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Becoming - 55 gallon tank upgrade

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Becoming - 55 gallon tank upgrade
Old 10-10-2012, 09:53 AM   #181
 
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I have reviewed this whole species profile and Snappy's trying to figure or where I went wrong. I guess I'll have to chalk it up to a bad batch. I really don't think my LFS mistreats or mishandles them.
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:51 PM   #182
 
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Kris PM me and I'll try to help mate.
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:02 PM   #183
 
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I'm sorry you're having such a rough time, Kris! I doubt they were at your LFS for long enough for them to be abused. These poor fish probably just came in and went right out again, it's really stressful to be a fish sometimes. *hugs* Hope you get the rest of them through!
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Old 10-10-2012, 07:21 PM   #184
 
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Wow, just wow. When/if I get my 55 gallon tank, I would just love to set it up that beautifully. I did try to do a bit of a desert oasis theme in one of my tanks, my nursery, but it certainly didn't come out perfect! LOL But that tank is just gorgeous!

And I know we had some discussion on it before...but I really have to agree that blue mickey mouse platy would be a great addition to that! So would the regular Mickey Mouse platy. I was going to recommend some types of Killifish, but it can be hit or miss with them a lot. =(

Have you ever seen the "Coffee" platy? You said you were thinking about the blues and possibly the whites....The coffee platy is supposed to be a mix of both with blueish white skin, and spots much like a dalmation molly, and apparently their eyes have a brilliant blue glow under the light. I think they also come in darker brown colors and keep that blue glow to them and spots too. I've never seen one but in photos and such, but it's an interesting looking platy I'd recommend looking into! There is so much to choose from when talking platy. But if anything, I'd recommend mostly colors in blues, bright golds, maybe a white or two, red, it's stand out too much with all the beautiful greens and darker colors you have there, but gold would be kinda like that little bit of pirates gold in the dark depths...if that makes sense. lol Geez, I have the urge to try and make a jungle tank and add in some "Gems" after seeing that masterpiece of yours! x) I might get more to contribute to you, but I really only know mollies and platy, and it seems you do too. lol
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:02 PM   #185
 
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LOL! Thanks, Sylver! Your excitement is contagious, and I appreciate your thoughts. Only. . . I think you're getting my tanks mixed up! It's easy to do, I have ENTIRELY too many!

THIS tank is my 55g soft-water community tank. It used to be in a 29 gallon, but recently upgraded to the larger size. When I made the switch, I left my Molly family behind in the 29. I haven't actually posted any pics of THAT tank up yet, it's still a work in progress (well, they all are, lol!). The 29g tank, with the Mollies, is going to be slowly converted into a hard-water tank, so that the Mollies can be as happy as I can make them. There is ANOTHER 29 gallon tank - the one in the kindergarten class room that can be found on this thread.

It is this Kindergarten tank that we were talking about Platy for, and I've had my hands full just getting the water cleaned up there. To complicate matters further, every fish that I stock the Kindy tank with will be coming home with me at the end of the school-year. Since they're live-bearing fish, they'll end up in my 29 gallon Molly tank. *whew* I really hope that makes sense, because I think I've just confused myself - and they're MY tanks (I haven't even mentioned the frog tank or the Betta tank yet!)!

I've never seen coffee Platy, but ANYTHING coffee related is okay in my book, lol! They sound beautiful. The Kindergarten tank is going to be really fun, but I'm looking forward to getting those fish back 'home' where they belong at the end of the year!
As for this tank, the 55g softwater community - Thank you for such kind words!!! It's already looking quite a bit different, as the swords have all melted on me, but new growth is plodding along - I can't wait to see what becomes of Becoming! For right now this tank is stocked with Kuhli Loaches, JellyBean Tetra, and Bolivian Rams. I actually DO understand just what you mean about the 'treasure' - and because of that, the colors of this tank have always been more or less black, green, and orange. The orange hues of the loaches, the Jellybean Tetra, and some of the rock-work were very deliberately put.

Speaking of Coffee and how much I love it. . .
Have you ever heard of or see a Coffeebean Tetra? These guys were my original first choice, with the Beaners being my second. Of course, they're also just as tough to find as the Jellybeans were! If I ever come across them, I WILL have to add a shoal of them to this tank. . .



They're adorable! With those lovely orange fins and that single little black spot - I think they'd compliment the rams and the rest of the tank perfectly! I really hope I find them someday. I just think they're the neatest little things! Plus? Coffee! ANYTHING coffee is okay in my book!




I actually learned a lot from having live-bearers in with this bunch, and that is - they don't fit in! It's WAY easier to feed live-bearers when they're kept to their own kind. They're so greedy and fast, I always felt like I was overfeeding the tank to ensure the less aggressive fish their proper share. . .and to be fair, they're always hungry because of the way their digestive systems and metabolisms work. It's much kinder to feed live-bearers several light meals in a day, I think - something that just doesn't work out in a tank with these other creatures. Things are so much easier now, and I am so excited to have gotten the Mollies a tank of their own at last! I think I'm going to hold off until summer (when the kindergarten fish come back home) to start adjusting hardness. . . but I'll be really happy when everything in the 29 gallon hard-water live-bearer tank is settled!

Thanks for stopping in and for the comments! I hope you follow along with me on both of these threads as these tanks unfold. . . I'd love to have you along for the ride! Encouragement and new ideas are always appreciated! *hugs*
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:11 PM   #186
 
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Holy crud, this is a long, and active thread! My apologies if I'm repeating info here
I'm thinking you need some more swords

I skimmed through the thread and have a couple of comments. I haven't been hanging out on TFK as much as I want to due to work (and that darn need for $ to live on).

First, WOW, you have some great pictures here!

Next, did you ever find the info you needed about the Eheim cleaning routine? I know a few shortcuts that are posted around the forum here somewhere... BTW, you can buy clear acrylic tubing and make your own spraybars. I have a 36"clear spraybar on the back glass of my 55 gallon.

Why are Eheim spraybars green? My hypothesis is it reduces algae growth! That's based on comparing the results from a green Eheim spraybar and my home-made clear acrylic spraybar. I clean the clear one a lot more!

I have never had swords melt. Sorry yours didn't thrive. How are they now? Perhaps I'm lucky, but I haven't ever had a melt happen. My guess is your light is a little too low.

For a (relatively) inexpensive light for a 55 gallon tank, I like Zoomed's dual T5HO fixture. You can mount on the tank or suspend using the included kit. Make sure to use only one of the "Ultra Sun" bulbs though, 2 T5HO's are too much light. The fixture has two bulbs and two independent switches. It gives enough light for my swords to do well without any additions to my low-tech 55 gallon (no Excel, No CO2). If I want to show off the fish, I turn on both bulbs (one's a plant bulb) to provide a better color-corrected light. The "Daylight" bulb is a little on the blue side, but nice.

Regarding the comments about "Dwarf" water lettuce
. It is the same species as the "regular" variety. I can grow a big water lettuce plant over time without too much difficulty. We aquarists pull excess plants when thinning the floating plants. Which plants do we cull? The largest because they are easiest to grab. Over time, we have selected against the larger plants, resulting in a smaller/dwarf growth form. If water lettuce is prohibited in your state, then the dwarf form is forbidden for import as well, sorry!

I actually do still have a few swords if you should need some more, just let me know.

Last edited by DKRST; 10-10-2012 at 09:20 PM..
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Old 10-10-2012, 10:27 PM   #187
 
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DAVE!!!! *GLOMPS* My knight in shining Bar Swords and Water Sprite!!! I'm so happy you found your way here! Thank you thank you THANK you for all of these beautiful, gorgeous plants! I seriously can not thank you enough!!!

I don't know if I need new swords, or more light, or just to leave things be, honestly! Nearly all of the original leaves are gone at this point, on all but one or two plants - BUT THERE IS NEW GROWTH DAILY! I am so proud of those new little leaves, watching them unfurl a bit more every day is bringing me so much joy - you don't even know! You'd THINK I'd be totally bummed that they melted, but I'm not. I expected it - YOU know I did, lol! ONE sword died. It was a small one to begin with - the others are all growing! I have no idea how long it's going to take them to be big and majestic as they were when you sent them (THANK YOU!) - or if they ever will be, but they served their mission - they made the transition from the heavily planted 29g tank into the 55g tank smooth and comfortable for the fish. They melted away bit by bit over the course of a month (still melting, some of them!) so it wasn't a dramatic switch for the babies, and that is worth everything to me!

So as of today, my lighting is a bit different (still ghetto!), lol! I have an 18" light fixture, and a 24" light fixture, that together actually run from end-to-end on the tank. As of today, I have an EXTRA 18" fixture that I have sitting on a piece of plexi at the very back of the tank. This is giving me *slightly* more lighting in the middle of the tank, but. . . I'm STILL confused over if it's needed, because everything is growing well including the swords! Plants confuse me - they grow when they shouldn't!!!

I posted a list of the plants, and how they're doing on page 14 (toward the bottom), if you missed it. Those lights by Zoomed are the exact ones I was considering! They're a bit closer to my price range than most. . . sheesh!Thanks for the good review, and practical information. The problem right now is that I need to convert to a plexi hood in order to really use it. I'm hoping that I'll be able to do this after Christmas. . . Hopefully everything will keep plugging along until then :)

Again, thank you for all of these gorgeous plants that really made this tank come alive! The floaters are doing great! The WaterSprite plants you sent are amazing, I've actually got some in all of my tanks at this point, and am going to need to start sending some away soon! You know how long I've been trying for this plant to thrive, and I'm very happy that it's finally doing so. I'm also in love with the roots from the water lettuce - they're just gorgeous! Only. . . they get all tangled up in the Water Sprite and I can't always see them in this tank, lol! In the other tanks it's just stunning. Thanks also for the clarification on the Water Lettuce, I thought it was all the same thing. Funny how the 'Dwarf' water lettuce myth is perpetuated all over internet-land!

REALLY INTERESTING about the spraybar coloration. . . Huh. I never would have thought of that one. . . but it really makes sense now that you mention it. I thought that there MUST be some valid and logical reason (aside from replacement sales) for them to have chosen the color TEAL. Ug.. Thanks for that thought! So how do YOU have your spray bar? I'm still trying to figure out everything about this new filtration system - it's so different from a HOB, and I'm not *quite* happy with things yet. I had it at the end of the tank on a diagonal, but didn't feel that I was getting enough movement at the surface that way. So my husband cut it down a bit last Friday's water change (felt better about doing that when Boredomb and Snappy let me know that I could easily replace it with pvc from the hardware store!). Now it's lost 2 holes, so the pressure is higher. . . though I'm getting the water movement that I wanted, it might be a little bit TOO much. The rams and Tetra seem to enjoy 'playing' in the current, but it cuts right across the center of the tank, and with the Tetra being SO tiny, I'm nervous that they might be working to hard to rest. I've been fiddling with it here and there, trying to find something that works, and as of right now, my biggest Water Sprite is 'hooked' onto my The Stick, and is baffling the flow somewhat - which is okay, but I don't know how much the plant likes it! You have yours across the entire BACK of the tank? That's an interesting thought. . .

I'm all for tips and tricks on cleaning The Beast! I'm still not really comfortable with it at all, and have yet to open the darn thing since I put it up! I was actually planning to crack her open this last water change, but I foolishly saved the big tank for last, and it was too late to mess with. Next week I'll see whats going on in there, and remove the old media - I have somewhere else to put that stuff to use, anyway!

Good to hear from you, thanks again for stopping in! I've been trying to get decent pics of the new growth on the swords. I'll try again. . . it's IMPOSSIBLE to get a clear shot of the back of the tank! Been driving me bonkers! I might take you up on the offer for more swords, but not just yet. I'm trying REALLY hard to leave things totally alone in this tank, and see how they progress naturally. They ARE growing steadily somehow. . . so for now I'm just going to see how they do! They're really such beautiful sword plants - and can you believe that some of the new baby leaves are purple?! In the lighting I have, this makes NO sense! Plants confuse me!!!
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:04 PM   #188
 
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Hahaha, you're right, as you know I DID Mistake this for your Kindergarten tank thread, I'm sorry! I also wish I read your reply before I replied to the real Kindertank thread(like asking if you were going to care for the fish on said breaks, glad you will!). lol However, the suggestions I put in there are there for others to see as well, maybe you will have a lot of people add or comment to it as well. ^_^ I was going by what the tanks looked like on both threads though!

I will check in on both of your threads to be sure, and comment when I have something I want to suggest or say about it to you. x) You have some awesome followers, and I can certainly learn a great deal from them same as anyone else reading! And I know that if I add something that isn't quite right, one of those people can teach me a thing or two by correcting. :3

As for your tanks being a work in progress...when is a tank not? People can call them "Finished" or "Completed" all they want, but changes will be made, it's just too hard not to add plants, colors, decorations, remove and re-arrange, and the plants are always growing! =)
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Old 10-11-2012, 01:16 AM   #189
 
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Ches you are killing me with your "books"! LoL I really hate reading! LoL so what do I do join a forum so I have to READ everything! Anyways just wanted to say since your husband cut the tube down and you think you might be getting to much pressure or force due to less holes. Well that's an easy fix!! If you want to cut down on the pressure and keep the same volume of water moving through the filter and tank just have you husband make the existing holes bigger. You will still have the same volume but with less pressure.
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:27 AM   #190
 
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I will also add that the colour of the spa ray bar does not affect the algae growth at all its more likely to be the compound of the plastic that retards algal growth.... Green light actually has a tendency to encourage some types of algae.

Swords do have a habit of coming and going so I would not worry too much about their melting .... Even mine having been ravaged by two gibbiceps are actually making a good reappearance.
Bored bomb is right about boring out the holes on the spray bar.... And I fact it's probably a good idea as these species of fish prefer high turnover but lower pressure movement.
There is no such thing as a "completed tank" unless the plants are plastic and the fish fake... All tanks are a living ecology from the fish and plants down to the bacteria.... In fact I take it back ... If there is water there will be bacteria and algae so there is actually no such thing as a "completed tank" ... Life will always be there.
To avoid any more confusion can you give us a runs down of what is in which tanks? Plants and fish?
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