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Brenden Mitchell

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  1. I think I will end up emptying the tank and removing everything I can. They are not only extremely fast but seem to be omniscient as well. Not yet! They are laughing at me as we speak.
  2. I've set up a jar with plants and some sinking wafers Netting them out is impossible. I've tried before. The rapscallions in question ...
  3. Thanks, it's a 10 gallon shrimp tank/quarantine tank. I just let it grow wild for the shrimp. The kuhli's seem to enjoy it, but I'll move them to a bigger tank after a while. They seem healthy, no illness I can detect.
  4. Thanks a lot. I have never shown this tank to anyone except some family and friends and none of them are hobbyists. It's nice to hear that other people enjoy it. I have a sponge filter in the back left corner. It's hidden behind the roots of some water lettuce, elodea, and the wood. But if you could look from above there is actually a lot of room back there. The pothos that's on top of the tank has grown its roots into the sponge filter, which I thought was pretty neat.
  5. It could be the wood. I have been assuming it must be a bacterial bloom of some kind.
  6. August 1, 2022 I had no idea what I wanted to do with this tank in the beginning, I placed fluval stratum underneath fluorite gravel and threw some plants in. September 22, 2022 The plants didn't grow very much in the first two months, I bought lots more and added a tree root that I found in a lake. I ended up hating the look of the fluorite gravel and I poured more fluval stratum on top. I'm more of a dirty mulm kind of guy, I don't like the clean look that much. Expensive mistake buying fancy gravel... March 22, 2023 After I added the top layer of fluval stratum the plants started to grow much better, the dwarf hair grass eventually took off. I added in some crypts, the foremost is doing well. The other two in the middle and on the right side are slowly growing. Java fern and Pogostemon stellatus did not do well, I have finally removed the Pogostemon because it refused to grow, replacing it with Elodea, which I don't necessarily like but it grows super fast and generally looks decent. It fills in empty space well. I added pearl weed in the middle, which has just been trimmed. It was reaching the top of the tank before the trim. Anubias nana petite is attached to the wood, and it has been growing very, very slowly. There is also some type of grass that is doing excellent, dwarf chain sword? I bought it at a LFS and it was unlabeled. There is a slight cloudiness to the tank that has persisted, coming and going, for a couple months now. I change 1/3 of the water every two weeks or so. I fertilize with two pumps of Easy Green and one capful of API leaf zone every Sunday. I test water before water changes and I never have Ammonia, Nitrites, or Nitrates. I don't vacuum the substrate, but sometimes I stir it up when I'm changing water to suck up a little of the algae growing between the grass. My PH is something like 7.8-8.2 usually. The tank is unheated and usually fluctuates from 68-72° F. That's about all the details I've got. I have 10 white cloud minnows and a handful of wild type cherry shrimp which I culled from my 10 gallon cherry shrimp tank. I want to keep the good colors in the 10 gallon and put the rest in here. I'm feeling good about this tank, it's had a lot of ups and downs but I think it's finally getting pretty solid. I will probably not use aquarium substrate again. I think that fluval stratum is not really worth the money, nor are the gravels - at least not for my uses. They do look very nice, and for certain styles they can work well. However, I prefer organic potting soil and gravel/sand from creeks. I have noticed a distinct difference in this tank and my other two tanks which had soil. This tank took much longer to show plant growth, the growth is less intense, and it has had many ups and downs in health, whereas my dirted tanks have always remained stable. Anyway, thanks for checking out my tank. If you have any thoughts or questions let me know.
  7. I have only found one seller that is as good as the co-op, it's the same exact price but the selections differ at times, I've never had issues with them or the co-op. So there are others out there, they are just hard to find. I like to buy from smaller sellers a lot, just because I like to support the smallest businesses that I can.
  8. I am by no means experienced or very knowledgeable, but the two times I have moved my white clouds from their tanks I have immediately had large spawns of fry within 2-3 days. I believe that they eat their eggs/fry, and once you move all the parents away the fry grow and become visible. Last time I had fry I tested this assumption and recombined the adults and the fry and they were immediately eaten. I had heard that white clouds would not eat their fry, but in this case they did - very quickly.
  9. I don't think its philosophically wrong to say that an animal who has expressed its full potential is happy. That's their entire life's goal after all: survive and reproduce. I doubt it feels like happiness, but I'm sure it's not a feeling of suffering.
  10. If you are undecided on a major, I am always trying to recruit people into Biology. I'm currently in a Conservation Ecology program and it's very, very cool. I never hated college but I went through a few different major and I never felt like I was in the right place. When I switched to Biology it immediately felt right. At my school, most of the upper level Biology classes are in the field, so I actually spend most of my classroom time outside learning things at national/state forests, conservation sites, etc. I am learning a lot and it's just made me love plants, animals, and nature even more.
  11. It's my understanding that DOCs are microscopic, like the size of molecules. They are the basic compounds that organic materials break down into: "proteins, organic phosphates, and simple sugars" is what I just read. Specks of debris would be particulate organic carbon (POCs). Either way the bacterial bloom does look a lot like milk to me, and it has a sort of structure to it, like a web.
  12. If you're only growing crypts then a stingray II would be too much light. You'd probably be fine with almost any cheap LED, and that would let you keep the lights on for a long time without the intensity growing lots of algae. The original Stingray has half the PAR of the Stingray II. But you could probably use something a little weaker than that as well. What keeps my tanks from growing a lot of algae is very fast growing stem plants, I use a lot of Elodea. It soaks up excess nutrients and you can see its growth day by day.
  13. I used a Fluval 3.0 nano on a 10 gallon tank for a single month. It is pretty bright, so there is enough light to grow plants very well. The issue is that the footprint of the light is very small. I was only covering 1/3 of the 10 gallon tank with the Fluval nano. So only plants that were directly under the light were growing well. I eventually switched to a Finnex Stingray II, which has been doing great on my 10 gallon. I think the Fluval 3.0 nano is better suited for cube tanks, due to the footprint of the light. I previously used that light on a 4 gallon cube, and it worked very well.
  14. @TheSwissAquarist Those are the gold variety of White Cloud Mountain Minnows. I think they're very beautiful. They are very fun to watch. The males are always chasing each other and flaring their fins. The females mostly just eat and stay really plump with eggs. I have one who is the definite "alpha" male, and he has gotten very deeply red around his fins and face.
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