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Never send someone to the LFS for you.


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So to save a little time because my work schedule changed this week. I asked my mother to stop by the fish store for my today to pick up a couple nerite snails to help control algae in the 10 gallon I keep for my nephew.  I get a text from her saying they're out of snails but had a betta she wanted and said I could call it her Christmas gift if I helped her set the tank up.  I thought that would be fine and told her to get it if thats what she wanted. She showed up at my house with a 5 gallon walmart tank kit, some gravel, some type of plant, the betta, and a clown pleco.

I asked her why she got the pleco and she told me the fish store employee said it was just as good as the snails. Then I asked why she brought the betta to me if we have to set it up at her house...the she dropped the "I don't have time to take care of it so I will keep it here and you can take care of it for me since you already have the stuff to do it".

Now I have a fish I didn't want and a tank I wasn't planning on having. I planned on my next tank being a 20 gallon for me, but apparently I'm the family fish keeper now. 

The heater she bought was a tetra 100w reptile heater for turtles because apparently all stores nearby were sold out of 5 gallon heaters and the Walmart guy told her it would work because it shuts off at  78F. I know it will work for now and have already ordered a proper heater. 

I'm a little frustrated over the whole situation, but at least the betta she dumped on me is a pretty one. Also anyone know what kind of plant this is? And what should I do with the clown pleco? I put im in the 10 gallon for now and will probably move it to my 20 when I get it.  Is there any special I should get for it?





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Definitely a sword, but not sure if it’s Echinodorus bleherii (Amazon sword) or another species.  There’s significant variability in color depending on growing conditions, but none of my E. bleherii show any sign of pink or red and I have them in several tanks with a variety of different light conditions.

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Definitely an Amazon sword, and they do like to spread out. You will probably want to get some kind of fertilizer like Easy Green or root tabs, as they often need more fertilizer than what you get just from fish poop. No offense to Gator, but I would recommend buying a solid chunk of driftwood or two rather than cholla wood, as you are going to want a large, solid surface to grow algae and biofilm on. Driftwood is better suited for this in my opinion, as cholla wood is often too small and doesn't have the right surface area. The good news is that your new pleco will max out at a size that would fit a 20 gallon and is probably small enough for your 10 right now, so that's sustainable with your current setup. You'll want to supplement the algae grazing it will do naturally with some kind of pleco food, especially if you are introducing it to a clean tank with no algae built up. You'll also want to give him somewhere to hide, so maybe get a little cave or arrange some rocks or something to create a sheltered area. Hang in there, and I hope you make the best of a frustrating situation.

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Outsourcing the trip to LFS ! The only reason I would do that would be to save money (if you don't see the fish you can't buy the fish) so this was a total fail.  You definitely picked the wrong assistant next time send Mum to do the grocery's and you have the LFS fun.

My preferred local LFS's are in garden centres that also have great cafes so I never let a chance to go slide.  

At least she turned up with a set up not just the fish.

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