Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Twistersmom 03-01-2009 07:54 PM

keeping fish off plants? Any Ideas?
Since I now have a problem with high nitrates in my tap water, I have decided to try and take a natural approach.

I did build the DIY nitrate remover to use for my 210gal tank. Still waiting for the glue to dry.

I have ordered some hornwort and westeria, that are suppose to be good for nitrate removal.

One problem is, my goldfish, tinfoil barbs, and bala sharks will not leave plants alone.

Anyone have any clever ideas on how to keep fish away from the plants?

fishkid 03-02-2009 10:49 AM

Fish will be fish. You can't keep them away. Try java fern and anubias. They have tough leaves and are distasteful to herbivores. My cousin has a nice goldfish tank with these two plants. The goldfish even spawned!

Twistersmom 03-02-2009 11:50 AM

Yea, I also ordered some java fern and moss balls thinking they may be fish safe.
Not sure how well they work for nitrate removal.

My tinfoil barbs have snacked on java fern before, but that was after all the other plant where gone. I have added fresh veggies to their diet, almost daily.

I have been trying to think of some way to put a guard around the hornwart, but still allow the hornwart the ingredients it needs to grow and have enough water flow for it do its nitrate removing job.

catfishtabbi 03-02-2009 02:48 PM

Hi, i wanted to tell you that clown loaches push those moss balls around. It's halarious. Could you buy food plants that your fish like and float or tie them like a feeding so they see those as food ? I have gorgeous subulata that stands straight up in thick bunches and one rainbow fish who picks a strand off at the bottom and runs around with it just a hangin out of his mouth like a hillbilly with straw.Then after a few hours he sucks it in like spaghetti. god what i'd like to do to that fish.

Twistersmom 03-02-2009 06:51 PM

I have some clown loaches in the tank the moss balls are going in.
It will be interesting to see if they do the samething.

syrinx 03-02-2009 09:44 PM

Java fern grow so slowly I doubt if it would be much help with nitrates. You could put window screen (not the metal kind) around your plants, but it wouldnt be very attractive

Last week my clown loaches took great pleasure in destroying an Echinodorus I added to their tank. This was after I got rid of some silver dollars so I could keep plants in the tank. They also bit holes in the leaves of some Java Fern, but tired of it before major damage was done. I moved what was left of the echinodorus to another tank and a new leaf came out yesterday.

Today my Curviceps, which arent supposed to bother plants, ate a week old Aponageton, the only one of a half dozen bulbs that sprouted.

I'm starting to think my fish just like to aggravate me.

onefish2fish 03-02-2009 10:01 PM

for a heads up, you are keeping tropical fish with cold water fish

i dont know how effective these are on eating up nitrates but ive heard fish wont eat them
Onion Plant | Miscellaneous Plants | Live Aquarium Plants | Aquarium Livestock -

Twistersmom 03-03-2009 06:42 AM

The fish are in are in different tanks.
With 30 ppm nitrates in the tap water, I have nitrate problems in all my tanks.

Thanks for the list onefish2 fish!

Fishcricker 03-03-2009 07:57 AM

I read that you are providing veggies. Blanched Kale or collards might be some to try. But in reality some fish like plants and that is always going to pose problems with planted tanks.

Twistersmom 03-04-2009 07:17 PM

So far the fish have been pretty good with the hornwort I put in with them today.
They picked at it at first, must have decided it does not taste that good.

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