New tropical aquarium
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New tropical aquarium

This is a discussion on New tropical aquarium within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Hey guys about 3 months ago i bought a tropical aquarium. I'll start of with specs 65L tank 100W heater + the flouro lights ...

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New tropical aquarium
Old 09-22-2009, 09:18 AM   #1
 
New tropical aquarium

Hey guys about 3 months ago i bought a tropical aquarium. I'll start of with specs

65L tank
100W heater + the flouro lights and UV lights up top
It has a 500/L a minute pump in it
Also another air pump that puts bubbles in the tank pumping air through an octapus

I have in the way of fish a...

5 inch Bala shark/silver shark
1 male gourami 2.5 inches
2 females gourami 2.5 inches
4 pearl gourami

So far have not killed any yet so i imagine i must be doing the tank setup right i generally clean the water out once a month

I have about 8 plants that look like strandy seaweed and the fish love them

i feed them flakes and algae pellets and as a treat i also give them frozen blood worms they all eat everything i give them

Anyhow here is a photo, did have a few more questions though my bala shark has jumped a fair few times whilst i've cleant the tank out and as a result has lost a couple of scales he doesn't seem affected though but will they grow back? and what should i add to my tank if he accidently loses any more.
Also i noticed the shark gets spooked way way to easily at night when it's all darkened room, i fixed this by leaving only one half the fish tank lit up and they seem happy but what else can i do to reduce his frightened nature or does the fish have bad eye sight or something and sudden movements scare him?






The other fish tank i have is also a tropical aquarium

It's got...

60L glass tank
a small filter which seems to work done the job over last 3 months
a top flouro light
about 6 plants
a bubble wall at the back of the tank

It's got alot of smaller fish in it, i think in total about 12, all tetras of some sort i am not entirely sure i clean out the tank once every month and a half a full changeover.

so far just feeding them flakes and they seem happy it's my g/f's tank so she manages it, had a couple of fish die however over last 3 months not sure what causes it but had 2 problems.

one looked pregnant and had a bloated belly then died, the other just lost all balance and did circles and loops and died later that day what could cause that and what can fix it?

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Old 09-22-2009, 10:29 AM   #2
 
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Hi Alienslayer, welcome to the forum!
Your bala shark is spooking is due the fact that they are a schooling fish and need to be kept in a group in order for them to be comfortable. Your tank size will not support a group, much less this lone individual. Balas get rather large (all the way up to 16") and a 65L (17gl) does not give this fish the room they need. It sounds like he's an unhappy camper in your tank.

What type species of gouramis are you keeping besides the pearls? I've read that multiple gouramis can become problematic due to their territorial nature but someone else with gourami experience will have to weigh in on that as I've personally never kept them. I do know that 65L, once again, is much too small for this many fish.

Are you leaving the tank half lit 24/7? This isn't a good way to solve the spooking problem as fish require a full period of darkness (12 hours is ideal) in order to rest, just like us.

I do water changes once a week, any less than that isn't giving the fish what they need. Fish require and need fresh clean water and the only way to provide that is by way of regular water changes.
Injurys (such as your bala missing some scales) can often turn into bigger problems (infections) without fresh clean water, which will allow your fish to heal on their own much more quickly.

In regards to the other tank, you say you're doing a full changeover. Does that mean you are completely emptying the tank? Doing so can cause the tank to recycle all over again and the ammonia/nitrite spikes are what could be causing the death of the fish in this tank.

Do you happen to have a water testing kit?

I'm really sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

Last edited by aunt kymmie; 09-22-2009 at 10:32 AM..
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Old 09-22-2009, 11:42 AM   #3
 
nah we never lost any fish in the last month, it's been pretty good really only ever lost i think in total 5 fish we have it down pat, normally we can get the water stable within a few hours then we put the fish in with 1/4 of their orginal water and we adjust by testing the water the next day. most times it goes a little alkaline so we put ph down and it stabalizes. i have never really done that before most ppl say empty out half the water stir it up a bit to get the gunk and crap out of it then add fresh water i have always just done a full tank change once a month or so i think in future though i will be just emptying out the old water into a bucket and filtering it through a strainer back in.

yeh quite possible the shark is spooked cos the tank to small for him he mostly hides behind the rock cave and comes out for food later when it's darker, the gouramis seem ok 3 spot gourami i think they are called.

the pearls keep to themselves in a group on one side and the other gouramis keep hiding in the caves and the car, sometimes they do this mad chase around the fish tank but mostly they just hide in the plants and eat them too

never had a problem with the amonia stuff i use way to much water conditioner for that to be an issue, water has always stablaized fine for me now that i know what i am doing. it was most of a problem at the start

i did seperate the pearl gouramis though i put them in the pink fish tank they have more room now.

now my big fish tank just has 3 2.5 inch 3spot gouramis and that huge bala shark.

Last edited by Alienslayer; 09-22-2009 at 11:46 AM..
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Old 09-22-2009, 04:53 PM   #4
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alienslayer View Post
nah we never lost any fish in the last month, it's been pretty good really only ever lost i think in total 5 fish we have it down pat, normally we can get the water stable within a few hours then we put the fish in with 1/4 of their orginal water and we adjust by testing the water the next day. most times it goes a little alkaline so we put ph down and it stabalizes. i have never really done that before most ppl say empty out half the water stir it up a bit to get the gunk and crap out of it then add fresh water i have always just done a full tank change once a month or so i think in future though i will be just emptying out the old water into a bucket and filtering it through a strainer back in.

yeh quite possible the shark is spooked cos the tank to small for him he mostly hides behind the rock cave and comes out for food later when it's darker, the gouramis seem ok 3 spot gourami i think they are called.

the pearls keep to themselves in a group on one side and the other gouramis keep hiding in the caves and the car, sometimes they do this mad chase around the fish tank but mostly they just hide in the plants and eat them too

never had a problem with the amonia stuff i use way to much water conditioner for that to be an issue, water has always stablaized fine for me now that i know what i am doing. it was most of a problem at the start

i did seperate the pearl gouramis though i put them in the pink fish tank they have more room now.

now my big fish tank just has 3 2.5 inch 3spot gouramis and that huge bala shark.
There are two things here that are going to cause you significant problems with fish health and may lead to loss of some fish.

First is using chemicals to adjust ph with fish in the tank. Never, never do this. There is a reason why the pH of the water is whatever it is, and normally this is due to the buffering action of the carbonate hardness [expressed as degrees KH]. The harder the tap water, the stronger will be the buffering capability of the water. This means that when you try to lower the pH the chemical substance does that, but the buffers in the water work to bring it back to the "norm" and the result is fluctuating pH which is very stressful for fish. The more you do this, the worse it gets, until the buffering capacity of the water is exhausted and the ph will then crash. The pH of an aquarium containing fish should only be adjusted slowly over a long period of time, and safe methods include peat filtration or RO [reverse osmosis]. The stress on the fish from using the chemical affects its metabolism and will slowly (or sometimes quickly) weaken its immune system, leaving it open to further disease and parasites.

Second is using "filtered" tank water. This is more harm than good. The reason we do a weekly partial water change is to remove some of the water that contains toxins and replace it with clean fresh water. Fish expel urine and solid waste; the solid breaks down through bacteria into liquid, either in the substrate or in the filter. The liquid remains in the water. No filter can remove this. The only way to remove it is to remove some of the water and replace it with fresh. Removing the water, filtering it, and then replacing it is doing nothing. The urine and liquified solid waste is still in the water. The second reason for a partial water change is to reduce/eliminate nitrates that cannot be filtered out. In both cases, you have to use fresh water treated with a good conditioner.

Never do a "total" water change except in a dire emergency. Water stability is important, and a weekly partial water change of 30-40% will achieve this.

Kymmie mentioned it, but I'll repeat, do not leave lights on the tank 24 hours. This also stresses the fish, and stress always leads to health issues, sooner or later. Fish require 10-12 hours of total darkness. There shuld be light in the room when the tank light comes on and goes out, either daylight or a room light. This will eliminate the shock of suddent changes on the fish.

Byron.
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Old 09-22-2009, 09:48 PM   #5
 
ok thanks for replies so basically whenever i clean out my tank next i am better of just removing 1/4 the water and just topping up? then adjusting i thought fish needed a stable ph balance the water here is very alkaline like a dark blue. What about all the stuff that sits at the bottom of the tank old food and what not? or do you just stir the gravel up a bit when cleaning it and remove what i can?

Also yup i've started turning off the lights fully at night now so they get total darkness i did however re arrange the plants so that the fish have more hiding spots the shark seems less spooked turns out whenever i opened up my door the way he used to hide in my tank the sudden movement causes him to dart.

and yeh i've always noticed my fish don't seem to eat as much after a full water change until a few days after
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:36 AM   #6
 
i did have one more queerie though, i heard that the shark is basicalloy a scavanger and eats whatever he can get off the bottom and gouramis eat plants, does that mean i should only feed them once every second day or so? recently i've been feeding them 4 times a day and they don't really eat much
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Old 09-23-2009, 10:30 AM   #7
 
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Answering your last two posts.

You're feeding too much. Fish can manage with one feeding a day, and only what they clean up in a few minutes. Feeding in the morning, 30 minutes or longer after the tank light comes on, is the best time, as they are the hungriest and most active. A second feeding in early evening (but not just before the lights go out) won't hurt. From what you say you are feeding way too much; it should not be lying around on the bottom. And the shark will not scavenge, he needs proper feeding just like the other fish. With bottom dwellers, you should have a good sinking tablet/pellet food and put in one or two once a day when you feed the flake.

When you do the weekly partial water change, vacuum the substrate in the spots you can get too, but not around the plants. Use the syphone to stir up the gravel a bit, no need to go deep. There are many types of bacteria living in the gravel to break down the detrius into nitrogen for the plants.

No need to adjust the pH in your tank, as I pointd out previously. The fish will be better with a stable pH, and the tank will be close to the tap water.

I'm not aware of gouramis actually eating plants; they like to browse over plant leaves and roots (of floating plants, which is good in a gourami tank) looking for bits of food.

Byron.
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Old 09-23-2009, 09:31 PM   #8
 
ok cheers well i use algae pelets for the shark and he seems happy to eat 5-6 of those a day i might cut him down to 2-3 a day, as for the flake feeding i think i'll feed them a few flakes in the morning and some blood worms later on in the afternoon how does that sound? And yeh the shark eats blood worms too.

My gouramis rip into my plants hey normally if i don't feed them for a few days they go vegeterian on me and destroy the lot :P

i used to have some of that floating grass stuff you mentioned and they did eat that too but it got way to messy in the tank clogging up my filter and turning my water greenish after a few weeks so i stopped using it.

normally i've never planted my plants in an aquarium i've always just kept them in their little green buckets so i could clean the tank easier and re arrange it to keep it looking fresh
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Old 09-24-2009, 10:39 AM   #9
 
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Originally Posted by Alienslayer View Post
ok cheers well i use algae pelets for the shark and he seems happy to eat 5-6 of those a day i might cut him down to 2-3 a day, as for the flake feeding i think i'll feed them a few flakes in the morning and some blood worms later on in the afternoon how does that sound? And yeh the shark eats blood worms too.

My gouramis rip into my plants hey normally if i don't feed them for a few days they go vegeterian on me and destroy the lot :P

i used to have some of that floating grass stuff you mentioned and they did eat that too but it got way to messy in the tank clogging up my filter and turning my water greenish after a few weeks so i stopped using it.

normally i've never planted my plants in an aquarium i've always just kept them in their little green buckets so i could clean the tank easier and re arrange it to keep it looking fresh
I wold reduce the pellets to 1-2 in the morning; that is planty for one fish. Plus the bloodworms in the pm. Your green water is more likely due to overfeeding than any plants.
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