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Fish-in Cycling w/ Betta and ADFs; help ASAP!!!

Discussion in 'Cycle your Tank' started by Pandoeuvre, Mar 19, 2019.

  1. Pandoeuvre

    Pandoeuvre New Member

    Mar 19, 2019
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    So I think we messed up.

    We got a new Betta fish(Keanu) and six ADFs the other day, and literally this morning I found out about cycling... The Betta is in the 3.5 gallon, and we have two tanks. We've got three ADFs in each, and the Betta in one, with the intent of getting another betta for the other once we find a white one we like. The issue is, these tanks have not been cycled, which I was just notified was an issue. Keanu is the most beautiful fish I've ever seen and I'd love to keep him- I've read that in a tank less than 10 gallons one fish might be able to survive a fish-in cycling. That means Keanu might be able to survive, if he is alone, right?

    I've done a lot of cram research the past couple hours, but I've found more on Bettas than ADFs. Can ADFs survive cycling? If so, can we keep three in the other tank, or would it have to be a solo frog? We are going to get seachem prime and that master api liquid test kit tonight. We have never kept aquariums, except for me having a couple even more poorly cared for Bettas in the past as a child who did not know any better, and this is relatively new to us, but I'd really like to at least keep Keanu... Should we return all the frogs, do one fish-in cycling and one fish-less?? These are filtered, 3.5 gallon tanks that we are going to get heaters for ASAP. They have several fake plants each, a good 1-2 inches of gravel in the bottom, and decor that the fish and frogs can hide in.

    As much as I'd love to keep that beautiful Betta, above all else I want to know what the advice is. Can we keep the Betta? Should we? Can we keep any of the frogs? Should we? Would it be a worthwhile experience to do a fish-in and a fish-less cycling at the same time in separate tanks? We set them up last night, and I don't know what the ammonia, nitrate, nitrite, and pH levels are. We also don't know the temperature. Our home sets at around 76F because my partner prefers heat- I don't know if that means that the water is 76F or not though. Without specific numbers, is there any advice anybody can give? Especially regarding the ADFs.
  2. Guppylover3x

    Guppylover3x Fish Addict
    Tank of the Month Winner!

    Jan 8, 2019
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    Hello and welcome to the forum :hi:

    I am glad you have learnt about the nitrogen cycle. You need to test the water everyday for ammonia and nitrites. When readings show above 0 for either of these perform a water change. Ammonia can also be reduced by using a gravel cleaner weekly to take out any excess food/waste in the gravel. Live plants are always better than fake plants as this creates a natural habitat for fish. A fishless cycle is always better as it causes less stress for the fish, if you have time I would recommend doing it this way. The Betta alone will be fine in the 3.5g though they prefer a 5g. Temperature is also part of the perameters that need to be maintained. You can add a thermometer to measure it. From my knowledge I’m sure bettas usually prefer warmer water and need a temperature of 78-80F (25/26c) I prefer to add LCD thermometers (stick on) as opposed to the normal ones. This is due to normal ones taking up space in the tank. I have never had any experience with frogs so I am unable to answer this question unfortunately but I am sure other members can help. Best of luck.
    #2 Guppylover3x, Mar 19, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2019
  3. Deanasue

    Deanasue Moderator
    Staff Member Moderator Global Moderator Tank of the Month Winner!

    Oct 29, 2018
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    Guupylover3x is correct. You can do a fish in cycle with the betta and it sounds like you have already researched on how to do it. Be sure to do water changes and use Seachem Prime as your dechlorinator as it will temporarily bind the toxic chemicals and protect your fish for up to 32 hours. I know nothing about tha ADF’s though. In researching them, I find nothing on fish in cycling for them. I would return them to the Lfs if you can until tank is cycled. If they won’t take them back then get a bottle of Tetra Safe Start+ bottled bacteria. It will at least speed the process up some for you. Don’t use Seachem Prime for 24 hours after using the Safestart because it can destroy the bottled bacteria. Use another dechlorinator during this time. After the 24 hour period begin using the Prime with every water change. You can do this on both tanks. Do you know anyone with some used filter media or gravel? Perhaps your Lfs? If they will give you some and you keep it wet and take it directly home to the tanks, it will help “ seed” your tank with beneficial bacteria and get it going faster. Simply put the used media in back of your new media in the filter or put the gravel in a panty hose and lay it in your tank. Let us know if you have questions. Good luck!
    #3 Deanasue, Mar 19, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2019
  4. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

    Jan 26, 2008
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    Perth, WA
    Post # 6 at the following link has some info on what to do with a fish in cycle.

    If you can get bigger tanks 10 gallon instead of 3.5 gallon, it is better for the fish and frogs. Maybe ask the shop if you can swap the tanks for bigger tanks and pay the difference.

    Frogs need a 10 gallon tank or bigger.

    Frogs are just as sensitive as fish when it comes to ammonia, nitrite & nitrate (or any other chemical), and any ammonia in the water can kill them. However, unlike fish that get burnt gills from ammonia, the frogs absorbs the ammonia into their body through their skin and it poisons them and damages their internal organs.

    Frogs should only be kept in a single species tank with an established filter and no fish because they regularly eat small fish. And if the fish get sick, the medications used to treat the fish will usually kill the frogs.
  5. essjay

    essjay Moderator
    Staff Member Moderator Global Moderator

    Nov 28, 2006
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    Teesside, UK
    I would never keep frogs with a betta. Not again after what happened several years ago when I tried it.

    ADFs are almost blind. They find their food by smell and this takes a little while. Bettas are very greedy fish and by the time the frogs have found where you put their food, the betta will have eaten it all. I ended up with a terracotta plant pot stood upside down, with frog sized holes cut in the rim and a stone over the hole in the bottom of the pot (which was now on top) and I put the frog food in that. It did not take long for the betta to realise he could manage to get inside but not out again.

    Because ADFs are almost blind they lunge at anything that moves thinking it is food. This includes betta's tails. I found the betta swimming frantically round the tank trying to dislodge the frog which was clamped to his tail. I immediately set up my quarantine tank, split the filter media between the tanks and moved the frogs out.

    Despite what you may read, frogs need more than bloodworm. There are a few makes of frog food which are suitable for ADFs, depending where you live. I am in the UK and used ZooMed Frog & Tadpole Food.
    There is a good pinned thread on ADFs here http://www.fishforums.net/threads/african-dwarf-frogs.234165/

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