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Feeling bad about neglect...


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Hello everyone,

I’ve had my tank/s since October, a 20 long and 10 gal. I’ve fretted over all the different types of algae, I’ve religiously done weekly water changes/gravel vacs, kept diligent notes of my water parameters before each water change and various nuances, until now.

I love snails (mystery and nerites) and in addition to their relentless deification they started eating my plants... just as I was noticing them eating my pogostemon plants we were packing to move to a neighboring city. I tried to keep up with feeding the snails every day so they would hopefully leave my plants alone but they basically decimated the pogostemon, leaving a barren wasteland of stems on the right half of my 20 gal. After we successfully moved both tanks, I counted fish/ snails/ shrimp and rejoiced that there were no casualties. That’s where the neglect began. I of course made time to feed the fish and snails but that was about it... unpacking and sorting consumed any free time I had. I used the test strips to keep an eye on the parameters and as each week passed I told myself I’d clean the tanks next week.

Now, going on 3 weeks with no water changes, I finally had time to sit and stare at my tanks. The stems of my pogostemon had turned translucent, my cryptocoryne’s looked to be melting and my once thriving dwarf aquarium lily had ceased sprouting and has started melting as well. It dawned on me that it wasn’t necessarily the move that shocked my plants... I hadn’t put root tabs in the tank in 4 months! I’m really hoping they bounce back now that I’ve put root tabs in. I’ve kept up with the easy green but it’s obviously not enough for the root feeders. 

Meanwhile... my 10 gal had become so overrun with water wisteria and green hair algae, I almost couldn’t decipher my heater thermostat under the shroud greenery. 

I guess the moral of my story is even though I have neglected my tanks, with a light stock of fish in both tanks I’ve discovered I was doing too many water changes. Snail poop is snail poop... and my fish and water parameters seem unaffected. I do feel badly about my plants and hope they can make a come back with some regular root tab feedings. I’ve also learned that water wisteria grows insanely fast and now I am considering putting some in place of the late pogostemon (RIP) and test the snails’ appetite to keep up with that fast growing plant.

Thanks for reading if you made it this far!

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