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Thread: Turtles, fish, cleaning, plants to put in tank

  1. #1

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    Hi there,
    I just acquired an 80 gallon and 2 70 gallon tanks. Right now my turtles are living in the 70 gallon, with me cleaning out the water every 3 days. Luckily i have it set up to siphon out the window and put the hose in for cleaning at the same time which is almost like a filter. But this is getting timely.

    My first thought is that i need a giant filter, but i haven't a clue what would be the best for these dirty little guys. I know nothing about filtration systems. I found one for 130 bucks for a 100 gallon tank its a cannister filter not undergravel. will this be enough?

    And since its such a large tank i wanted to add some aqueous plant life for beauty and turtle chomping. Any suggestions on easy care plant life?

    Also, I wanted to add some fish to the tank for viewing pleasure, but also maybe to help keep it a bit cleaner? Can this be done? or only the kind that eat the algae.

    I would love any suggestions, because i haven't a clue where to begin.

    My turtles are quite hearty and healthy. They are red eared sliders and a couple mutations. I have had them for about a year and they are varying sizes, the largest being 3.5 inches.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    thanks,
    jo

  2. #2
    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Hi jojo and welcome to the forums. Been a long time since I've had fishtanks, so I haven't kept up with the latest and greatest technology. So I'll leave that for others. Siphoning, though labor-intensive, and there's always that possibility of swallowing filthy water, is very efficient, especially with the way turtles will quickly dirty a tank. It just occured to me that you might have it set up to syphon automatically, if you have a plug on the end of it.

    I'd be concerned about the turtles being big enough to go after and eat the fish. How big are they?

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    my siphon pump broke and i had to suck on the tube and alas got a taste of dirty water... I kept thinking i was going to die from salmonella..grin. not funny. So i found a hand pump version and works pretty well.

    I am on my 3rd filtration system. But they were for 50 gallon tanks on a 30 gallon tank, and it still didn't work all that well.

    my turtles are babes. They range in size from an inch to 3.5 inches. one of them is just growing faster than the others. Any thoughts on what kinds of fish i can put in there? even the algae eaters? I know of only one kind plescomus? spelling? and will have to research where to get them.

    any thoughts on plant life i can add?

    thanks jim for the welcome. I have been lurking for a month or so. i want to make one of the tanks into a terrarrium, that is how i stumbled on this site. And i am getting intrigued by the carnivorous plant topics...

    jo

  4. #4
    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    I think everybody has has a taste (literally & figuratively) of siphoned water. Do you use a some tubing or do you have a more sophisticated apparatus, such as the Python siphon?

    Plecostomus are good algae cleaners and can be purchased at any petshop. How high do you plan to have the water level as that could influence what kind of filtration system you could use, beyond sucking on a syphen hose.

    Fish? Pond / pool goldfish that are at least a few inches would probably okay, but I still wouldn't trust turtles as far as nipping and catching them. You definitely don't want anything with long, flowing fins. What do you plan to feed the turtles?

    The turtles might also unintentionally uproot plants with their swimming.

    Are you intrigued enough about CP's to get into them? You can buy from **********'s online store or take your chances on the garden centers or follow the Carnivorous Plant Trading Post - or I can send you some easy starter plants w/instructions. Many of us would be happy to get you started as well. If interested in some CP's, you are welcome to send me a PM.

    BTW, when I worked for a tropical fish wholesaler, I had a co-worker called JoJo - short for Joanne.

  5. #5

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    mines is short for josephine. worse, i think. I had a pump looked like a tire pump for the siphon worked great till my neighbor used it and broke it. Now i found a just a long clear hose with a ball attached 3/4 of the way down. You just hand pump it a few times and then gravity just takes over. Pretty easy. Since the tank is in my garage/studio i can open the window and just let the water out. And then add from the hose.

    I am totally intrigued with cp's. i'm sure they would thrive where i live. I have a jungle of insects. and flies? i have horses, goats, pigs... I wonder can they grow wild? LOL... I would put them in all the pens. Does easy starter mean low maintenance? Can they live outside? I have only read a little on the forums regarding them...

    regarding the turtles everything is just an experiment right now. They are doing well with nothing in their tanks but some island floating devices where they can get out of the water. Everything else is just to try to liven it up. Add some excitement in their lives...grin. i feed them pellets and whatever drops in the tank naturally/various insects.

  6. #6
    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Pet shops sell a product called a Python, but you can always buy a piece of appropriate length and diameter hosing at Home Depot or Lowes, in case your current one fails you. Sucking is the fastest and easiest way to get the hose started, but also the messiest. If you fill it up with water, first, then place one end in the tank, followed by the other end to where you want to drain it, it will begin syphoning.

    I wish I could say that I am an expert on what does well in Florida climate, because some plants will thrive in the heat & humidity while others will struggle. Perhaps Treaqum or Flytrapgurl can help. Having said that, many American pitcher plants and Flytraps should do well. Maybe hanging baskets of
    Asian / tropical pitcher plants will also do well. No doubt ya'll have the critters to keep them well-nourished!

    Some people construct bogs or mini-bogs, which are often glorified planters, to put flytraps, American pitcher plants, and some sundews in. That's what have up in Southeast PA, that works well. Most of my plants are inside, on window sills, but the flytraps & American pitcher plants do the best when they are outside, getting direct sunlight. Some people collect rainwater and others buy distilled water. Yet others have a reverse-osmosis (RO) unit to keep the plants watered. Never use tap or spring water for them.

    Would I be correct in assessing that 'Josphine' is far from being your first choice of being addressed?

  7. #7

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    no... when i get old maybe, josephine will suffice. right now i think i'm still a jojo... LOL... i have well water with just salt added to soften. Or i have it directly from the well. I bet that would work?

  8. #8
    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Jojo it is! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_n_32.gif[/img] I wish I could say I knew how CP safe your wellwater is, but I just can't. Has it ever been tested for metallic salts, such as Calcium, Magnesium, Manganese, and Potassium. Another thing I am told to look for is Total Dissolved Solids (TDS). I know this must sound more complicated than imagnined, but CP's will die if they are getting metallic salts in their water - the slow death kind. Now some people actually have tap water that is safe for CP's, but they have had their water tested and they know it is safe. The same is true for those whose groundwater is clean enough, the trouble is that everybody's situation is different. If you can get the gallon jugs of ditilled water (~50 cents per gallon) at Winn Dixie? Publix? Krogers? that would definitely be safe. I just don't know how clean the water is from the wells.

    I think I know about using salt for a water softener because we used to do that at the tropical fish wholesaler to produce soft water for fish that came directly from South America. But that's an aside.

    Is it possible to set up a plastic trash barrel to collect rainwater? Some people do that.

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