10 GALLON AQUARIUMS FOR THE FAINT OF HEART
If you can, buy
the aquarium combos that come w/ the overhead (biofilter), hood
& light, you will save some money.
**Items required to start
a viable tank:
**Set your tank up with
everything including water. Let sit for at least 3 days.
(may be part of the aquarium combo)
10 biofilter (may be part of the aquarium combo)
& light (may be part of the aquarium combo)
pump for a 20 gallon tank
to cover ľ” of the bottom of the tank
plants (Swords & Java Fern are good, so is Water Wisteria
– AVOID anacharis) RINSE THOUROUGHLY TO REMOVE ANY HIDDEN SNAILS
beginners guide to freshwater aquariums, pick one that
includes tank setup.
Add your fish in
groups over a period of 1-2 weeks.
recommendation for a 10 gallon tank (this will technically
“overstock” your tank, but with the live plants & dual
filtration, it will work). These fish are all generally pretty
hardy fish & should take a lot of neglect, but you don’t
want to neglect them if you can help them:
male Betta (only 1 Betta – more than 1 & they will kill
Zebra Danio’s (not necessarily male/female)
small cory catfish for the bottom
(plecostamus) - this is important because a NON-dwarf pleco
WILL outgrow your tank
- DO NOT GET A SNAIL
can add off & on as needed something called feeder shrimp
or ghost shrimp (these will be eaten by other fish, but will
also help keep the bottom clean)
the tank is always full. It will dissipate water about 1
pitcher full a week, just fill it with regular tap water
will want a magnet scraper to clean the sides about 1x every
3-4 weeks. This keeps the algae off the side of the tank
needed (when the water starts to take on a decidedly yellow
tint) empty at least ˝ of the tank & refill with tap
water. Depending on your tap water, you may need to let it
stand overnight before adding it to the tank
something called Cycle & Betta Fix available for your
tank. The Cycle can be added 1 capful every 2 weeks. The Betta
Fix should be added if the fish start showing signs of
decreased activity, fin rot, spots (spots can also indicate
something called Ich which any pet store can sell you a cure).
Hints & Tips
- By a
cheap “fountain” pump & the hose to go with it – this
makes emptying the tank easier than using the siphons the pet
shops sell. If you can’t find the pumps for $9 or less, the
siphons are just fine, but getting them started is a pain.
Harbor Freight is good for these small pumps.
dead fish as soon as you see it.
weekend & weekly feeder tablets on hand in case you need
to leave unexpectedly (Wardley makes the best).
small/micro pellet food if at all possible (Nutra-Fin Max for
tropical fish is my recommendation). Pellet food is cleaner
than the flake food thus making tank maintenance easier.
light only needs to be on during the day, optimally only 4-6
should not need a heater for the fish, but if you do, by a top
quality one – it’s worth the extra expense to have a safe
heater. For those of you in Northern/Mid West climates, a
heater may be necessary, especially during the colder months –
it largely depends on what room temperature is.
the aquarium in direct sunlight.
sure you have a proper aquarium stand or that there is no
question the place you set your aquarium can handle the
weight. I think a gallon of water weighs 8 lbs. or something
like that, plus you add the gravel & your talking 90 lbs.
There’s nothing worse than coming home & finding 10
gallons of water on your floor because the “table” collapsed.
OF THESE SAME RULES APPLY TO LARGER TANKS AS WELL. AS A
GENERAL RULE, YOU WANT 1" OF FISH FOR EVERY GALLON OF WATER
(KEEPING IN MIND THAT THE FISH YOU BUY TODAY AT 1" MAY BE 4"
IN A YEAR). 1 x 2" betta, 5 x 3" danio's, 5 x 3" swordtails,
10 x 1" tetra's, 1 x 6" regular pleco (will grow to 13" or so)
= 40 gallons (you can do more BECAUSE of the dual filtration
method I recommend, IF you scale up your overhead filter &
add a power head (or 2) to your undergravel filter).
IN MY OPINION DOUBLE
FILTRATION WITH THE BIOFILTER OVERHEAD & THE UNDERGRAVEL
AT THE BOTTOM, MAKE FOR MUCH EASIER MAINTENANCE.