Aquatic Plant Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just set up a 5.5g with ~2" of Eco-Complete as the sole substrate. This is my second aquarium. I only have one pot of Eleocharis acicularis (dwarf hairgrass) and some Marsilea quadrifolia (clover) in there at the moment (I will be adding some rock or driftwood and a lot more plants in the next week).

I am a little unclear or confused on how long it will take this tank to be properly ready to stock with fish. I was thinking of getting some of the Scarlet Badis that Arizona Gardens has, and an Oto, some snails and shrimp. But when would it be safe for me to get some fish in there? The literature on Eco-Complete seems to indicate cycling times are shortened because the substrate is pre-stocked with bacteria.

Anyone have any experience with it? Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,710 Posts
I have never used eco-complete, but I would go ahead and add a fish or two to at least start the cycle. If you plant heavily you shouldnt notice much of a cycle at all really.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I will try that. I can take one of my small gourami's and put it in there for now. I wanted to check as I am still a little unsure about some of the technical issues of starting a tank and did not want to kill a fish.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
302 Posts
I can tell you what I did with eco-complete from experience. I tore down a tank and installed a new filter. I put in eco-complete and about 20 fish in a 20 gallon long. the fish were guppies btw. No ammonia spike or nitrite spike and it was good to go from the start. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
739 Posts
I'd add a single little fish or fish food alone and use a test kit to know when cycling has completed. Personally I have doubts about bacterial contents in eco-complete. Bacteria need oxygen and a food source to remain alive, I don't know how long bacteria can stay alive in a sealed bag of gravel without an ongoing food source, even if it is wet. Let us know how long it ends up taking.

Giancarlo Podio
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
302 Posts
GP you have a very good point. That reminds me that I should add that I planted heavily from the start. Perhaps it was the plants and not the eco-complete that saved my fish. =)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
147 Posts
I read somewhere, cannot quite remember where now, that it is not necessary to add fish for the tank to cycle... adding food alone cycles the tank in virtually the same tank.

No experience with eco-complete though, it may shorten the cycle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
My girlfriend had a small gourami (not sure exactly what the species is right this moment) that was getting picked on by other gourami in her one community tank. So we brought it over to this new 5.5g setup, and see how he does. Has the tail fin torn up a bit from the others. This tank has only been set up since Sunday, so this should initiate cycling, if the Eco-Complete has not done so already.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sir_BlackhOle said:
Do you have any test kits?
Yes I do. I have the AP Nitrate and GH/KH test kits, the Tetra pH test kit. And perhaps one or two others float ing around there. I have not had the chance to do any testing yet, but will try to by the weekend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Seems to be doing ok so far. I just added a lot of plants to the tank, perhaps too many. (The gourami seems kind of pissed off now, not enough swimming room :)

I took one of my freshwater clams from the 10g, and he's just buried himself in the eco-complete. Does not even stick a little bit out, like in the pea-gravel 10g. I assume he is ok. I found him while planting and just set him on top of the substrate. Had buried itself completely again within 15 mins.

Am currently acclimiating 2 small rummy nose tetras to the tank. Will see how they do. So far, so good! The Eco-Complete seems to very much make it simpler to get a tank started. I'm very happy with it so far.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Just want to mention that I used Eco Complete for my 7 gallon and I added a full stock of fish and shrimp - 6 pygmy cories, 1 bamboo shrimp, amano shrimp and a small gourami all withinthe period of a week with no ammonia or nitrite spike present (tested daily with each new fish addition)

I also had the eco complete sitting in water for at least two months, possibly three without any source of ammonia or anything like that, and water had been changed a bit before things were settled.

Amazing stuff, I like it ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
181 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
In the three tanks I have set up with Eco-Complete, a 5.5g a 2.5g and a 2g "jar", both seemed ready for fish very quickly. Like the previous poster, I found no nitrate or ammonia spikes. The live bacteria packed in the water with the substrate must work! The only "problem" I have with the Eco-Complete is that it is very light and easy for me to uproot things unintentionally with my big, clumsy hands. :)

But that is minor. The plants in general seem to like the stuff.

The only thing I have found is that the "natural" chemistry of an EC tank is pH ~8, 6dGH and 5dKH. The tap water in my city is always pH 7, 0dGH and 0dKH (it's about as empty as water can get).
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top