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Dwight

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  1. I had a 100G guppy tank outdoors (shout to Lucas Bretz @ LRB Aquatics for the idea!) that I successfully overwintered using Lucas' techniques only to have it completely wrecked last summer by Water Hyacinth I put in the tank. Oh, that stuff was growing like crazy and was absolutely beautiful! Unfortunately by the time I discovered how invasive Hyacinth actually is, it had overtaken the tub, crushed my cycle, and destroyed the whole tank. I'm trying again this summer, tub is cycled (again) and I put three Comets in last week
  2. @Drenon88I'm using Aqueon Quiet Flow 30 on the 20 gallon tank and a Quiet Flow 20 on the 10 and a small sponge in the corner of both. @Flumpweesel I've done occasional gravel vacs getting to this point, and that has worked well... After thinking through this last night and this morning, I believe I caused this in a panic. overfeeding can cause Ammonia spikes (which I likely missed Monday), the ammonia converted to Nitrite (which I caught Tuesday). I came to virtually the same conclusion as @HH Morant I managed to save just one of the six by moving it quickly to the 10 gallon. As of this morning, it was fine, the snails are fine still in the 20 gallon and the bacteria bloom that popped up during my panic last night in the 20 gallon tank has subsided quite a bit this morning. I'll continue to monitor and tamp down my reaction a bit next time... Thanks for the replies!!!
  3. Ahhh...that could be the sulphur smell source. I use Prime and API to detox my tap water. But this had sat since Friday last week and this smell literally "exploded" as soon as I added the water.
  4. Last week I posted about cycling issues I was having, and after getting some good info, I went back and checked and saw the parameters have been 0, 0, about 40 and pH 7.0 nearly two weeks. Again, thinking my tank was cycled, we went to a fish store (not Big Box Pets) Saturday and bought six Zebra Danios and thee Mystery Snails for our 20 gallon tank. We also got a couple live plants. There were no other fish in the tank and a little algae. Things seemed to be going well but when I came home today, I noticed that rotten egg smell and saw the fish were not as active as they have been, lethargic. I tested the water and still had 0 Ammonia, but Nitrites had spiked to over 1.5 and Nitrates were near 140. I did a 15% water change and the Danios immediately swam to the surface, the smell intensified and within ten minutes four were floating belly up and the other two were struggling. I did manage to get those two of into the 10 gallon but they don't look like they'll make it. I'm not sure where the parameters are there, but leaving them in the 20 would not work based on the other four. What have I done this time? And why the spike in egg smell so quickly?
  5. Thanks for some really good replies! I've got too much invested to quit! LOL! OK, some answers/replies... 1. No quarantine as I do not have a tank flourishing yet 2. I've not put more than 2-4 small fish (small Comets + Otos) in either tank + a couple snails at any given time, trying to manage the bio load at least somewhat. I wouldn't think I'm overwhelming the tanks, but it certainly is possible. 3. 10 gallon runs clear but no algae, it's moderately to well planted, I fertilize once a week. The 20L runs a little bit cloudy, outbreaks green water sometimes, and has no problem growing algae. Parameters have been really good for a couple weeks now, just Nitrate running high (one plant in this tank, no ferts). I clean up the green water by cutting off lights for a day or two. 4. The fish in local Big Box Pet Store, Inc are kept in less than ideal conditions, goldfish crammed in, Otos look skinny most of the time, so I think I will change up to Tetras or Danios...oddly enough, they usually look in pretty decent shape when they have them and the tanks have been maintained. One of our stores has some pretty good fish people that seem to care. The other, not so much, but I'm still reluctant to make major fish purchases from either. 5. My tap water is town water, so it's inconsistent as it can be (especially pH and Ammonia). Before putting it in the tank, I filter it at the spigot, use Prime/Water Conditioner and let it set at least 24 hours before use.
  6. The same thing happened while trying to get my 10 gallon cycled. Turned out to be I was doing a fishless ghost feeding cycle and food was accumulating/decomposing in my filter. Cleaned the filter, vacuumed the gravel, tried a different way of cycling and have not had that problem repeat. Your tank is obviously far more established than mine, so I seriously doubt this is your issue (maybe similar with any excess food decomposing though?) but more to show there are many root causes for the same issue sometimes
  7. I can not answer fish questions with any degree of authority as I am just now getting back into the hobby after many, many years. But, from a pet own perspective, we've had to make that same decision five times with our furry babies over the past ten years or so. It's never easy, but our decision point has always been the quality of life our animals enjoy. Once that is degraded to the point it feels like we are letting them suffer needlessly, the kindest thing is let them go.
  8. I’m getting back into the hobby after several years of not keeping fish. I bought a used 10-gallon tank off Craigslist back in May and bought a brand new 20L Memorial Day Weekend. I have tried to get these tanks cycled since setting them up and every time I think they've properly cycled, I go get fish and they die within a month. I track my parameters faithfully (sometimes obsessively) and have done everything from a fishless cycle to a fish-in cycle to actually purchasing well used filter media (which has been most successful to date) from an online fish breeder. So far I’ve lost five goldfish and six Otos in addition to a few other less expensive, common fish from Big Box Pet Store, Inc. I currently have no fish (still waiting for parameters to settle and become consistent), my 10 gallon is planted (with Aquarium Coop purchases!) and they are doing well, just the tank has consistently increased Ammonia (typically <1 ppm) and Nitrites (typically < 1 ppm) and Nitrates vary. I do fertilize weekly. My 20-gallon has but one live plant, grows algae consistently well but still has increased Ammonia (again<1) and Nitrites (<1) with Nitrates around 10-20. I am open to trying anything to get these tanks in condition to maintain a few fish. My goal is to keep a Betta in the 10-gallon tank, with a few tank mates and maybe some smaller cichlids in the 20-gallon. Any advice on how to accomplish this would be greatly appreciated!!
  9. Hello Fellow Fishkeepers! I'm Dwight and I live just east of Raleigh, NC. I work full time, wife is retired, kids are grown and gone with families of their own. We've had cats for many years, all strays or shelter rescues, and loved them all. Their passing was always devastating, but we usually had two or more to soften the blow. When our last passed back in March, we decided to hold off on adopting a new cat and try something else. Since I had aquariums (and Cichlids) many, many years ago (and "thought" I knew something about it), I felt that was the natural path. I'm finding I knew nowhere near what I thought I knew even though my Cichlids lived a happy and healthy life until I sold them to a local Richmond VA aquarium store because they kept trashing the tank. Only after he purchased them did he tell me I had a breeding pair...oh, well. As I said, after the last of our cats passed in March, I decided to get back into the hobby. I currently have two tanks (used 10 gal purchased off Craigslist in early May and a new 20L from a PetSmart sale Memorial Day weekend). No fish at present as I'm struggling getting the tanks cycled since initial set up. I'm here because I've made purchases from Aquarium Coop, subscribe to the YouTube channel and trust Cory's knowledge of fishkeeping. I feel like followers of Cory and Aquarium Coop would also be knowledgeable... Since this is my first post, first day on the site, can someone be kind enough to point me to the most knowledgeable and informative forum to post questions about cycling my tanks? meanwhile, I'll just try to get the lay of the land, as it were. Thanks so much and I look forward to this group!
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