Suggestions!!!??? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 11 Old 01-19-2010, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys, my names Jake and im new at this forum. Ive been a fish keeper sense i was about 7. Now i am 19. Sense then ive had 2 ten gallons, a 40 gallon tall and now i just have an 80 gallon long. I have 2 electric yellows, 2 electric blues, and roughly about 6 or 7 baby yellows. 2 plecos and thats about it. I need something new though. About a year ago i bought the cichlid sand/shell gravel stuff and now i want to switch to sand. Can i get sand from home depot or something like that other then at the fish store? Also i want to put in some plants i need to know whats some good hardy plants cause i never have luck with plants. and im looking to get some drift wood....i need HELLLPPP suggestions pleaseee!!

Im planning on doing this on saturday:]
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post #2 of 11 Old 01-19-2010, 10:26 PM
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Welcome. There are others here better at the plant info than me. But I can tell you that regular play sand that can be had at Home Depot can be used. A lot of people like pool filter sand as well. I believe it's slightly bigger granules and both work really well. Sand needs to be rinsed well before putting in in to the tank though.

Found it. Here's a link talking about using sand.

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Last edited by Mean Harri; 01-19-2010 at 10:29 PM.
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post #3 of 11 Old 01-19-2010, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks you! yeah when i bought the crushed up shells and sand it had water in it. The fish guy at the store told me to just put it in...well that was the worst thing i have ever done! my tank was a mess after that!! You said Pool filter sand? I think i might try that!
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post #4 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 02:56 AM
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This is an African cichlid tank, right? I would be cautious about removing the cichlid sand and replacing it with inert sand. The sand you have now keeps the pH and hardness of your water high, which is great for African cichlids. Removing this substrate may cause your pH and hardness to drop after water changes and not recover. Why do you want to switch? Cichlid sand is usually plain white, as are the inert sands you're thinking of.

As far as plants, there are few that will work as your water is likely very hard and your pH quite high. Mbuna are also pretty fond of digging up and munching on plants, so any plants you add are likely to become food rather than decorations. You can try some vals or java fern, if you want.

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post #5 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 10:19 AM
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Hello & Welcome to the forum.

My yellow tank was set up with normal play sand from the home store and then as plants what worked well for my was Hygrophilias and Pennywort as floating plants. To see the set up, click on the tap here to the left under my name on the tap "Aquarium" and then on the "Yellows Tank" to see the pictures.

~ Life Is Too Short, Break The Rules, Forgive Quickly, Kiss Slowly, Love Truly, Laugh Uncontrollably And Never Regret Anything that Made You Smile.
Life May Not Be The Party We Hoped For, But While We're Here, We Should Dance. ~
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post #6 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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well honestly i was thinking about turning in my cichlids for new fish. I either want more laid back fish or i want a few mean fish. Ive had my cichlids for about a year and a half and some of them are getting HUGE!! And they boss around the other ones. Ever sense i started fish keeping i have always loved the planted tanks where they have the grass like plants all on the bottom. I dont know why i just have.
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post #7 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 02:49 PM
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Welcome to the forum Jake.

Following this thread, I gather you will be giving your present cichlids to the store/another hobbyist before you do any changes to the tank. I certainly hope that is correct.

Once you have an empty tank, one method of establishing a planted aquarium is described in the series of stickies at the head of the Aquarium Plant section of this forum, authored by me. They detail a low-tech natural setup that is probably a good method if you have not had success with plants previously as you mention. That should start you off.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #8 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Yes i am going to give them to my LFS this sucks to see them leave but, it has to be done. Any suggestions on the kind of fish i should switch too? I love haveing a breeding pair of anything, but then i also like to have a varriety of fish. Then the other side of me likes to have a few hostile fish to keep my tank active...but the hostile fish and the other set of fish not at the same time...if that makes any sense haha? My friend has a 120 with an arowana, 2 peacock bass, and 2 sabertooth tetras. To me the bass are the only interesting and fun to watch fish. But Thats my idea of hostile fish.
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post #9 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 04:44 PM
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I want an arowana... Someday...

RIP fire eel
why did you think it was a good idea to keep going over the top of the tank
when you realized you couldn't breathe outside water?
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post #10 of 11 Old 01-20-2010, 07:09 PM
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Well I'd start by making a decision first what fish you want. This i'd base of the tank size you have and the water you have. Assuming you didn't treat your water any special way for the cichlids my guess you have a higher pH and hard water there right?
Once you've figured out what fish you really want....then I'd start discussing plant options.

~ Life Is Too Short, Break The Rules, Forgive Quickly, Kiss Slowly, Love Truly, Laugh Uncontrollably And Never Regret Anything that Made You Smile.
Life May Not Be The Party We Hoped For, But While We're Here, We Should Dance. ~
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