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Beginner Fish Added To The Aquarium

By King of DIY on

Joey Mullen: The beginner aquarium is done and I got to admit, it was a tremendous amount of fun even though we went from beginning to end in about 10 days. That's when I bought the fish and the plants, it was 10 days ago. You guys will remember, we started off with 80 barbs. Four different species, being one of the top five beginner fish in the hobby in my opinion. To an extent, it's arguable and debatable depending on who you talk to, but that said, barbs are colorful, active, hearty, and commonly available and pretty darn affordable. It was definitely high on my list for one of the next fish I want to get for the gallery showcasing tanks that are pretty beautiful that the beginner could probably get into or be inspired by.

That wasn't necessarily how this tank evolved, you guys will remember when we first set this tank up, which by the way is 120 gallons, four feet long, two feet wide, two feet tall. I needed some scaping supplies. I went inside, everything was frozen. You guys remember the story. I was able to dislodge one large piece of wood and that was it.

I couldn't find my rocks, I had no clue where they were, they're in the snow, and if I would have found them, they would've been frozen solid. I use the fake rocks that are in there, to begin with. The downside is, is not only are they fake, but they're hollow and can only be placed into one certain direction, up and down.

You can't really pile them either. I suppose you could, but anyways. The bottom line is, we have one piece of wood and four fake rocks and a bunch of beginner plants. This is what we come up with. I think it's absolutely beautiful considering what we had to work with. For those beginner hobbyists or trying to get into the hobby, I know that we always see these absolutely masterful aquariums, but it doesn't take much to create something beautiful. A few rocks and a piece of wood, maybe that's not what you go with, but I think this tank will show testament that you can create a beautiful aquarium with easy to keep, easy to find, affordable fish, and very minimal scaping supplies.

How did I get everything set up so quickly? Bottom line is, I typically quarantine for six weeks. This gives me enough time to monitor the fish, make sure they're healthy, make sure they're fattened up, make sure that they are stress-free and can handle going into a new aquarium. Of course, parasite, pathogen, and disease-free. Quarantining simply means keeping them in an aquarium separated from anything else that if these guys are sick, they could pass it on to somebody else. You guys know that I had the ability to remove, these systems are typically run-- This tank and this tank are on the same filter, for example, but I can remove one and run into another sump.

That's simply what I did with this tank. I knew I was going to be able to set this tank up immediately. Quarantine for 10 days and medicate the fish. I medicated their food, as well as the water just as a precaution which I typically don't do. I don't like doing it. I don't like causing stress to fish unneeded. These guys turned out to be pretty healthy, but we still will quarantine them in their own system apart from the tank above which has my exodons that look hungry right now. I dropped some meat in for them.

Basically, I took some already established media, which is biological media, the stuff that goes in your filter that houses the beneficial bacteria that breaks down the ammonium nitrite into nitrate which you removed through water changes or plants and immediately cycled this aquarium. A lot of people like to transfer old water from one tank to another. I got to say, there's not enough bacteria that live in the water column to support life. It can potentially help jumpstart the nitrogen cycle and cycling aquarium, but it's going to take a tremendous amount of time. Certainly not 10 days. It's going to take 6 to 10 weeks, but the bateria will live on everything within the aquarium.

There was already substrate in here, they'll live on the rocks, they'll live on the wood, they'll live on the glass, it will even live on the plants, but for the most part, you're beneficial bacteria is going to be concentrated in your filtration system. I took enough bacteria, and cycled media to filter easily 300 gallons, and I tossed it in this one just to make sure that in case there's any bacteria die off, they're still enough to support 80 tiny little fish.

Essentially, I was able to cycle this aquarium right from the jump. I know that this might sound like news to a lot of you because a lot of people that watch my videos are watching them for the first time, they're new but I've started every aquarium in the gallery like that. Taking established media from one tank and moving it to another. For example, this got tons of media in it now too much. I could take some of that and put it on to the next tank when I'm ready. We even did that for the 2000-gallon aquarium. If you don't think I trust that, I have eight fish and I paid probably a little more than $15,000 Canadian for. In the 2000, cycled that aquarium the same way. If I didn't believe in it, I certainly wouldn't risk some of the most difficult fish to keep that are really expensive.

When it was time to move them, drain that tank because there's no way I'm going to be able to catch 80 tiny little microscopic fish in a 120-gallon tank. Drain the tank to about, I don't know, three or four inches, scoop them out, and then simply add them in. Try to add them in all at once, but there's a couple of things that I noticed right off the bat which was entirely interesting to me. That was how each species interacted with the environment. You see, they didn't interact all in the same way. See the Odessas and the Rubies-- I don't if I'm saying Odessa, Odyssey. I say Odyssey because that's what it looks like it's spelled to me, and everybody's correcting me. I say things the way I want to say them and how I think I see them all the time. My apologies, it's just part of this channel you got to deal with. I say things differently and mispronounced everything all the time.

But the Odessas and the Ruby Reds or the Rubies, Neon Rubies, I forget what those ones were called through their common name. Those guys stayed near the top, where as the Golds and the Cherries hugged the bottom of the aquarium. Most of the fish hid for the first couple of minutes, but I swear, within about three minutes, the fish were throughout the entire aquarium doing just like they are now. I almost want to say that maybe there's too many in here, but over time, we'll see what happens.

They're obviously going to grow, put on some size substantially in comparison to what they are now and continue to develop their color especially since I'm going to be packing them full of color enhancing foods. Over time, I can see that the Cherries are still hugging the bottom, to an extent. Mostly through the bottom half of the tank and the Golds are as well. They come up more than the Cherries. I think that has a lot to do with the other types of barbs that are dominating the top space. Still interesting to see when you're trying to select a barb, this is a great example of four different species, how they're going to interact with their environment, as well as their coloration. You can make a choice based on that.

But definitely, if you are going to get barbs of any type, you will always want to start with at least 6 to 10 just because they certainly will interact well together. If you are interested in something like Tiger barbs, which is one of the first part I ever kept 17 years ago, they are nippy and they are probably one of more aggressive barbs. Anyways, how fast they acclimated to this aquarium was certainly a testament to how all the aquariums match in parameters. Basically, if you were to go scoop your fish, take them out, put them right back in the tank, they might be a little sad or mopey for a few minutes, but then it just goes back to normal. That's exactly what these guys here did.

Every tank in this gallery is ran exactly the same, the methods, and so forth. Now that the fish are in, I think this is going to be a really interesting tank to follow along. We'll see how it progresses. I don't think I want to add in more fish. I was thinking some bottom dwellers and what not, but I think we'll take advantage of the community style perhaps with0 the next aquarium. I definitely want to do a community aquarium with a lot of beginner fish. I also want to do a livebearer fish or a livebearer aquarium of some sort and see what happens there. I think we could have some pretty interesting results there. but that's the only three empty tanks left on the racking system, and I'm pretty excited to do it.

If you have any suggestions on what we should do there, I'm constantly taking in and seeing what you guys have to say and we'll go from there. We'll see what happens over the course of the next few weeks. I do know that it's been absolutely ridiculously cold outside. I'm not necessarily struggling to keep it warm out here, but I do have to make sure that water changes are done on time and the temperatures out here stay pretty stable.

It's been the coldest that's been a very long time, but I'm maintaining and everything's going according to plan, but wish me luck. It is cold. Anyways, I hope you guys enjoyed this tank. I certainly enjoy it. I think it's pretty awesome tank myself. If you're interested in this aquarium, you want to follow along with its progress or the new ones we will be setting up, make sure you subscribe if you are not already. I'll see you guys in the next video.

About King of DIY

Joey is THE King of DIY, and when he built his gallery of aquariums he chose the Custom Aquariums rack system with 120-gallon tanks...a lot of them!

Joey Mullen is also known as the king of DIY, uarujoey or the DIY fishkeeper on social media. Providing education and inspiration for aquarium enthusiasts on YouTube, he is also the author of The Ultimate DIY Handbook; for the DIY Aquarist. His channel is about educating all levels of fish tank hobbyists who are passionate about caring for fish and keeping an aquarium of their own. Joey's aquarium rack systems were custom made by our professional fish tank engineers, here at Custom Aquariums.

Please watch the King of DIY's videos for some helpful information and great tips on diy aquarium keeping.

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