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Advice on Quarantine Tanks


Guest ninjafish

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Guest ninjafish

Hello! I have a question about quarantine tanks. I currently have 1 oranda in a 20 gallon and I may get another one sometime. I have had 2 goldfish before in that tank. While I enjoy having more than 1 fish, my frustration is when one of them gets sick. I find myself rushing to start my quarantine tank to protect the other fish, but I also worry to stress the already sick fish by setting up an uncycled tank.

I have considered keeping a quarantine tank running for such emergencies. Do you keep a quarantine tank running all the time so you are prepared for a sick fish? I do know how the tank stays cycled if there are no fish in it most of the time.

If you do not keep a quarantine running, is it okay to just set up a quarantine tank when a fish gets sick? This is what I used to do. I've also tried to ease the stress of being in an uncycled tank with some Tetra Safe Start and using water from the old tank. What are your thoughts on Safe Start?

Thank you very much!

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Hi! Welcome to Koko's! Usually when we quarantine a fish we recommend 100% daily water changes and so the cycle of the tank doesn't matter since all the water is cleaned every day.

I personally don't use safe start but I'm sure someone else can give advice on the product.

As for keeping two goldfish in a 20G I wouldn't recommend it. Here we recommend 15-20 gallons per goldfish and so your tank is perfectly sized for the one oranda you have! How much filtration do you have on your tank? Do you have an airstone or bubble wand?

I'm not the expert here but I'm sure someone with more knowledge will be along shortly to answer more questions that I may have missed.

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The best thing to do is to have a clean, empty quarantine tank on hand.

You do not need to keep the QT running all the time :) If you did, you would need to add pure ammonia to the tank so the beneficial bacteria would "feed" on it( the ammonia acts as if there is a fish in the tank. I so not prefer to do this)

When you need the QT, just put some cycled media in the QT filter from your main tank's filter, and add water to the QT of the same temperature and pH as the main tank. Also, make sure the water is dechlorinated ;)

Edited by teleSC
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Hello! I have a question about quarantine tanks. I currently have 1 oranda in a 20 gallon and I may get another one sometime. I have had 2 goldfish before in that tank. While I enjoy having more than 1 fish, my frustration is when one of them gets sick. I find myself rushing to start my quarantine tank to protect the other fish, but I also worry to stress the already sick fish by setting up an uncycled tank.

Hello and welcome! It's not a good idea to keep the QT tank running for a long time. You could be accumulating pathogens in that tank, or have ones left over from a previous QT.

I agree that sick fish can be even more stressed in an uncycled tank, but only if you allow ammonia/nitrites to become harmful. Using Prime to detoxify, and changing water when needed is all you need to prevent this from happening. The frequent WCs are actually very helpful for the treatment.

I have considered keeping a quarantine tank running for such emergencies. Do you keep a quarantine tank running all the time so you are prepared for a sick fish? I do know how the tank stays cycled if there are no fish in it most of the time.

QTs should be started fresh each time, and depending on the situation, cycled media may or may not be used.

If you do not keep a quarantine running, is it okay to just set up a quarantine tank when a fish gets sick? This is what I used to do. I've also tried to ease the stress of being in an uncycled tank with some Tetra Safe Start and using water from the old tank. What are your thoughts on Safe Start?

I would definitely set up QT fresh each time. You don't actually need SafeStart, and you certainly don't need water from the old tank. SafeStart can work sometimes, but it seems iffy. Water from the old tank doesn't really provide any benefits, as far as cycling is concerned.

When you need help, please post. We will be happy to guide you through specifics. :)

Thank you very much!

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Guest ninjafish

Thank you very much for the input! It is always a panic when a fish seems sick and I have to decide if I should set up another tank. Much appreciated!

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