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  1. #1
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    Feb 2012
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    04-21-2012 1:06 PM

    First freshwater tank! 55g

    A few years back I was running a heavily modified 8g Biocube nano reef setup, which I absolutely loved and ran flawlessly for nearly a year.

    After being out of the hobby for a while, I decided to give it another go with a much larger and much more freshwater tank. Ended up snagging a 55 gallon complete setup off craigslist, and finally got it mostly set up on Saturday. I'm running a Cascade 1000 pump with all brand new filters and zero established bacteria colony. I know I'll likely get a lot of mixed opinions about starting with a product called Nutrafin Cycle; but I decided to give it a go; as I have no livestock and realize that in a worse case scenario, all I have to do is drain and restart from scratch and get a bacteria source from a LFS.

    First day and second day; did the Cycle product as directed as well as adding in a bit of fish food to start the ammonia process.
    Third day, came home from work today to see that the water had went from cloudy to completely clear over the course of the day.
    Ran some tests and as expected, ammonia is very high. Going to recheck in a couple days and see where it stands.

    As of right now; I plan to stock the following:
    4x Sparkling Gourami
    5x Tiger Barb
    5x Boeseman's Rainbowfish
    5x Celebes Halfbeak
    4x Oto
    1x Red Tailed Black Shark

    I ran all of the above through the calculator at aqadvisor and the results showed zero conflicts and all species fall into nearly the same water temperature range. I also plan on filling out the tank with live plants over the next few weeks.

    So, the questions:
    1. I'm not too terribly in love with the Halfbeaks or Red Tailed Black Shark's...anyone have any suggestions as to what I can use to replace them that will also do well; and am I nearly fully stocked, or can I add more? I'm looking for some fish with a bit of color and activity.

    2. The tank came with a 200W Stealth heater which I had assumed was broken after the tank wouldn't heat past 68 degrees. Now I'm running a 300W cranked almost all the way up and sitting directly in the path of water distribution but the tank is sitting at 79 degrees; is it normal for a tank of this size to take a while to heat up?

    And alas; a picture. YES, I bought a random plant at petco that I know isn't an aquatic plant. I merely did it to appease the girlfriend so she'd stop asking when we could put something in there. It'll be removed after I get my shipment of plants.
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