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  1. #3531

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    1 Not allowed!
    I'll look forward to reading it, when you have time to type it up.
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  2. #3532

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    TGIF and here's to over coming difficulties! :-) - Taurus   pizza for all.  I finished my book today!!! - fishmommie   Merry Xmas To You! - Sandz   Happy Christmas! - Slaphppy7   Good to have you back! - Slaphppy7   
    Troop and Military Support - Amber Alert - Bladder Cancer - Endometriosis - Equality - Liver Cancer - Liver Disease - Missing Children - POW/MIA - Spina Bifida - Suicide - KevinVA   World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - KevinVA   Adoptee - Bone Cancer - Child Exploitation and Abuse - Hope and Support - Peace - Retinoblastoma - Right to Life - Student Sexual Assault - KevinVA   

    Default A Series of Bad Decisions


    3 Not allowed!
    I said 70gal, but I meant 75gal. I thought you could edit these posts, but I guess not. It's been a while since I've been on a forum. Kind of missed it - forces you to double-check your work, before posting. Oh well... anyway!

    We moved to our new house about 4yrs ago. I drained the tanks as much as I could, leaving some water in each, because I couldn't get all of the Giant Danios, black neons and otos, etc out of the tank. I took the larger fish I had out and used buckets to transfer them (we weren't going very far, so I didn't need airline/heaters/etc. Just going about 15min down the road.). We had mostly successes (everyone in the 40gals survived, but had a couple of losses in the 75gal). The drive was a little much for the little guys and the water sloshed around too much in the back.

    At this time, I didn't have any large fish in the 75gal. I had big schools of small fish and a few Siamese Algae Eaters. My Opaline Gourami had passed prior to the move. The tank was still heavily planted and I thought it looked great, but once I had it setup, I felt it needed more "unf!"

    So... what'd I do?

    I added a Jack Dempsey Cichlid... Yep, I know. I wanted something flashy, with character, and I thought for sure that the dither fish would be fast enough to stay out of reach (surely the Giant Danios were larger than JD's mouth), and the tank was heavily planted, so they'd have plenty of areas to hide in and escape to. You can probably see where this is going.

    Things were going smoothly for a while. If fish were missing, I hadn't noticed, because my schools were pretty large for the tank. It wasn't until I took a short vacation where I would come back to a "mysterious" disappearance of all of my Black Neons, Otos and a good majority of my Giant Danios. The JD was quite a bit larger, as well. To be honest, I can't remember what happened to my SAEs, but I'm sure he killed them, as well.

    That was bad decision #1 in a series of bad decisions.

    Bad decision #2 was my thinking that my JD, now that he killed everyone, would require some additional friends that he could get along with.

    I invested in a Fire Mouth Cichlid, two Severums and two Keyhold cichlids. I even re-arranged everything in the tank, so that the JD couldn't stake claim to any one area.

    Well... things were working out fairly well, for about 2 months, maybe a little more. The Fire Mouth was my most fun, at the time. He was smaller than the rest, but he was the most territorial and seemingly smart... in fact, he outlasted all of the new cichlids, after the newly named "Godzilla" killed everything, but him. Yep... There were only two fish left in the tank.

    Bad decision #3:

    Godzilla was a jerk... He couldn't tolerate anyone and killed everything in the tank, with exception to my Fire Mouth. I had read up on Jack Dempseys and according to most hobbyists, they're hit or miss. You can get a good one that can be communal, or you can get a complete dick that will wipe out a tank and fairly quickly, especially as they mature.

    So, I was at a loss. I loved Godzilla, but it was more of a love hate relationship, because I loved my other fish, too. My unnamed Fire Mouth (posthumously named Hercules) was the underdog that kept performing. He was healthy, he was as voracious as Godzilla and they pretty much left each other alone. But, my tank was fairly large... certainly larger than I needed for these two fish, and I wanted it to grow, but I had to think of more aggressive fish that I could house with these two.

    I asked around and no one could recommend anything other than... a Red Devil Cichlid (properly named, might I add).

    Yes... Investing in a Red Devil Cichlid was my 3rd bad decision. He was on the smaller side, at the time, about the size of Godzilla. They both were fairly territorial and kept to their own corner of the tank. Of course, I noticed that things were taking a bad turn for my Fire Mouth. :( In hindsight, I probably could have put him in with my Panduro Cichlids in one of my 40s, but at the time, I thought he'd be a killer in there. Either way, it was likely a lose lose situation. Knowing he was pretty aggressive, himself, I thought he could fend for himself. Godzilla was leaving him alone and the Red Devil was the only one bothering him. There were also a lot of hiding spots for him, so I thought he'd be pretty ok. He had a shot... right?

    He didn't have a shot. I came down to the man cave one morning and he was gone... missing... completely invisible - eaten. I know it was the Red Devil. I didn't see him do it, but I'm certain he did it.

    Anyway, I figured that was it... Godzilla and the Red Devil. That's all I'd be able to have in this tank. Until, that is, the Red Devil seemingly killed Godzilla. Yep... Godzilla was missing. I couldn't fathom how that could have happened so quickly, because they were about the same size. Surely there'd be a dead body somewhere... and if the RD did eat him, there'd be a skeleton, but he was literally missing. I checked under driftwood, behind all the plants, etc... he was gone. RD did it again. He made the impossible, possible, by out Godzilla'ing Godzilla. That's how he got the name "Kong." My kids named both of them. This, of course, was before the new Kong vs Godzilla movie was to come out... foreshadowing (Kong wins).

    It wasn't until 3 months later that I actually found Godzilla. MONTHS. THREE of them. I was changing out the decor in the tank, because Kong had decided he didn't like anything, anymore. He tore up all the plants, moved sand all over the place and made the tank look like crap. I was taking out the pieces of driftwood, and there was a hole that I wanted to empty water out of. I dumped it out into the tank, and Godzilla comes flying out. He was hiding in the inside of the piece of driftwood that had a hole at the top. The hole filled with water, but the hole was also just above the waterline... First, I didn't think the hole was that large, and 2nd, I didn't think it would be possible that Godzilla could even get in there... but there he was.

    He was beaten, he was disheveled, his fins were nipped to hell, but he was still alive.

    I wanted to save him, so I placed him in my 40gal Panduro tank with a red-tailed shark and one remaining Celestial Pearl Danio. Needless to say, that didn't end well and ended up being my 4TH BAD DECISION.

    I was left with three tanks, two of which only had one fish in them. The Godzilla tank and the Kong tank. At that point, I pretty much gave up. I had them going strong for several months. I would never put another fish in the 75gal tank, with Kong. He would be alone... or so I thought.

    Godzilla's tank, however? Well, I had some success with a Fire Mouth, and thought to myself... "Hey, what else could be aggressive enough, but not TOO aggressive?" Convict Cichlids! Bingo!

    So that's what I did... I bought two Convicts and placed them in the 40gal. It would be just the two of them and my Jack Dempsey, Godzilla... until it wasn't. NO, I did not know the two Convict Cichlids were a mating pair at Pet Smart!? Who in the world would think THAT? NO, I did not expect babies in the first month I purchased them... Who would have expected THAT?! Not this guy...

    So, if you know anything about Convict Cichlids... you'll probably know they're really good parents... probably too good. Helicopter parents of the water world. Godzilla didn't stand a chance. They didn't eat him, but they stressed him out so bad, that he was indeed killed off. They had him cornered, while protecting their fry for days. I would have moved him, if I had a place to move him, but I wasn't going to sacrifice my other 40gal tank to this monster, and he'd die, anyway, if I moved him back to the 75. I could have added a separator, but I was just done. I said "sorry, bro, you're on your own" and let it play out. He was a dick... he died by two other dicks. Fitting end, if you ask me.

    The Convict Cichlids now own that 40gal breeder and the fry are growing rapidly... I have nowhere to put them, though, and now I'm struggling to figure out what I'm going to do with them, especially now that I've discovered a NEW batch of eggs... Well, technically my daughter discovered it. They're breeding like rabbits, now. The fry, already free-swimming, aren't even a month old, yet, I don't think... Either way, I'm up to my ears in fry.

    Kong is doing well, but since I couldn't do anything with that tank, anymore (with fish), I decided to clear it out and give him more room to swim around. I took out the driftwood and I tried to give him more hardier plants that might survive (they didn't) in addition to floating plants (they did). It took me a while to come up with a solution for that tank, but after doing some research I learned that the only possible thing I could house with a Red Devil Cichild would probably be an aquatic turtle... so that's what I did. Kong's new friend is Shelly, and they love to hate each other. Shelly is an African Side-Neck Turtle and probably the sweetest reptilian I've ever had the pleasure of knowing. Every time she falls into the water (she doesn't dive), she reacts in a way a child might, if you threw him into the middle of a pool. She flips out and sloshes around. Meanwhile, Kong things it's really fun to nip at her feet and tail. I caught him sucking in an entire claw... it can't swallow the claw, but that didn't stop him from trying. He eventually had to spit it out... and at this point, Shelly only goes into the water when she feels she has to. She knows Kong's in there, and Kong knows she's up on her platform, when she's up there.

    To give you an idea of how much of a jerk Kong is, he'll take note of Shelly being on her platform and will quite literally bite the bottom of the platform in a way that will make the platform pop up. The noise is quite large... and many times it's followed by a "SPLASH" as Shelly is thrown into the water. She could end it all by taking a bite out of Kong, but she's too sweet. She doesn't have a taste for fish and while she tolerates the clown, I don't think she knows what in the world to do with him. He's quite literally a bully that needs to be smacked in the mouth.

    Anyway, that's my story... A series of bad decisions which led me to turtle keeping, being a fish breeder by accident and decided that a new community tank would be a good idea. My current project is a 120gal window-in-wall tank. I'm planning on a school of angels, big schools of cory cats and a couple of dithering schools, as well. The window is done, the sump is done, the plumbing is done, the water is flowing and I just need to fill it. Coming soon!

    Sorry for the lack of pictures. I tried to post one earlier and it froze my screen. I'll try to follow this up with a couple of photos/vids, but I don't want to lose everything I wrote, again.
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

    If you don't do it, who's going to?

  3. #3533

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    Default


    2 Not allowed!
    Wow.

    And I thought my second pair of cichlids to EVER try (do you remember who gave me my first?) were bad for doing this...every once in a while...good thing I have about 50-60 tetras in the tank to keep them in line



    Awesome update Kev, sorry about the losses and mayhem, hope you and the family are doing well after the move, first and foremost
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  4. #3534

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    Default


    1 Not allowed!
    Regarding the pictures, they need to be a certian pixel size to post, too large and it won't load. I use the Paint program on my computer to upload the photos and resize them to a maximum of 2000 pixels on the top value, then save them and you can upload them to the site.

    Hope this helps you out. Sorry about the cichlid nightmare with Hercules, Godzilla and Kong. Almost a clash of the titans.
    75 Gourami/Eel tank
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  5. #3535

    Join Date
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    Troop and Military Support - Amber Alert - Bladder Cancer - Endometriosis - Equality - Liver Cancer - Liver Disease - Missing Children - POW/MIA - Spina Bifida - Suicide - KevinVA   World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - KevinVA   Adoptee - Bone Cancer - Child Exploitation and Abuse - Hope and Support - Peace - Retinoblastoma - Right to Life - Student Sexual Assault - KevinVA   

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Slaphppy7 View Post
    Wow.

    And I thought my second pair of cichlids to EVER try (do you remember who gave me my first?) were bad for doing this...every once in a while...good thing I have about 50-60 tetras in the tank to keep them in line



    Awesome update Kev, sorry about the losses and mayhem, hope you and the family are doing well after the move, first and foremost
    Thanks buddy, appreciate it! The new house is great and everyone is doing awesome. Looking forward to sharing more. =]

    Dare I ask if your first cichlid was an Apistogramma panduro? lol I vaguely remember having some pretty good success with them.

    Can I interest you in maybe 10-20 Convicts? lol

    Awesome video, man. You have a lot of fun going on in that tank. Tons of color and a lot of activity.
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

    If you don't do it, who's going to?

  6. #3536

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    TGIF and here's to over coming difficulties! :-) - Taurus   pizza for all.  I finished my book today!!! - fishmommie   Merry Xmas To You! - Sandz   Happy Christmas! - Slaphppy7   Good to have you back! - Slaphppy7   
    Troop and Military Support - Amber Alert - Bladder Cancer - Endometriosis - Equality - Liver Cancer - Liver Disease - Missing Children - POW/MIA - Spina Bifida - Suicide - KevinVA   World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - KevinVA   Adoptee - Bone Cancer - Child Exploitation and Abuse - Hope and Support - Peace - Retinoblastoma - Right to Life - Student Sexual Assault - KevinVA   

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    2 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Boundava View Post
    Regarding the pictures, they need to be a certian pixel size to post, too large and it won't load. I use the Paint program on my computer to upload the photos and resize them to a maximum of 2000 pixels on the top value, then save them and you can upload them to the site.

    Hope this helps you out. Sorry about the cichlid nightmare with Hercules, Godzilla and Kong. Almost a clash of the titans.
    Thanks so much. I forgot about the limitations, so that's good info to have. The problem I had yesterday was when I just clicked the "Insert Image" button. The website literally hazed over in a light gray and I couldn't do anything. I had to refresh the page and start over.

    lol, thanks. It was definitely a clash of something. Now that Kong has the whole tank to himself (mostly), he's turned into one of the most interesting fish I've ever had. He's more like an aquatic dog that can't have nice things. He knows exactly which bottle of fish food his food comes out of. It's the purple canister, not the green or red, or a bag, and he's always following us, as soon as we're in the basement. I think he thinks his territory extends past the aquarium and across the room. He'll follow my kids from one side of the tank to the other. He's pretty cool.
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

    If you don't do it, who's going to?

  7. #3537

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    2 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by KevinVA View Post
    Thanks buddy, appreciate it! The new house is great and everyone is doing awesome. Looking forward to sharing more. =]

    Dare I ask if your first cichlid was an Apistogramma panduro? lol I vaguely remember having some pretty good success with them.

    Can I interest you in maybe 10-20 Convicts? lol

    Awesome video, man. You have a lot of fun going on in that tank. Tons of color and a lot of activity.
    You've got a very good memory, lol....I just wish they would have worked out for me, after the trouble you went through getting them to me.

    Thanks for the kind words, and I hate to sound negative, but "no" to the convicts....if Mrs. Slap would let me have another tank, it would be a different story, but she seems to think 5 is enough, for some reason
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  8. #3538

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    1 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Slaphppy7 View Post
    You've got a very good memory, lol....I just wish they would have worked out for me, after the trouble you went through getting them to me.

    Thanks for the kind words, and I hate to sound negative, but "no" to the convicts....if Mrs. Slap would let me have another tank, it would be a different story, but she seems to think 5 is enough, for some reason
    No worries! Cichlids are finicky things.

    What do you mean "no?!" Offer the guy 20 free fish and he's like "nah, I don't like wonderful, free things." Kidding! I absolutely get it. lol

    I wonder if an army of Convicts could kill a Red Devil? No... no, that's crazy talk.
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

    If you don't do it, who's going to?

  9. #3539

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    2 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by KevinVA View Post

    I wonder if an army of Convicts could kill a Red Devil? No... no, that's crazy talk.
    Only one way to find out...................JUST KIDDING, I would never condone that sort of experiment
    10 Gallon Beginner Tank... Journal
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    29 Gallon: ... Journal

    “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went” - Will Rogers

  10. #3540

    Join Date
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    2 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Slaphppy7 View Post
    Only one way to find out...................JUST KIDDING, I would never condone that sort of experiment
    lol, of course not! But if I did... it'd be just between you, me and the turtle. ;P
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

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