Few questions on maintenance & suchlike. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 5 Old 03-13-2012, 03:57 PM Thread Starter
Red face Few questions on maintenance & suchlike.

I've had a tropical fishtank for about 1 1/2 years now, 25 litres heated to 26*C currently with a couple of plants, a red betta, 4 cardinals & a tetra (I think) which I acquired by accident and have never been able to identify.

The problem is in September I'm going to uni, and I need to make sure the tank's as low maintenance as possible. I'd quite like to buy a few otos to keep the plants a little more algae free anyway, but I'm conscious the tank's not going to have many water changes, and I'm not sure how much I trust my family to feed the fish every day while I'm not there either.

The fish have survived a week without food several times when I've been away - but that's probably not done them much good.

I'm also worried because the fish I haven't identified has been getting increasingly aggressive - and the betta's been quite lethargic for a while now.

So I guess I'm asking:

a) does my tank have any spare capacity for more fish
b) would buying some java moss or another low light plant help keep the water in a decent state for longer between water changes (it always gives min. ammonia, nitrates & nitrites in tests nowadays)
c) any suggestions for keeping the tank ticking over while you're away for extended periods of time? (I already have the light on a timer..)
d) and any ideas what might be wrong with Yossarian? (the betta)

Ooh also I'll try and take a decent picture of the unidentified fish in case anyone can identify it: it is about the same size as the cardinals, with the same eyes, you can see it's silver at the front and you can see its spine, the fins are largely clear and it spends most of its time at the top of the tank, is quite active and greedy at feeding time, swims differently to the cardinals.
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post #2 of 5 Old 03-13-2012, 04:41 PM
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you could add an automatic feeder, so your family would only have to refill that once a week or so. No matter what you are going to need weekly or every other week water changes. If you are moving away i wouldnt suggest adding more fish, and i dont think you have more room to add many more fish. adding more plants would help, although dont add to many because they will grow large, and cover other plants which could cause problems. Post a picture, maybe we could help you with identifying the tetra. how old is the beta? and also, the water might be to warm or cold for him, i dont know my conversions from Celsius to Fahrenheit, and i have to go, or else i would help.

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post #3 of 5 Old 03-13-2012, 04:46 PM Thread Starter
26*C is 78*F.

It's lights out in my tank right now but I'll put up a photo tomorrow, it's hard to get a decent one.

I'm not sure an automatic feeder would work in my tank - I have nowhere to attach it and from the sounds of reviews it'd soon get damp and gunked up.

It's just because I have a problem with algae on the plants I'd like to add a few more fish. :/ Idk, it's probably a bad idea.

Thanks anyway~
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post #4 of 5 Old 03-13-2012, 04:55 PM Thread Starter
oh and I assume the beta is maybe 1 1/2? I got him November 2010.
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post #5 of 5 Old 03-13-2012, 05:25 PM
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Is there any chance you can take the tank with you? It's not that big and most dorms (at least on this side of the pond) will allow you to have a fish tank. That's the only way I can see it working unless you set up an automatic water change system.

Your temp is fine for the betta. It might be that strange tetra is stressing him out. When you get a picture to us tomorrow we should be able to help you with that.

For the algae I would not get any more fish. It will just make the problem worse. Floating plants like duckweed and water sprite will help take care of it by blocking out the light and absorbing nutrients. Your tank is actually a little overstocked. In order to have other fish with a betta you should have a 10 gal or larger tank, and the tetra should be in a group of 6 or more. Maybe find someone else to take the tetra and just take your betta with you to school. A lesser fish load will cut down on algae.


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