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  1. @GardenStateGoldfish If you're referring to climate zones as shown on here https://www.weather.gov/jetstream/climates I am between C & D (western NC mountains). It can get quite hot during the summer, although last year it never got above 93 but normally we have days were it can approach the 100 mark. If I remember correctly 2012 we had 3 104 F days in a row...but that's atypical. The location of the kidney bean pond should see sun from mid morning to late afternoon during the summer. Once the end of October gets here will probably mark the end of the season as far as keeping fish outside... Being a smaller pond (50 gallon) I do wonder if going with one of the larger stock tanks would be better to reduce temp swings? Since it will be under direct sunlight for several hours. Once summer gets here overnight temps usually don't fall below 68 F between June and August. Also good heads up on the dragonfly larvae, never knew that would be a problem and we do have some dragonflies. Also good advice @Streetwise about having ways to keep critters from falling in and drowning, that would be bad and likely to go unnoticed for too long.
  2. I did consider, before being given this pond, to go with a stock tank which I can get from a feed store. Looks like the depth on the 100 gallon stock tanks are about 31" and the depth of the pond I was able to measure about 18" in the deepest section. I did look up the pond I have and appears 50 gallons is the capacity. The larger stock tanks do get a bit deeper. So if given the option would it be better to go with a stock feeder tank for the extra depth (if not overall capacity) versus trying to fortify the kidney bean pond? I am also assuming that floating plants like water lilies, water hyacinth, guppy grass, duckweed and so on would also provide some protection and cover from predators? Is it standard practice to keep a screen of some sort over a pond?
  3. @Dawn T That is a concern, not sure what will work best, whether I need to fabricate a cover or load up on floating plants for cover.
  4. I'm planning on setting up a mini-pond this spring once the weather warms up. I was given a kidney bean shaped pond which I estimate hold about 50-60 gallons. So far I have the pond filled with water and purchased some caribsea flora max and crushed coral. I have pretty soft, slightly acidic well water, so hoping the crushed coral and substrate help raise the pH and add hardness as my understanding that guppies prefer harder water higher pH. Do correct me if I am wrong on any of that, haven't added anything to the pond other than water. My next step is to run airline from inside (hopefully) to a sponge filter. May consider adding a heater just to help keep it from getting too low at the beginning and end of the season. The pond is partially buried but we're talking about 12-16". So that means by the end of the end of the season I'll need something else to keep the guppies (and perhaps their fry if this all goes according to plan) in at the end of the season, so I'm thinking indoor mini-pond. Definitely will have to find a source for plants (guppy grass, water lilies, etc) perhaps that sort of stuff is out of season? I just want to make sure I'm not going down the wrong path, or missing some important steps or other things I need to consider. This will be my first pond and first time keeping guppies.
  5. Looks like I forgot to follow up so here's an update. The smell was definitely the rocks. Not sure if it would have caused problems but felt it would better to not roll the dice. In short, I removed the rocks, changed the water out and no more smell. I've had the tank running with fish since then and haven't had any problems so far. So the moral of this story is don't put random rocks in your tank unless you know the source or know what kind of rocks they are. Same goes with DIY driftwood, that was something else I thought about doing and didn't go through with. It is very easy to add stuff to the tank that might cause more problems.
  6. Probably the worst thing I ever done was try to do a marine aquarium in a 10 gallon tank. Not saying it can't be done but at the time I had no idea what I was doing and as anyone could imagine it didn't end well. I simply had no understanding about things like the nitrogen cycle and that ammonia was a thing. I have definitely learned a lot since I was a kid and getting back into the hobby. Looking back it is amazing how many myths and bad information there is out there. For instance like someone else mentioned, I would change out all of the water, rinse the gravel and so forth...it does make me cringe thinking about how bad that was.
  7. @JaredL Yeah I read similar things and most of what I read sounded like that is more likely to occur in an older setup tank or having deep substrate. No airstone in the tank currently, however the tank is completely new and was filled along with the Fluval Stratum and rocks then the smell started at about 48 hours in. To answer your question, no there is likely not adequate agitation if I had fish in the tank, right now it is just water, substrate and a few plants from my other 10 gallon. My guess would be that since the tank is not stocked that oxygen levels should stay at a decent level with the agitation there....then again I'm not expert either. I did drain and refill, rinsed out the filter media and we'll see what happens. If it stinks again in a couple days then we'll know the rocks from Home Depot weren't the cause...or maybe I didn't get all the water out (which is pretty much impossible having substrate)...
  8. Nope, didn't add any dechlorinator. I am on well water, however, I've never noticed any sort of odor coming from the water. I did see that Prime and some other stuff can cause odors. I did try to search around to see if Stratum might cause an odor, same for the rocks (I was inundated with ads to go buy some more rocks). I did see a lot of posts on other aquarium related sites that rocks from places like Home Depot are allegedly safe or that people didn't have problems. Couldn't really find anything mentioning a sulfur smells specifically for Stratum or much of anything about the rocks. I guess the one way for sure I'll know having taken the rocks out of the tank (and now I can put ~3 more gallons of water in) is to drain and refill the tank and see if the odor comes back. Probably need to ring out and rise the filters too. I'll post back to the thread after I've done that and a few days have gone by. Definitely curious if anyone has had odd experiences like this.
  9. @Dandy Pearl That is correct. Actually just a HOB and heater. The tank is new, I did have it going, temporarily, with fish a month ago. I drained it and it sit for a few weeks dry. I rinsed the tank out before filling it and adding substrate and this "creek stone" The best I can determine on these rocks is that they're supposed to have come from a dry creek bed...but of course not knowing what kind of rocks these are, or if they've been treated with something (nothing on the package)...Hopefully a drain and refill will fix the problem and won't be a problem later on when I do get around to adding fiash.
  10. Yeah that's kind of the feeling I got...but since I've never used the stuff before. At any rate, I went ahead and removed the rocks. Probably the better choice rather than to experiment with boiling and baking rocks and finding out they're not safe for fish. I'll probably wait until tomorrow but I should probably change out some of the water and do so until the smell is gone.
  11. A couple of days ago I got my 55 gallon setup with Fluval Stratum and also got some "Natural Creek Stone" I got from Home Depot, thought it would be a money saver, look neat against the black background and substrate. I did rinse and clean the rocks. However, after 2 days have gone by I am noticing a sulfur smell. I've never used Fluval Stratum before but I also don't think that's where the smell is coming from. I have a feeling it is coming from the rocks. Someone had suggested I boil/bake the rocks but I do have a concern about explosions and not sure that would necessarily fix the problem--but then again I don't know. The tank is not stocked with any fish and won't be until likely after the holidays. Other concerns about the rocks, because hindsight is 20/20, is whether or not the rocks will alter the water chemistry, hardness, etc over time. I plan on doing a large school of neon tetras and possibly other fish that prefer similar water parameters. Haven't completely decided on everything. My gut instinct is to remove the rocks and find a new purpose for them, after all once plants are taking over the tank I probably won't see much of the bottom anyway. I don't know what type of rock these are other than they're natural creek stone and not cement. I guess the first question is to rule out the possibility that the Fluval Stratum would be the cause of the smell? Second is the likelihood of these rocks being an issue. I'm not opposed to removing the rocks but wouldn't mind not having to remove them either. edit: The water parameters after 24 hours after filling were: pH 6.6, GH 72 ppm, KG 36 ppm, Ammonia 1 ppm, Nitrite 0 ppm and Nitrate >0 but less than 5 ppm. I rechecked the water and nothing has changed (that I can measure).
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