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  1. #1

    Join Date
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    Default The 75g planted hopeful


    0 Not allowed!
    I probably should have started a journal right when I started this project, but I waited until I had a major blunder to ask for full guidance. I'll start off by telling you my end goal, then I'll tell you what has happened :(

    Here is my game plan for the tank: I decided to go for a more low tech planted tank. Eco complete substrate, (for those who didn't see my other post) Slate background, and some driftwood for cover and looks! For fish I want one electric blue acara, and 6 or so pictus catfish.

    Alright so here is what has happened to this tank... My wife had this idea of going with a Grecian theme for the tank. I thought it would be pretty cool to pull off, but for aquarium decor I couldn't find anything that I didn't feel was cheesy. So I started looking up what materials could and couldn't be used in an aquarium. I ended up finding a ceramic pot, and figure both didn't seem to be coated with anything. I also found two PVC decorations that could hold rhizome plants.

    By the time I got all of the decor I already had the substrate in my tank, slate background in, and had been doing a fishless cycle which seemed to just have finished. I added all of the decor and some plants and also added somewhere around 2.5ml of ammonia to keep the bacteria happy until I could go to the fish store. (I had just added 2.5ml of ammonia roughly 4 days prior and it was back down to 0 again).

    Well this time the ammonia was hardly dropping. I figured I stalled the cycle by adding everything to the tank, and decided I'd wait it out until it recovered. It took 8 days for the ammonia to go from 1.0 to 0. So at this point I had 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and 20 nitrates. I did a 60% water change and the next day went out to get fish.

    Yestersay I brought home one 2 to 2.5 inch acara and four small pictus catfish roughly 1.5 inches a piece. They seemed to take to the tank well, and by yesterday night they were swimming all over the tank. This morning before work I couldn't see in the tank, but I checked the water again and had 0,0, and somewhere around 5 to 10. Then my wife informed me a couple of hours later that all of the pictus catfish we're dead :(. I had her checked their fins and they are all in perfect shape, so I don't think it was the acara. Plus the acara is swimming around the tank with clamped fins and seems stressed. All I can think is one of the decorations I added is contaminating the water, I had my wife remove everything except for the plants and driftwood (which I boiled multiple times before putting it in, and the cycle seemed to be going good with them in there).

    I should have never taken the risk of adding those decoration :\. I'm still at work now but I'm planning on buying an airstone on my way home and then doing a major water change to get any toxins out of the tank. What do you guys think? Am I on the right track here or should I take a step back? I just don't want to lose another fish if I can help it.

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Welcome back! - Slaphppy7   Celebrating your amazing restoration work! - showmebutterfly   Have a Candy cane ;-) Merry Christmas - steeler58   Happy Holiday to you! - Boundava   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   

    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    I don't want to speak too soon, but it looks like the tank is under control. After the pictus cats died we removed the decor from the tank and I did two 75% water changes in two days to remove any toxins in the water. After that the acara colored up and he now is eating and seems pretty happy. I've checked the parameters twice a day since and it seems like my tank is still cycled.

    The next think I think I want to do now is find a bigger piece of driftwood to add cover and more height to the decor. I might look at some rocks also, and then rearrange the plants. Here are some pictures of my current setup.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Wyoming
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    Congrats on 3,000, have an oyster! (?) - Slaphppy7   For giving your daughter a tank, scaping rights included! - RiversGirl   Let the gift giving begin, Merry X-mas ;-) - steeler58   Happy Holidays to all of you! - Boundava   sorry to hear about your knee. since you dont drink herea a slice - bpete   

    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    Wow, bummer! It seems pretty obvious that you've come to the right conclusion--one of those pieces must have had something in it that was toxic to the fish. Glad you saved the acara. How is he now? Still bright and hungry?

    Cool looking tank, by the way. I like your choice of colors. It will look really nice when the plants grow up.
    Good luck--Thomas

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Apr 2018
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    utah
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I also agree with your assessment. since it came on so sudden and your nitrogen cycle seemed in order. the Acara was probably able to handle it better than the pictus. the tank looks great.
    Brian

    I wish I had a Fish Wish Dish.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2014
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    NW IL
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    Merry Christmas to you and your family Nat. - Taurus   Merry Xmas to you! - angelcraze2   Champagne for the holidays. Cheers! - mermaidwannabe   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   Hope you feel better soon - Silbar   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Sorry for your losses, but glad you were able to remove the cause. I agree, I love the slate background, the plants will stand out nicely against it.
    5.5g- Shrimp tank
    Tub Tanks
    5g Opa Ulae salty tank
    Fish room-*pending*


    TUB tanks:
    5.5 Shrimp Tanks
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    DebinWhitmore

  6. #6

    Join Date
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I like the slate too. I have never done anything like it. how about some details on how you did it?
    Brian

    I wish I had a Fish Wish Dish.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    Quebec, CA
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Sorry about your losses, live and learn. I'm glad your EB acara is doing much better, (s)he is gorgeous, love those fish!

    You can add height with plants, the wisteria can grow to the top and the vals (if they are spiral) will grow half way up. So it will fill out once the plants grow in. But keep your eyes open for a bigger piece of DW, I love DW scapes and think it would look stellar too!
    GiVe Me sHrEd TiLL i'M dEaD
    -Kat

  8. #8

    Join Date
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    Welcome back! - Slaphppy7   Celebrating your amazing restoration work! - showmebutterfly   Have a Candy cane ;-) Merry Christmas - steeler58   Happy Holiday to you! - Boundava   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks everyone!

    All I did for the slate was silicone it to the back of the glass. I made sure I got slate that wasn't coated, and I even slightly sanded some areas to double check. Also the stuff at Lowe's had shiny metal in the slate so I stayed away from that, and checked every piece I bought from Menards for any signs of that. I scrubbed the back of the slate with water to remove any dust and then put 1 inch sized Z's of silicone on the back of the slate. (It is stronger to have multiple patches then to have one continuous bead of silicone). I left it dry for roughly two weeks before I added water. I did have to silicone my canister intake to the slate to hold it in place.

    It is spiral Val so that's good to know! The wisteria is the newest plant in the tank, but it's it outgrowing the rest quickly! Do you think with my lighting (two t-5 bulbs). I could grow a carpet like plant in the tank? Also should I add more.plants to the tank or will that been too many for my setup?

  9. #9

    Join Date
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    If you are asking me, you can never have too many plants lol. I think you could do a low/med light carpet like dwarf sagittaria. Even stargrass (if your fish don't eat it) would make a nice carpet IMO.

    Those are my favorite easy carpeting plants, but micro sword, chain sword, tenellus might work too. Keep in mind you can mix and match sections of carpeting plants. I also like staurogyne, but it's pretty slow growing without pressurized co2. Some ppl use hairgrass, but I never had luck with that one.
    GiVe Me sHrEd TiLL i'M dEaD
    -Kat

  10. #10

    Join Date
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    Welcome back! - Slaphppy7   Celebrating your amazing restoration work! - showmebutterfly   Have a Candy cane ;-) Merry Christmas - steeler58   Happy Holiday to you! - Boundava   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by angelcraze2 View Post
    If you are asking me, you can never have too many plants lol. I think you could do a low/med light carpet like dwarf sagittaria. Even stargrass (if your fish don't eat it) would make a nice carpet IMO.

    Those are my favorite easy carpeting plants, but micro sword, chain sword, tenellus might work too. Keep in mind you can mix and match sections of carpeting plants. I also like staurogyne, but it's pretty slow growing without pressurized co2. Some ppl use hairgrass, but I never had luck with that one.
    Nice suggestions! I really like the stargrass! My biggest concern is. Was plants needing more nutrients then I'll have in the tank, and then them all suffering because of it. One question I have is do I need to add nutrients? It seems like most people who add nutrients also have a cow system so I'm not sure if you add them or not if you don't have a cow system?

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