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What should I do??

gottahavepets
November 3rd, 2005, 09:38 PM
I have a 25 gal tank, with an AC 50 (was 200) filter and lots of live plants. My tank is stocked to the max but I'm worried about my danios, I only have two. They seem fine except that they aren't growing, they are eating and acting normally now. I think I made a mistake when I purchased my two rainbow sharks and 1 krib. I would prefer another krib and more danios. Would a pet store take the sharks or would I have to find someone else to take them? I would never just flush them, that's not an option. Or will my danios be fine just the two of them? Any advice would be welcome as I really enjoy my tank.

Tank residents: 2 zebra danios
5 tiger barbs
2 rainbow sharks
1 female kribensis
2 flying foxes

Sneaky
November 4th, 2005, 09:40 PM
Hi there,
first of all, rainbow sharks are highly aggressive towards
their own species. When yours get larger, they will kill each other.
You should never keep more than 1 rainbow or red tail black shark
in a tank together less than 100 gallons.
The flying foxes are also closely related to rainbow sharks,
and again do not tolerate their own kind, or any other conspecifics (related species, like red tail black sharks and rainbow sharks).
Also, both flying foxes and rainbow sharks grow to about 6 inches, and the recommended tank size for a single one of these is 29g by itself.
You can return the sharks and the foxes to the pet store for store credit, or trade them for more danios.
Kribensis are also very aggressive fish, but keeping one alone should be fine,
and danios are very fast.
What I would do is,
return the sharks and flying foxes to the pet store
get 6 more danios
get 3 more Tiger barbs
Then you would be fully stocked with those fish and
the kribensis

Heres a great website for information on fish, on everything related to fish, with very knowledegable members and lots of great info:
http://www.fishprofiles.com

Heres some info on Rainbow Sharks and Flying Foxes:

http://www.fishprofiles.com/files/profiles/rainbow.xml

http://www.fishprofiles.com/files/profiles/flyingfox.xml

gottahavepets
November 8th, 2005, 01:11 AM
Thanx sneakypete. I'm not sure about returning both foxes, I really like them and they were not aggressive towards each other until the sharks came into the tank. I may return the sharks or trade them in for more danios. I want a male krib because my fish book says they will breed in a community tank, and it indicated they would be happier with another fish of the same species. Right now she thinks she's a barb. She's very gorgeous but the barbs just don't seem to be all that interested in her. I saw in your reply to the filter question that you do not recommend carbon unless it's needed. Have you always had success with that? I would like to take the carbon out of my AC 50 and just run the zeo-lite and peat that I've got in there now. Will this upset the balance if I do it before the next water change? I also notced you use house-plant fertilizer, do you find it to be better than the kind of spikes made for fish tanks? I always seem to be low in iron and other nutrients, and yet I don't change the water as often as I have read I should. I will definitely be checking out those links you sent. Thank-you again.

Sneaky
November 8th, 2005, 03:21 AM
Hi there,
well, you dont have to return both of the foxes, they just
cant be kept together in a tank, or when they are older they
will probably kill each other lol
Are they actually flying foxes or are they siamese algae eaters?
Often these fish are mislabelled.
About breeding kribs in a community tank- yes they will breed in a
community tank, but they will also start killing other fish.
My sister had a pair of those and when they laid their eggs,
they killed 3 cory catfish, 1 angelfish, 1 blue ram, and 3 dwarf gouramis!
They are not really suitable for breeding in a community tank.
If you do decide to try it, I wish you luck, as they are a very aggressive and terrritorial fish when breeding. Very much like their larger african brethren. (Kribensis are an african cichlid).
I havent really found either the fish tank spikes to be better than the houseplant ones or vice versa. I use the Jobes because they are about 3.00 for 25 or 50 of them where as the nutrafin plant spikes are 3 for 7.00.
I also lack iron in my tanks, and the houseplant ones have a good iron content.
I have tried the nutrafin plant spikes, and they worked just as well, so really i think it is a personal preference, or what you can afford.
yes, you could remove the carbon from your tank. Zeolite is a superior product anyway, but it might also remove nutrients from the water, im not sure I dont know much about it.

Wondering again about your flying foxes, when I bought my Siamese Algae Eaters, they were listed as "Flying Foxes" and I often see them sold as much. Heres some pics of the most often confused fish sold as SAE's or Flying Foxes:
True Siamese Algae Eater (species name crosscheilus siamensis)
I bought two of these labelled in the pet store as flying foxes.


http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b101/SoSnEaKy/New%20Pics/PicsNewPC17103.jpg


Stone Lapping Barb (species name garra cambodgiensis)
I also purchased this guy, also labelled in the pet store
as a flying fox.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v698/sneakiest_pete/Fish/PicsNewPC4161.jpg


True Flying Fox (species name epalzeorhynchus kallopterus)
(this is not my fish)

http://ivanov.cekool.com/aquamag/images/-crosso/kallop.jpg


Chinese Algae Eater- often sold as a Siamese Algae Eater or a Flying Fox
(species name gyrincheilos aymoneiri)

http://www.centralpets.com/critter_images/fish/freshwater_fish/FWF_0004475_20020407163704.jpg

gottahavepets
November 8th, 2005, 02:39 PM
While I have no pictures to post, I am sure one of my foxes is a true flying fox, the other I did wonder about as it does look a little more like the stone lapping barb. It still eats algae and that's the main reason why I bought them. It drives me crazy that a book will say put these fish together, the pet store will say another thing and then I'm here stuck with the wrong fish. The guy at the pet store where I bought the sharks was supposed to be knowledgeable about which fish to put together. On the profiles sight, I saw that the sharks could go with bettas and other fish. I am looking to get a 10 gal or bigger tank for my betta and was trying to figure out which tankmates to add. I will continue to do research on this before I run out and buy anything, but I may put one of the sharks with him. Any recommendations you would like to make will be welcome. Although I cannot afford to buy an huge tank, I will be looking out for deals. I have space for up to 30 gal in a long tank, I also like the hex and panorama tanks but they are so costly. Thank-you again for your advice, it is very welcome as I am still a newbie fish keeper. I got the tank around Valentines 2005, so it is still fairly new.

Sneaky
November 8th, 2005, 05:58 PM
Yes, I sure do know the misunderstandings that pet stores can
create for new aquariasts!
My first tank was my 25g. I set it up with no knowledge
of the cycle- plunked a whole bunch of fish in, not knowing
about compatibility or anything. After most of them died,
i came to the internet to do research.
My first mistake was buying Bala Sharks. The guy at the pet
store said "Sure Bala Sharks are perfect for a 25g tank",
but he didnt inform me that said fish grow to over a foot in length,
and grow rapidly as well!
My experience has been, listen to the pet store people, but always
take what they say with a grain of salt. Most of what they say is not
true and only said because they want you to spend money! Best thing to
do is browse the store, write down what you like, then come to the
internet and research the fish first. It will save you stress and worry,
will help your fish get along better, and you wont have to take
fish back to the store! :-D .Thats what I do anyway. I hate having to
sell back my pets to the pet store because of their mistakes selling them to me!
Flying foxes and Stone Lapping Barbs dont really eat algae.
Stone Lapping Barbs appear to be eating algae, however, their primary
diet is the eating of microscopic organisms that live in algae and on plants,
and on the glass surface. They actually leave the algae intact while sucking off any small critters. They are very peaceful, and both these and siamese algae eaters can be kept in groups- but this requires a very large tank.
Flying foxes may eat some algae when young, but they really are not an algae eater- they are an omnivore. Once they reach a good size- 2-3 inches, they will eat algae only if they are terribly hungry, and mostly will want meaty foods like flakes and pellets.
The only good algae eater of all 4 I pictured is the Siamese algae eater.
All of these fish get very large- 6 inches or more, and really need at least 55 gallons of space. The chinese algae eater- mostly commonly sold to beginners as a great "algae eater" is a horrible purchase for most beginners. Not only do they not eat algae after they grow past the 2-3 inch mark, but they grow to 10-12 inches and become very aggressive, as well as eating other fish as their priority!
Anyway, if you really want some good advice on fish, I have found that the website :

http://www.fishprofiles.com

Has been exceptional in their assistance, their knowledge base, as well
as having profiles on individual fish and many other helpful information.
Check it out, they have about 4000 members, so if you need help, you can definetly get it there!

gottahavepets
November 13th, 2005, 12:38 PM
Hi again, I want to be sure that I can take the carbon out of the filter. What do I replace it with? I use the foam, and peat wrapped in filter floss, and biomax, the zeolite is supposed to remove ammonia if there is any, I didn't think it removed anything else. As well how much peat for 25 gallons and how often should I replace the peat? The fish do seem much healthier with the peat, I tried running without it but my pH kept spiking and I was testing negative for ammonia and nitrites/nitrates. When I put the peat back in everything settled down again. Thanks for yor advice, I always appreciate advice given with good intentions.

Sneaky
November 13th, 2005, 08:57 PM
zeolite, as well as carbon, will remove nutrients from the tank.
The best thing to replace it with would be filter floss.
For a 25g tank, you shouldnt need to use much peat,
maybe 1/4 of a pound at most.
This should keep your water nice and soft.
Espescially great if you have soft water fish.
Interestingly, all your fish are fish that dont really require
soft water.
Tiger barbs prefer a ph of around 7.0, with a hardness
of around 120 ppm or so.
same as the rainbow sharks and flying foxes.
Kribensis, are rift lake african cichlids,
and prefer a ph of 8.0-8.5 and a hardness in the area
of 250ppm or up.

gottahavepets
November 13th, 2005, 11:05 PM
The reason for the peat was because I was having a hard time keeping the pH close to neutral, and yet there was no ammonia to account for the pH to go up. I tried kH buffering but that wasn't successful, so I went back to the peat.The books I was using for advice recommended soft acid water for the barbs, pH 7. Honestly, all the fish were unhappy looking without the peat in the filter. I don't think I have a 1/4 pound in there, maybe a couple of tablespoons at the most. I wrap the peat in the floss then stuff it in a filter bag. It seems to work really well. Thank-you for your response.

Sneaky
November 14th, 2005, 09:58 PM
Hi there,
ammonia has absolutely nothing to do with the PH of water.
Ph is caused by the number of or lack of calcium ions and other minerals in the water. A PH Of 7 would not be considered soft and acidic, but is neutral.
A ph of 5.0-6.9 would be considered acidic. A Ph of 7.5-8.5 would be considered alkaline.
Hardness is in some ways related, but isnt defined by ph.
For example, you can have a ph of 7.0 neutral, with a general hardness ranging from 0 (no calcium ions in the water), to over 300 ppm (lots of calcium ions).
KH Buffering is particularly helpful when raising PH, but does little in the way of stabilizing low PH, except to prevent fluctuations.
Peat is, in my opinion, the best, most natural way to lower ph.
In my tanks I use 1 pound of peat granules in each of my 2 canister filters,
as I have very hard well water. My water out of the tap is ph 7.4, not very high at all, but has a hardness of about 240 ppm dissolved calcium ions.
The 2 pounds of peat I use changes the water to a ph of 6.6 and a hardness of less than 60 ppm. As I have discus and tetras, this is essential for their health to have soft water, and even then they would appreciate 0ppm, however, I dont think thats possible without reverse osmosis filtration of my water.
Interestingly, I wonder why your fish would seem unhappy in a higher ph.
All of your fish would be fine in water of ph 7.0 up to 8.0, espescially the Kribensis. Tiger barbs are very hardy fish and will tolerate almost any water conditions.
I would suspect there is another reason the fish were unhappy, and suspect it may be some type of mineral or chemical in the water that the peat must neutralize.
Have you tested your tank for ammonia, nitrItes and nitrAtes?
Have you tested the water coming direct out of the tap?
Do you use water conditioner when changing the water and vaccuum the gravel?
I cant understand why your fish would be unhappy.
Not to say I am recommending removing the peat from your filter,
cuz if its working and your fish are doing good, why change it right?
Anyway, strange that they would be unhappy.
-Koran.

gottahavepets
November 16th, 2005, 05:15 PM
I tested all the levels two days ago and everything was in normal ranges, no ammonia, very little nitrites, I only test one of those, pH 7.6 I think. I will continue to use the peat at the dose I am using, I will only adjust if the water becomes too dark, the water has gone back to clear since removing the carbon and zeo-lite, and the fish are fine, maybe now my plants will grow! They are all smaller than they should be and I do add ferts occasionally, I will be testing the iron more often now though. I'm not sure what could be in the water that the peat has to neutralize but the aqua-plus doesn't. I have tested my tap water and it comes out at 7.8, I have a counter-top purifier that removes impurities, adds some minerals and changes the pH to about 8. I've checked various sources abot the needs of kribs and they all recommend pH 5.5-8, and I also checked the rest of my fishes needs and I won't worry too much as long as the pH doesn't go over 8. The problem bfore was the pH creeping up after I would lower it. I think the tank is doing well now and I'm looking at different plants for it. Possibly changing some of the fish, I'm not sure.

Sneaky
November 17th, 2005, 05:27 PM
See, that could be why your fish are unhappy!
Your tank hasnt finished cycling.
As long as their is Nitrites in the tank, the cycle is not
complete, and this will irritate the fish.
Aquaplus isnt really a very good quality water conditioner.
I do not believe it removes any heavy metals from the water
at all.
I use Prime- 1 capful per 50g, one bottle conditions 1000 gallons
of water. So on your 29g tank, considering you probably change out
about 5 gallons during a water change, a bottle of prime would last you,
200 water changes, if you do a water change every week, would last
you about 3 years. Prime removes chlorine and chloramine, detoxifies
ammonia and nitrItes, removes impurities, removes heavy metals,
and adds stress coat to the water.
You should consider getting a NitrAtes test, as once your tank
finishes cycling, there should never be any ammonia or nitrItes to
test. Cycled tanks require only that 1 test, NitrAtes.
Anyway, glad to hear your tank is doing good and the fish are happy!
Always great when things are going good.

gottahavepets
November 17th, 2005, 06:34 PM
Hi Sneaky, because the tank is a planted aquarium, I was expecting there to be nitrates, is this not so? I will get a nitrates test right away and I still have a whole bottle of Aqua Plus that I haven't opened! Maybe I can trade it at the same time I trade the sharks in. I'm going to get corys, can you recommend a type that can be in the same tank as the tiger barbs? The profiles said pandas but I don't think so, anyway they'll be going in with the Betta. I want corys that won't get too big but are pretty to look at. Thanks again fish guru.

Sneaky
November 18th, 2005, 03:28 AM
Hello again,
In a planted tank that is fully cycled there will be NitrAtes.
There will not however be any NitrItes.
These are 2 different forms of Nitrogen. NitrItes is caused by
the first stage of the nitrogen cycle, the breaking down of ammonia.
Further on in the nitrogen cycle, the ammonia will be completely
broken down at such a fast rate, you will no longer find it on your tests.
Following this stage the NitrItes build up, and are broken down into NitrAtes.
Eventually this too will become so balanced, that the NitrItes will be broken
down as they are occurring, and no longer will NitrItes show on your
test. After this your tank will be cycled, meaning it is no longer
producing harmful substances, and that the nitrobacter bacteria is
transforming ammonia rapidly into the end product NitrAtes, which are
what feeds your plants mostly.
Im not suggesting you not use your Aquaplus, just when its finished you
may want to replace it with Prime, as a more economical higher quality
product for your fish keeping :-D
Makes sense for people like me who are penny pinchers, and prefer
a more concentrated higher quality product that lasts longer and works
better!
Anyway,
as for Corys, Panda Corys would work just fine.
In your tank you could go with several different types of
medium-smaller corys.
Heres some active, attractive, fun corys I know of that are small:
Trilineatus (Also called Jullii Corys in stores, even though they are not the right species) - ~2 inches
Panda 1.5-2 inches
Aggassizi or Ambiacus ~2 inches
Dwarf/Salt and Pepper/ Dainty Corys, Corydoras Hasbrosus 3/4 - 1 inch for males, up to 1.5 inches for females. Totally awesome active dwarf cory.
Pygmy Cory Corydoras Pygmaeus 3/4-1 inch. The smallest cory, Very active and playful as well.
For any cory you could go with 6 of them, for the 2 dwarf species, as many as 8 Hasbrosus would = 6 of the others, and for the tiny pygmys, 10 would be = to 6 of the larger corys.
The biggest corys, the ones to avoid are:
Peppered / Paleatus ~3 inches +
Bronze 3-3.5 Inches
Albino 3-3.5 inches
Metae / Bandit 3-3.5 inches
Green Brochis Splendens Cory- 4 inches++++

Edited: Forgot to give you the link to a couple good catfish sites if you
wanna do some more looking at cory types you might like:

http://www.corydorasworld.com/

http://www.planetcatfish.com/

gottahavepets
November 18th, 2005, 11:47 AM
I was doing some tank maintenance last night, I think I had too much gravel in the tank because it used to have a UGF. So I was scooping gravel out prior to doing a water change when I discovered that I had left a piece of the under gravel filter in the tank. I slipped it out as careful as I could and could not believe the gunk I found under there! So I sucked out as much of that as I could without taking more water than I usually do (5 gal). This morning the tank is looking clearer than last night. How soon should I clean/replace the sponge from the filter? I was going to use that sponge when I get the new smaller tank to speed up the cycle process, but it will be so gunky, I'm sure some of that must be toxic, although as I had said all the fish seemed fine. Should I pop a carbon back in for a little while or just leave it. The tank was fully cycled before and this nitrite reading came out of nowhere, the last few readings were zero.
Sneaky, thanks for the cory lists and links, I will definitely check them out. Pandas may win as I am too impatient to wait for the new tank. Two rainbow sharks = how many pandas or similar size? Would it be 5 or six or less? Thanks in advance. I ask you because I'm too lazy to do the math. I may look it up on my own anyway! Thanks again Fish Guru!

Sneaky
November 19th, 2005, 03:46 AM
Well, in a planted tank, the gravel should probably be around
3-4 inches.
I would leave the sponge thats in there for a bit to compensate.
Maybe in 3-4 days you can remove it and put a new one in.

Undergravel filters are nasty, nasty things

When considering size of the rainbow sharks- if you take their adult
size, that is 12 inches.

I think you should 6 of whatever type of cory you choose.
They do best in large groups.

gottahavepets
November 20th, 2005, 02:23 PM
I think I have the right amount of gravel, it is sloped up to the back, which is where the swords with their larger root systems are. UGF's sure are nasty, I didn't like it in the 2g the kids were given for X-mas last year, I didn't like it in my 25g. A friend of mine is really keen on having one in her tank though, so I'll give her my old one with thanks.

I am thinking about also trading in the SAE or the Flying fox, I have determined the one I thought was not a fox is a SAE. Although they were fine with each other until I put the sharks in. If I did so I could get more danios to fill out that school again, although I am leaning more towards another type of rasbora that may get along ok with the barbs, I can't remember the name of it though, it is long, silver with a black stripe I think.

Have you seen Finding Nemo? My krib was acting like the fish that thought her reflection was her sister last night. I have never seen her do this. I have been wondering about her because her belly has always been very pink and slightly extended. She wouldn't be wanting to mate would she? I did have more kribs at one time but they died off until there was just the one left. She tries to get the barbs to notice her but they just aren't interested.LOL. Although I realize that if I got a male krib and they decided to breed, they would kill all the other fish in the tank. This is the only thing holding me back from getting her a BF right now.

Sneaky
November 20th, 2005, 07:56 PM
I am thinking about also trading in the SAE or the Flying fox, I have determined the one I thought was not a fox is a SAE

Well, the difference in these two fish is great
one, the flying fox, is a omnivore and does not eat algae past a certain stage in its life. The SAE is possibly THE BEST algae eater in the world. If you have algae in your tank at all, keep the SAE. Plus Flying Foxes can become very aggressive with age. SAE's are always peaceful.
I would keep the SAE and remove the rainbow sharks and flying fox.
SAE's may not seem so attractive when young, but become gorgeous when adults, and best of all because you have a small tank, SAE's stay slightly smaller than Flying Foxes or Rainbow/Red Tail black sharks.



She wouldn't be wanting to mate would she?

Well, yes, yes she would. However, as you are aware, breeding kribs will kill off your other fish, and if they dont agree with each other, you could have 1 or both kribs dead as well. I would just let her be, she will go through what i call "breeding mode", probably every 3-6 weeks as per a normal female. With no male present she wont get aggressive or territorial as she would if a male were present. She will be better off for your tank, to stay alone, and will be perfectly fine that way. After all, even in the wild not every fish finds a mate.

If I did so I could get more danios to fill out that school again, although I am leaning more towards another type of rasbora that may get along ok with the barbs, I can't remember the name of it though, it is long, silver with a black stripe I think.

There are only 2 types of Rasbora I can think of off hand that meet your description, one is the Scissortail Rasbora, silver with a black stripe and a "scissors" tail with a black marking and yellow marking on each tail tip. This fish grows to 6 inches and is totally not suited to your tank.
There is also a Brilliant Rasbora, silvery with a red tail and black stripe, this fish is about 2.5 inches long, and would be more suited to your tank.
I see by looking that there is also another rasbora called a Lined Rasbora, silver with a black stripe that grows to about 2 inches.
Heres a link, where you can look and see which fish you are talking about.
Either way, if you want to add more fish, some fish will have to go. Whats your current stocking at now? The tank is 29g right? EDIT: Ok I see you have a 25g, and the tank occupants are:

Tank residents: 2 zebra danios
5 tiger barbs
2 rainbow sharks
1 female kribensis
2 flying foxes

So, If You Take the Rainbow Sharks and Flying Fox Out You have this:

2 Zebra Danios 2x2 inches
5 Tiger Barbs 5x2 inches
1 Female Krib 3 inches
1 SAE 6 inches

Now if we go by the Inch rule, you have 23 inches in fish right there.
Because I am not partial to the inch rule, I allow for more flexibility.
I would say you have a Maximum allowable excess of 5 inches about
the inch rule, so 30 inches of fish would be fine in 25g.
That gives you about 7 inches to work with roughly.
Personally What I would do is either remove the Zebra Danios and the SAE as well,
as these fish really do need larger tanks.
Then you would have more space.
If you have Algae, either Ottos or a Bristlenose Pleco or Rubbernose Pleco would be a better choice. None are as active nor as large as the SAE.
Then you could add 3 more tiger barbs, and a school of 6 of the smaller rasboras.
That would work.
Or, if you want to keep the ZD's and SAE,
then I would just round out your schools, go with 3 more tiger barbs,
and add 4 more Zebra Danios or Leopard Danios or White Leopard or White Zebra
Danios (all same species).







http://www.elmersaquarium.com/10rasbora.htm

gottahavepets
November 20th, 2005, 10:59 PM
Thank you for your reply, it was very detailed and thoughtful, my favorites now has a lot of fish-related links in it. And I do use them.
The zebras will be going in to the 15g when I get it to cycle the tank. I have had them for almost a year now and they only live for 2. The SAE I think I will keep. The tank is long and he does seem to be fine.The longer I have had him, the more I like him over the fox, and yet, based on the advice of the fish book I had I was desperate to have two foxes. It is the fox that is aggressive, as well as the sharks. I am trying to find out if the store I got them from will buy them back, or let me trade them in for different fish. Could it be the smallish tank size that makes the sharks so aggressive with the other fish? Although they do leave the krib alone. She tells all the fish off when they bother her.
It was the brilliant rasbora that I was thinking of. I was looking at them because the top level of my tank is pretty empty right now, although all the fish seem to go all over the tank. I was very interested by the barb community tank in the link you sent, I will study it some more as I have some time before I plan to get more fish. I may wind up doing something totally different. Though they are frisky fish, I do find the antics of the tiger barbs to be so entertaining.

Sneaky
November 21st, 2005, 06:51 PM
Could be the small tank adding to the aggression.
Recommended is usually a 29g tank for a single rainbow or red tail shark or flying fox.
SAE's are usually recommended for a 55g tank or larger because they are schooling fish. However I think it will be fine there where it is.
I see you are getting a 15g tank too?
Whats the plans for that? You could always rearrange your setup by moving fish around, depending on what your plans are.
Keep in mind you could breed Kribensis in a 15g tank with a school of tiger barbs....
I can understand your not wanting to get rid of the danios LOL
I have 2 leopard danios I have had now for like 3 years, cycled every tank I have with em, and I couldnt bear to part with them.
I think zebra/leopard danios can usually live up to 5 years.
I would say 3 years is like the minimum life span.

gottahavepets
November 22nd, 2005, 11:04 AM
Hi Sneaky, I wound up getting a 10gal tank, the 15 just wouldn't fit where I was planning on putting it. I have it set up with live plants and the filter is running. I need to get a small heater for it and more plants for both tanks. I used some water from the bigger tank and some decorations and filter media to help with the cycling process. This way too when the danios go in the water will be much closer to what they're used to. I am planning on Harlequin rasboras and panda corys for this tank, as well as my betta. I am wondering in what order I should introduce them to the tank, as the betta will be the most aggressive. Should it be pandas, harlies then betta? After the danios have cycled the tank of course. Which I'm not sure how long that will take. I want all the fish in by X-mas as it is my present (oops!) In the 25g I haven't pinned down exactly what I want to do once I get rid of the sharks and fox. I am thinking about rounding out the schools for the time being, 6 barbs, 6 danios, maybe a few ottos or corys if possible. The lady who sold me the 10g said the corys don't count as much in the inch/gallon ratio because they are cleaner fish and help to reduce the waste in the tank. Do you believe this is true? They still consume oxygen, although that mey not make a difference in a planted tank. But they also must produce some waste as well. I'd like to believe her because then I would put them in the 25g as well as the ottos and other fish. I want to much! My dream is to have as many tanks as I need to hold all the fish I like. My goodness that was long, sorry. But thanks for your interest and advice!

Sneaky
November 22nd, 2005, 07:18 PM
[QUOTE=gottahavepets]Hi Sneaky, I wound up getting a 10gal tank, the 15 just wouldn't fit where I was planning on putting it. [/QOUTE]

a 10G tank is a perfectly good one!

The lady who sold me the 10g said the corys don't count as much in the inch/gallon ratio because they are cleaner fish and help to reduce the waste in the tank. Do you believe this is true?

No, this is not True. They are not really "cleaner fish", as they do not
eat other fishes waste, though some people think so, and they do eat, breathe, and poop just as much as any other fish! In Fact, most bottom
feeders poop twice as much as any other fish! However, Panda Corys are
quite small, and are one of the few types of corys recommended for 10g tanks. You have made a very good choice.
For your 10g tank, after the danios cycle it, which can take from 21-60 days depending on how much you change the water (less changes= faster cycle, but also = more stressed out fish). A Bottle of Prime would be great for you during this, as it detoxifies ammonia and nitrites, but doesnt remove them, allowing the cycle to continue without as many water changes, and without as much stress for the fish.

Yes, you should add the betta last. Corys or Rasboras first, in whichever order. I would do 6 Panda Corys and 6-8 Harlequin Rasbora. Add only 6 fish at a time, and at least 1 week apart to prevent ammonia spikes.
You could even add 3 panda corys and 3 harles to start, if you wanted to, or add 6 of one and then 6 of the other.
Add the Betta last, he will feel out of place and wont have other fish coming into his territory, he will be going into a new territory.

In your 25 tank, once you take out the sharks and fox, you will have quite a bit more room to work with. I forget, its a 25g long tank right, not a tall one?
If it is long, you can stretch the stocking levels more than if it is tall.
Stocking levels are not just based on inches per gallon, but also on square inches of tank space.
Example, a 10g tank, and a 15g tall tank, which have the same size base,
and therefore essentially allow for the same stocking.
a 25g tall tank is only 18 inches long, where its long equivalent is 24 inches I believe. So thats 18x12=216 inches of floor space or 24x12= 288 inches of floor space, which is a great deal more.
Tall tanks are much more difficult to stock because of their height.
My 25g is a tall tank. Has proven to have its share of difficulties, but currently is occupied by 2 Angelfish (breeding pair), 1 stone lapping barb, 9 corydoras aeneus (bronze+albino), and 5 ottos which are destined for the 10gallon tank later on (10g tank infested with worms right now ugh).

I still havent decided what to do with my 10g tank.
Its current occupants are 2 guppies and 6 platys, and 4 corydoras hasbrosus, and a rubbernose pleco. I have lost almost all the guppies and platys now to a parasite called Camallanus Worms. Very difficult to get rid of.
I have decided to euthanize the remaining guppies and platies this weekend
:-(
I also have a Paradise fish that is also infested, and is in a fish bowl fighting a losing battle. If it shows no signs of improvement by the weekend I will have no choice but to put it down as well.
Which reminds me, when you go to purchase fish, perhaps purchase a bottle of anti-parasitic food, and feed the fish strictly on this for the first 4 days.
This will help cure any parasites internally before they can pass on to other fish. Watch for Camallanus worms in pet store tanks- they resemble a red thread poking out of the fishes anus. If you see these, dont buy any fish from that tank, or any from connecting tanks (if they share water)
Second time Ive lost all my fish in my 10g tank because of these worms in 2 years.
Well good luck, and keep me posted, I sure enjoy chatting with you!
Im glad you find my information useful! :-D

gottahavepets
November 23rd, 2005, 04:55 PM
Hi Sneaky, I tried to reply yesterday but I was having loin problems. I know euthanizing fish is not fun. I have had to do it. More when we had the 2g set up. I had New Tank Syndrome. Rushed the set-up, added too many fish too close together. Yikes!
Today the danios have moved in to the 10g to start the cycling process. So far they seem happy. I will have to keep an eye on the amount of sunlight this tank gets. Although it will be easy to fix once I get the roman shade up in the kitchen. I have the water conditions as close to the other tank as possible. I will do my best not to rush this tank. I will add the harlies in 3 wks, then the ottos in 4 and finally the pandas in 5 and Buddy in 6. This way I'll have the routine down before the pandas go in. I am not sure yet where the sharks and fox are going, or when they are going. LFS said they may or may not take them, some may trade a little others have said not. In the spring I think I'll change the gravel for more natural stuff. It looks great in the 10g!
I really enjoy chatting with you as well. And I will continue to keep you posted. On the FP site I am luvmykrib, I may say hi if I run into you over there. You're So_Very_Sneaky right? What a fish list you have. My hubby would go live elsewhere as we don't have enough room! Oh wait, he already does part-time now! :rolleyes: Will keep posting the progress and anymore questions I may have.

Sneaky
November 24th, 2005, 10:47 PM
I will add the harlies in 3 wks, then the ottos in 4 and finally the pandas in 5 and Buddy in 6.

Ottos are highly sensitive little catfish. They have a huge mortality rate, due to improper addition of them to tanks. Ottos should only be added a tank after sufficient time has passed to prepare enough algae for them. I would add the ottos way after all the other fish,
and only then when you have substantial algae to support them. If not, most or all of them will die of starvation. Also, when adding them to a tank, you should always do a super long acclimation. I do this for sensitive fish as well, or any that are expensive or seem weak. Open the bag when you get home, float in the aquarium. After about 30 minutes, open the bag. Add a couple ounces of tank water to the bag (shot glasses work great for this).
Wait another 15 minutes, add 2-3 more ounces to the bag. Wait another 15 minutes. Remove approx. 6 ounces from the bag (do not pour in tank).
Add 6 more ounces of tank water at this time. Wait another 15 minutes, then repeat removal of water and replacement with tank water. Wait 15 more minutes and repeat one more time.
Then finally net the fish gently from the bag and let them swim from the net into the tank.
This will help ensure as many ottos as possible survive.
I recently bought 5 ottos for my 10g tank, and followed this, and 4 of the 5
at least have survived (unsure of the other one, only have seen 4 at one time, other may still be alive just may not see it).
Thats amazing success with otos! A couple years ago I bought 8 ottos and only 1 survived, despite careful acclimation. Not enough algae in my tank I suspect and they starved or became ill from competing with the others for food.

Also, dont just wait "3 weeks" to add fish. Keep liquid drip tests on hand for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrAtes.
Once the ammonia and nitrItes are completely Zero, and nitrAtes are present on your tests, then it is safe to add fish.
If you want to try to speed the cycling process, using gravel from a seeded tank (placed in a nylon, or cheesecloth bag if colors are different), will help to speed it up.Adding water from a cycled tank will really do nothing, except to add ammonia products to the new water. No live bacteria is present in the tank water.
Also 2 products can assist. One is called Stresszyme- comes in a yellow bottle, and it has live bacteria in it to assist in building your bacteria colonies. The other product is Biospira- if you could find this in a store where you are, it will complete cycle a tank in just a few days! I have not been able to find it here, and am unsure of its availability in the rest of canada. However, it would definetly be worthwhile to look for it!
Hagen also makes a product called "New Improved Cycle", unfortunately, due to their lack of refridgeration, and sitting on shelves, in warehouses for years, you are never guaranteed a bottle of this will still be live bacteria.
I would avoid it, and stick to stresszyme, or biospira if you can find it.
Good Luck my friend!
Keep me posted on how you progress!
Also, I wanted to mention, in the spring, I will have some quantity of
aquarium plant babies and clippings available. I recently shipped some all the way to New Brunswick successfully! Shipping was quite hefty, but my prices are low and plants are good, and I can ship quite a quantity for the same price, if you are interested in buying some plants in the spring think about it and let me know. I am sort of taking a list down of people who want to trade or buy.
-Koran .

gottahavepets
November 25th, 2005, 11:27 AM
I was planning on testing the tank bfore getting the harlies. I added the water from the old tank to jumpstart the peat, for the bacteria I moved two ornaments, DW with JF and the biomax insert from the 25g tank into the new tank. I have used 'Cycle' with each tank and it has seemed to work fine. I will look for the other products, but as with the aqua-plus, I have a new bottle that hasn't been used too much. They were on sale and I'm a sucker for a sale price.
The danios are in the tank now, they've been in since Wednesday. One of them has a wound on it's side that seems to be healing, I've been adding Stress-Coat and Res-Q at night to help with healing. The other danio has been chasing it around but it has managed to find some hiding spots. Maybe I should get a breeding trap for the wounded one until it heals. I will not put it back in the other tank with a wound, the barbs would be after it for sure.
If i fed algae wafers before adding ottos, would some of the algae grow? Although the ornaments I transferred also came with algae. I suppose it may die before they move in. I will remember to acclimate them slow and be sure there is algae before they are purchased. Because it is planted, I have added fertilizers to the tank. Will this speed up or slow down cycling, and algae growth? So many questions.

I would definitely be interested in some plants, I can only get low-light plants, although the light in the 10g is almost 2 wpg. I am interested in trying glosso and some hairgrass. I could PM my shipping address.You can add my name to the list.
-Colleen-
Stony Plain AB

Sneaky
November 27th, 2005, 09:14 PM
If i fed algae wafers before adding ottos, would some of the algae grow? Although the ornaments I transferred also came with algae. I suppose it may die before they move in. I will remember to acclimate them slow and be sure there is algae before they are purchased. Because it is planted, I have added fertilizers to the tank. Will this speed up or slow down cycling, and algae growth? So many questions.
I would definitely be interested in some plants, I can only get low-light plants, although the light in the 10g is almost 2 wpg.


No, algae wafers are freeze dried and therefore the algae is not alive.
It will not cause algae to grow.
The only thing that will cause algae is good light and nutrients.
Sounds like at 2wpg, wont be long before you have some algae,
all that matters is just time, it will happen lol

Fertilizing the plants - wont really affect your cycle. Good to boost them when first planted of course. Dont overfertilize at first as you dont want to end up with black beard or staghorn algae.

As for the plants, please send me a pm titled plants, and in the spring when they are ready, i will pm you with a list of available plants and stuff.
:-)
Do you have any pics of your tanks at all?

gottahavepets
November 27th, 2005, 09:27 PM
Hi Sneaky, I do not have any pictures of my tank. My boys have managed to break every camera I have owned and I am too scared to get a new one! I am hoping to get a digital soon tho so I can post some pics.

gottahavepets
December 5th, 2005, 06:27 PM
The 15g is up and running, nitrite and ammonia are at 0 and I just introduced 2 ottos. I did it slow over an hour and they seem to like it fine.
I took the 2 sharks and fox out of the 25g and returned them to the store they came from. I introduced 4 ottos to this tank as well. The krib is being a bully though and nipping at the poor little things. Sneaky, you mentioned once the tiger barbs and the krib could all go in the 15g, is this true? I may move them to save the ottos from big mean Gorgeous,(may call her George if she doesn't behave). Then I would have the harlies and pandas and betta in the 25g with the danios and ottos. What do you think of that? I hope she settles down or I may have to catch the ottos and move them for now. I tried catching her and couldn't! I was going to try rearranging the tank then reintroducing her. It worked when I put the sharks in. I did lights out, moved everything then lights on again.:fingerscr

Sneaky
December 5th, 2005, 07:28 PM
Hi there,
Yes, the tiger barbs and Krib would work
out just fine in the 15g by themselves.
Then you could have the more peaceful fish in
a tank by themselves.
Kribs are very extremely aggressive, sometimes
without warning, and she probably sees the ottos
as a threat to her territory.
Ottos are so cute! I also got some recently, got 5,
4 survived, pretty decent survival rate. Trying out a
new store.

I recently bought myself some new fish, 3 Red Eye Tetras.
They are so gorgeous! Heres a pic, not mine but some you
can see:
http://zierfischfreund.de/Fische/Salmer/Moenkhausia%20sanctaefilomenae.jpg
I wanted 6 but Petcetera only had 4 and one didnt look so good.
Had them since friday they are so cute, little, only 1/2 inch or so,
and so sassy!
Schooling with the little buenos aires tetras I got about a week and a half ago:
http://www.jennyandernie.co.uk/Buenos-Aires-Tetra-02.jpg

I have cleared my guppies and platies out of my 10g and am wanting to do something different, but something compatible with my Hasbrosus Corys and Rubbernose Pleco.
I am thinking I am going to do Beckfords Pencilfish. Heres what they look like, little guys, only grow to about 1 inch
http://www.g-hoener.de/images/02%20Salmler/Nannostomus_beckfordi_neu_paar_d.jpg


I am glad things are going well in your tank, and hope things work out in
my little tank. After so many problems caused by Guppies, it would be nice
for something to go right in that tank.
Well, keep me posted!
-Your friend,
Koran.

gottahavepets
December 5th, 2005, 08:15 PM
Love those pics of the new fish! The beckford's pencil fish are pretty as well. They almost remind me of white clouds but with more colour.I only had problems with the guppies I had, but a lot of that was the tank (2g) and new tank (owner) syndrom. At least it's curable!:rolleyes:

I think I will move the barbs and the krib because they do better together. The barbs are nipping a bit as well. Now I just have to catch everybody. They should do alright if the tank goes through a mini cycle right? I think it will because of the higher fish load.It's too bad I was hoping for a certain feel with the smaller fish in the 15g. But the fish have other ideas. Right now the ottos are all clinging to the glass or the amazon sword and keeping out of sight.So everyone seems to be getting along. We'll see how they're doing when I get back home. Good thing I have water waiting.

That danio that had a bite in it's side is healing slowly. I will get a trap for it so it can continue to get better.I wound up moving the other danio back into the 25g tank because it kept chasing the wounded one. It never rains, it pours, or snows a lot as it is doing here!
I will keep you posted, I'm hoping to get some pictures soon, I may borrow my friends digital camera then I could post some pics.
-Colleen-

gottahavepets
December 6th, 2005, 11:21 AM
It's a 10g not a 15g, I had a bad case of wishful remembering! I went looking for a 15g, but they were too big for where it was going.

The ottos seem to have settled in, the barbs and the krib aren't bothering them too much, I'm watching them to be sure. I am ready to move them out if I have to. Not 100% on who is going where though. I think the barbs and the krib will be too much for the 10g. I do wish I had another tank right now but then I'd be in trouble. I should wait at least a few months before indulging my hobby more.:p

Would increasing the number of barbs help? They are focused on each other right now, but 1 more would round out the school a bit better.

Now I'm rethinking adding pandas to the 25g, I may go for another variety of cory for that tank. Something a bit bigger, like a spotted, or a zebra.We'll just have to wait and see who winds up where before deciding on the next fish.

Sneaky
December 6th, 2005, 05:19 PM
Hmmm....
How many T-Barbs do you have now?
It is often said that getting more of these disperses
aggression. Sometimes I wonder if you will just end up
with more of the little hellions!
I have always heard the best number for a semi-aggressive
schooling fish is 8.

Im glad your ottos are settling in and the krib isnt bothering them!
Thats good to hear! Could be that she is just going through a
breeding phase making her more aggressive than usual.
Think it happens about once a month with kribs! LOL sounds
familiar!!

Anyway, I am not sure what you mean when you say "Spotted" or
"Zebra" Corys- im pretty sure this must be yet another
peculiar common name. Wish people would just stick to the actual
names of species, regardless of whether is it easier to pronounce or
not!
Im betting the "Spotted" Corys you are talking about are Trilineatus.
Actually the Three-Lined or Leopard Cory.

If so, i can tell you they are, then they are hardy little guys that are very
nice looking and great schoolers. They often hover above my plants like little
UFO's. Dont know why or how they do it, but it looks really cute.
Heres a pic of one of mine, is it what you mean by Spotted Cory?
OH, I also had another thought, I have some Ambiacus Corys, sold to me as
Aggassizi Corys, which also may be called Spotted. I will post a pic of that one too. And I also remember when browsing my photos that Pepper/Paleatus Corys are sometimes called "Spotted". Please let me know if it is one of these corys.

Trilineatus Cory _ I have 2, cant find any more. One of my Absolute Favorite Corys of all time. They are soooo gorgeous!


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v698/sneakiest_pete/Fish/PicsNewPC4107.jpg


Ambiacus/Aggassizi Cory - I have 3 of these, never been able to find
anymore of them. Another of my Fave corys!


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v698/sneakiest_pete/PicturesNewCam19055.jpg


Pepper Cory - keep in mind how large the stone
lapping barb is- a solid 3.5 inches in length. Compare the
size of the pepper Cory. This is a female, which are of course
larger than males. However, Pepper Corys, along with Bronze/Albino,
and Metae/Bandit Corys, are the largest of the cory cats.


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v698/sneakiest_pete/Fish/PicsNewPC4137.jpg


Oh and I found a super cute pic of one of my ottos I wanted to share with you, I think they are totally the cutest type of pleco-type fish out there!


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v698/sneakiest_pete/PicturesNewCam14028.jpg

gottahavepets
December 6th, 2005, 09:27 PM
The spotted cory I was thinking of (I haven't seen it except in my brother's 55g tank) has the same stripes as the panda but also the spots of the corys you posted. They are all real sweethearts though. I also like the habrosus (?) or dainty cory and the metae also looks real cute as well.

LOL more of the hellions! They really are little hell raisers! But they have also settled down. The temp is almost right and I lowered the pH a bit to closer match the water in the ottos bag and the T-Barbs are doing mating dances all over the tank. At least that's what they look like they're doing. HE HE HE! One of them has been so fat for so long I've decided she must be a she and she's about to pop. The krib would enjoy that I'm sure. I haven't found any live food for them, so the best they get is frozen.

I really like the ottos. Day 2 and they're all still with me. I have been able to count 4 in the big tank and 2 in the small one. They have been eating like crazy. Busy little guys! Should I do a water change or try not to disturb them too much? I knocked an anubias off it's rock trying to catch the krib and have been unsure about reaching into the tank. I don't want to stress the ottos anymore than I already have. Both tanks are due for a water change soon. The plants in the 10g have been sucking up the nitrates like crazy and I had to add N,P,K to top it off. I have to get a phosphate test so I can judge the uptake of that.

Thanks for the pics of the corys. I'll check out the profiles to figure out which one my brother has. He doesn't get the proper names. Or worry about if they need to be in schools, he just buys one or a couple of whatever catches his eye.Work in progress. I'll get him all straightened out soon enough! He bought 2 plants for his 55g because the lfs guy said plants help with nitrates. He doesn't read as much as I do. I'm just itching to get my hands into his tank and show him how plants should look! I also have to make up a feeding schedule for him and make sure he gets the right stuff. Guess what he's getting for Christmas? Yep! Fish store certificates, I'm thinking Big Al's, there's one in Edmonton, I haven't been there yet, can't wait to go though!
Wow this was a long one. Thanks for your reply, it's always good to hear (?) from you!:D
-Colleen-

PS: How do you get your vals to be so lush, good light, food? That's something I always forget, I assume the fish feed the plants! I read they need calcium in their water and I think peat filters out calcium or something. I know mine all disappeared and now they're tiny. The broad leaf like in the otto pic is down to one leaf although a new leaf is coming up!

Sneaky
December 6th, 2005, 11:15 PM
Hi there,
I wouldnt worry about water changes.
Ottos while sensitive, are not really phased by human
presence in the tank. So many times I have had them
accidentally suck onto my arm! LOL

The plant the otto is on is Vallisneria Americana.
It is the largest of the Vall plants, and currently I keep
removing the longest leaves, as it grows up the side and clear
all the way across my tank along the surface of the water.
I have heard it will grow to as much as 70 inches tall!
Oh well I just keep trimming it back. I had it in my low light tank
for some time, and it grew almost as fast as it does under the medium
light. I did have some in my 10g high light tank, but it simply grew so
fast I couldnt see into the tank for its leaves!
Plants really need 3 things:
Proper Temperatures
Light
Food
All my plants grow naturally in environments where temps
are considered tropical. I keep my tanks all at 82F, which is a
pretty warm temp. However it inhibits disease! And besides, the
fish like to be warm! lol - the discus are always telling me its
still a little chilly for them though LOL
The Vall americana is hardy from -12 - +40, so is a good all round
plant.
Light- I have 3 tanks one low light .5wpg, my 25g tank, one medium light at 1.5 wpg, my 75g tank, and the high light 10g tank with 4.3 wpg of light.
Its not so much the wattage as the type of bulb which really helps.
I use true daylight 6700 compact flourescents on my 10g and 75g tanks.
This is the best type of lighting you can give your plants period.

Food- plants use up various minerals and elements from the water,
as well as NitrAtes and carbon dioxide.
There are ways of improving these things in the water,
by adding trace elements, or by providing a fertilizer than
contains trace elements.
Yes peat removes calcium from the water. Water hardness is caused
by dissolved calcium ions in the water column, and peat essentially
removes these by bonding to the calcium ion. I have well water that
is incredibly hard ph 7.6 and gh of <280ppm.
I add 2 pounds of peat to my filters, 1 lb to each, to keep
the water at a ph of 6.6 and a gh of >60ppm.
There are some good fertilizers, but the best way to give your plants the nutrients they need is with a combination of in gravel ferts, and liquid ferts.
I use "Jobes Plant Spikes for Lush Ferns and Houseplants". Get em anywhere just about, I get mine at Walmart.
Bury one deep under the gravel below each large plant.
I replace these approximately once every 3 months by simply adding
a new one.
I supplement with a liquid fertilizer, a pair of them actually,
One is Flourish Excell. It contains trace elements, as well as nitrogen,
however, if used too regularly I have always found it causes staghorn
or black beard algae! So, I use another fert, called "Aquarium Plant Fertilizer" by the "Aquarium Stuff Company" out of Burnaby BC.
It lacks some of the high levels of nitrates that are in the Flourish, so doesnt
cause algae.
So my total plant regime is:
Lights on at least 12 hours.
Plant Food sticks once every 3 months under
every major root feeding plant.
Liquid Ferts- Week 2, following water change, full dosage
of Flourish Excell. Week 4 following water change, full dosage of
Aquarium Plant Fert. Repeat.
Water change of 35% every 12-14 days.
:-)

Also, plants require C02, so if you have a large or great many air stones
in your tank, this causes the c02 to be released from the water.
If your fish can tolerate it, remove all air stones, or limit
their use. This will cause less
dispersion of c02, and allow plants better growth.
I like to use a single air stone, as my canister filters
do not provide surface agitation, so This keeps
the surface agitated to promote oxygen exchange.
It also provides more oxygen to the fish, which I always
find is beneficial.

gottahavepets
December 6th, 2005, 11:58 PM
I just started using the jobes sticks, my regime calls for them to be broken into thirds and added bimonthly. 2 sticks in the 25g and 1 stick in the 10g. I found it on the krib I think, in one of the articles. I have also started using flourish excel and plant-gro N,P,K. The excel is supposed to go in every morning, 1/2 cap in the 25, 1 ml (approx 1 thread) in the 10g, and the N,P,K after each water change. I also add flourish iron about every three days, that's how quick it seems to disappear, I don't just stick to the tests though, the plants will tell me when they need more iron. My biggest challenge seems to be light, I can only get about 1wpg. But I am using the flora-glow lights, the spectrum is the 67000. The 10g has the better amount of light. Still my swords aren't doing badly, they just don't grow madly. HEE HEE poet.
Anyway, :rolleyes: I am doing the right things for the plants. I have also rmoved the airstone I had in the 25g as soon as I was assured the fish were getting enough air. I barely slept the first night, I was dreaming they were all drowning LOL. I went away over the summer and the filter quit, but I still had the airstone in and it kept the water moving. The plants did the rest. Good plants. We're going away for a bit over Christmas and I'm worried it may happen again, luckily I'll have someone come and check on things, make sure it's all running. NOT feed them though, I'll use the timed release food. Last time I had family feed fish the water was disgusting when I got back. I couldn't see the fish for the left-overs!:eek:
I change water every 7-14 days depending on how it looks, what the fish are doing. My pH is higher though. Keeping it close to 7.5 is hard enough. I haven't ever had it down to 6.6. I don't think the krib would like it too much if I got it that low. In the 10g I am trying to work it down lower though. My profiles site logbook recommends a lower pH for the fish going in to that tank. The 25g pH suits the current residents and the logbook recommendation as well.
Juggling temperature needs is tricky too, plants like cool with warm roots, fish like warm and I like small power bills. The fish win hands (or fins) down.
I am definitely going to borrow a camera so I can take pics of these ottos, they are so cute, and the 2 in the 10g are really lively now. The 4 in the 25g are starting to come out a bit more. They totally ignore the barbs nosing around. And the krib must be finishing breeding mood, she's leaving them alone. She sure is pretty when she wants some love! Her anal fins turned a really dark purple and her pink belly was almost neon! She was trying to boss the barbs around and then they started their dancing and she seemed to get all excited. Yikes, my tank is turning into some weird fish mating display tank. Pervy fish! Poor little innocent ottos, to have to live with such creatures!

Wow, I'm tired and losing my marbles, so I'll say goodnight and talk (type) at ya later!
-Colleen-

Sneaky
December 8th, 2005, 06:30 PM
Hi Colleen,

Sounds like your krib is a very pretty girl!!
I have always liked them, but always been afraid
to add one to a community tank because of their
aggression. Espescially after my sisters kribs killed
like half her in fish a weeks time!

In my 10g tank I try to keep the ph down by using a small bag
made of a knee high with peat in it, suspended just under the filter
output. It wont fit in the filter, its one that takes pre made cartridges,
tall and skinny, a Cascade filter. This seems to have lowered the ph
a little bit, but has softened the water by about 80ppm. Not as much
as I would like, but better than it was!

Your lighting, while lacking in wattage, is definetly the right kind,
which makes all the difference in the world! While you may not
be able to get high light plants like rotala indica to grow,
you will probably get most others to! A Sword is a very good
indicator of whether your light is good enough or not.
Swords are notorious lovers of high light. If it survives, and
does well, regardless of how fast or slow it grows, then you can
probably pick up most medium light plants and run with them.

I am really having a hard time deciding what to put in my 10g.
I have gotten rid of all the guppies but one big female,
and a few platies, all of which will be going this friday.
That leaves me with 4 Cory Hasbrosus and a Rubbernose pleco.
I am currently treating them all for Camallanus worms.
If this final medication doesnt work, I have no choice but
to euthanize them all.
I have tried about 7 different anti-parasitics, including those
for dogs, cats, and birds. I have tried anti parasitic food, nothing
is working. I am trying some fizz tables Parasite Clear, and hope
they work. Otherwise I have run the gambut of every single
wormer available in the country, except one, and that one is for
cattle, and comes so strong it would be impossible to treat
these small fish without killing them. UGH.

So I may end up with a totally empty 10g tank.
Dont know what to put in it!
Its a jungle, so whatever goes in there has gotta
love a planted tank, and be hardy!
I have had quite enough of gouramis and guppies with their
diseases and affluence for parasites!
This is the 2nd time I have lost a whole tank full of fish
to these parasites.

Anyway, any ideas for my 10g tank?

- Your friend, Koran.

gottahavepets
December 9th, 2005, 11:53 PM
Hi Koran,

Yes, she's absolutely Gorgeous. She eats from my hand, nips at me when I am rooting around in the tank, she likes to show off for me all the time, and she's leaving the ottos alone and has gone back to bossing the 5 T. Barbs around, the dear.

(Added in Dec 10
I picked up 6 harlequin rasboras, while I was acclimating them, I tried to cut the bag so it would fit in the hood of the tank. There was so much pressure in the bag it exploded! I checked to see how the fish had done and there were two missing! I found one fairly quickly and got it back in the bag, it took 5 mins to find the other one though. I was sure it was dead and was going to toss it when it gulped for a breath, I dropped it in the bag and it floated upside down, so I scooped it out and it gulped again! I put it in the cup the betta came in and added water from the tank, it gradually turned itself upside right then started swimming backwards, LOL. I left it in the cup for a bit and continued getting the other 5 ready to go in the tank. Then I decided to try adding it back into the bag to see if it would swim forwards. It did, then I added them all to the tank. They seemed fine but now one seems to have a dislocated jaw or something. I think it's one of the ones that hit the floor but I could be wrong. Will this interfere with it eating? I am not feeding them much yet as I like to let them get settled in first. This happened yesterday and I didn't write about it because I was worried I might lose those two.)

Because I like them so I'd suggest a single krib or a bolivian ram (haven't found any here but I'm looking, my betta won't live forever) with some smaller fish, like the harlies and pandas or, a pair of kribs or rams, as you have not tried kribs this may be the time to try.Mine does not seem to mind the lower pH and hardness of peat filtering. Have you ever had shell dwelling cichlids? The neo. multis are so cute and they stay small. I have seen some of them posted on FP and I would like another 10g for them.

That worm sounds like it's really hard to kill. You may wind up taking the plants out and bleaching the tank, then setting everything back up. That's what I would do, just to be sure they were finally gone. I'm assuming you've tried pimafix and melafix, how about -metrodizonole- it was recommended as a prophylactic anti-parasite on FP, I can't remember who, but someone whose advice I would trust. I will be looking for some, he says it's ok to treat the whole tank with it, in food form or as a med. It also doesn't require carbon filtration to remove it as it oxidizes in 24 hrs. I haven't had any problems with parasites so far, knock on wood. Hope you finally get it all cleared up. Did it come in with some fish? If so I wouldn't buy from that store anymore. I had kribs from a lfs that had just opened and the kribs died one by one, the clerk said it was my water, which had nothing wrong with it, I tested. Their tanks weren't cycled and they shouldn't have been selling fish. I will only buy supplies from them when I don't want to go into the city. I refuse to buy fish from them at all.

Let me know how it goes and if you find something that works for those worms I'd be interested just in case. I'm going to pick up that metro stuff if I can find it. I've been lucky seeing I don't have a QT. I try not to get store water in my tanks, unless I trust the store. So far the fish in my 10g have all come from the same place. Even the danio was from that store.

Talk to you later
-Colleen-

gottahavepets
December 11th, 2005, 09:23 PM
Sad news!:sad:
The harly that was on the floor for 5 min is dying. The gills on one side are reddened, he is gasping and sometimes on his back. He doesn't have long at all. I am so sad as he made such an effort to stay alive, even when I had given up. I have been advised the gills may have been fatally damaged while he was out of the water.Poor baby, it is hard to watch him go belly up and try to right himself, swim that way for awhile then struggle some more. I am going to put him out of misery. It's probably better that way. I can't suffer anymore.

Sneaky
December 12th, 2005, 02:59 PM
Awww, what a shame.
Well, these kind of things happen!

In response to your earlier post about Metranidazole.
I have treated these worms now with Jungle Brands Anti Parisitic food
for three weeks, ingredients Metranidazole, and Prazinquantal.
Medicated with liquid Prazi-Pro, prazinquantal main ingredient.
Tried Kent Marine RX-P which treats most parasites with a dose of
hot pepper. Works great for ich and flukes, not for worms.
Tried Salt Dips at a super high concentration nope not that either.
Tried "General Cure" for parasites: metrinidazole, trichlorfon and levamisole, nope nothing.
Tried Dog Wormer with ingredient Piperazine Citrate.
Tried Jungle Brands Anti Parasite fizz tabs now, which are metrinidazole,
couple antibiotics, and arciflavine. I have seen no improvement after second dose.
I really am at a loss. Im amazed my paradise fish is still alive, the state it is in. I will spare you the horrible details. I really would like to cure this fish and the others, but it is looking hopeless.
I have now used all but 2 medications listed in my fish health guide, and have spent probably 70 dollars on anthelmentic treatments.
I suspect because fish are so heavily medicated in the fish farms, that a lot of these parasites have become immune to these common medications.
I suspect I will be unable to find anything to kill the worms that wont kill the fish. UGH.
Oh well.
What can ya do I guess?
These worms can come in on any fish, particularly gouramis, labyrinth fish,
and livebearers, as well as many wild caught fish. The problem is, in some fish it can take so long to even show symptoms of the worms, that the QT tank doesnt work. Even after QTing these fish for 3 weeks, having them in the tank for 3 months, It took 4 months solid before any fish even demonstrated a single symptom. UGH.
Horrible.
Just my luck! LOL

On a lighter note, I got 7 Red Eye tetras, and 6 Glass Catfish recently.
The Glassies are so cute and so nice looking I love them!
They look like what you get when you cross a mouse with a catfish LOL
Great little critters!

gottahavepets
December 12th, 2005, 03:44 PM
Those glass catfish sure are neat! I haven't tried them yet. The barbs make me a bit nervous about what other fish to add. And now the krib does as well because she gets so snarly once a month. Like me I guess, cause I do too!

Those worms sound really horrible. It's too bad that it takes so long for the symptoms to show up. There's got to be a way to treat them without killing the fish. That makes me nervous as I don't have a QT, I introduce my fish right into the display tanks. The bettas almost a year old so he must be clean. So far I haven't had too much bad luck. I did start with a 50% loss rate, but I really rushed putting fish in. This time I'm trying to wait at least a week in between adding fish.
Any idea how long tiger barbs live? I can't find it in any book, or in the profiles. I am starting to think about putting different fish in the 25g when they are all gone but I don't know how long that will be. I am waiting on putting cories in that tank because of how the krib reacted to the otos, I don't want her scaring little cories also. Although that worked out ok I guess.
I hope to be able to post some pictures soon. I found out what I'm getting for Christmas and I'm so excited! But I must act surprised because the kids don't know I know, although everyone else does. LOL, I just can't keep secrets, it's beyond me.

Your Fishy Friend
Colleen

Sneaky
December 13th, 2005, 05:33 PM
Tiger Barbs are pretty long lived fish.
I would say they probably live anywhere from 3-7 years, maybe more.

Yes the worms are horrible. This is the second time I have had
to deal with them.
My paradise fish has had a third treatment of meds, and is still
getting worse and worse.
Sigh. I am going to euthanize all affected fish this weekend and
then watch the rest carefully.
Ugh. Poor fish.
I may have to break the tank down and do a full tank clean.
I am not sure if the worms can survive without a host, or not.

I just dont want to have re-cycle this tank again, it would be the 4th time!
lol
serves me right for always changing my mind anyway!
Well, next fish I get for this tank are going to be ones who arent
commonly plagued by parasites. So no livebearers and no gouramis
of any kind!
Maybe go with some type of tetra, I have never had a single issue
with any tetras, and even have some neons and glowlights that are over
2 years old! They are only supposed to live about 9 months to 1 year most commonly. Amazing.
Anyway, I too am looking forward to christmas.
It will be a nice break.
I look forward to your pics Colleen!
Talk to you soon,
Koran.

gottahavepets
January 12th, 2006, 02:20 PM
Koran, how much peat do you use to lower and maintain a stable pH? I am lowereing my pH to about 6.5-6.8 because iron is insoluble at anything over 7.2.
My plants have been showing iron/potassium deficiency and I think the reason is the pH is too high to keep the minerals soluble. The problem is the pH keeps going back up! You stated you use 2 pounds in the water change bucket right? And then some in the filter as well. For both my tanks, one bucket is 5 gallons the other is 2.5 g. How much peat would you recommend in the buckets and how much in the filters, one is aqua-clear 50 the other is the a-c mini? I have been using pH adjust down to lower the pH before it goes into the tank as well as to adjust the pH of the water in the tank. The fish are all fine with the lower pH, I have done it gradually over a couple of weeks. Now to keep it from bouncing back up. I have a feeling the gH is really high, as well as the kH coming from the tap. I will be getting those tests and testing the tap and both tanks asap. I will continue using the peat as I see it as very beneficial to both plants and fish.
Thanks in Advance!
Your Friend
Colleen

Sneaky
January 13th, 2006, 09:02 PM
Hi Colleen,
Really depends on the tank size!
I use 2 lbs of peat in my filters. 1 lb in each.
Are you wanting it for the 25g?
If so, I would start with 1/4 of a lb (1/4 of a box if you buy it that way in the Hagen peat granules box)
and then test you water about 24 hours later.
If its still not soft enough, add some more.
I dont use any in my water change water, just in the filters.
I test my water after each water change, and if the hardness
begins to rise I change the peat. Usually its good for between
1-2 months depending on whether I do extra water changes or just
the regular schedule.

Just reread your post and saw the filter types.
For these filters the best thing to do is get some knee high pantyhose
and rinse them well, then add the peat to it and tie and cut the excess off.
Then you can make it in smaller packets to fit your filter better!

gottahavepets
January 17th, 2006, 11:10 AM
So if the kH from the tap is really high it will take more peat to reach the desired pH right? And when the kH starts to rise the peat is spent. It takes 6 doses of pH adjust down in a 4 gallon pail to lower the pH by 1 degree, I have to use 6 times the recommended dose to adjust the pH in the tanks, I'm guessing this is because the kH is so high, the pH goes up because the kH buffers it even though I have peat in the filters.
I am almost tempted to give CO2 a try because it will drop the pH for me and keep it there. I don't have enough light for Co2 though, it would probably cause some sort of crisis.

Sneaky
January 17th, 2006, 11:45 PM
Hi Colleen,
actually with even lower light c02 would be effectual
in your desires. While It may not help the plants as much as
if it was a higher light tank, it will still create improvement.

yes, the kh is definetly buffering the gh and thats why the gh keeps
rebounding. Thats also a common issue with chemical buffers.
Do you have any real driftwood in the tank? Driftwood often
acts as a KH buffer, by releasing tannins into the water.
This, combined with peat, is usually a very high level of buffering
and water softening.
Even a small peice of driftwood will release tannins continously for
about 2-3 years, depending on the type of wood.
Just boil it if you can fit it in a pot, scrub it good,
and soak it in a plastic tub of water for 2 weeks changing the
water daily or every second day - this will remove the majority
of the tannins which would turn the tank water brown.
The rest will be enough to buffer the kh sufficiently.

Yes, the peat lowers the gh, and ph, and when it is spent the ph and gh
climb again. I find it usually is good for 3-4 months before the ph starts rising.
Mind you I use a ton of it, probably would need to be replaced more often if using smaller amounts.
Also - you can imbed peat granules/fiber/plates/pellets underneath your gravel,
and this will not only nourish the plants but help to buffer the water acidity as well.
I use the little round pellets, and turn the sideways and bury them deep under the gravel - but I have very thick gravel - so this may not work for all. My gravel is about 4 inches deep.

Also Colleen, you may want to look into Kent's product Black Water Extract.
This may give you better results quicker, as it is a concentrated formula of tannins and peat concentrate as well as some other things that create a soft water environment.

gottahavepets
January 18th, 2006, 06:21 PM
Hi, would the Blackwater extract be better than the pH adjust down? It is sulphuric acid and the amount I have to use is astounding and I wonder what it could be doing to the water, plants and the fish. I worry about H2S poisoning sometimes. I can't find the kH test locally, so I'll be heading off to Paradise in St. Albert, I know they've got it there. The local store uses and sells the test strips, the 5 in 1's, and they are not accurate enough. No wonder they were telling me there was a problem with my water! I use the hagen test kits and I haven't had problems with them.
Because my water is so buffered it would probably take a lot of peat and driftwood to reverse it, I may need to get a small chunk of driftwood to have in the water buckets and add more to the tank. Both tanks have real driftwood, and I can add more to the bigger tank, it's on the list, and while I have all the gravel out in the spring I can put a layer of peat under the gravel. I have read that in an article in the Krib I think it was, making great substrate or something, I did wonder about the peat being lifted during gravel cleaning though. I guess in a planted tank gravel cleaning doesn't have to be really deep to be effective, there should be a layer of mulm for the plants anyway.

gottahavepets
January 20th, 2006, 03:04 PM
Ok I found a hardness alkalinity test. The KH was between 180 and 300, the GH was at 300, that's from the tap. The pH was 7.5, I adjusted it to 6.8.I changed the peat in the buckets a few days ago and when I tested it the results were KH 80, and GH between 75 and 150 and pH was at 7, not the huge shift it usually does. The numbers are definitely getting better. I changed the peat in the filters as well and switched from the granules to the loose stuff as the granules just didn't seem to work. I will be testing more often and changing as needed. This summer I will be looking for a cheaper source of peat. I always get a bale for the garden and as long as it's pure with no added chemicals I should be able to use it!
I put the peat in the buckets so that it's already softer before it goes into the tank. This way I don't need to add as much to the filters. The water will steep for a week or so with an airstone to keep it moving before I put it in the tank. The theory is that it will need less adjustments at water change time and not stress the fish by being too hard. So far they really seem to be doing well. The plants will tell the tale eventually if I can keep the iron and potassium in solution long enough for the plants to use it. The Kents Blackwater extract is also a source of chelated iron, do you think they add it to the bottle or is the peat a source of iron? Flourish Excel is not a source of nitrogen, it is a source of carbon and it helps to reduce iron to the state that is most readily used by plants. It is supposed to control algae but I haven't found that to be true, although the tank with the most algae is the 10g with a bit higher light and some direct sunlight. Soon that will be changed, I have a blind I just haven't put it up yet. I love that window except when the sun beats right in and blinds me. Although it's cool to see the amazon sword pearl when the sun shines!

Sneaky
January 20th, 2006, 10:00 PM
Thats a good idea!
I never would have though bout it!
Yep you could definetly use any peat as long as it has
no additives. Is definetly cheaper that way.
I use the granules as they are way more concentrated than the
bulk fiber, but maybe it depends on the water?
If blackwater extract uses iron, its probably added to the mix,
as most soft water is low in iron, and iron is required for fish and plants
to some degree.
It definetly wont hurt.
How are your fishys doin these days?
Mine are finally getting over the worm problems thank god, remember you wanted me to tell you what I found that worked in case you ever encountered it - pure crystalline metronidazole. Only thing that has worked.
Thank god!

gottahavepets
January 21st, 2006, 02:29 AM
Thank goodness you found something that works! The crystalline must be stronger than the other type.

My fishies are all happy, the pandas are getting over their shyness, the otos are fat and happy, the new danios and barbs are all finding their places in the shoals.
I am so looking forward to replanting in the spring, but to tide me over I get to play in my brother's tank (55g long). I gave him a Big Al's gift certificate for Christmas to get plants and maybe some fish if we don't blow it all. He has tetras, one of each I think. I've convinced him we need to limit it to 2 or 3 schools and build them up.
I'm looking at cardinals, black skirts and lemons, what do you think and how many? Also maybe add some otos (6 to 8) to replace the pleco he lost over the last few months. It swam into a fake driftwood and didn't swim out again. My brother found the skull while cleaning the tank! He's got some cories and I think we'll increase the numbers there too. First though I want to get the plants in then let the tank settle before we work on the fish. I'd hate to introduce cardinals and such then shock them all with a major planting operation.
So that's what I'm doing, dreaming about little tanks and big tanks.

Sneaky
January 21st, 2006, 09:11 PM
Hi Colleen,
yep the crystalline stuff is way stronger, and has no adverse reactions, and is safe for all fish. Big Als had a great price on it too.
I got enough to do 8 full doses of slightly above recommended dosage,
and it says just to treat every second day until symptoms disappear.
I am going to run 5 doses, then keep the other 3 and watch. It may take a couple weeks for the fish to shed the worms, and some may die from this, but hopefully the majority of affected fish will survive.
I have already seen some of the worms peeping out turning from red to white - which assures me they are dying.
I am also feeding the fish a new type of gel based food with metronidazole, prazinquental and flubenol, as well, 2 days each week, to assist the powder in the water. It seems to be helping and the majority of the fish actually eat the gel stuff.

Ohhhh, planning a 55g! what fun!
Does he want it to be tetras only?

Lemons, Cardinals and Black Skirts sounds like a great match, nice and contrasting, and very colorful!

I think this would be a good stocking:
6-8 ottos would be a good number
10 Cards
10 Lemons
8 Black Skirts
8++ Corys of one species

That would be a nice busy bustling tank.
Or he could do 1 group of 6 corys, and then he could
have a little space to do a centerpeice fish if
he so chose, like a gourami or something.

gottahavepets
January 22nd, 2006, 12:30 PM
Oh how much fun was that! I played in the big tank last night. He has really low-light so we stuck to the hardy low-light species and also 3 swords, I know they aren't low light but they have done well in my tanks. We got 3 largeish driftwood pieces and a really neat pagoda stone, (heavy!) to make some caves and such, I tied the ferns and moss on and placed them in. We added the blackwater, his water is also very hard, so we doubled the dose. After I was done playing my sister-in-law said she really liked it, so I guess I did a good job. When it grows in it will look much better I'm sure. In a couple of weeks we will be adding a few more plants, a smaller anubias like the nana, and some crypts. I wanted a water onion but couldn't find any. We were at Big AL's in Edmonton and I couldn't believe how much their plants cost! So we headed to my favorite LFS in St. Albert and got a lot more plants than we could have at BA. I have had no problems with the plants or the fish I've gotten from there.
The tank has been having problems with un-explained deaths, I think it's the really hard water, the blackwater will help with that I'm sure. And now that he knows how to clean the filter properly and will be adding to the biolagical filter with some bio-max in it he won't have as many problems.

So here's what is in the tank right now, we are making decisions but it's hard, my SIL like lots of colours in the tank and many types of tetras, I haven't yet got her convinced that three of each and 6different kinds isn't a good idea. The ones we won't be adding to I'm not sure what to do with, I don't think I should rescue them, I took the lone rasbora last night and it didn't make it, too long in the bag I think. 1 1/2 hours. But here's what's left I think I remember them all.
2 red-eye tetras (big)
3 black skirts
2 black neons
1 bleeding heart tetra
1 black-spotted cory
1 blood-fin tetra

She wants 3 more red-eyes, he wants lots of cardinals, they both want the otos and cories, and she wants rummy-nose tetras now as well as what's already in the tank. I like the black skirts, they are really pretty and set the other fish off nicely.
Are all tetras short-lived? I may be able to convince her that she could wait and replace them later as they die off, that way she can have all the tetras she wants in a never-ending pattern. So let me know what you think and I'll see what I can do, they have a bad habit of buying whatever catches their fancy.

Lucky Rescue
January 22nd, 2006, 02:44 PM
You should never have one or two tetras of any kind. You should have at least 3 in a small tank, and 5 or more in a big tank. Odd numbers make a more attractive display I think but that's just personal taste.

Corys shouldn't be kept alone either, as they are quite sociable.

Rummy nosed tetras are pretty, but delicate to water conditions, moreso than many other kinds.

Other fish I like and have always kept are gold barbs and cherry barbs. They are attractive, peaceful and live a very long time. You need 3 or 4 females to one male, as the males tend to harass the females a lot.

gottahavepets
January 22nd, 2006, 04:48 PM
Hi Lucky Rescue! You know that, I know that, I need to make them see that as well. I'm trying to convince them not to just buy whatever catches their eye but to actually plan it out beforehand. Looking at needs and compatibility before purchasing them.

Here is what I'm thinking may work, the numbers are all negotiable.
10-20 Cardinals
5 Red Eyes
6 Rummy Nose
5 Serpae Tetras(formerly thought was Bleeding Heart)
8 Otos
6 Cories

The ratio works out to about 1.5"/gallon, using 50 gallons and 20 Cardinals. This to me is acceptable in a long planted tank with regular weekly water changes and not over-feeding. I see it as a colourful and active tank which is what the SIL wants. They have two young daughters who love watching the fish.

Sneaky
January 22nd, 2006, 08:11 PM
10-20 Cardinals
5 Red Eyes
6 Rummy Nose
5 Serpae Tetras(formerly thought was Bleeding Heart)
8 Otos
6 Cories

This should work Colleen - Red Eye Tetras have the possibility of
being quite nippy (I have 7), so you may want to consider upping
the number to 7. I started with 4 and found them to be harrassing my pristellas, which are too peaceful to handle it. Upped it to 7, now they only harrass each other.
Red Eye tetras get very large as well - about 2.5 inches.
If you were to get 2 more, Id stick with only 15 cardinals.
Not all tetras are short lived- the red eyes will probably live 5-7 years,
the serpaes 3-5, the rummynose 3-5, and the cardinals 2-5 depending on water conditions.
Sounds like a nice tank!
Hope you post some pics of it!
As for the unexplained deaths - have you tested the ammonia and nitrItes,
in a cycling tank none of those tetras stand a very good change of making it through. If its still cycling, id wait now till it finished, then add only 3-5 small fish at a time at 2 week intervals. This will prevent mini cycles and rebounds.
Or- it could just be the fish were a bad batch, that also happens sometimes.
Keep me Posted,
Koran.

gottahavepets
January 22nd, 2006, 09:21 PM
The tank has been running for two years now, it isn't still cycling. The ammonia and nitrites are both zero, I think it was the hardness, we have really hard water here and he's farther into the city. My husband has a degree in water/waste water treatment and Edmonton water gets worse as you go East. We're on EDM. water but ours is the farthest West and therefore has the least treatment done to it, I still think it's awful water though. My brother also doesn't change the water every week, he does it once a month. That'll be changing right away, and he used to change both halves of the filter at the same time as the water changes. This is also changing. His tank has a Whisper 60 from Tetra, I'm not 100% sure what filter media to recommend aside from peat and bio-max, he can't run carbon with the blackwater extract, I'm thinking loose filter floss in a media enelope on one side and peat on the other side. Rinse one then the other next month. Do you think that'll work? I have only used the Aqua-clear filters so far. He may be changing to the AC 70 or larger when he can afford it.
Stress could have killed them as well, the numbers are really poor for schooling fish. He also had a pleco go into a cave, get stuck and die, all he found was a skull, it would have raised the nitrates really high. We'll be testing for phosphorus as well, it's something I've never tested for and maybe we should.
The blackwater hasn't reduced the GH far enough yet, how long do you think we should wait between doses to bring it down to where we want it? Right now it was a double dose last night which was recommended on the bottle, a single dose tonight then he'll test again tomorrow. If it still hasn't done it's job I'll tell him to take the carbon out and just put the floss envelope back in. Maybe that's what it is, the carbon.
Thanks as always I look forward to your imput.
Colleen

Sneaky
January 23rd, 2006, 04:20 AM
Thats good to know the tank isnt cycling.
I couldnt remember whether it was new or not.
I suspect you are right about either water or stress doing
them in.
Poor Pleco. That happened to 2 ADF's I had, got stuck in a
ornament and died.
Cool though on finding the skull thats kinda morbid and neat!
*lol*

Im glad to hear your working on his maintenance regime with him!
Way to go!
Even happier to hear they listen. Some people - its like talking to a
brick wall - im sure you know some of those!

The BW extract is probably being filtered out by the carbon.
I would suggest removing it and seeing if it makes a difference.
Like you know, carbon isnt really needed for a tank except
in certain situations.

I dont know Whisper filters either - never heard very good things about them so chose to avoid them.
I know aquaclear and cascade and eheim and fluval. Just got a Rena XP-2 thats exciting! Now to wait for the missing tube to come ....

I think bioballs/peat/floss are the best things in filter personally.
:-D
Take care my friend,
Koran.

gottahavepets
January 23rd, 2006, 06:12 PM
I hope he listens to me, this is my little brother we're talking about. Fish may be the only thing he listens to me about this century! It's funny he's had his tank 1 year longer than I've had mine and already I know more about fishkeeping than he wanted to learn. I think he thought there was nothing to it, put fish in and enjoy. Hopefully the new regime doesn't turn him off. Although I could wind up with a 55 that way!

He may be getting an AC 70 soon as it is the one I know the most aboutand have the most experience with. That doesn't really say much but I figure stick with what works until it stops working.

How long should the tank settle before add new fish? I'm thinking at least a week, then we can start topping up the schools we are keeping and add the more sensitive otos and rummies another week or so after that. We'll be adding more plants as we go along as well. But I read the rummies are very sensitive to transport shock and will take the recommended measures to prevent this when it comes time for them.

I may be upgrading to higher light. It would be nice to have 1 wpg or even 2. Right now I'm lucky if it's at 1/2 wpg! Hagen has a double light hood that will fit my tank, it is the same make as the one I have. This way maybe I won't lose as much water to evaporation as I won't be cutting out for an undergravel filter, and if I have a submersible heater by then I won't need as big a hole on the heater side either.
With higher light I will be looking at CO2 as well. I may go with the hagen one because it looks simple to set up and use and it is the right size for my tank.
I am hoping this will all be accomplished during my spring tank reno. We'll see how that goes. I have to start saving my pennies now.

Sneaky
January 23rd, 2006, 11:19 PM
Hi Colleen,
I think that you could probably add about 4-6 new fish (if theyre small) each 10-14 days.
That will give the tank time to stabilize in between each.
If I can suggest, for a 55g tank, a hang on the back filter is really not
the way to go. For a bigger tank, with a higher bioload, I would really suggest a canister filter.
If he wants easy maintenance, canisters are the way to go.
I clean my canisters only about once every 3-4 months when flow rate decreases. They also hold about 10X more media in one chamber alone than a whole HOB filter does.
Sure a canister may be more expensive, but in the long run, its worth it.
In the past 3 years I have gone through 4 Aquaclear filters, and 2 Cascades
Hang on the back style filters. I have switched all my tanks but the 10g over to canisters now.
Fluval makes a decent cheap canister,
Rena would be second in cost, high in quality, second only to Eheim.
I have all 3. The rena so far seems to be the easiest to maintain, start, and put together. The eheim is the most difficult, but has the best quality.
Just a suggestion if he wants more filter for his buck, go for a canister.
For a 55g tank I would recommend personally a filter that does at the very least 75g.
My 75g tank is now receiving 220G of filtration, or 20X per hour turnover rate.
You wouldnt believe how much less maintenance of the filters I have to do.
Anyway just a suggestion you might want to consider.

I am also going to be getting a C02 system for my birthday next month.
Im getting one of the Nutrafin easy grow c02 systems for my 10g tank and see how that goes. With 4.5 wpg, im sure it will help!

-Koran.

gottahavepets
January 24th, 2006, 03:21 PM
I have shied away from canisters because I thought they would be more work to clean than the ac hobs. Mine has been a dream, I have had it from the beginning. We'll see what he says, so far I've had free reign on this project! I was thinking for the hob we'd go with the larger one that will do 60-100gal size tank, I haven't seen the price on it. If they're about the same then we'll give the canister a try.

Next month is my birthday as well! 3 days after Valentines day, so I usually get something red and heart shaped for my birthday. Can't complain the hubby is usually prepared to give in to my every whim at that time of the year! Heck last year I got the 25g! This year it's a wonderful trip to a spa for a wrap, massage and soak in an epsom salt spa. Can't wait.
Colleen

gottahavepets
January 26th, 2006, 12:59 PM
Koran, get this, I was checking the profiles of the fish I want to put in the 55g and cardinals can live 10yrs! The black skirts 6, not all the fish have a lifespan listed though. So I'm wondering if the black skirts would be ok in my 25 or if we should move them into my brother's 10 with the mollies. I really need to get more info on tetras. The mollies are doing great in the 10 as it is, it is kept brackish the way they like it and they are breeding well. I think the black skirts are compatible with the fish in my 25, at least according to the profiles they are. Let me know what you think, here's what's in there now:
1 krib
1 SAE
5 mixed danios
6 tiger barbs
4 otos

The only real problems I see are the krib and barbs aggression, I do have a method that has worked lately for introing non-aggressive fish to the tank, and will use it, as well as lights out during the intro. If you think it is a bad idea then we'll donate the fish to whatever store we're buying from. That's what I did with the fox and sharks, they didn't give me credit but they did take the fish.
Thanks
Colleen

Sneaky
January 26th, 2006, 09:02 PM
I think black skirts would be fine in your
25g tank. They really are too big for a 10g (as are mollies).
Cardinals definetly dont live 10 years. Maybe 5 at most,
but i still doubt that. Neons and Glowlights average lifespan is
get this "185 days", but can live to a maximum of "560 days".
Mine are 3 years old or so, so have beat that by a lot.
Thats in my fish book, cant remember what its called, its an older
one my mom gave me.

I dont suspect cardinals live that much longer than neons.

You definetly would not want to put any tetra in a brackish water
tank. Mollies, though not really needing salt at all, will be tolerant of it,
tetras are definetly not tolerant of salt. A half dose is usually recommended.
More than that often results in bloating and dropsy, as salt improves osmosis, and opens the pores in the skin more, allowing a greater amount of water to flow through, resulting in imbalances.
I am definetly not a pro-salt person myself, dont believe in it, dont use it, dont keep mollies in brackish water only in fresh. Im of the belief that salt is a placebo, it makes you feel good but does nothing for the fish beside improving osmosis. Thats just me though.

I read your mention of frogs - ADFS come from several lakes in Africa - they are called the Rift Lakes. Victoria, Tanganiyka, Malawi, and a couple others.
These lakes are often temps of 82 to 88 or even 90+ degrees. These frogs have poor internal temperature regulators, and unlike our native frogs who can be frozen and come back to life, ADFS cant handle cold temps (temps below 76F). They develop red leg - which is caused by a pooling of blood in the extremities, espescially the back legs, and lack of blood flow to the lungs, heart, and brain. This results in death.
I make sure mine stay warm, as I also lost 2 to this in my early days of fish keeping when I was told by the pet store that 72F was warm enough for any tropical fish!
I love the little guys. I recently lost 1 to an injury (im betting it was a yoyo loach in its zeal for food that nipped him).
I plan to get a couple more. I like to keep around 5 of them at least.
Great little frogs. Or, I may move the remaining 3 I have now to my 10g tank.
Then they arent at risk from the yoyos.

I lost one of my 3 pearl gouramis yesterday, she was severely bloated, and I am assuming that her body was unable to pass the dead camallanus worms out, and resulted in death. (most common cause of death in fish being treated for camallanus worms).
It was a sad day - pearl gouramis are my favorite gouramis, these ones eat from my hand and come to the top for pets every morning. Very friendly fish. Sad to lose one.

P.S. your hubby should talk to my boyfriend. On Valentines Day im lucky if I get a box of chocolates lol

gottahavepets
January 27th, 2006, 07:49 PM
Emergency!
My betta is losing his tail, fin rot, I turned the filter right down and left it overnight, I think it could have been that(low oxygen), or the tank really needs cleaning, it's not even been a week yet since the last one. The only other things it could be are the harlies decided to pick on him or a bacterial infection. The other fish are all fine though, none of them are losing their tails! It wasn't the temp cause it has been holding steady at 78 F. pH was back up to 7.5, the kH wasn't too bad but the water was back to being hard. I did a water change but didn't try to adjust anything. The new water has been steeping with peat and a chunk of driftwood for almost a week, it was softer, more acidic and the kh was lower. He's in lights out, he was 'pacing' the front of the tank, so I turned out the lights.
I checked with all my books, and the 'net and I couldn't find too much. I dosed the tank with mela-fix and will do so for the next 6 days, then change the water again. I hope his tail grows back, it was so pretty before!

Sneaky
January 30th, 2006, 08:10 PM
Colleen, how is your betta doing?
Is its tail still receding, or is it starting to heal?
Fin rot is usually fungal, there are a couple
ways to help.
A salt dip will often help, as it is an antiseptic and
will kill the fungus. Mix 2-3 tbls salt in 1 litre of tank water.
Dip the betta for 30-60 seconds, however long he appears
to tolerate, or hold him in your hand and just dip his tail
for about 60 seconds.

Pimafix + Melafix would be my treatment of choice, following
a salt dip of the affected area.

gottahavepets
January 31st, 2006, 11:43 AM
Thanks Koran,
His tail is looking ragged, it is still receding as well as the top fin. I have been using just mela-fix for the last 5 days, I'll do a water change and start using both mela-fix and pim-afix, I will try the salt dip as well, I don't know if he'll let me hold him but we'll see. He's flaring it normally and his eyes are bright and clear, they were dull when I first noticed it. It's strange that the other fish were not affected, good but strange. Treating the whole tank will prevent them from getting it though.
The harlies have been displaying and the pandas have also been acting like they are thinking about spawning, it's funny to watch. Now I just have to get the pH and GH stabilized, I'm thinking the GH is phosphate buffered since the peat has barely touched it, I will be testing for phosphates and maybe using Phos-X to remove them, is there any other recommendations you'd like to make for this? I have been testing the water in the tank as well as the buckets with peat in them, the GH barely moves with the peat added to it, that's why I'm thinking it's not carbonate hardness buffering the water but rather phosphates. I'll let you know when I get the test and test the water.

Sneaky
February 1st, 2006, 01:59 AM
Hi Colleen,
definetly sounds like the betta has something fungal going on.
I really think a salt dip would help and so would the pimafix.
I have been blessed with never ever having a single case of fin rot yet.
*cross my fingers*
have had mouth rot before though, and salt dip+ pimafix+melafix did the trick.
I wouldnt be surprised if he just caught his tail on a plant, rock, something and got a tiny tear which led to a fungal infection.

I had no idea phosphate would buffer GH. I thought phospates = bad cuz they cause unwanted algae to grow. If you have excess phosphates you too should have excess algae. In hordes really.

GH is a measure of the general hardness of water caused by calcium ions.
You must have super calcinated water. Do you have a well drilled right through limestone?! we did at our last rental place!
The peat still lowered it though.
I suspect though that due to your HOB filters being not very large for the addition of peat - that you just simply cannot use enough.
If you had a canister, I would suggest adding a whole box of peat granular to it to lower the GH.
My water is super buffered - 2 boxes of peat granular takes it from
ph 7.6 to ph 6.6 and from GH of <300ppm (thats how high my test goes), down to a GH of >80ppm.I suspect you simply need more peat than a HOB filter can handle. I think my large driftwood peice, due to it being hemlock also adds some large amounts of tannins to the water which help buffer it as well. Hemlock never sinks as it never waterlogs, and it always releases tannins. Its been 3 years and the water is still very tea colored.
Really a great peice of wood, except for the need to consistently retether it to the slate once a year.

gottahavepets
February 2nd, 2006, 12:40 AM
Hi Koran, after 6 days of just Mela-fix his tail is looking better. It is not so ragged as yesterday, it doesn't appear to be getting any smaller, he still looks happy, he's active, eating, foraging, playing tag with the otos and pandas! I think you may be right, there are some tight spots in the tank and lately he has been seen rooting around in almost all of them! He gets in and starts rooting, he stirs up a bunch of stuff while he's at it, the harlies come darting around catching all the bits and then he pulls out and moves on to a new spot! I try not to overfeed to cut down on nitrates etc building up but he finds all the spots where food collects LOL. I also saw him nipping at his own tail yesterday, which was actually kind of funny to watch as it is so short right now. I will be changing the water then continuing Mela-fix and adding pima-fix during the re-growing of the tail to prevent bacterial infection etc. I am not so sure about stressing him out with a salt dip, I may not know then which treatment did the trick. I am also not sure how long the tail growing will take. It is a much larger tail than the danios tail was (lost to another danio in a high-speed chase LOL).
I read about phosphates buffering the water at the seachem site I think it was, I go all over the 'net now, read here and there. I still have to get a test to prove/disprove that there is any phosphate in the tap water, then I'll know where to go from there. It could also be as you say that I need to get more peat in the water. I will increase the amount in the water change buckets until it reaches the desired levels. Plus there is the blackwater extract which is looking better every day. You should check out the arguments over on FP about trying to change the water! Yikes, I'm almost scared to even mention it now! I also ran into something interesting about CO2 and pH and photosynthesis. Maybe you've noticed the pH drops over night then rises during the day. It happens in my tank without CO2 and I'm trying to figure out what effect adding CO2 will have on this natural shift in pH. Especially as I'm trying to lower the KH and GH in the tank with peat, I'm wondering if the shift will be larger than if I left the KH and GH alone.

I am hoping to get a new hood with an extra bulb in it soon as well as the Hagen CO2 kit on the 25g. Then I will have moderate light, about 2 wpg and CO2 enhanced growth. I'm leaving the 10 alone though, it has plenty light and the fish are making enough CO2, plus I am using Excel when the fish don't have tail rot!

gottahavepets
February 7th, 2006, 12:09 PM
Yay! Buddy's tail is growing back! It is definitely bigger than it was yesterday. So now do I continue dosing mela and pima fix until it is all grown back or do I just change the water and add extra water conditioner? I would also like to clean the filter but I haven't yet. He seems to like going under the return, it's like a high power shower! He's gotten so good at surfing, I think the harlies taught him!

During treatment I reduced my Excel use and now I have beard and hair algae and who knows what. I also noticed his tail didn't start growing noticebly until after I started dosing the excel again at the double strength for algae fighting. Weird huh?!

Sneaky
February 7th, 2006, 06:27 PM
Colleen, I am so glad he is getting better!
If the tail ends are clear whitish and growing back
with no signs of fluff or redness, you should be fine
to discontinue the mela-pima fix use.

Good clean water will heal him now.

I find it very very very strange that you claim Flourish
Excel prevents algae.
I used it, and found it caused black beard algae,
staghorn algae, and brown diatoms in mass amounts,
so I stopped using it. Have never had any since, except
in my 10g super high light tank, and thats only cuz I
sometimes leave the light on too long.
Flourish Excel is often noted for causing algae problems and
diatom growth. I am amazed that you find it is an algae preventative.

gottahavepets
February 7th, 2006, 06:39 PM
The plant guys over at FP swear by it, and I had no problems until I stopped dosing at least every other day. We'll see how it goes, it takes about double the dose to prevent algae, I don't know how it will affect algae already there. I started a log on the other site to chronicle my tanks conversion from non CO2 to CO2 and better light. That's for the 25 though the 10 will stay non-CO2 and it has decent light already.

His tail and fins are looking really good, he seems to like hanging his tail in the filter return LOL. I will probably do a water change,add actvated charcoal then clean the filter in a few days. He's back to his old self, clear eyes, bright colour, he's also back to being very active. The harlies look nervous, they have gotten used to him moping by the heater, now he's out front pacing. He likes to charge me whenever I get too close to the tank!

gottahavepets
February 13th, 2006, 02:34 PM
Sad news! One of the pandas in the 10g with the betta has passed away. It looks like a fungas was groing on it. I didn't catch it right away so I had no idea it was sick. I haven't put the ac in the filter yet, should I do another round of mela-fix and pima-fix to be sure the other fish don't get it? The rest all seem healthy, I did a water change yesterday, and Buddy's tail is still growing in. I was thinking either another round of the prior treatment or a different anti-fungal to get the stuff in the water from the panda. It shouldn't hurt to do that should it, or should I just do a couple of water changes in succession?

Sneaky
February 13th, 2006, 03:12 PM
The mela-fix pima-fix treatment could definetly be
repeated.
Im sorry to hear of the loss of your panda!
Sometimes these things just happen!
I would definetly do a few water changes before
using another med, even though melafix and pimafix
claim they dont react with other meds.
Whichever Maracyn treats fungus would probably
be a good bet.
I doubt however that any other fish will get it.
Just maybe keep an eye out for a few days
and watch the fish to make sure.

gottahavepets
February 13th, 2006, 07:21 PM
Thanks for your quick reply! I think I'll just do the water changes and keep an eye on the other fish. I didn't rush to clear out the mela-fix and pima-fix as it recommends it for adding new fish, so I figured it could gradually come out during water changes and that would help to prevent it from being spread to the other fish. :fingerscr
They do all seem to be acting normally, they rise to eat and swim around like normal. Buddy has gone back to rooting out bits for himself and the others, he really does go all over the tank. I am also going to wait a bit, then get 2 more pandas, I had wanted 6 originally but am not wanting to overstock the tank because of it's size. Then I will have 1 betta, 5 harlies, 5 pandas and 2 otos and tons of plants.:D

Now the CO2 bug has bit me well and truly, I haven't got the unit for the 25 and I'm already making inquiries into a DIY for the 10! The plants are looking good, but I think they could do better, the trick seems to be keeping iron and potassium going into the tank, CO2 would also lower the KH and pH a bit, then I wouldn't have to use quite as much peat as I do, not that I will stop using the peat, I love how it makes the fish look! And it is also supposed to make them more immune to fungus. I'm sure you were right and the betta tore his fin prior to me turning the filter down, that would allow the fungas to get in. The panda's have been doing some flashing before the water change and the one that died could have been wounded doing that.

gottahavepets
February 15th, 2006, 10:47 PM
Got my CO2 and my light! The Hagen CO2 kit was on sale at Superpet so I grabbed one, later when I have it figured out I may move the canister to the smaller tank and do a DIY on the bigger tank, it seems so easy now that I have seen one!
I picked up a Coralife light, 65 watts 6700K, now I need to find a rim and glass cover for the tank. Mine (the one that came with the tank) doesn't have a rim or a glass cover, the light fixture is protected from moisture by a gasket thingy, this is going to be the tricky part. There is a glass place nearby so tomorrow I am heading there with pictures, dimensions and the light fixture, maybe I'll have something rigged up soon.
It's funny I was talking to my hubby and he seemed to think I had already got the stuff I wanted and was just waiting for my birthday to pull it out, so I figured what the heck and went out and got it!

:D ;) ;) nudge nudge :highfive:
I've been wanting to use that one.

Sneaky
February 19th, 2006, 02:48 AM
Colleen...woohoo!!
How is your c02 working? Is it easy to use?
I really like Corallife power compacts..thats what I use
on my 75g ...135w power compact.
My birthday is tomorrow, so Will be going on monday to
pick out my present....
I cant wait!

my frog passed away...poor frog...rip little guy.
Glad hes not suffering any more though!

gottahavepets
February 19th, 2006, 02:00 PM
The Nutrafin (Hagen) CO2 kit is really easy to set-up, it is like a ready-made DIY kit, you don't have a lot of control over the flow rate, but this isn't an issue yet as the bubbles aren't moving that quickly anyway. I have some valves from an air kit that I could patch in if I needed to slow down the bubble rate.

Getting the light on the tank was a hassle, my tank has no top rim for the glass track to sit on so I had to find a rim and adapt it to my tank, I was able to get a bottom rim from another Waterhome 25 kit, then I had to trim the supports off so the track would sit on the rim. There is no glass top that fits either so I had to get a 36" and trim the tracks and the glass, what fun, do not try this without practicing first, it is not easy! I will be replacing the two pieces we had to cut, too many sharp jagged edges, they are covered by the track at least. Overall, I'm happy with the way it looks and the amount of light I have now, I'll post a pic at the bottom, a before and after so you can really see the difference. Now I can widen my scope of plants that I can use a bit, I'm starting to plan for the re-plant in the spring, I may even start adding plants now as the light and CO2 may cause some algae growth. I want red, a rotala macandra or something, or a lily, I've seen some that are red, and I also want some nice bushy plants. Oh so much fun!

So have you figured out which CO2 kit you're going to get? Now that I have the Hagen one I see how easy DIY can be, I may switch this one to the smaller tank and put a larger bottle on my 25. The ladder diffuser is adjustable for smaller tanks, but it says it is only good for up to 20 gallons. It would be great for the 10, and the ladders can be purchased separately. I got lucky that SuperPet clearance had the whole kit on sale, 1/2 price! I should have got two!

Sorry about the frog, I was hoping you could pull him through, how are the others?
Your Friend Colleen


Before
http://i25.photobucket.com/albums/c56/luvmypetz/25GallonWholeTank.jpg
And after
http://i25.photobucket.com/albums/c56/luvmypetz/NewSet-upwholetank.jpg

Sneaky
February 20th, 2006, 07:21 PM
OMG Colleen! The difference is light is amazing!!!!
I love the huge sword you have in the back left.
Gorgeous! I have one of those exact
same swords in my 25g, but its only about 1/5 that size.
Of course its only under .5wpg so thats why!

I am going to get the Nutrafin (hagen) c02, same as you
got there. Glad to hear its easy! I am hoping that after
I get it, I can model a larger one for my 75g tank, and maybe
use a large bottle, like a 2.5g water jug. Big enough...small enough
to shake! I thought bout using a 5g jug...but full of water impossible
to lift and shake!

The other froggies are doing really good. It seems whatever it
was wasnt contagious, it remained isolated to that frog alone.
I suspect it had a wound that quickly developed gangrene.
Poor thing. Im glad it isnt suffering anymore though.

Today will be a sad day though....remember Sneaky Pete,
my female angel whos swim bladder was ruptured?
Well, after about 8-9 weeks now, she has not taken
a turn for the better. She is now swollen like a melon on
that side. Poor thing. I have decided that despite her
few attempts at recovery...it is now just too far gone.
It will just continue to reinflate and deflate...causing her
pain and suffering.
The poor thing. She stopped eating 3 days ago, and now isnt
even moving enough to keep the snails off her. Every day I
pick snails off her as she floats at the surface.
Today I am going to Euthanize her. I will miss her greatly.
I just cant stand to watch her suffer anymore.
:sad: :sad: :sad:

Are you going to do a log on your changes with c02 and higher
light? Id love to watch it progress!
I will be going to get my c02 on wednesday when I go to town.
I will probably do a log on it to see if there is any change,
and do weekly pictures.

My sister got me a Balloon Belly Blue Ram for my birthday!!
It looks like a little female and gosh is she a beauty!
I will take some pics tonight when my batteries finish
charging so you can see her!
Ive put her in my 10g tank for awhile so she can grow,
and so I can make sure my big tank is worm free. Im
monitoring for 60 days to ensure worm free status!
So far 17 days and not a sign!
Lucky too...only lost 2 bolivian rams, 2 pearl gouramis, and
a rummynose tetra to the darn things. I count myself
lucky!
My sister QT'ed the Blue Ram for over a week already,
and gosh its healthy and gorgeous!
Never had a blue ram before....I am going to have to make
up a bag of peat for my small tank to soften the water for
her...im sure she wont appreciate the hard water in that tank
much.

gottahavepets
February 20th, 2006, 11:30 PM
Yeah, the fish all need shades!:cool:
I have a log going in the Planted Tank forum on FP detailing how I did the changes, my trials and tribulations. I am pleased with it so far though. The light emphasizes the need to change the gravel, and that sword does look amazing. It has finally outgrown that tank, I will be giving it to my brother, I hope it does well there, he has a lot less light than I do on his 55g.

I am glad the other froggies are doing well, it must have been just him, poor thing. And I'm so sorry to hear that Sneakypete isn't doing well!:sad: I had hoped she would make a recovery. If the swim bladder is ruptured though I guess there isn't really anything you can do. Better she not suffer anymore.

The new ram sounds great! I was at Petcetera today and they had rams in tank labelled as ruby cichlids, a man there bought two because the 'rubies' were cheaper than they would be if they were in the right tank. They had no rams in the ram tank. Ha ha! I almost got Gorgeous a mate, they had a beautiful male krib with a double eyespot on his tail and really good colouring considering they never look as good in the store tanks as they do at home. But since I am treating for ich I decided to wait. It was real hard to walk away though.

2 of my barbs and a couple of the danios had ich spots, only one for most of them though. I decided to treat it, I think I know what caused it and it shouldn't happen again. The temp outside dropped massively last week and the house furnace and the tank heaters just couldn't keep up, so I think that may have caused an overnight swing in the tank. The fish are the new ones I got a month or so ago, so they haven't developed strong coping systems yet I guess, I may lose one barb anyway, it looks thin, but it is still eating. Do they ever stop? I used the Jungle Labs stuff, did 2 doses with a WC in between, the most prominent spot is disappearing, I wonder if I should do one more dose or cean up the meds? One of my otos is clamping his fins and I can't find what that means. So I may just stick to tank maintenance and hope that works. He may not like the higher temp in the tank either, it is a bit above what they're used to. He could also be dealing with the new light and CO2, though the pH hasn't really dropped yet, the KH and GH are still above what I'm aiming for, but right now I don't want to mess too much with it. I will be getting the Kents Blackwater extract soon. And I will still have peat in the filters.

I also dosed the 10g for fungus, but will be clearing that out, I had done it before you posted that the other fish may not be affected, I lost 2 pandas though and wanted to clear it out before losing anymore. They get a WC tomorrow then I'm putting AC in the filter to clear out the med. Jungle Labs Fungus Eliminator, I figured it would be stronger than the Mela-Fix for getting the fungus from wherever it is in the tank. We'll see.

Sneaky
February 21st, 2006, 06:56 PM
Hi Colleen!
HAH - they label the Bolivian Rams as Ruby Crown Cichlids here
at the petcetera too! They call the Blue Rams, Ramirezi Cichlid.
This is one is a potbelly blue ram ...omg she is gorgeous.
She has the typical ram colors, with a black stripe down her
eye which almost reaches the ones on her pectoral fins.
Her tummy is bright pink - why im guessing its a female.
And she has bright blue lipstick! Shes a stylish one I guess!
:thumbs up

If the otto is clamping his fins but has no spots I would assume
hes just responding poorly to the medication. I have used
that same med before and the plecos and ottos went clamped
fins till it was gone. Didnt hurt them, maybe just irritated them?

If the spots are fully gone and its been a couple days, Id start
the W/C's to get the med out.

Day before Yesterday when I got the Ram, I decided I better
do water changes before adding her, so did a big 40% on each tank.
Wow ever clean now!
The ten gallon is looking gorgeous!! Im so happy with it.
I cant wait to get my c02 tomorrow!
Im going to start a log on fp for it, do weekly shots to see if it
makes a difference.
Need to trim back the Ambulia in my 10g again its totally taking over the
tank. When I did a w/c I pulled off all the stuff on top that
was growing algae, and junked it.
The plants are looking a little leggy so Im debating whether to pull
them and trim them and replant. But I did that only about 3-4
months ago....maybe I should wait longer.

omg on a side note and a bit of a rant....about 1 month/5 weeks ago
I bought a Rena XP 2 filter. It was missing one of the big hoses!
So I called them right away and they said they were going to mail
me out a replacement asap. Well its been like 5 weeks now and I still
havent got it! Where are they sending it from.....taiwan?
I am going to check today and if it still isnt here call em again.
I would really like to get this filter up and running!
by the way....it looks awesome.
For setup anyway easy easy easy!
Cant wait.

Jungle Labs FUngus Eliminator --- I have had great results
with that. Works well and seems to be quite mild for use with
corys and scaleless fish.
Im sorry to hear about your pandas. Its hard when you lose a cory.
They are just so adorable I hate losing them.
Ive been lucky, only lost 2 of the 10 hasbrosus I had in total now.
All 4 of the last 4 I bought are doing great.
I put some peat in my Cascade filter on my 10g yesterday, and
already all the fish seem brighter.
I wish the three guppies would grow faster so they can move out.
Somehow though...the tank still stays clean longer and
looks emptier with the 1 paradise fish, 1 balloon ram, 4 pencilfish,
3 baby guppies, 2 frogs, and 8 C. Hasbrosus, than it ever did when it
was a platy and guppy tank!
Anyway Im rambling now totally.
Talk to you later!
Koran.

gottahavepets
February 22nd, 2006, 06:54 PM
Hi Koran,
The fungus dosing seemed to be killing my water sprite so I pulled it out and chucked it. I think I'll put vals or sags in place of them. The pandas seem to be feeling better, they have come out of hiding again and are very visible up front. The otos look better as well.
I will probably lose one barb, I'm debating doing it now or waiting, he's real skinny and tries to eat but spits it out. I'm suspecting TB for that one, I've had some fish exhibit the same symptoms and lost them, there's no effective treatment, but in the past it's also been pretty restricted to weaker individuals, no major losses. That's why I am hesitating, it may not spread if the other fish are healthy enough to resist.

Well now I know of one more place to find Bolivians, I couldn't find them before because they had the wrong name. Actually I checked the FP profiles and that's one of the names listed. Oh well, they were $3 less than the other rams they had a tank for.

They must be making the hoses from scratch, growing the rubber tree from seed and everything! My gosh, that would be frustrating, you deserve a good rant now and then.

When I had the 2 guppies in my little 2g that I had way back when, I couldn't believe how much mess two little fish could make! I was actually glad when they passed on.

Today is Wednesday so hopefully you get the CO2 kit you wanted, if you have any questions about it feel free to ask me, I'll be checking in regularly!

Sneaky
February 23rd, 2006, 10:10 PM
hi Colleen,
yep, guppies are definetly one of the messier little fish!
Im glad im down to just 3 left. I mean I love the little guys
they are super cute and friendly...but enough is enough!
you know?

I went in yesterday to get my c02 kit, and they didnt have any
left!!!
argh!
So, waiting till next week, or I may stop in and check
at another pet store when Im in town for my class on wednesday
night.
I checked it out at Petsmart, but they wanted 50.00 for it!!
Way more than the 32.99 the other place is charging!

gottahavepets
February 24th, 2006, 01:20 AM
Hi Koran,
Oh how frustrating! If there's a Superpet or a Superpet Clearance Center nearby check there, I got mine for $24.99, almost 1/2 price, they are usually around $40-50 here.

So I lost a couple of fish from my 25g. One oto and one tiger barb, the oto death is a bit of a mystery, and the barb got really skinny, I was suspecting TB, but I cleaned my filter today during a water change, I've done 4 in about 5 days or something! There was this really thick, tarry almost black gunk clogging up the sponge and the filter was a mess! So I cleaned that out and replaced the peat, then started it up again, it runs nice and quiet again. I was very surprised as I do filter maintenance every month. I'm pretty sure it was the water sprite dying in the tank from the med, and the moss is always getting caught in the uptake, so some of it must be getting into the filter as well. I will replace the sponge in a couple of days and then remove the carbon in about a week. I need more peat or some blackwater extract, I can't wait for spring, I can get a big bale of peat for about $3, rather than the little box for $15. With the CO2 in the tank, pH is 7.2 and holding, KH is 120 ppm, or 6.8 dKH, that puts my CO2 at 12.7 ppm. Which is pretty good I think. I haven't done anything to the tank to lower pH except the peat in about 2 weeks now, so that should be a good reading. My high KH seems to keep the pH from dropping too much. Lowering the KH by much more may cause a drop, so I'm not too sure how much I want to mess with it. I may not be as aggressive with it as I was, but I still am going to use the peat/blackwater extract.

gottahavepets
February 27th, 2006, 07:08 PM
Well it has been almost 2 weeks since adding the CO2, it is now time to change the bottle, I am trying to figure out an easy way to do this, I have a 1.5 L wine bottle, attached to it is a whiskey spout, an air kit valve, then I will attach that to the tube going into the tank. I have found that the spout has an air release hole, to make pouring booze smoother I guess, so I need to seal it with aquarium sealant for this to work. Too bad I have the sugar water ready and the yeast has been actvated, the bottle is still too hot though so I haven't added the yeast to the bottle. Here's the link for the advice I'm sort of following, the article talks about various yeasts and how they each work, I never knew there was a difference but it is a pretty vast difference. It also gives some good diagrams for putting a system together. The whiskey spouts were my own idea, I was shopping at Ikea and decided to try them. I couldn't find the bulkhead fittings the article shows. I did only check one hobby shop though.

http://www.qsl.net/w2wdx/aquaria/diyco2.html

I hope that works, it was a pretty good article for someone who has never made a system. I am happy with the Hagen system, but I feel the bottle will need changing too often, I could just go and get another canister to make the changes easier, and I may wind up doing just that if this doesn't work. I don't know how I feel about having the wine bottle sitting there beside the tank, I'm not that bad a boozer, really!

Have you got your system up and running yet Koran?