Setting up a quarantine tank

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Apr 11, 2023
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Good day, everyone.

My main tank is ready and I'm itching to get more fish for it. I want to get more corydoras for the two adult corys I already had, if people remember from my stocking thread. The temporary tank they were in was put together quickly due to me moving, so it was not cycled. And it hadn't cycled while they were in it. I wanted to get them into the newly cycled tank as soon as I could.

The temp tank is now going to be used as a quarantine tank. So, I just have a few questions.

I have read I should cycle a quarantine tank. I have also read that if you put a sponge from a cycled tank into another tank, you don't need to wait for the cycling process to finish. Is that true? I use HOB filters, and the one in my cycled tank has two foam pieces in it. Can I take one of the foam and put it in the quarantine tank?

As for treatment, I read that if you don't see any illness you can still put a tiny amount of medication just in case. I have Melafix and some ich medication. I can't find anything for parasites, so I have aquarium salt. Should I put a small amount of any of these, or just do salt treatment?

Any advice would be appreciated.
Don't add any treatment unless the fish have obvious illnesses which can be diagnosed accurately. The only medications which could be used routinely in a quarantine tank are worming meds as many fish from the far east breeding farms arrive with worm infections. But I do not know which, if any, worming meds are available in Canada. Hopefully our Canadian members will be able to help there.
Don't bother with Melafix, it's tea tree oil. (And Pimafix is bay tree oil)

The media in a cycled tank will have bacteria on them. Taking mature media from a cycled tank will instantly transfer some bacteria to an uncycled tank, leaving the rest of the bacteria behind with the media in the donor tank. It should work provided you don't overstock the quarantine tank - and keep an eye on the ammonia and nitrite levels in the donor tank for a couple of days.
However, if the donor tank is heavily planted, there may be just a tiny number of bacteria on the media in which case fill the QT with cheap plants like anacharis left floating.
I like to add some fast growing floating plants to my quarantine tank to improve the water quality. It's excess from the main tank that I was going to throw away anyways. And then I throw them out after the quarantine. Otherwise, I put plastic plants and plastic pvc pipe fittings in mine for the fish to explore and hide in. Plastic because it doesn't hold pathogens as well and is easier to sterilize.

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