I'm buying a 30 gallon soon and I wanted to get 2 Dalmatian Molly's to occupy the tank as well as one other fish. From reading endless articles is it true that I would have to add aquarium salt with the Mollies??? If so would that be harmful or annoying to the other fish that I choose to be a tankmate. Is there anyone that has DM and if so what plants and food do you think they seem to enjoy. I was thinking of getting a few gold ribbon plants but there are sooooo many to choose from but I would feel more comfortable with one's that are easy to care for.
Also if I might add that the tank cycling has my nerves in overdrive!! I read a very good and detailed post to start off set up My tank minus the fish add Tetra safestart and that I should test daily with a paperless test kit for accuracy and use Prime as the water conditioner, add ammonia in the mornings then in the evening test for ammonia and nitrite. After a few weeks of adding ammonia and testing plus partial water changes as well as ammonia/nitrite readings at 0 the tank should be properly cycled. What do you think??
There is no need to put salt into your tank for Molly. They do fine in freshwater.
Consider you plan to add plants, plants hate salt although they can tolerate slight salt concentration.
As for what food to feed them, they aren't picky eaters from what I know. You can try any high quality flake or pellets as stamp food. I recommend Omega One and New Life Spectrum. They are the best of the best for stamp food. Pellets might be superior to flakes due to their nutrition do not dissolve into the water as quickly once you throw them into the tank, and fish can easily eat them whole without polluting the water.
This article talks about the high quality fish food. You really only need just one stamp food, and then feed 1 or 2 supplement treats once or twice a week. http://petskeepersguide.com/best-food-to...sh-colors/
For plants, if you haven't had a lot of experience with them, I suggest you start with hardy plants such as Java Moss, Java Fern, and Anubia. They are easy to take care off. To have plants, you need to have good lights. I use T5HO lights in my own aquarium.
You are on the right track for planning to do fishless nitrogen cycle first.
Tetra SafeStart is a form of live bacteria product. Most of us have had good experience with it, while a few claim have had poor results from it. Whether or not you decide to use it, you should be prepared to cycle it normally and only see this product as a jump start for your cycle.
If you have access to an established tank, by getting a piece of filter media from that tank can also allow you to heavy seeding your new fish tank. It might have the same effect as Tetra SafeStart whch will give you a jump start on the cycling.
It is quite simple to cycle a fish tank, but it takes lots of patients as it might take weeks for it to complete.
If you decide to use Tetra SafeStart, you need to get a bottle rated at least twice your tank size. Dump it all in and let it sit for at least half a day before you add very little ammonia (must be pure ammonia in this case). Because the live bacteria will start to die if without a food source for more than 24 hours.
Just use API master kit to test your water. It is the most common aquarium water test kit used by most of us.
No problem. You might need to know that while keeping a planted aquarium is a lot more fun and it definitely look better, it can be a lot more troublesome and require a whole new level of maintenance. It will also cost you more if you want to keep it seriously. I would recommend you to plant the plants first and let them have a head start while you do the fishless cycle. Fish can come in much later.
To set up a planted aquarium, there is a video in this thread worth watch. http://petskeepersguide.com/forums/Threa...d-aquarium