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So I’m finally getting a tank started for the first time, I was originally going to do a 20 long but since I want a decent variety of fish I decided to go for a 40 breeder instead. I’ve also been researching on YouTube for over a year now (mainly getting info from Aquarium Co-op, Primetime Aquatics, Girl Talks Fish, and MD Fish Tanks). I’m wanting to keep a betta as the centerpiece, rummynose tetras, some kind of live bearer (I’m leaning heavily towards Endlers), either ottos or plecos, and cherry shrimp. I know bettas can sometimes eat shrimp so I’m going to test it’s temperament with a couple of cherries first before getting a bunch for a colony. Also this will be a heavily planted tank (got about $200 worth of plants in my cart on Aquarium Co-op’s website 😅) and I plan on feeding high quality food. In Arizona we have really, really hard water and high PH. I’ve seen it range from 7.6 to 8.2 depending on the city (I don’t know numbers for hardness, I haven’t gotten my test kit in yet). I know I can cut the tap water with RO/distilled water to lower PH/hardness, but I recently saw a video from Prime Time Aquatics where Jason said he’s successfully kept bettas and shrimp in his tap water, which is pretty close to what I have here. In the video he says that keeping stable parameters is a little more important than matching the exact parameters of the fish you’re keeping. So, finally to my question lol. Has anyone here kept bettas or shrimp successfully in harder water with a high PH? If so, did you end up cutting your water, or did you leave it just as it comes out of the tap, and did you notice any issues with the health of the fish or shrimp?
In getting my 80 gal tank ready to plant the folks at the Co-Op said to do a deep clean of my substrate as this tank has been in use for 18 years. I have done 3 cleanings of about 12 gallons and my nitrates are coming down from 160 to 40. The issue is that my GH has jumped from 89.3 nine days ago to over 214 today. I checked my tap water and it is 143.2. Any ideas as to what might have happened? The only additive I used was Chlorine remove. TIA