and my own bait minnows. :sonicjay: :sonicjay: or should i just move the whole "minnow factory" to the basement and just put them in a giant tube with basic provisions like at the bait shops??? any recommendations on "just keeping it simple"??? just figured i'll ask. but i really would like to try and make the aquarium work.


PS: somebody told me that supposedly the bigger the aquarium, the easier it will be to keep it clean/healthy and clear because there won't be such a large concentrations of fish poop etc... in a small quantity of water. so if i had 5 fish in a 10gallon tank, it would be dirtier than if i had the same 5 fish in a 20+ gallon tank. does that make sense, or not??? like i said, i do have 2 20 gallon tanks in the attic i could set up.
 

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understand that the filter is not the bacteria portion of the unit. Thats the job of the biowheels. The filter is strictly for mechanical filtration.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
so which part is the biowheel??? i don't remember reading anything about a biowheel on that filter.

man talking about aquariums makes me feel like i used to year ago when people were talking cars. LOL
 

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so which part is the biowheel??? i don't remember reading anything about a biowheel on that filter.

man talking about aquariums makes me feel like i used to year ago when people were talking cars. LOL
I just went to the link. Is that not the unit pictured int he link?
 

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the water is only 2 days old. i used tap water and then put some tablets in that the pet store told me to use. it's supposed to change tap water into good aquarium water by removing/neutralizing a bunch of stuff.

it's in the living room on the far end away from windows. it's at the entrance to the hallway almost in the middle of the house.

no light bulbs on the tank. just whatever natural light is in the house (with white curtains pulled over the windows), or when we have the lights on in the evening.

i only have 2 little 2" crayfish in there right now.

i have a 20gallon aquarium sitting in my attic that i'm thinking about setting up with a divider, so i can have crayfish on one side and minnows on the other side.



i've been reading online alot and it keeps talking about the "cycling" and "bacteria growth" to properly clean the water. but on my millenium 3000 it says to change the filter every 21 days. so if i replace the filter every month, then won't i be throwing this "good bacteria" away??? i'm confused on this whole bacteria thing.

ovrlnd: you said ur running the 3000??? do you know what those 2 blue tubes up top are for. they sound like they adjust airflow in the water or something, but i'm not sure. i have them pointing straight up for "what sounds like max airflow".

i also have the water speed on the filter just under max flow. should i maybe slow it down a bit, or leave it at max flow???



i really would like to use the aquarium, because i like the way aquariums look. and i thought i could accomplish 2 things at once. have an aquarium, and my own bait minnows. :sonicjay: :sonicjay: or should i just move the whole "minnow factory" to the basement and just put them in a giant tube with basic provisions like at the bait shops??? any recommendations on "just keeping it simple"??? just figured i'll ask. but i really would like to try and make the aquarium work.


PS: somebody told me that supposedly the bigger the aquarium, the easier it will be to keep it clean/healthy and clear because there won't be such a large concentrations of fish poop etc... in a small quantity of water. so if i had 5 fish in a 10gallon tank, it would be dirtier than if i had the same 5 fish in a 20+ gallon tank. does that make sense, or not??? like i said, i do have 2 20 gallon tanks in the attic i could set up.


there is some truth to that, however it also depends on the size of the fish. Another important piece to this puzzle is if you have city water or well water? With city water, the cycle time tends to be longer and harder to reach certain ph levels without using specific chemicals for your application. With well water, generally you will have a softner so adding salt is not necessary to keep a good healthy brackish water condition and a lot of time there is no wait for putting fish right in(of course, that is my experience with the 135, 55, 29, 20 and 10 gallon aquariums that i have) your successes may vary depending on your water. With city water you will want to add a little salt. How many minnows and what size r they?
 

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Also, that filter you have is plenty large for your aquarium. make sure to check your charcoal and that it is good and clean, then make sure you have the pump operating at maximum flow. there should be a knob or something that you can adjust and you shuold be able to visibly see the water pouring over the shutes faster. put it at the highest rate.
 

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HURL SCOUTS
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scorpio, the tubes on the 3000 ariate the filter water and help the bio-grid (the black plastic interts, not the filter inserts) this is a nice feature on this filter and I usually run them up. the 3000 doesn't have bio wheels they use the grid.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
there is some truth to that, however it also depends on the size of the fish. Another important piece to this puzzle is if you have city water or well water? With city water, the cycle time tends to be longer and harder to reach certain ph levels without using specific chemicals for your application. With well water, generally you will have a softner so adding salt is not necessary to keep a good healthy brackish water condition and a lot of time there is no wait for putting fish right in(of course, that is my experience with the 135, 55, 29, 20 and 10 gallon aquariums that i have) your successes may vary depending on your water. With city water you will want to add a little salt. How many minnows and what size r they?
i'm pretty sure it's city water. why do i have to add salt for freshwater fish??? and how much is "a little". i'm gonna start setting up the 20gallon tank tonight so i can let it cycle for a while. no minnows just yet. just 2 crayfish that i caught. my minnow traps aren't comming in until next week. i was kinda thinking about keeping like 12-24 minnows in the 20gallon depending on what size they are.



Also, that filter you have is plenty large for your aquarium. make sure to check your charcoal and that it is good and clean, then make sure you have the pump operating at maximum flow. there should be a knob or something that you can adjust and you shuold be able to visibly see the water pouring over the shutes faster. put it at the highest rate.
highest flow rate. will do. as for the charcoal/filter, they're brand new. i bought all new filters for the millenium 3000 since it's been unused for a while.

scorpio, the tubes on the 3000 ariate the filter water and help the bio-grid (the black plastic interts, not the filter inserts) this is a nice feature on this filter and I usually run them up. the 3000 doesn't have bio wheels they use the grid.
air up. that's what i had them on. just didn't know if i should. thanks.
 
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