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About Kirsten

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    Happy Camper
  • Birthday May 31

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  1. I recently bought a used 29g with the wet substrate still in it. It was a little heavy and awkward, but definitely doable with 2 people. What I would do is transfer about half of the existing, relatively clean but cycled tank water to your QT. Then move out any floating plants and hardscape. Then transfer your fish, then siphon out the rest of your water (put it in the QT as well if it's relatively clean, or water your plants with it if it starts getting gunky at that level). Get a friend to help you move the tank to its new location, then put everything back in mostly reverse order. Hardscape, then some QT water, then your fish and and floating plants, then the rest of your water. You could (and probably should) do it all in day. It'll be a long day, but good practice for if you ever have to move the tank again.
  2. Don't get me wrong, I love my platies and would recommend them to anyone who wants a carefree, colorful bunch of fish. But for a large tank I say go big and get some swordtails, just make sure to have no more than one male, and remove any male fry as quickly as you can identify them. If they're still too feisty, you can always rehome them and get some gentler platies.
  3. Nice! Welcome back to the hobby! Sounds like a really fun community tank! My only reservation would be about the rainbowfish, since they like hard water vs. a lot of your other fish. Guppies love hard water, but they're super flexible. Instead of the rainbowfish, I might suggest a small school of larger tetras like emperors or diamonds (just make sure none are fin-nippers who'll torture your angelfish), or a larger livebearer like swordtails. That rainbow shark might be a little too aggressive, too, for your rams and pleco. Might want to do a school of corydoras instead. For your first tank denizens, I'd start with the smaller fish like the tetras or guppies, then work your way up in size until you're ready to pick out your glorious pleco and angelfish 🙂
  4. Yeah...tough thing is my QT is being used for new fish and I'd rather not give them whatever this is, if it's disease. And catching these buggers is so hard in a big tank full of plants like this. Might wait 1 more day and see if it's looking better. Otherwise, I do have maracyn, it'll just suck to try to dose the whole tank for 5 days.
  5. 2 days ago I noticed a white patch on a female endler's face. I freaked out at first but convinced myself it was probably an injury. Since it happened so quickly, I figured she ran into a piece of driftwood sometime in the night. Resolved to keep an eye on it and see if it got worse or better But this morning, there's a little dingly bit and I just cannot tell if it's fungus or not: Her energy and appetite seem normal. No other recent fish deaths or maladies. Whaddya think?
  6. 100%. I'll be in touch when some hatch! (edit to say: Sorry, no can do!)
  7. Hooray! Fish Day! Still waiting on a few delayed plant orders to fill these in even more, but happy to get my fish acclimated in the meantime. Moved my guppies from the 29g where I was quarantining them to my new hardened water 36g. Got 3 Hamburg swordtails in quarantine that I'll soon add to this, along with my convalescing mystery snail, some MTS, and some sky blue neo shrimp! And for my 29g, I can already tell I'm going to love tetras: They're such a lovely flash of iridescent color in a dark and spooky tank 🙂 Speaking of dark and spooky, can you spot the croaking gourami in the back? Look for the spooky glowing eye! 😄 I opted for just 3 to be safe, and they seem to be sticking together, lurking in the shadows, which I'm taking as a good sign that there's not more than one male. Also got a mat of asian liverwort there for my foreground since dwarf baby tears will just not stay planted. Now to wait for more plants!
  8. I've received about a half dozen shipments of fish, shrimp, snails and plants this winter and the only death was when USPS got backed up for a week in early December (lesson learned, nothing live in the mail between Black Friday and New Years). Some have come priority mail, identified as live fish, identified as just "perishable," identified as just "fragile, this end up." I just received a big, beautiful package from Aquatic Arts via UPS next day air (paid a small fortune for that, too, yowch) and even then, they wouldn't ship it out until overnight lows here, there, and at the main UPS hub near them were warmer that 20F. But most ebay or etsy sellers have just been Priority Mail. Some have been breather bags, some have been double breather bags, some have been double regular poly bags (including the Next Day Air, which makes sense). All have performed equally well in my experience. I think, for an advanced hobbyist selling one or two species of tank-raised fish, some priority mail box liners, whichever bagging system feels better to you, and only listing fish for sale in the spring and fall, shipping at the beginning of the week and avoiding holidays should protect you pretty well. Most ebay sellers have a live guarantee, but for the fish only, and require a picture of any dead animals to give a refund and communication within a couple hours of first delivery attempt.
  9. Yeah that sounds right to me. The tank was all mixed, even with crystal shrimp and I think some pinocchio shrimp. It was kind of a glorious mess. Assuming any survive the coming gourami onslaught, I might get more serious about only raising one color. But my little blue shrimp is already hard at work with her eggs! How can you say no to a face like that 🙂
  10. Yeah, definitely depends on the placement, whether you'll be mostly seeing it at a distance or up close. I have both a betta and a pea puffer and, I gotta say, I like my pea puffer more. But this would be a fine tank for a betta if you went for that. Just to throw out one wild suggestion: Opae ula shrimp! No water changes, no heater, no filter, only feed once a month and top off with distilled water. They're brackish, so you'll need a little marine salt, and you won't be able to use normal aquarium plants, but a 5g like that would be paradise for them, especially if you creatively hardscaped it.
  11. One more happy Aquarium Co-op customer!
  12. From how I understand, a well-balanced tank in these regards means the right balance of nutrients, living plants, CO2, and light. A good balance of all of those elements create thriving plants that grow and snap up all the available nutrients before algae can take hold. It also helps if there are creatures that eat algae, so that even if you're out of whack while you're getting set up and your plants are still growing, the algae won't be able to choke out the plants.
  13. I'm out of reactions for the day, so, ❤️ Thanks for the warm welcome and all the great help!
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