30 gal fish tank cycling?!

Question: 30 gal fish tank cycling?
I haven't had one this big before and im finding out that i need to cycle it,i found a guide on how to do it on ehow http://www.ehow.com/how_5515094_cycle-fish-tank-fish.html
Do i have to do this? is this the right way?I do want my fish to be healthy so if i do have to its fine. Im getting fancy gold fish.I have had them before but i have never done this to my tanks and they where all fine. Also i have some beautiful sea shells i would like to put in my tank how would i make them ready for my tank? Just wash them off in hot water and then put in there? Thanks for your help.


Yes you need to cycle the tank otherwise you'll need to be doing full water changes on that 30 gallon tank weekly, which is nearly impossible & lead to some bad water quality issues. 2nd, don't add shells-the throw the tank's PH off which can stress/sicken your fish. To disinfect other decor, running it under warm water is usually enough-make sure to check the bottom as they often hide tiny round inspection stickers there.

It's best to fishless cycle the tank before adding fish, as the spikes & dips during the cycling process do permanent gill damage to fish & can sicken or kill them. It usually takes 4-8 weeks, so wait until it's done to purchase your goldfish. Here's info.: http://www.myfishtank.net/articles/fishl…
You need:
filter (Hagen's has good filters @ PetCo. Since goldfish are so messy you need double the filtration for the tank, i.e. your 30 gallon tank needs the filtration for a 60 gallon)
filter cartridge
water conditioner (removes chlorine, chloramines, heavy metals. AquaClear (WalMart, PetSmart) or Prime & Novaquel (PetSmart) used together are good.
pure ammonia (@ hardware stores)
gravel vacuum
decor (do the pantyhose test-run a pair over plants & decor-inside & out. Places where they snag are also places where fins will snag, so file them down.
plants (real or silk-plastic snag fins)
eye dropper
water test kit-liquid only. Strip tests are more $ over time & inaccurate. Use liquid test kits. "Master Test Kits": http://www.walmart.com/ip/Tetra-Laborett…
light (optional)
seeding material-you can use their food, a few handfuls of gravel from an established tank in the end of a pair of pantyhose left on the tank gravel or a filter cartridge from an established tank.

You can check Craigslist, freecycle,com, Ebay, backpage.com or online fish forums for many of the avobe items as people usually sell tanks &/or equipment cheaply or give them away on those sites.

Once the tank's cycled, you'll change 10-25% of the water & vaccum 1/3 of the gravel 1x/week (exact levels will be determined by your water test results). Make sure to not change too much water or vacuum too much gravel because it can cause a mini-cycle. And make sure to stay up w/the water changes as otherwise the water quality won't be good which will stress & can sicken or even kill your fish.

I'm not an expert but have been rescuing sick, injured, old and handicapped bettas from Wal-Mart, PetSmart, etc. for five years. Because most vets don't do much with fish I've had to learn through research and experience, and am pretty good at diagnosing because I've seen most betta health issues at this point.

you don't really need to do all that although some of it is right.
You can add fish food instead of ammonia which is cheaper and works in the same way.
And you don't need a heater but it does speed the process up.
you also need to add bacteria like once everyweek
you can also tell when your tank is cycling by seeing brown alge starting to grow or your tank getting really cloudy.
when it is over the alge will turn green

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