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Thread: An Ichthyogeek's attempt at Aquascape + Fish Breeding

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    An Ichthyogeek's attempt at Aquascape + Fish Breeding

    So, I recently moved, and it's time to start the tank journals. For background, I've moved to LA County for my first job post college (!!!!), and I'm excited to give aquascaping and fish breeding some serious tries. Here's what's happening currently:

    pH after overnight degassing is around 7.00, and TDS is 175 (that's like, scary good, right???). I need to ask if they use a water softener though. I know they use chlorine since I can taste it. But given the slight "off" taste to the water, it might just be that I'm tasting the calcium or magnesium in the water.

    Petco sale is happening, but I don't get out of quarantine until next Monday. My boss is also a fish person so I'm debating asking him to pick up and hold the tank(s) for me until my work starts next week. Also wondering if I should ask him for like, a cup of cat food for grindal worm cultures (I don't own a cat but he does, so like...?)

    Right now I need to go over my stocking list and check to see if I have the right stocking listed for the current water parameters I have.

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    Update!

    So I've been to Petco, which was having its $/gallon 50% off certain tanks sale, got myself a nice 20L, and we're gonna get started!

    https://www.instagram.com/p/CMi7Zk6D...on_share_sheet

    I've decided to use Instagram (and maybe YouTube as well) to see what I can do with that. Mostly as picture/video hosting sites, but we'll see what happens later down the line.

    Right now, I'm running a lot of the plants I have through a fenbendazole treatment to prophylactically treat for hydra and planaria, as those are two hitchhikers that I don't want in my tank. They're currently sitting in 2 gallons of medicated water, and the equation goes as follows:

    1 ppm = 1 mg [medication] / L [solvent]
    The current dosage for treating hydra and planaria with fenbendazole is ~0.6 ppm.
    The packets of fenbendazole I'm using are from Chewy, and they run at 250 mg fenbendazole/packet, which roughly comes out to 1.60 grams when emptied.
    1ppm = 1 mg/L -> .6 ppm = .6 mg fenbendazole / 1 L water
    1 gallon = 3785.41 mL
    .6 mg fenbendazole/ 1000 mL water = x mg fenbendazole/3785.41 mL water -> x = ~2.27 mg fenbendazole
    250 mg fenbendazole/1.6 grams powder = 2.27 mg fenbendazole / x grams powder -> x = .014 grams

    Because my scale only goes to .01 grams, I doubled the recipe (so 2 gallons of water), and ended up with ~.029 grams powder needed, which rounded up to .03 grams powder. The less said about the white powdery stuff that I was measuring from a ziploc bag the better....

    Ouch List [Prices may have changed]:

    20L Aquarium: $25
    Sponge Filter: $11
    Heater: $19
    Aquarium Light: $25

    Weighing Scale: $14
    Airline Tubing: $7
    Air Pump: $18
    Airline Splitter: $11
    Aquarium Backing: $14
    Fenbendazole: $20

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    SCAPE Member Just Planted Jawaeater's Avatar
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    What kind of scape do you have in mind for the 20L? Are you using aquarium soil? Nice IG. I'm terratropicals

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    InActive SCAPE Member Just Planted robmcd's Avatar
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    Following this both here and that other little site.@olddirtyrob on IG
    " as sure as the sun may shine, I'm gonna get my share of whats mine..." **Jimmy Cliff**

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jawaeater View Post
    What kind of scape do you have in mind for the 20L? Are you using aquarium soil? Nice IG. I'm terratropicals
    I'm just using some sort of black sand (black diamond? unsure.) : http://scapeclub.org/forum/showthrea...e-can-I-buy-it

    I'm planning on seeing what I can do with a heckin' amount of leaves plus just a few plants to absorb nutrients from all of the feeding I plan on doing. I know it's not going to be competition worthy, but I'm wanting it to be aesthetically pleasing enough to look at throughout the day.

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    It's been about a week, and I may have gone overboard.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/CM5vP6zJ...on_share_sheet

    The fish tank cycled fairly quickly, and I believe that it's because of all of the plants I ended up purchasing. Which meant that I was able to add in more stock! I'm excited to finally add in some more fish! And the best part was that I got to get a deal on all of the ones I purchased, which is really, really great (although not so great for my wallet).

    I actually like buying blackworms and letting them sink into the substrate. They provide a good enrichment food for all worm eaters in the tank, AND they also help process waste in the tank. The one issue is that you can't really gravel vacuum the tank a lot until they're all gone, but that's not really an issue for me at the moment.

    Another thing I like is Repashy. I first tried using it in college for a lab I was in, and the fish I was working with (northern Mexican swordtails) really took to it. I also like using it since Oto cats seem to thrive on this mix. Currently I'm feeding one cube of soilent green and one cube of spawn and grow a day.

    Ouch List:

    Cholla logs x3 - $10
    Black cotton thread - $3.5
    2x Anubias nana var. petite - $10
    1x Melon sword (Echinodorus osiris) - $15
    1x banana plant (Nymphaea sp.) - $5
    10x pygmy corydoras (Corydoras pygmaeus) - $30
    5x otocinclus catfish (Otocinclus sp.) - $15
    1x portion of blackworms (Lumbriculus variegatus) - $3.5
    6x amano shrimp - $24

    1x Mini bloodworms SF Bay Brand - $5
    Silicon molds for making Repashy - $9
    Repashy Spawn and Grow - $10
    Repashy Soilent Green - $20

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    I'm finally almost finished with my build, and just have to wait on a few things to grow in.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/CNJHIQqp...on_share_sheet

    I decided to wait a bit this week before buying any more fish. I'm still waiting on some lucky bamboo from Amazon to arrive, as well as some Azolla from an LFS. Some stem plants have been floating around in the water, so I went ahead and planted them today (fingers crossed that they'll survive). I was able to get in some pretty nice looking melastoma roots from Tannin Aquatics, which was really fun. I also got in some helix pods, guava leaves, and my favorite: Indian Almond Leaves.

    I've been holding back on feeding Repashy this week since I had a small nitrite spike for some reason, which resulted in me doing a lot of water changes in order to get things under control. Another reason why I'm holding back on getting more fish at the moment. In the meantime I'm adding one guava leaf and one indian almond leaf each week.

    I did finally bite the bullet and ordered some stuff from Brine Shrimp Direct, so I'm fully stocked and prepared to hatch out a ton of brine shrimp now! I also bought some golden pearls to feed the fish as well, since those are supposedly a good diet for smaller fish.

    Ouch List
    • 2x Melastoma Roots - $36
    • 10x Helix Pods - $7
    • 24x Medium Catappa Leaves - $14
    • 24x Guava Leaves - $16
    • 1x 57g 300-500uM Golden Pearls - $7.25
    • 1x 2oz. spirulina powder - $3.95
    • 1x Artemia Sieve (120 uM) - $5.95
    • 1x 100mL EZ Eggs - $15.95

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    It's been a while, but I'm alive and that's what matters.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/COWFmYiJ...on_share_sheet

    I'm basically finished with stocking my tank plant wise. Got some neat floaters, my lucky bamboo in, and now I just need to wait for my stem plant to survive and start growing again so I can propagate it.

    I was originally planning on buying featherfin rainbowfish for my 20L. I went to Aquarium City the other day, and saw some monster sized ones. The Julien(spell?) said that those were full sized, and I just can't see fish that size doing well in my 20L. In a 40B yes, but not a 20L. So I had to revise. I've decided to go with a quartet of sparkling gouramis to replace the threadfins. I bought one today, but I'm waiting on the other three to arrive hopefully next week.

    Now that I have floating plants, I feel much more confident overfeeding my tank. And by that I mean providing multiple small meals a day. It's time to start busting out the frozen food soon.

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    Just 1.5 more fish species to go until I'm fully stocked!

    http://instagr.am/p/COof52BDN4v/

    I got my hands on a school of chili rasboras! They're still not in mature colors yet, but they're still quite colorful! I also decided to nix an idea of getting Farlowella cats eventually. Saw some at Aquarium City, but they're just too big for a 20L. I just need another trio of sparkling gouramis, then it's time to hunt for that last species...

    My banana plant finally developed leaves! I'm really happy about it now, because I wasn't certain about if the plant would survive. I'm going to have to monitor nitrates carefully now, and feed more/less as required, which is great. Part of it will be helped by my removing that giant clump of subwassertang and java moss (xmas moss?). I haven't decided on what I want to do with it just yet, but I'll probably move it to a shrimp tank. ALSO LOOK AT THE SWORD PLANT. He's so big now!!!!!! I wonder if I'll get emergent growth?

    Now that I have chili rasboras, I've finally started feeding brine shrimp again! I love that it's so easy to hatch them. My only miff, is that the hatching container is so loud...and since my bed is like, 15 feet away, I've decided to start using earplugs to sleep at night. It's worth it though.

    I do need to ask if somebody can ID the floating plants for me. I think they're a Phyllanthus species (aka red root floaters), but the roots aren't very...red. They're more long, which I like.

    Ouch List:
    Chili Rasboras - $30 for 10

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    SCAPE Member Sr. SCAPEr Speaker73's Avatar
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    Your floating plants are red root floaters. You could try supplementing iron to help with the red color and blasting then with light. They really like that.
    You are...

    what you do...

    when it counts.



    The Masao

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    SCAPE Member SCAPEr Smilet's Avatar
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    With red root floaters it all depends on your water, Iíve had water where there super red, really green with small vines and than in my shell dweller with an abundance of nutrients the roots were massive! Post a picture so we can see some updates, I just picked up a small school of sparklings and a honey gourami a few weeks back!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    Thanks you two! I post my pictures on Instagram, and then link it back onto the forums. I try to post once/week or so....

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    SCAPE Member Jr. SCAPEr ichthyogeek's Avatar
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    How has it already been 8 weeks since I started this tank?

    https://www.instagram.com/p/CO9OBUoD...on_share_sheet

    I got that trio of sparkling gouramis I wanted! Funny story, so work's finally ramping up for me, and I was planning on going to the LFS on Friday. Work kept me till 4:50, and then I absolutely had to devour a sandwich (who knew pastrami was so good??), and since the commute is an hour, I missed the LFS closing...and then yesterday (Saturday), I had to go in for work again to finish up a job I needed to get done before tomorrow, and left at 4:30 this time. I made it to the LFS, and not only did they have the gouramis, but now they also have blackworms back in stock. So I ended up buying a trio of sparkling gouramis, and then a portion of blackworms (which, thank goodness).

    Now, there's one more fish that I need to get. And one more plant.

    I'm still learning about California as I go. I did a preliminary search last night, but I just don't know if it's legal to keep green cabomba (C. caroliniana) in this state or not. And, of course, it's hard to figure out where to search. Barring that, if I can't get cabomba, I'm going to try my hand at hornwort again. This time, I come prepared with knitting mesh! So I can do the whole "stand of bushy floating plants" thing that I just really enjoy.

    As for the fish...that's a long story. Long story short, it's a pipefish. But not just any pipefish. I'm looking for a pipefish that looks like this one:

    https://www.plantedtank.net/threads/...7/post-9451897

    I know, I know, the title says "Doryichthys martensii care". But, now that I'm in Cali, there's like, a ton of freshwater pipefish in the hobby. Some of them look like Ctenolucius hujeta (freshwater barracudas), while others have waaaay too many dots on them. So the search is on, to find this one pipefish species, and grab a pair of them.

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