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I've just bought a tropical Tetra fish tank. I've added gravel, substrate, plants, bogwood, heater and filter and turned it on. I then added an airstone and air pump.

I'm not sure whether to add the chemicals to dechlorinate the water and whether I need to add the bacteria? I'm in no rush to add fish. Happy to wait a few weeks. But are the chemicals really necessary?

My reason for pausing is that I added chemicals in fish tanks in the past and got a sticky substance on the surface?
 

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dechlorinating chemicals are not necessary (using airstones for a week will dechlorinate the tank water).you can cycle your tank water by adding some fish food to the tank and/or using an old filtering medium (if available)
 

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That's about 15 gallons.
Start with maybe two or three types of fish and get one or two of each type. This way you get a few kinds to watch interact and some will be stronger than others. There's no set rule, just guidelines to go by. Feed very sparingly. Many of these tropical fish do not find much food in the wild, so keep that in mind.
Now that the tank is setup, and your about to put fish into it, right now overfeeding is the most important thing you need to be concerned with. Don't overfeed them and wait 8 weeks before adding others. Or, if you are into statistics, test and log the both the ammonia and the nitrite levels from now till then. In 6 or eight weeks, you should see both spike and fall, that's when it's ready for more fish. Then you can go to the store and get a few more of those or some different kinds.
 
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