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johnzhe's Achievements


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  1. New tank looking good! I've tried getting the tea look in my tank before, never really got that far.
  2. Bellies! Fat Otos are happy otos, as they say.
  3. I wonder if all else fails, fish surgery is possible (similar to treating human eyeball luxation: just pop it back in with the correct method). I know various surgeries are common on larger fish (like goldfish wen trimming, and I think king of diy did an eye surgery on his arowana) but I have no idea about a fish as small as an oto.
  4. I also used to have two pea-sized mystery snails, and both of them died from starvation even in a planted, active tank. One more thing to consider (if you're getting a small snail again) is tank size. A tank too large will be hard for the snail to find food in if you're not dumping tons of it in. Just imagine a pea-sized mystery snail trying to find a small slice of zuchinni in a 100g tank. Sure, that zuchinni will feed it for a few days, but it might not find the zuchinni without wasting a bunch of energy crawling to it. (This is more relevant for really tiny snails and breeders trying to maximise their output, but it still matters a bit here.) Larger snails will be a bit better in big tanks since they move way faster.
  5. A zoothamnium... hmm. Interesting. I used to have something similar in my tank, but I think mine were a bit larger and more active. Sadly they all died out. https://imgur.com/a/SGtDEWA The images aren't the highest quality, but did your creatures look sort of like mine? And Bacter AE overuse? I'm using that as well so I might have to watch out for it. Very interesting!
  6. It totally is! And thanks for the reply and explanations! The discussion about protein sources is very interesting, and I'll definitely think more about it. I'm currently keeping a personal journal on my own fishkeeping experiences. If I ever manage to breed my Otos I will definitely share how I did it (with parameters and everything). Since there are already two commercial breeders, I see the day when Otos become common to breed. And good luck with the Cocamas! I couldn't find anyone who's bred them before (even though several have tried), so it would be very exciting.
  7. Wow, the O. cocama are huge! Just found your journal. I'm a newbie fishkeeper (~2 months in) but I love research! And my eventual goal is to breed Otos (have 5 O. macrospilus in a species-only planted tank that's matured for around a year before getting fish). I don't know how many of these other Oto breeders you've found before, but: james0816 on plantedtank forums Fins And Whiskers on Youtube Dendrochirus Zebra on Youtube are some of the other guys I've found. (I can throw some links up if you want.) Some interesting things I've noticed is that bioAquatix and Aquaticarts, the only two places I've found commercially selling *tank-bred otos, sell O. macrospilus only. But all the hobbyist breeders are breeding O. vittatus. (Dean's the exception with black Otos, but, well, he's Dean.) I'm also trying to cross-reference your setup, water parameters, feeding etc. with the other few breeders. Fins and Whiskers keeps her water way cooler at 71-75F, for example, so it seems like a wide range of temperatures can work. In the Accidental Oto tank, you don't feed any live foods (just cucumbers, Hikari algae wafers, zucchini, and Repashy Super Green, I think?) and your F1 Otos still spawned. And yet both Dean and Fins and Whiskers think that live food is key to spawning Otos. Maybe any protein source can work. Sorry for the rant. But anyways, I'll be keeping an eye on this journal!
  8. Do they move/wave in the water and do they close up if you disturb them? Maybe they are a freshwater cnidarian, similar to hydra. (They have too many tentacles to be hydra though.) If they don't move, then I have no idea.
  9. I only have one tank, it's being filtered by a USB nano air pump, and one time it 'broke' because the hole where the wire sticks through got clogged with dust. I pulled the dust out and the pump started working again. The air pump really is not water-safe. The rubber casing is the only thing separating the motor etc. from the outside.
  10. Algae: Some sort of green hair algae. Aquarists don't really know how to distinguish specific types of hair algae and I'm an aquarist. Critter: Freshwater limpet! I used to have some of them, but I think they died out when the tank was low on nutrients and the ramshorns outcompeted them. Like all "pest" snails, they will reproduce and might overpopulate. I say might because I suspect them to be the least aggressive breeders of all the pest snails (although you will still come across one or two people saying that their freshwater limpets became a nuisance). They probably came in on something you added recently? Not super harmful, in any case. They don't eat healthy plants. I don't even think they eat dead plants, they seem really picky.
  11. I'm fairly sure I'm testing correctly, just because my tap water tests is close to matching the water reports from my city (213 ppm CaCO3 last year October, I'm not great at figuring out which conversion to use). The KH/GH tests are also pretty hard to screw up. I will, however, test again and maybe take a trip to my LFS. Update: After two 10% water changes, GH at 25° and KH at 22°. (Took the sample right after the water change - water may not have mixed completely together, so I may have gotten more of the tap sample.) Maybe I screwed up the first tests a little with inconsistent drop sizes, particularly the GH test. However, this is still some incredibly hard water.
  12. Context: My tap water is 17° GH and 8° KH. I had a 25g aquarium sitting for about 10 months with live plants (rotala, anubias, ludwigia, elodea, moss etc.) and some snails. In the recent months I did very few water changes. Before getting the liquid API GH/KH test, I had test strips which showed values at the top of the range (180ppm GH/240ppm KH) which was close my tap, so I thought things were normal. Other values were fine. Ammonia zero, nitrite zero, and nitrate close to zero. I was barely putting any food into the tank. 8.2 pH. Got 5 Oto cats two weeks ago, drip acclimated them. Frequent testing with the API Master test kit, everything that I could test for was still fine (zeros for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, 8.2 for pH). I didn't do big or frequent water changes - only about 10 percent weekly. Otos are eating blanched zucchini hanging from a skewer. Fast forward to today. Got the test kit. 35-40° GH and 30° KH (I got lazy with shaking the test tube at every single drop for the GH test). I'm somewhat surprised my Otos didn't get shocked when I put them in my tank, or that they aren't dead yet. Going to do daily 10% water changes to bring down the hardness without shocking them too much with a parameter change. Scape: Sand-capped organic soil (Green Diamond blasting sand on Root Farm organic hydroponic potting soil). Hardscape is aspen poplar driftwood. I've added some aspen and oak leaves. No rocks. Filter is a USB Nano air-powered Mattenfilter with a pre-filter sponge. Any theories on how the hardness is so high? I'm fairly sure there's nothing leaching minerals in my tank apart from maybe the shells of dead snails. I also wasn't doing just top-offs during the ten months, although maybe evaporation could have concentrated the water.
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