Thought I would post an update on this journal as I have been focusing on the shrimp one for the past few weeks.
The fish tank has been operating pretty much perfectly.
I do feel that the Hydor power head is a bit powerful as the plant at the back is clearly growing to the right as the water current is a clockwise motion. I know this is not ideal as it should be a spray bar along the back facing forward and the current hitting the front and going down.
The other news is my plant the Lindy sent me in the post is slowly growing nicely without any algae.
Thanks Lindy. Mature is one word for it. It certainly has a mind of its own in what grows etc. But after all it was for me an experiment to see if I could create a planted tank, actually grow some plants, see which ones grew and and at what rates. For example my early attempts at HC were good then they deteriorated and I have to rip it out. But I believe it was all down to lack of flow and getting ample CO2 to that level of the tank. Reckon if I put HC in again I would not have the problem.
I think over the next 6 months I will look at a new scape, and put some thought into the actual layout itself and the plants that should go accordingly. Also would like to have the right type of plants from a particular part of the world and the relevant fish to go with it.
As for Hydrocotyle Verticillata, it is a slow grower. At first I thought it wasn't going to grow at all, but it has grown, even at the bottom of the tank and I like the delicate leaves it produces.
Back in London tomorrow with some time to spare so as well as getting a haircut I think I will pop into ADC for a mooch around.
Thank you sir.
Although it's not quite the designer aquascape I see from most people on the forum it has been fun to experiment with the plants, their growth rates and styles. Also seeing how the fish take to the new hidey holes.
Especially interested seeing how the little cutting of Hydrocotyle Verticillata Plant Details that Lindy sent me is growing.
Belting tank rolymo. This was one of the first journals i read when i joined. Its great to see a complete novice start their first tank and a year and a half later you have a beautiful tank of healthy plants and a nice tank with sensitive shrimp too
Clearly everything has grown. Some of it has taken over and thinned out the grass carpet. There is now huge amounts of places for the fish to hide.
The wood still wants to float after nearly a year submerged.
Going strong as is the fish tank.
I have learnt a lot over the months. In leaving the cleaning routine and it's effects. And also lights out for periods of time due to no Co2 and it's effects. But I have managed to bring it back to order. Apart from it needs a good thinning out.
Sorry for not posting in a while. Have been changing jobs and houses and concentrating on keeping the family together. But I thought I would post today a quick post as over the last 12 months I learnt some more stuff again using my eyes.
So I, as I imagine many let the tank go. I watched over time. The things I did that I believe were wrong were as follows:-
I got complacent about the weekly water changes. Live started to take over so that when it came to water change time I was busy or decided to defer it to the next day and then it was the working week.
I let the ferts regime slip. I would run out and could not be bothered to make some more up as it meant boiling some water and waiting until it had cooled and then measuring out the relevant doses etc
Fastidious cleaning of the tank. On the occasions I would change the water, I literally changed the water and changed the white flossy filter material. Maybe squeazed a sponge or two.
Stretched the feeding. Usually I do every other day. But might do 3 days etc.
When the FE ran out I would turn the lights off for a few days until I got the local FE supplier. Combined with point 2 with lights on no wonder plants suffered.
So what did I observe when I cleansed my soul of laziness and came to my aquatic senses?
Well I did a major water change and clean 4 weeks ago and saw the effects of the above.
Fish were mostly all there but no sign of any Amano shrimp. Snails had gone. A couple of my daughters Platy's were no more.
Moss of which you can see in the previous picture had gone wild, had actually died underneath the green top layer. This causes lots of bio waste.
Any grass carpet I had was gone.
Lots of leaves with algae on.
GULP!!! Slapped myself in the face to jolt myself back into reality and into the hobby.
I pulled out both the big branch with the moss growing on it and another piece with java fern growing on it and was very sad to see so much build up of silt, much and stuff. Poor fish. (felt very guilty at this point)
I majorily trimmed back the plants, saved any bits of moss that I could.
I cleaned up the branches and tied back on remaining moss firmly to the main branch.
Then a major major water change. Sorry fish it was for your own good. Along with a major hoovering of the tank subtrate to clear up the silt and detriaus.
Cleaned the glass, internal pump inside and out.
Squeezed a number of the sponges and changed the Purigen for some fresh stuff.
Made up the Ferts
Took some fogbit from my shrimp tank which I had also let go and which was growing bigger than I have ever seen (growing out of the tank towards the light, amazing) and added that to my main tank.
2 weeks later and more major water changes, plants seem to be responding. Fish appear to be happier. The tank look crystal clear again.
Last week I went to the LFS and treated my daughters to 3 Tuxedo Platy's and myself 4 Colbalt Blue Gourami's (staged over a week)
The buzz and hubbub in the tank is amazing. Fish swimming around lots, eating nicely. Anubias is sprouting new shoots, moss is slowly growing.
Back on the road to recovery.
So what did I learn. Simple
CO2, Ferts, Intense light, water changes and cleanliness are king. Get it wrong and the tank starts to suffer and you spiral out of control. Luckily I have this forum to thank for the help in understanding the rough basics and for having a 180l tank which I believe slowed down the effects of poor routine and maintenance.
Onwards and upwards. Might even get some rock and change the layout soon.
I will update my shrimp tank on the appropriate thread.
Cheers for reading.