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Thread: Newbie tank suggestion

  1. #9

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    Okay... I have to point this out. The glass TETRA and the glass CAT are very commonly mistaken. The glass TETRA gros to be about 1 1/2 inches long, and about an inch tall, in the shape of a disk. Now, the glass CAT grows to be about 7-9 inches long, and over 1 1/2 inches tall, and when it gets big enough, will gulp down other fish (and shrimp)! So be careful on what you get [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]

    [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/alien.gif[/img]

    -Spec

  2. #10

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    *Update*
    Got some great advice and here's what's going on:
    Cycling tank with plants and ghost shrimp.
    2 weeks - two glass catfish. The kind that won't grow over 2"
    3 weeks - add some golden or red tetras
    4 weeks- small school of neon tetras

    The fish store guy actually told me that the glassfish (glass tetras) are really hard to keep alive because of a fungus they are susceptible to so I don't think I want them anymore. Usually I don't trust the folks in the store, but it was a local fish shop and the fact that he recommended cheaper fish is a big clue that he wasn't just trying to sell me something more expensive. He was also was honest about other things as well, so my tank is turning out to be a bit different but still very cool.

    Here's a pic, I've added rocks from the store, Agate Beach, CA and Glass Beach (Fort Bragg, CA) to give it some interesting colors. The larger rocks are also agates or quartz. And the plants are real [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img]

    And, my parents were pretty irate about the tank until after it was done. Now they're pretty happy to have it, and enjoy trying to find the 13 ghost shrimp in there.



    I do have a question about lighting though. Having trouble finding specs (that I understand) Backstory is that I was also getting lights for my terrarium and one of the lights I bought was on sale and opened. When I got home, I was lucky to find an aqua ray tube inside! Must have been a returned light setup and the person forgot to switch out the tube. So basically I have the following lights and need help figuring what to put where. The aquarium does have live plants, so I'm not sure if the aqua ray light specifically will work there or what since I don't have a box for that one:

    Terrarium (needs two bulbs)
    Aquarium (only holds one bulb)

    Lights (all 18"):
    *GE 15w, 620 lumens, Color temp 5000K, 90 CRI Sunshine full spectrum light
    *Philips 15w, 410 lumens, Plant & Aquarium
    *GE 15w, F1578-AR-FS Aqua Ray
    *plenty of soft white tubes

    I'm definetly putting the full spectrum light in the terrarium, but unsure about which of the other two to put in the aquarium or terrarium. Aquarium needs to be for fish AND plants, and the terrarium needs to be able to grow my cps. If it helps, the plant and aquarium light looks peachy/pink (the one in the tank pic), and the aqua ray looks violet/bright white. Thanks in advance! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif[/img]
    A flytrap ate my homework!
    -Michelle

  3. #11

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    You would have to have at least 4 ghost cats if they are kept in smaller groups they will actually die of loanlyness.
    [img]http://home.**********.com/users/pondboy/Neps/Neps%20sig..JPG[/img]

  4. #12

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    Yeah, I can probably fit 4 in there...neon tetras are pretty small so there should be room.

    Oh, and I think I've solved by lighting questions (let me know if I'm wrong). Found a GE .pdf with info.

    Looks like the aqua ray is for salt and freshwater aquariums plus for corals and other aquatic plants. So I guess that's going in the aquarium.

    The full spectrum and the plant & aquarium looks like it can go in the terrarium.
    A flytrap ate my homework!
    -Michelle

  5. #13

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    Hi wicked, Thanks for the CP seeds [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif[/img]
    I used to raise all sorts of fish. My current tank has quiet a variety of chichlids and community fish.

    Neon Tetras are schooling fish, so you shouldn't purchase any less then 3. Most pet stores claim there is no way to separate Male from Female, but is not true. Males are a bit smaller then females and have a much slimmer body. mature Female tetras have a round belly (which means shes full of eggs). slim females will be noticed as a straggler behind the rest of the school. You should always be the one to pick out the fish.

    There are so many precautions for ghost catfish. But i never took any seriously and all mine did fine.

    GLASS FISH!!!!!! id suggest you be very cautious with glass fish. These fish carry lots of diseases for some reason which can break out to the whol community. I wouldnt suggest getting these fish from commercial petshops (petsmart and petco). Ick was particularly the disease of choice, but also had my fair share of fin rot. And if your gonna treat the fish for a disease with that blue liquid stuff, do it in a different set up because that stuff will stain your silicon blue.

    i think ghost catfish eat alage, but you wanna make sure that you have something that will. A Plecostomus or something like that.

    some of the ghost shrimp may get eaten up. but its no worry.

    anyways, hope you get your aquarium going.

  6. #14
    scottychaos's Avatar
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    here is the thing about live plants in aquariums..
    you need LOTS or none at all!
    to be really sucessfull growing live plants..
    and whan I say LOTS im talking LOTS LOTS LOTS!
    stuffed full! like this..

    http://www.tamura.com/yasuaki/aquarium/tank2.jpg

    because of...Algae! the evil enemy of planted aquariums.
    to grow plants you need lots of light..algae also loves lots of light! algae grows much faster than your "real" aquarium plants..
    there is only one thing that can really keep algae in check.
    lots and lots of healthy growing plants, because they will (eventually) suck all the nutrients, depriving the algae, causing very little algae to grow..
    but..it can take months or years for your real plants to win the nutrient battle against algae!
    so you have to start out by STUFFING the tank with plants, so the real plants have a chance from the beginning..

    one or three little live plants, + enough light for them = uncontrolled algae farm.

    tank full of live plants + enough light for them = lots of nice growing plants and very little visable algae..

    growing live plants in an aquarium is an entire other aspect of the hobby! and MUCH harder than fish alone!
    [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img] [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]
    Fish are so easy to care for compared to aquarium plants!
    not trying to discourage!, because it can be done..
    but one or two or 3 little live plants isnt going to work..
    they need light, giving them enough light will allow algae to really take over..without a tank full of plants to combat the algae, the only way to kill the algae is cut way back on the light..which also kills the plants!
    its a war! it took me and my planted tank 2 years to win it..
    just a "heads up" on the fun and frustration of planted aquariums!! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif[/img]

    also, a planted tank should have very few fish, compared to an unplanted tank..to keep nutrient levels down, and a better overall tank balance..really the emphasis for a planted tank has to be the plants alone..the fish are almost secondary..
    for a FISH tank, with no live plants at all, algae isnt even an issue at all because you can just use the littlel tank light that comes with the tank! the fish dont care about lots of light, you can still see them fine, but there is far too little light for algae to grow (or live plants)..

    the greatest thing I ever read, to help me really understand planted tanks, was this:

    to have a succesfull planted tank, you CANT think "I would like to get a few real plants for my fish tank."
    thats how most people start..it wont work!
    instead you have to think "I would like to get a few fish for my plant tank"!
    [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]


    Scot

  7. #15

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    Here is my thoughts on the tank etc...

    When cycling a tank no fish should die from ammonia poisoning. If they do you have stuffed up as you don't want an ammonia spike as ammonia will stop the bacteria that "eat" nitrite from growing slowing down the whole process. Add fish slowly to stop large spikes.

    What filter are you running on the tank? This will ultimately dictate how many fish you can put in. Unfortunately I do not know the fish you are going to add as over here common names are completely different [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif[/img] curse common names!!

    With the tank itself you have a shell in there!! Get it out this could play havoc with your water chemistry. If you need to buffer the pH use a carbonate hardness generator. The plants you have are a worry too. The Glossostigma(?) will not grow in this setup as it needs lots of food CO2 and light! The red plant (Ludwigia?) has not been grown underwater (it has terrestrial leaves) and may not be an aquatic plant! Avoid most red plants as these are usualy hard to grow, or not even aquatics. The crypt (wendtii?) should do well though. I would try some hardier plants at first like Microsorium, Anubias (make sure it is an aquatic species, I would recommend A. barteri), Ceratopsis cornuta and Vesicularia. Your shop should be able to help you with these names, if they can't change shop!!

    You also have very course gravel, this is bad! Food and rotting matter will get caught in the stones where nothing can get to it to eat it. Ideally the substrate should be no larger than 3mm. You can place larger rocks over this but use the finer gravel to fill all the gaps. I would probably use a sand >1mm, although sand requires a few basic tips or you can get it very wrong. Personally I only use fine sand now.

    This talk about glass fish getting sick easily, what species are these as I do not know of a glass tetra (glass bloodfin tetra?) do you know the Latin name? Is it a Chanda sp.(http://madhunag.tripod.com/glasstetra.html)? These get injected with dye which causes them to break out in Lymphocystis (amongst other things) which is commonly mistaken for a range of other illnesses. The dye seems to destroy their immune system. I find "un-dyed" Chanda sp. very hardy. As for white spot, no fish should ever get white spot unless it is in incorrect conditions or has been stressed!

    A few small Loricariidae (sucking catfish) like Otocinclus and 10 or so shrimp coupled with some plant growth should keep most algae at bay. But remember the best way to grow algae is to feed to much or worse still a cheap food!! But make sure the fish get a balanced diet with feedings of live and frozen foods (don't feed beefheart or a beefheart based frozen food)!

    Don't over stock, don't add fish that will grow much over 2", add a few plants that will grow in your conditions, do weekly water changes, feed a good quality food and buy your fish from a shop that knows their $#/+ (read: about fish)!!! A good shop will mean the difference between success and failure!!! As for your lights I can't help you as I do not know any of these brands [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif[/img] but over a tank this size one full length tube should give you good plant growth. My mate grows his aldrovanda, along with other aquatic plants in a 10 gallon with a single 2 foot tube.

    Hope this helps
    George

  8. #16

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    I really appreciate everyone's advice. I'm having loads of fun and it's already a family activity to try and find all 13 shrimp.

    I'm using a GE 15w, F1578-AR-FS Aqua Ray tube that's for freshwater and saltwater aquariums plus aquarium plants and corals. The plants are Glossostigma, Lilacina (Alternanthera reineckii var. lilacina), and Cryptocoryne wendtii "green". All of the plants have good roots on all of the stems and if they continue to do well, should be enough to multiply and cover the tank. Remember this is "econo tank" - plants are expensive so I will see if I can propagate more before purchasing.

    My filter is an Aqua Clear Mini Aquarium Power Filter, 100gph for a 20gal tank (mine's a 10). Has adjustable speed. I keep it on full and plenty of bubbles seem to get mixed in. I do have small gravel in there but I guess it's not enough. I'll add a 5lb bag of it when I can get to the store. Luckily, I don't have anything in there but hungry shrimp, so there is no food buildup yet. Sanddollar will be taken out...and toys added in [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img]

    The glassfish I was talking about is the Chanda sp. I made sure to notice that the ones in the store were unpainted. However, a few did have the fungus so I will steer clear of them until I have a more established tank and/or more experience.

    Over the next month I'll be slowly adding a few dwarf algae sucker of some sort -thinking o.vittatus, c.pigmaeus - depends on what the store has. A few glass catfish, and later some of the really small tetras, probably neon or such. Not too worried about algae, we'll see how all the critters do. Of course I say that because it hasn't gotten gross yet. But I can always clean the tank! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif[/img]
    A flytrap ate my homework!
    -Michelle

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