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New Nerm Survival Kit


Jennifer V
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I've had so much fun with my tank so far that my mom decided to buy one for my dad for his birthday. I started with all Tetra brand products -- heater (which already broke), flake food, chemicals like safe start, aquasafe, easy balance (I still don't know what that one does). My question is, what are your top recommendations for what I should put in my dad's care package to get him started? What would be in your survival kit? 

Edited by Jennifer V
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9 minutes ago, Jennifer V said:

@James Black he'll probably end up with mostly fake plants, although I want to send him some marimo moss balls. Do you have a water conditioner and heater you like best? It's a 10g tank. Should I get him a sponge filter or have him keep the hob the kit comes with? 

the sponge filter and the hob will do fine, it doesn't matter. I like the seachem prime as a water conditioner and as for the heaters, fluval makes some nice ones.

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I'd suggest easy strips for water testing (the easier testing is the more he'll do it), a gravel vac, fritz complete from the coop (so you get the pump top and 1 pump treats his whole tank), the med trio, aquarium salt, new sponges for in his HOB and a prefilter sponge or a sponge filter to replace it, an air stone/pump/tubing/checkvalve and a variety of fish foods. 

That's pretty much the shopping list I'd give anyone who just set up their first tank minus any stuff for plants. You also mentioned his heater broke. If he has fish that need one you can get him a small preset one. 

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A last minute gift could be going with him to the LFS to pick out fish based on the setup you've picked for him, giving him tips on various fish (this species could be too shy, this species grows too big, that species and the other one that you like will get along just fine, that fish will color up and look gorgeous, etc.). Good luck, what a lucky Dad he is!

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15 minutes ago, Maggie said:

A last minute gift could be going with him to the LFS to pick out fish based on the setup you've picked for him, giving him tips on various fish (this species could be too shy, this species grows too big, that species and the other one that you like will get along just fine, that fish will color up and look gorgeous, etc.). Good luck, what a lucky Dad he is!

Love this! He lives states away and I haven't seen him in quite awhile so this is my way of connecting with him. I just want him to have the best of everything! I don't think I started with the most amazing supplies because I just didn't know any better and hadn't found all of you gurus yet. 

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Maybe some beneficial bacteria, I've had my cycle crash before and it's probably a literal life saver. I personally love the Tetra Easy Strips. Also one or two buckets since they're a huge help with isolating fish for medication. Plus they're good for water changes. A pipette is also a huge help, especially once bottles get empty it can be hard to get exactly 2 ml for example.

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2 minutes ago, FlyingFishKeeper said:

Maybe some beneficial bacteria, I've had my cycle crash before and it's probably a literal life saver. 

What brand of beneficial bacteria do you use? Also, when you say your cycle crashed, does that mean the ammonia, nitrites, etc just went haywire all of the sudden? 

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Personally I use API's Quick Start, but I've heard good things about Fritz's. I had some ammonia, then dosed some bacteria and overnight it took care the majority of it. Might just be a fluke though, I would probably also decide if it's completely needed since I treat it more as a precaution and sometimes it's not needed for months. 

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