AS600 - Carpet Deathmatch

Fiske

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In reality a continuation of my old AS600 journal. But since I really ripped it all apart, I'd better keep the journals separate. So here goes:

The gudgeons left the tank in vertical direction within a few weeks after my last update; their fry sadly perished too. A 20 cm piece of an (to me) unknown stemplant got tossed in the tank. Life took over. Waterchanges got skipped, CO2 ran out, ferts got added once a month, some fish food got thrown in when I remembered to.

So in march I removed several kilos of an (to me) unknown stemplant; and surveyed the damage. I'd lost all cories, and 5 of the oto's, only 2 left. All CPDs accounted for. 3 paros now reside in the lowtech. Hairgrass was GONE. C. crispatula had bulked up, C. wendtii was full of runners. Lots of Bolbitis, with quite a bit of staghorn.

Only one thing to do.
Buy fish a hotelroom.
Buy plants.
Empty everything.
Sort hardware.
...
Rescape.

2020-04-07%2013.37.31.jpg
 

Fiske

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Better shot:
2020-04-07%2016.49.46.jpg


Plants:
C. crispatula
C. wendtii
C. willisii x nevillii
Eleocharis mini
H. bolivianum
Microsorum Trident
Bolbitis
... Oh and a few Buces from the lowtech, just to see how they handle it. Will up the count when (if) the tank behaves.

Eheim Pro 4+ 350T
Aquarebell lilypipe and inlet
AquaClear 20 powerhead
Eheim skimmer

Tropica soil powder
ADA Powersand
Dragonstone
Redmoor roots

Maaassive CO2; dropcheckers bright yellow.
 

Fiske

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Small update:

Second week. I've gone over to 50ish % waterchange every other day, down from every day for the last week. 1,5-2 ml of glut per day, slowly decreasing that.
Got white fungus on wood, and some diatoms. Couple of days ago 8-10 shrimp, a few nerites and my 2 Oto's made the move. I decided to bolster the Oto ranks by buying 6 more. Very small, and somewhat skinny. One had run out of batteries when I got home, unfortunately. The rest are having a munch :) Hopefully they will bulk up. I might pick up some more... Also ordered a load of shrimp, the ones I have need some new blood. So fungus and diatoms are decreasing fast.

I believe I see some beginnings of growth from the chain swords and the hairgrass. I know I see a bit of melt from the Cryptocorynes, which was expected. Nothing alarming (yet). Moved another Buce in. Moved the trident out, it looked like oop; replaced with regular Java from the lowtech. Had a few large adventitious plants that fit well.
Not really running ferts yet, apart from 5 mls of Specialized sunday. Will probably dole out root tabs soonish.

2020-04-15%2017.55.34.jpg
 

alto

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Looks good (as usual) - love those floating crispatula leafs
Trim the bolbitis as per Jurijs mit JS recommendation (unless you want Bolbitis takeover ... I feel it’s pain upon each leaf loss, so I’ve just quit growing it :oops:)

I saw this today so had to go back in time to catch up on the previous journal - unfortunately losses of dwarf Corydoras isn’t unusual, they often seem to do well initially, then slowly vanish
I suspect this reflects them being predominantly wild caught and some latent (internal) parasites or ???

Your Habrosus looked fantastic so was very disappointed to read they’d succumbed to the Vanishing

I’m intrigued by the Fish Hotel - low budget dive or... ;)

Be brutal about cutting back any crypt melt
 

Fiske

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Looks good (as usual) - love those floating crispatula leafs

Thanks. One of my favourite plants as well. Too bad it takes months to establish and get going IME.

Trim the bolbitis as per Jurijs mit JS recommendation (unless you want Bolbitis takeover ... I feel it’s pain upon each leaf loss, so I’ve just quit growing it :oops:)
I have more Bolbitis than I know what to do with :O Will check it out. Thx.

I saw this today so had to go back in time to catch up on the previous journal - unfortunately losses of dwarf Corydoras isn’t unusual, they often seem to do well initially, then slowly vanish
I suspect this reflects them being predominantly wild caught and some latent (internal) parasites or ???

Your Habrosus looked fantastic so was very disappointed to read they’d succumbed to the Vanishing

Yeah. They were charming little fellows. I'm afraid the sharp pieces of Seiryu stone in the original sandy beach version wasn't helping; some of them had damaged barbs. Whether they had that originally, or I can be blamed I dunno. I'd love to do a proper setup for cories at some point. #needmoretanks #needbetterfloors

For now, the tank might be just Otocinclus and shrimp for a while, I just might put the CPDs into the low tech 45P to hidey-hidey with the paro's. Then I can have a tank full of fish I never see.
Not sure where I'm heading right now to be honest; mulling over options.

I’m intrigued by the Fish Hotel - low budget dive or... ;)

45 l cheap glasstank with a light cover of tropica soil, and an assortment of plant cuttings floating around. Dennerle corner filter. A flophouse basically.

Be brutal about cutting back any crypt melt

With extreme prejudice, that goes for remaining staghorn on a few old crypt leaves too. I'd rather cut a leaf too many now... rather than cry later.
 

alto

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some of them had damaged barbs.
I’m always inclined to think this is health related rather than sharp substrate - though perhaps the dragon stone is extremely? sharp
(at least I’ve never observed any barbel damage despite keeping Corydoras on what certainly felt like sharp substrates - especially Flourite red which was much sharper than anticipated (substrate change, already had the fish))
Barbel damage related to high bacteria levels in substrate has been documented
Also if fish have internal bacterial infections, these will often show as damage to fins and barbels (and general malaise - which is often not that easy to note in Corydoras)
 

alto

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:sorry: tried to do another Quote, but absolutely couldn’t get 2 in the same reply box, so posted and tried with a new box - it ain’t happening today - apparently I’ve made my Quote limit in this thread
(yesterday I managed multiple quotes within a single reply box soooooo :confused: :confused: )



Sometimes strong reduction in flow will greatly increase Parosphromenus sp. activity/visibility (some breeders on The Fish Hut page have switched to no filtration on their Paro tanks (with great success))
It does seem that placing them in a bigger densely planted/hardscape tank, just means rarely glimpsing them ... I suppose lots of places for them to move without ever venturing into the light - often a dangerous foolhardy move in their natural habitat, and they do seem more outgoing when aquarium more closely resembles natural waters
 

Fiske

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Sundays are for watering the houseplants, baking rye, chilling a bit before the workweek....

... And tank maintenance.
Big waterchange. Tried out how easy it was(n't) to clean the prefilter on the Eheim. Turned out it really wasn't necessary though, shrimpguard catches most of the larger pieces which I remove on the bidaily waterchanges. I do ask myself if designers of intricate prefilter solutions on bucket filters actually try them out themselves. Still I like this filter over the Oase because:
A) it is way smaller
B) it has at the very least the same amount of flow (a fair bit more in my assessment, actually)
C) it is way less noisy. The Oase would always trap air, so it was like having Victoria Falls in a cabinet at times. And juggling it around was having fun tilting a bucket @ some 10-12 kilos inside a cupboard. Again and again and again. And then a couple of times more. Everytime you had cleaned the prefilter (ie every week, because then it got so noisy you knew it was time). The air trapping part probably also contributed to the glassheater breaking, which I noticed on a major filter clean. Oh, humanity....
I guess I'm just an Eheim guy.

Added a bunch of root tabs for crypts+chainswords. Dosed one pump of Tropica Premium. Slowly cutting down on EasyCarbo, down to 1 ml pr day now, will probablydecrease if everything stays stable. Bit of diatoms and green dust on glass, which gets munched, as did the white fungus (now almost completely gone). Bit of diatoms on the large crispatula leaves gone courtesy nerites and shrimp. None on hardscape (that I can see anyway).

In other news: I've lost one of the new Otos every day since I got them. Down to 3 now which is a 50% mortality rate over 3 days. The remaining 3 ganged up with the 2 old ones and had a swim around during wc. They've always done that, this time it was like seeing Mum, Dad and the 3 Oto kids :D I'm crossing my fingers. I hope I can get some more, but options are a bit limited at the moment.
Added 30 shrimp; 50/50 Sakura Extreme Red and Sunkist Orange. Yeah, I know they will interbreed, and no, I don't care. Sue me. At least one was berried, so maybe...
Also 'seeded' the tank with some Hyallela, so hope I can get a good colony here too. I want some Asellus too, so gotta go fishing soon.

Trimmed the Bolbitis, but did leave some leaves. Added more Bolb rhizomes too, heavily trimmed.
And I've started a carpet fight by adding a few tufts of Lilaeopsis brasiliensis which seems to get going fast. I'm expecting great battles for territory in the future. Why have I postponed trying this plant for so long btw?
Hairgrass has bulked up and ready to take on competition, chainswords likewise; plenty of runners too. It will be glorious.
No major melt on crypts yet, transplanted Buces seems to be doing well so far.

Speaking of; everything is going way too well. I'm scared! Surely disaster is lurking around the corner.

Sometimes strong reduction in flow will greatly increase Parosphromenus sp. activity/visibility (some breeders on The Fish Hut page have switched to no filtration on their Paro tanks (with great success))
It does seem that placing them in a bigger densely planted/hardscape tank, just means rarely glimpsing them ... I suppose lots of places for them to move without ever venturing into the light - often a dangerous foolhardy move in their natural habitat, and they do seem more outgoing when aquarium more closely resembles natural waters

They're in the lowtech 45P with an Aquaclear 20 HOB. Circulation is almost nonexistent. They have always been extremely incognito. I guess I might also have a bunch elderly citizens actually, they don't seem all that spry anymore.

Still having a big think on what's going to be stocking in the 600 though, I've got a couple of options I'm mulling over:

1. put back the CPDs + try Peacock gudgeons again.
2. put CPDs into the low tech, get some eg. Pseudomugil or Iriatherina and try Peacock gudgeons again...
3. As above but something that is not Peacocks. I'd really like the gudgies, but last batch jumped. And apart from the fish dying, which I really don't like; they were quite expensive too. This time around though the tank is darker (thank you, black backing), maybe that will help?
4. Something else. I've been considering Apistos or Laetacara, although I'd rather do a proper blackwater set up for Apistos, and the Laetacara I saw in the shop were huge (for dwarf cichlids), I guess the shrimp will be food in either case.

Yeah, Otos and shrimp for a while, I guess.

No pictures right now, it's all sunny so it's reflection city. Will update that later.
 

alto

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Peacock gudgeons will take significant shrimp so I’d add these last
I’d also consider treating them with eSHa ndx (levamisole) - prepare soaked foods in combination with Seachem Focus if possible (greatly enhances medication binding to food particles) - they often seem not to do well longterm

Purchase juveniles if possible

I’m somewhat surprised at the jumping - unless they’re arguing over territory/dominance etc
While some people report very gentle behaviour in these fish, others report significant aggression
 

Fiske

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Peacock gudgeons will take significant shrimp so I’d add these last
I’d also consider treating them with eSHa ndx (levamisole) - prepare soaked foods in combination with Seachem Focus if possible (greatly enhances medication binding to food particles) - they often seem not to do well longterm

Purchase juveniles if possible

I’m somewhat surprised at the jumping - unless they’re arguing over territory/dominance etc
While some people report very gentle behaviour in these fish, others report significant aggression

Mine didn't touch the shrimp, but they were quite aggressive towards each other. That I very quickly only had 3 meant they couldn't spread it out amongst them much, jumping were by pecking order. I also think that the tank was to bright and busy for them. I'm hoping that this time, as the tank is darker they will be more relaxed. I might also get a larger group. It will be a week or 2 before I do though.


End of 3rd week update:
Still going well. Only algae I see is some GSA on the glass (lower front and right side); this corresponds well with where the sun hits the tank in the afternoons. I'll look into some paper for the hindmost 2/3rds of the side like I have in the left side. Hilariously, I also have GSA in the glasspipes. That's a first.
I've been pushing CO2 injection a bit over the last week, I think I'm about maxed now. Proper pH profile will have to wait a weeks time.
Started to add a bit more of Tropica ferts, still a bit on the low side. I also made up a phosphate mix, just to see if upping phosphates will do anything about GSA.
WC's are every other day for the next week too @35%.
Did my first proper trim, of Helanthium runners that were crossing the current frontlines in the Great Battle of Carpets; about to commence soon, just need to get the troops sorted and ready.
Added more Buce.
CPDs went in a few days ago. Watching them fool around in the hairgrass is a delight. The 3 remaining noob Oto's still doing well.

Obligatory crap pic, from yesterday:
2020-04-25%2019.07.30.jpg


Cleaning the dc:

2020-04-24%2018.50.58.jpg


Colours a bit more natural on this ackshully:

2020-04-25%2013.47.23.jpg
 

Fiske

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Yeah. Crossed the 1 month anniversary without much fanfare. Now running in the 6th week, and things still look good.

Still have GSA, I still blame it on the sunlight. Heaviest infestation is in the glasspipes, which do need a good clean. I might purchase a backup set though, just in case I'm having a tuesday. The upped phosphates didn't make any difference... I've had a wee bit of staghorn and BBA, truth be told; but only on leaves that were on the crispatula when it was moved. A lot of it looked dead tbh, and the leaves leave promptly. Had a bit of black tufts, which actually looked like new growth, prompted me to check if filter needed cleaning. It did.
Cleaned the filter, and started wondering whether I'd go full Eheim Classic next time.

Got a new hobby btw: Cutting chainsword runners. These things would take over everything if I turned my back for a few weeks.
Carpet is almost full, deathmatch commencing (although I'll still be restraining the chainswords). HG got the upper hand for now.
Changed out the planting on the right side, bolbitis just looked wrong here, and they were just thrown in with a pitchfork. So more javafern, 'Narrow' this time, as was the plan, some Xmas moss, some H. pinnatifida (if at first you don't succeed, try and try and try ad infinitum.) Also, more Buce (Kedagang), because Buce.

Bought 10 T. ocellicauda yesterday, and picked 5 dry peacock chips of the floor this morning. Damn. Reeeallly hope the last 5 stay cool and stay put. Swim, don't fly, guys.

At least my 5 oto's are still going.

Obligatory crap photos:

2020-05-13%2017.28.15.jpg


Sorry about the clingfilm, just a desperate measure against flying peacocks. Clearly didn't help. :arghh:

2020-05-13 16.56.13.jpg
2020-05-13 18.07.31.jpg
 

Fiske

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Tank looks really nice mate cant wait to see how the death match pans out

Thanks. I'm super happy with it, aside from jumping gudgeons. Especially after I did something with the bolbitis area, it wasn't working right.

Lilaeopsis is vastly outnumbered though, but it seems like it holds its own for now.
 

Fiske

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Update beginning of week 9. Closing in fast on the 2 month celebration.

The rest of the gudgeons followed the vanguard to certain death on the floor. One of them did it while I sat there drinking my morning joe, so I got him back in a hurry. So next time he chose a moment where I didn't watch. Literally. I checked, and it was in the tank. Watched an episode of some stupid show, and it was on the floor, nice and dry when it finished. That one I tried popping back on the off chance, but he was gone for this existence.
It was a bit of a gamble, and I'm not too happy about it; actually I feel fairly bad since I knew it was a risk :dummy:. I want some gudgeons again at some point, but not in an open top tank, that's for sure.

I'm not certain where I want to go from here; I still want some fish that can lure the hidey CPDs out in the open; preferably some that don't snack on shrimp, can handle a bit of flow and don't get too big. And don't jump.
Preferably some that don't need a large shoal.
Open to suggestions here....

In other news; as far as I can count, all Oto's are still going great. Spotted lots of shrimplets and halfgrown shrimp this last week.
Algae are minimal, it seems like the GSA is on it's last legs. Got a bit of BBA on a few select leaves, mainly the crispatula and the chainswords. Speaking of, the chainswords were getting too unruly, I removed them and planted more hairgrass and Lilaeopsis. So the deathmatch is still on, one-on-one for now. Hopefully the nevillii/willisii can gain a bit of foothold. On cryptocorynes: both crispatula and wendtii are sending out runners now, at some point I might have to start reining them in. I have been having a bit of hairloss from the lawn lately, probably fert related?

Cleaned glassware and filter today, popped in root tabs for everyone. Mixed up some EI solutions which I will probably start dosing in ½ or 3/4 doses soon.

Obligatory deluge of crap phone pics, also commemorating the lost :arghh::

2020-05-15 17.49.49.jpg

2020-05-15 17.49.53.jpg

2020-05-15 17.51.20.jpg

2020-05-15 17.51.54.jpg

2020-05-15 17.52.12.jpg
 

Fiske

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Not really an ideal time for pics, too much sunlight and reflections. This is from last week.
Tank is nicely stable these days. Added a bunch (10) of P. titteya saturday. They are nice, and not as shy as the cpds; although they are learning to fear the daughter :D
One oto had jumped out one month ago, by mistake I think; it's the first time I've seen that. The remaining 4 still going.
Dosing ½ to full EI + I add some root tabs when I remember it.
Chugging along nicely, need to do some trimming and I keep postponing glassware clean as long as possible.
Yeah.
 
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