my 27 Gal Cube
Hello, all. Long time no post...guess that's what kids and work do.
Anywho, I had a thread started here http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aqua...960&highlight= of me cycling and stocking my tank. It's a 27 gal Cube (20 w x 20 h x 18 d all inches) with an LED light on top. I went 17 months without a loss of fish, one died of causes unknown to me in Nov. '12. In December I wanted to try something new, so I found a couple on craigslist who came and took the 20 serpae tetra and the ABN pleco and added them to their 55 gal they had just finished cycling and started to stock.
Just to update on what is running in there, About 6 months prior (June '12) I had added an Eheim 2211 (rated for 39 US gal) as an additional filter. I doubled the biomax, adding the original amount from my AC70 and the additional new biomax all the the canister so it was packed with biomedia from top to bottom. I also have a killer pre-filter sponge on the Eheim which I've posted about prior. I then just stacked three AC 70 sponges (still the original sponges are in use I bought and put in when I first got it) and removed the prefilter on the AC70 so that thing is a mechanical filtration workhorse.
I've continued to maintain 60% water changes every week, and continue to test my water once a month. Crystal clear all the time minus the algae I leave in spots. 78 degrees all the time. I've meticulously kept a journal of weekly water changes, observations of fish behavior in response to changes in light, amounts or frequency fed, redecorating or adding/removing plants, fertilizer amounts and frequency and plant results, yada yada yada...you get the point. I've never had a real "spike," crash, etc of any sort since I completed my fishless cycle...Ammonia and Nitrite are always 0, and the Nitrates never get above 20, and pH hovers around 7. Same results every month when I test the water before a water change. That's testament to the advice and patience shown to me on this site when I joined, so kudos to the staff and members!!! I've really enjoyed this hobby as a direct result of your input here, you all probably remember my constant questioning.
So back to this past December.
I re-homed the stock in the tank. Then I went and picked up two Black convict juveniles from a guy in a neighboring town who had a gang of them to get rid of. And whoa are these fish fun. They know when they are going to get fed, and beg worse than our dogs. I'm thinking one is a male and one is a female, because one is literally twice the size of the other one, and the large one has a hump on his forehead like I've seen in some pics on-line. He is like three inches long now, not counting his tail and veils, if that's what you call them. The other one is smaller, much quicker, and his some vivid blues that show up on the fins when it flares up at me through the glass. Both are terribly healthy, colorful, and eat like pigs.
If they do end up being male and female and pair off and spawn, I am going to return the male to the guy I got them from, he said that wouldn't be a problem. Only time will tell.
In the meantime, that's what brings me to posting an update and looking for input.
Can anyone think of anything that would be safe to add as some sort of dither? The larger one hangs near the bottom center of the tank where some driftwood set up against each other has made a cave and the other one cruises around freely. They chase each other around now and again, but really it's just right before they get fed. I'm looking for something, like 6, 8, 10 fish that are quick and hardy enough to swim with one or two of these fish? I do realize that in time and based on their growth that one, if not both, of the black convicts will move back or onto another tank. I'm just looking for something that would add to the tank while the convicts lurk in the shadows of the rock and wood.
Oh, and I'll try and post some updated pics when I get a chance.
Thanks for your time and input!
27 US gal (20 in w X 20 in h x 18in d)-
Sand, heavily planted with Water Wisteria and Red Ludwigia.
One large piece of driftwood and some artificial caves.
2 female GBR
10 Bloodfin Tetra