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  1. Dave Spencer

    Advice on Keeping Crabs

    Hi everyone, I am just after a bit of advice for my daughter on keeping crabs. Basically, I don`t know a great deal about them personally. She wants to keep them in a small tank of around 20l - 30l, so my guess is that they would probably need to be small, and preferably more freshwater...
  2. Dave Spencer

    Climate change (Why do PFK bother with blogs?)

    They start a blog about the Amazon drying up, but then delete any posts that try to give an alternative view to their beliefs for the reasons. The same goes with an "ocean acidification" blog I tried to post on. Here is the Amazon blog: http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/c ... p?sid=3329...
  3. Dave Spencer

    Competition Win.

    I have just been told that I won the AEP "Power in a Picture" photography competition. AEP stands for Association of Electricity Producers. T Anyway, I get to donate £1000 to a charity of my choice, I win a camera and two tickets to the FA Cup Final. I also get an expenses paid overnight stop...
  4. Dave Spencer

    Nick Brandt

    Whilst I admire the technical difficulties associated with wild life photography, it is not really a genre that grabs me. This guy, however, takes it to a new level, for me, by stripping away any distractions and putting animals in their environment. http://www.nickbrandt.com/Category.cfm? ...
  5. Dave Spencer

    For You Insecty/Macroey Types.

    Here is something I stumbled across on Flickr. Apparently, there is a lot of tips and advice in his posts. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lordv/ Dave.
  6. Dave Spencer

    Brain Teaser

    See if you can get to the bottom of this. SSSHHH if you have seen it before. :shh: Dave.
  7. Dave Spencer

    Marsilea crenata question.

    I have just bought some Aquafleur Marsilea crenata and it looks to me as if it going to be way too tall for my requirements. Does anyone know how tall it grows submerged? I am hoping for one or two cm at the most. I knew I shouldn`t have put my original Marsilea sp in my propagator. It all died...
  8. Dave Spencer

    The Importance of GH Booster.

    Six months ago I moved house, a distance of approximately 10 minutes by car. The water in my previous house was very soft, and I didn`t expect the new house to be much different. Due to the softness of the water in the previous house I would add a little GH booster to my tanks at water change...
  9. Dave Spencer

    Barr Report.

    Is anyone else finding Tom`s site off line? I ask because my new internet connection is being tempramental, and I wanted to make sure it wasn`t just my connection problems. Dave.
  10. Dave Spencer

    Filter Recommendations, Please.

    After a series of disasters setting up a 120l Juwel Lido, I am on the verge of knocking this hobby on the head. Anyway, three leaking filters and one broken CO2 regulator, I am hanging on in hope that someone could recommend a filter for me. It has to have 16mm ID fittings, and not be a...
  11. Dave Spencer

    How the Other Half Live.

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/ne ... -tank.html Dave.
  12. Dave Spencer

    A Genius at Work.

    Here is a little something for you landscape photographers out there: http://www.silberstudios.tv/previous-sh ... dams-home/ Dave.
  13. Dave Spencer

    Using Carbon Below an Inert Substrate?

    Has anybody used carbon below an inert substrate? I am thinking of giving it a go in my next 120cm rescape to keep the cost down. Dave.
  14. Dave Spencer

    Food For Thought With The Holiday Season Looming!

    This is pretty good info. Never even thought about key cards containing anything other than an access code for the room? HOTEL KEY CARDS Ever wonder what is on your magnetic key card? Answer: - a. Customer's name b. Customer's partial home address c. Hotel room number d. Check-in date and out...
  15. Dave Spencer

    Anybody Else Given up on Dechlorinating?

    After several occassions where I have forgot to dechlorinate during a water change, and then running out of the stuff without the time to buy some more in, I decided to stop. Neither during the times I forgot, nor since stopping dechlorinating totally, have I noticed any problems. So, are...
  16. Dave Spencer

    Photographic Opportunism.

    Over the past two months I have been at work, with precious little time for aquascaping and photography. There was little I could do about the aquascaping, and a CO2 blunder left me without a tank for the IAPLC. However, I decided to make the most of a bad situation and decided to start...
  17. Dave Spencer

    Dave Spencer`s Attempt.

    First off, thanks to Super Duper Coley for some useful starting up info and pictures. Here are all the component parts. I don`t know whether the cable heater is really necessary, but it may help to keep the humidity up. Most light will be daylight, but I may supplement it with one or two 11W...
  18. Dave Spencer

    ID This Piece of Kit!

    OK, so who can tell me what this is? No prizes, though. Dave.
  19. Dave Spencer

    Do We Definitely Need CO2?

    I have been lead to believe that CO2 injection is a must, but I originally started thinking about propogation and assumed a steady flow of air would supply this. Anyway, the propogation unit I intend buying has a small sump with a pump and sprinkler system that sprays the roots, and keeps the...
  20. Dave Spencer

    The Oasis.

    I thought I might as well turn this in to a journal, seeing as the woes with it require virtual daily posting. The hardscape was first put in way back in November 2008, long before I knew I would have the time to plant it up. Tank specs: Opti white 60l tank. Tetratec EX700 filter with glass...
  21. Dave Spencer

    Juncus Repens.

    What is the best way of trimming this stuff? Is it right down at the base where the shoots form? Dave.
  22. Dave Spencer

    Boo Hoo!

    The mighty Hatters have been relegated. :( :( :( FA and FL.... :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: Dave.
  23. Dave Spencer

    Plant Propogators

    Can anybody recommend one? I am thinking ahead for when I break down my 120cm which has a lot of expensive crypts in it. It will probably be kept indoors, so I am guessing some supplementary lighting may be in order. Secondly, what medium should I keep them in? Something from John Innes...
  24. Dave Spencer

    Hygrophila corymbosa `Siamensis` 53B.

    Has anybody used this plant alongside Easycarbo? I have started adding the stuff, but some of the Hygro is turning to mush. I`ll knock the Easycarbo on the head for now, but I just wondered if anybody else had this experience. Dave.
  25. Dave Spencer

    Taking Pics at MEN Arena.

    Does anybody know where they draw the line? I was hoping to go with a 200mm lens and DSLR. I see people in the crowd using P+S cameras, but not DSLRs with telephotos. Cheers, Dave.
  26. Dave Spencer


    Photographed this weekend in Marrakech. Not quite as cute as the Robin pics. :twisted: Dave.
  27. Dave Spencer

    Robin Saves the Day!

    I went to Chester Zoo last Friday, only for the day to be a bit of a wash out. Most of the more exotic residents decided to wimp out and stay in the warm, but just as the day was about to become an unmitigated disaster, good old Blighty provided the star of the show. It is easy to forget how...
  28. Dave Spencer

    60cm makes a comeback

    The aquascaping ball is well and truly rolling for me at the moment. Long may it continue. :D I have grown a little bored using my freebie rocks, so I had to bite the bullet and line Jim`s pockets again. Still, I get the last laugh as I nicked a piece of rock he was using as a paperweight...
  29. Dave Spencer

    Here is the proof...

    ...that I am finally back to aquascaping. I set this one up at the GFs house, so played it safe with an Amano NA copy. It is only one month old, so the mosses are a little untidy as I am letting them take hold before any cutting and shaping. Dave.
  30. Dave Spencer

    copper Harlequins

    I am planning on filling my 240l with a shoal of the above, with the possibility of some Chocolate Gouramis. Whilst I don`t mind mixing plants from different regions, I think too an eclectic mix of fish looks odd. Can anybody recommend any other readily available fish from the S.E. Asia area to...
  31. Dave Spencer

    Paypal Verification.

    I just got an email from Paypal, stating I need to do this: Go to www.paypal.co.uk and log in to your account Click on the link "UK-Unverified" After you enter your bank details we will deposit two small amounts into your bank account, which will appear in three to five working days. Then...
  32. Dave Spencer

    Full Frame Photography!

    Nikon D700 cameras are on eBay at £1700ish. Gentlemen....start your wallets! My D40 let me down for the first time ever in flashless, low light, hand held the other day (cue the 70-200mm f2.8 Nikkor) . I anticipate a lot of this kind of photography in the future, so a camera that effortlessly...
  33. Dave Spencer


    Colour isn`t really my thing, but here are a couple from when I recently went to visit my mum and dad. Dave.
  34. Dave Spencer

    The Eternal City.

    Just got back from Rome where it was either bright sunshine or storms. And yes, the sensor on my camera needs cleaning. :oops: Ponte St Angelo. The basillica of St Peter in the distance. The Trevi Fountain. I couldn`t quite get the white balance right on this one, as I remember the scene...
  35. Dave Spencer

    Chester Canal and River.

    Here are one or two pictures to show what a beautiful city Chester is when the sun shines. I just never get out enough with my camera. :( Dave.
  36. Dave Spencer

    The Gaze of Solemnity.

    Anybody know where I have lifted the name for this scape from? Here is a hastily taken pic of my 60cm from a couple of weeks ago straight after planting, water change bubbles, reflections and all. This will hopefully turn in to a potential competition entry. I`ll see how the Pogostemon helferi...
  37. Dave Spencer

    Last Night`s Snow Storm...

    ...brewing over N. Wales. Dave.
  38. Dave Spencer

    Visiting The Green Machine.

    I have opened this thread so that the one in the plants forum doesn`t become too bogged down. I have a few ideas going around my head, which I have proposed to Jim. He seems quite keen on something along the lines of a practical demo on setting up a planted tank. We should be able to rustle up...
  39. Dave Spencer

    The Green Machine.

    I have just got back from a UKAPS visit to The Green Machine near Wrexham, and am very excited about what I have seen: http://thegreenmachineonline.com/ It is essentially an aquarists` shop primarily targetted at us, the planted tank fraternity. Mark and Jim are the two guys running this...
  40. Dave Spencer

    The Mighty Boosh.

    Anybody out there watch it? Like most of what i consider to be cutting edge comedy, it is a bit hit and miss, but when it hits it is genius. The Nightmare of Milky Joe. :lol: Dave.
  41. Dave Spencer

    Welsh Mountains...A Distant Echo.

    It`s way too early to reveal this scape ( one day old), which represents the third reincarnation of this tank, but I would appreciate any advice out there. I ran the Riccia scape to destruction to see far how I could push the Riccia for future reference. I am sad to see it go, but I will do...
  42. Dave Spencer

    ID This Moss, Please.

    This is what I found growing out of my hairgrass. i think it`s Christmas moss, but I admittedly don`t know anything about mosses. Cheers, Dave.
  43. Dave Spencer

    B + W Images of Krakow

    First off, I have to say that these photos in no way represent what the beautiful old city of Krakow really looks like. I like to give my pictures a gloomy look. You may also notice that I like to shoot straight in to the sun as well. :lol: Walking down Grodzka: Church of Bernardyna (I...
  44. Dave Spencer


    I have recently arrived back in the UK after a long weekend stop in the old town of Krakow, Poland. All I can say is what a beautiful, historic city for those wishing to step off the beaten track. Anyway, with Auschwitz-Birkenau barely an hour away, I felt compelled to visit. Fortunately, my...
  45. Dave Spencer

    My First Attempt with a Light Box

    This picture is no great shakes, but it is my first attempt. :? Basically, I have lined a cardboard box the same dimensions as my 60cm x 30cm tank with silver foil, and placed it on top of the tank. The lid of the box has a hole cut in it centrally, to allow a remote flash gun to be fired...
  46. Dave Spencer

    Black and White Photography.

    Does anybody out there use B + W photography much? Personally, apart from the usual holiday snaps and tank shots, I prefer it 99% of the time. Of course, the digital age and Photoshop mean that it is possible to shoot in colour and convert it to B + W. Dave.
  47. Dave Spencer

    Dave`s 60cm Iwagumi.

    Thought I would post it here to keep Zig`s Iwagumi company. It is a bit more basic in design than Zig`s, but it is my first (of many hopefully) attempts, and am happy with it thus far, with one or two reservations. Tank: 60 x 30 x 36 opti white high clarity. 60l capacity. Lights: 1 x 24W...
  48. Dave Spencer

    White Balance Settings on a Nikon D40.

    In response to Graeme`s thread on the white balance setting on a Canon 350D, here are the white balance settings on a Nikon D40. Shutter speed 1/2 sec. Aperture F 16 with one stop of underexposure. ISO 200. Tank lighting is 22W of Arcadia Arc Pod compact T5s. Each white balance setting can be...
  49. Dave Spencer

    International Aquatic Plants Layout 2007 Winner.

    What do you think? Dave.
  50. Dave Spencer

    Alcohol Tasting in NW England and N Wales.

    Anybody in this area of the world feel like getting together some time for a chat. Some of us are keen on photography as well, so there should be plenty to talk about. We could also bring along various bits and bobs for swapping. What do you think? Dave.
  51. Dave Spencer

    Opti White High Clarity V Float Glass.

    I am toying with the idea of retiring my 120l for now, and setting up a 120cm rimless, braceless tank :roll: , and was wondering about the additional cost of going for higher clarity glass. I already have a second hand (therefore, cheap) opti white high clarity 60cm which is a quality item...
  52. Dave Spencer

    Spirogyra and Amano Shrimp.

    Does anyone know if Amano shrimp will eat this type of algae? Dave.
  53. Dave Spencer

    Check this out!

    A little something to break the virginity of this section. The clip is a bit lengthy, but well worth watching until its conclusion. Dave.
  54. Dave Spencer

    Hemianthus micranthemoides growth rate....

    Does anybody out there consider this to be a slow growing plant as far as stem plants are concerned? I have some in a medium light nano where growth is fairly slow, but it doesn`t seem to be growing any faster in my high tech EI tank. There is some Micranthemum umbrosum in the high tech tank...
  55. Dave Spencer


    I was going to post this in the plant gallery, but it is more of a tank shot really. This look was stumbled upon by accident. Whilst I have been trying to reduce the light in this tank, I bought separate starters for the two Interpet T5 PC lamps so that I could restrict the full 3.4WPG. I...
  56. Dave Spencer

    Gloomy Iwagumi.

    My aquatic photography is very much in its infancy, but I have just had a go at the pictures below. I used a Nikon D40, ISO1600, various levels of under exposure and lighting was a desk lamp pointed at a black piece of card on the wall behind the tank. I wanted to create some distinctive rays...
  57. Dave Spencer

    TPN v PMDD Trace

    Has anybody noticed any significant improvement in dosing Tropica trace as opposed to powdered trace from AquaEssentials? I have tried both, but I haven`t seen any real difference at all, and certainly not enough to justify the cost of continuing to use Tropica. It would be interesting to hear...
  58. Dave Spencer

    Aquarium Plant Paradise

    Has anybody got this book by Takashi Amano, and an opinion on it? Dave.
  59. Dave Spencer


    Does anybody else out there use this stuff? I am using it on two of my tanks now (I find it difficult to fit in to my nano tank filter) and am mightily impressed with the water clarity it gives. All my tanks had what I presumed to be crystal clear water, but Purigen takes the clarity a notch...
  60. Dave Spencer

    Rotala rotundifolia

    Excellent pics, Graeme. The light and depth of field on the final picture is superb. Here is my Rotala rotundifolia in my 120l taken before the tank was stripped down. The pictures were taken with a Nikon D40 on a tripod. The white balance was on auto and I just used exposure compensation to...