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Hello! 
 

My name is Nanci Byers and I currently live in Ogden, Utah. I started in the hobby in 2012 and had a wonderful 55 gallon community tank with smaller peaceful fish so I could enjoy their behaviors. Lots of plants and growth and I really enjoyed it  

2 years later I had a lot of different types of algae and one morning woke to one of my beloved dwarf chain loaches dead and being eaten by an Amano shrimp. I was devastated and broke down the tank. 
 

I got back into the hobby in 2018 with a 40 breeder and loved the aqua scape I started but was too impatient to add fish to the tank and lost most of my fish. I felt so bad that I broke down the tank and sold off the remaining fish and equipment. 
 

As a regular outdoor gardener I live for the growing months, but have issues during the winter. So earlier this year decided once again to venture into the hobby starting smaller. 
 

I started a 20 long in mid February and even though I have had some success in the hobby, still asked for a lot of advice from my local club’s FB group. Everyone is very nice and great about answering questions. 
 

I discovered Rachael O’Leary’s YouTube channel years ago, but just discovered Cory’s Aquarium Co-Op channel and love his content. He doesn’t talk down to people, but still explains scientific principles in an easy to understand format. 

So here I am. Started using sponge filters for the first time. In my 55 I liked allowing the back and sides to develop algae for the biofilm. I am a lasessie-faire type of gardener and take the same approach to aquascaping. So Cory’s approach works very well with my goals. My goal has been to keep nano fish species in larger groups. 

I have lots of questions and look forward to getting to know everyone. I don’t post very often and still feel like a rank beginner. So I probably have lots more questions than answers. But I will share what knowledge I can in the community. 
 

Cheers, 

 

Nanci

 

” Seek Beauty Every Day”
 

 

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5 hours ago, Nanci B said:

Hello! 
 

My name is Nanci Byers and I currently live in Ogden, Utah. I started in the hobby in 2012 and had a wonderful 55 gallon community tank with smaller peaceful fish so I could enjoy their behaviors. Lots of plants and growth and I really enjoyed it  

2 years later I had a lot of different types of algae and one morning woke to one of my beloved dwarf chain loaches dead and being eaten by an Amano shrimp. I was devastated and broke down the tank. 
 

I got back into the hobby in 2018 with a 40 breeder and loved the aqua scape I started but was too impatient to add fish to the tank and lost most of my fish. I felt so bad that I broke down the tank and sold off the remaining fish and equipment. 
 

As a regular outdoor gardener I live for the growing months, but have issues during the winter. So earlier this year decided once again to venture into the hobby starting smaller. 
 

I started a 20 long in mid February and even though I have had some success in the hobby, still asked for a lot of advice from my local club’s FB group. Everyone is very nice and great about answering questions. 
 

I discovered Rachael O’Leary’s YouTube channel years ago, but just discovered Cory’s Aquarium Co-Op channel and love his content. He doesn’t talk down to people, but still explains scientific principles in an easy to understand format. 

So here I am. Started using sponge filters for the first time. In my 55 I liked allowing the back and sides to develop algae for the biofilm. I am a lasessie-faire type of gardener and take the same approach to aquascaping. So Cory’s approach works very well with my goals. My goal has been to keep nano fish species in larger groups. 

I have lots of questions and look forward to getting to know everyone. I don’t post very often and still feel like a rank beginner. So I probably have lots more questions than answers. But I will share what knowledge I can in the community. 
 

Cheers, 

 

Nanci

 

” Seek Beauty Every Day”
 

 

Welcome aboard, Nanci! Thanks for sharing part of your journey with us. Cory and the CoOp team really occupy a vital space in this hobby. I’m also encouraged to hear that you had some  positive experiences on your fish club’s Facebook site. There are many tales of drama others report online.

It is so helpful to be part of a community of aquarists who have “been there / done that” before on almost every front.

As you describe your love for gardening, live plants, and beautiful aquascaping, I’m curious if you’ve ever come across either of these books before...

 

311367E9-246B-45F4-BF3B-EA89BFD64858.jpeg

E49A0B6E-70D3-47AA-B059-7120282829AC.jpeg

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10 hours ago, Nanci B said:

Hello! 
 

My name is Nanci Byers and I currently live in Ogden, Utah. I started in the hobby in 2012 and had a wonderful 55 gallon community tank with smaller peaceful fish so I could enjoy their behaviors. Lots of plants and growth and I really enjoyed it  

2 years later I had a lot of different types of algae and one morning woke to one of my beloved dwarf chain loaches dead and being eaten by an Amano shrimp. I was devastated and broke down the tank. 
 

I got back into the hobby in 2018 with a 40 breeder and loved the aqua scape I started but was too impatient to add fish to the tank and lost most of my fish. I felt so bad that I broke down the tank and sold off the remaining fish and equipment. 
 

As a regular outdoor gardener I live for the growing months, but have issues during the winter. So earlier this year decided once again to venture into the hobby starting smaller. 
 

I started a 20 long in mid February and even though I have had some success in the hobby, still asked for a lot of advice from my local club’s FB group. Everyone is very nice and great about answering questions. 
 

I discovered Rachael O’Leary’s YouTube channel years ago, but just discovered Cory’s Aquarium Co-Op channel and love his content. He doesn’t talk down to people, but still explains scientific principles in an easy to understand format. 

So here I am. Started using sponge filters for the first time. In my 55 I liked allowing the back and sides to develop algae for the biofilm. I am a lasessie-faire type of gardener and take the same approach to aquascaping. So Cory’s approach works very well with my goals. My goal has been to keep nano fish species in larger groups. 

I have lots of questions and look forward to getting to know everyone. I don’t post very often and still feel like a rank beginner. So I probably have lots more questions than answers. But I will share what knowledge I can in the community. 
 

Cheers, 

 

Nanci

 

” Seek Beauty Every Day”
 

 

Welcome to the forum! Don't get too discouraged by mistakes you make in the hobby. Everyone makes them. They are part of the learning process! I look forward to seeing how your experiences in the hobby progress!

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On 5/31/2021 at 9:43 PM, Nirvanaquatics said:

Dirted tanks are plant crack, that’s definitely true, however I highly recommend doing 2 things:

1. Use organic worm castings instead of soil. It’s finer, has less raw organic matter, and has a higher iron content. Worm castings also have the benefit of being less “hot” (lower ammonia content) so you have less risk of ammonia spikes. It takes a bit longer to really make a difference in some plants, but the results are just as impressive as regular soil. 

2. Use a barrier between the soil and your cap. plastic craft mesh works, but I actually recommend using egg crate to contain it. It’s cheap and you can cut it to size really easily with a pair or wire clippers. If you want a thicker soil layer, you can simply stack two layers and it’s still pretty cheap. You can see an example of my use of egg crate with nutrient-rich soil here on my blog. I used a special soil mixture with red clay, but I’m still experimenting with it, so I can’t recommend it until I know for sure that it works well. 

Pretty much everyone who has ever done a dirted tank has said that it does wonders for plants, but always complains about 2 things: ammonia spikes and the mess when the dirt gets disturbed. In my experience, the worm castings and barrier nearly eliminate those problems. I’ve had great success with it so far, and it should last about as long as an aquasoil would. You can always amend it with root tabs to extend the life of it, but if you use a coarser sand or gravel to cap it, detritus from fish waste will most likely make its way down there and act as fertilizer. 

If you’re nervous about it, you can always try it out in a small tank before you take it on to a larger scale, but I will tell you, after having a dirted pond and a few dirted tanks, I’ll never go back to anything else. 

 

 

On 6/1/2021 at 9:21 AM, lefty o said:

welcome to the forum.

 

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On 6/1/2021 at 4:55 AM, Fish Folk said:

Welcome aboard, Nanci! Thanks for sharing part of your journey with us. Cory and the CoOp team really occupy a vital space in this hobby. I’m also encouraged to hear that you had some  positive experiences on your fish club’s Facebook site. There are many tales of drama others report online.

It is so helpful to be part of a community of aquarists who have “been there / done that” before on almost every front.

As you describe your love for gardening, live plants, and beautiful aquascaping, I’m curious if you’ve ever come across either of these books before...

 

311367E9-246B-45F4-BF3B-EA89BFD64858.jpeg

E49A0B6E-70D3-47AA-B059-7120282829AC.jpeg

Thanks for the welcome. Yes I own and have read both books. For aquascapers, they have some great ideas, but most of the tanks shown are high light, hi-tech and CO2 tanks. So besides beautiful pictures not much for me to replicate. Inspire yes, but too much to do to get that perfect look. I have also read part of Diana Walstad’s Ecology of the Planted Tank. It’s hard science and I am a wannabe scientist. 
Anyway, with my terrestrial gardens, long ago I came to the conclusion that nature is messy and not perfect. I had not come across Cory and his theories about algae and plant growth in growing a seasoned tank, but it makes total sense. 
I would definitely recommend that folks take a look at the books, Aquascaping in particular, as it does have some builds in it, 6 if I am remembering correctly, but no index, which to me is a major flaw. 
 

Anyway thanks for the warm welcome! 
 

“Seek Beauty Every Day”
 

 

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23 hours ago, AnimalNerd98 said:

Hi to Ken as well! It’s nice to see some fellow Utahns on here, I live in Orem/Provo area! 

Hi neighbor, do you ever feel sorry for the people on here that don't have a good LFS? I can think of 6 I can drive to in a half an hour, not counting the 3 Pet-something big box stores. If you're ever in AF buy some Cherry Shrimp at Animal Ark, I happen to know that get them from a swell guy.😉

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41 minutes ago, Ken said:

Hi neighbor, do you ever feel sorry for the people on here that don't have a good LFS? I can think of 6 I can drive to in a half an hour, not counting the 3 Pet-something big box stores. If you're ever in AF buy some Cherry Shrimp at Animal Ark, I happen to know that get them from a swell guy.😉

Haha, that is awesome! I actually get tons of my fish from there, the most recent ones being some pygmy corydoras. Sadly, I already have a nice colony of cherry shrimp going, but if I ever need to add some new bloodlines in, I will definitely get them from there! I also like going to Fish4U in Murray whenever I get the chance. Which are your favorite stores? 

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I've bought fish at Fish4U also, I thought they were kind of expensive. I've bought fish at Jay's Jungle, he has limited stock but it is always really good. Go see The Waterfront in Midvale it's nice store and they carry Extreme Foods, @Guppy Guru and @Wel-Don Tanks own and operate it. Most of my fish have come from Animal Ark in AF, she will bring in whatever I ask for and I think she's a neat lady.

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On 6/6/2021 at 11:46 PM, Ken said:

I've bought fish at Fish4U also, I thought they were kind of expensive. I've bought fish at Jay's Jungle, he has limited stock but it is always really good. Go see The Waterfront in Midvale it's nice store and they carry Extreme Foods, @Guppy Guru and @Wel-Don Tanks own and operate it. Most of my fish have come from Animal Ark in AF, she will bring in whatever I ask for and I think she's a neat lady.

I have also bought fish and shrimp from Jay's Jungle, but I haven't got anything aquatic related from them in a while. I am going to have to ask them at AF if they could order some Scarlet Badis. Thanks for the recommendation on the Waterfront! I have never been and will definitely visit when I get the chance. 

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