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  1. Everyone seems to be doing well and feeding time is less dramatic these days. Hoping more experienced eyes can tell if the one in the middle is a female. I think the left most is a male. I have noticed the java ferns that came from Long Island had no die back and the ones from Massachusetts did. I am slowly increasing my light intensity on the whites and will leave the red where it is for the most part. Diatom algae has been not a problem since adding the oto cats and the farowella, still have some hair algae on my "carpet" but not too bothered and may add Siamese algae eating power in 2021.
  2. @Jack.of.all.aquariums Thank you, I would imagine if you did more frequent feedings there would eventually be a negative effect. The question is, at what point? I would be curious about how your readings on the culture go as it is around for longer.
  3. @Jack.of.all.aquariums are you sifting out your paramecium from the culture with clean water? If not, curious about parameters of the paramecium culture tank and the grow-out tank before and after you feed. Also, how frequently are you changing water on the tank?
  4. @Jack.of.all.aquariums just filtering out paramecium once makes you appreciate the work Preston has put into his breeding. I am happy a number of people are actively trying to breed. They really are great fish.
  5. @Jack.of.all.aquariums thank for more updates! How often per day are you spot feeding the paramecium?
  6. @quirkylemon103Thank you, a very rewarding "work in progress." Current stocking is 3 spotted Congo puffers, 9 Corydoras eques, 5 Otocinclus macrospilus, 1 farowella acus(?), 6 glowlight tetras (my cycling/maturing team). I may swap out the tetras for a group of smaller rasboras or danios. There's a little bit of agression from my now likely female puffer towards the other two puffers. Would adding a larger group of fish bring the aggression down or could it be just because she is the biggest and the other two are new to the tank and still bulking up? Letting some hair algae go unattended on the small foregrown pebbles. I'm slowly increasing my lighting strength to find a good balance for plant growth vs. algae that the otos and the farowella will consume along with their normal feedings.
  7. Calling this a "group" shot. My first (middle) puffer is getting girthy. Fingers crossed for 2 females and a male. Smallest one has been hanging out and coming up to the glass (upper left), other one is starting to spend less time hiding (bottom right). Middle one (pic 2) definitely bit the belly of upper left (pic 3) and left a mark. Is this just tank aggression or fore-play? Needle leaf java browning out... Sunrise java doing better. Doing 5 pumps of Easy Green, maybe I need to increase?
  8. @Jack.of.all.aquariumsThank you for sharing! Looking forward to seeing your success. From Instagram and recent Aquarium Co-Op video looks like Dean is feeding clams on the half shell and has gotten his male and female to mate. I started mixing in mussels into my T. schoutedeni diet to see if having a higher fat content will impact breeding/growing.
  9. He's a little rascal for sure, cannot wait to give him some company in 2021. Nothing is looking too good at the moment but a few things should be blooming soon that'll be worth taking a picture of. I keep saying my next hobby is going to be stamps because plants and fish take up a lot of real estate. @RovingGinger your signature made me chuckle.
  10. Loving how everyone is looking under new lights. Went a little higher and longer than I needed trying to then dial back to find a good "balance" for my tank.
  11. Thank you @Streetwise. @Ruud I will try to post some photos and tag you when I do. Did a little rescape, the large sword was blocking the flow from the hob and replaced with a few types of rotala. I added some mosses but was a bit over zealous with the glue on the rocks. The corys have been zipping around enjoying the new layout. Most importantly I finally put my guy in his home.
  12. 2020 has afforded me a lot of free time... With Craigslist I have been able to score 4 tanks, 3 stocked and one that had just been torn down (10g, 20g, 29g and a 55g). I will say a lot of my decisions have been guided by hours of watching Aquarium Co-op's videos, so if anything this is a long "thank you" letter to Aquarium Co-op as well as others sharing their knowledge and experience. The 20g tank- had a decent sized black moor goldfish, two angel fish, one cory, a guppy, a stick catfish, a platy and a molly. It was a community tank of horrors (though everyone was alive and no fin nipping I could see). Scaped with dragon stone and two swords plants. When I picked it up the hob filter had been broken for a couple of days. I immediately re-homed the goldfish and the angel fish to my lfs. I put the guppy into a mutt guppy tank tank. I will probably re-home everyone but the stick catfish at some point. The good news was that I was able to get the parameters dialed in over a few weeks and had a tank open for quarantine. My wife had said we could get a Tetraodon schoutedeni at some point and I happened to find one from a reputable vendor. Then I started the first of two ramshorn snail colonies. I believe he's a male and yet to name him but has a great personality. My daughter loves watching him and feeding him. The 55g tank- so then I got thinking, "what's better than one puffer? More puffers." I found someone getting rid of a 55g that had recently tore it down and was willing to deliver. I have an industrial table that's rated to hold north of 1000lbs but I want to stay on the safe side so 55g was a big as I wanted to go. I had been running an extra sponge filter so that helped get cycled along with 6 glowlight tetras added after 4-5 weeks. Hard scape and plants from a lfs, plants from Aquabid and a number of plants from Aquarium Co-op. I went for ADA Amazonia soil with a partial sand cap. I have been watching a lot of aquascaping videos (one of my other hobbies is growing rare orchids from Central and South America). The ADA soil definitely turned my water yellow and plays with your ammonia tests with having ammonium. Aside from a trio of puffers I knew I wanted a cory community. Was able to find a group of 9 Corydoras eques and I am planning to bump to 12 or 15 depending on final stocking. They are awesome to watch. Still not sure what I am going to do for dither fish, likely rasboras or danios. Debating on getting a reticulated hillstream loach and/or a Siamese algae eater. I know I am going to be dropping the pH with RO water at some point for breeding so need all inhabitants to be happy with that. Not sure if I will put any cherry shrimp in it or not. Part of the idea is to breed puffers and Corydoras but limit the potential for eggs being eaten. I have a "time-out" tank ready for my male if I can get two females to complete my trio. In addition to the ramshorns I started a scud tank and will be working on black worms and starting an infusoria culture this winter. I upgraded my lighting today and that's the latest picture. I am planning to add more moss and possibly fill out the right side of the tank with something else, maybe anubias or a large species of fern. I may change the plants in the middle a little too before adding my puffer to his new home. Right now the 10g is being used for quarantine and I have ramshorns, pond snails, guppies and cherry shrimp in the 29g. Still a lot to do but enjoying the journey so far! Pics are my puffer, the 20g the day I got it home, and evolution of the 55g over the last month.
  13. @Brian W I am in the same boat as you and been relying on blood worms for my puffer. She occasionally is picking off the smaller pond snails I put in the tank. Any chance you could post a pic of your puffer? Mine is healthy and happy but worried that there's possibly a defect with her tail.
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