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What silly mistakes have you made?


Kat_Rigel
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You guys, I'm so silly (not willing to say I'm an idiot quite yet lol) I was previously freaking out because my bamboo shrimp were not filtering and I couldn't figure out why. I looked at everything I had recently changes and just couldn't find the problem. I started overfeeding in an effort to entice them to filter, but it wasn't working. I asked for help online in various forums and of course folks said, "well, do you have good flow going in there?" And I immediately wrote it off because "Duh! I didn't change anything with the filter orr flow, the can't be it!"

Whelp I was doing some tank maintenance today and I looked at my HOB and thought... gee, that seems a lot slower than it should be. I messed with it a bit and I would say it had been at like 10% of maximum (which is what I usually use.) What a silly oversight! I had even been thinking, "Man, my hornwort is really accumulating a lot of dirt and mulm, how irritating." Duh, because the filter was running slow for some reason! 

Just goes to show you that the simplest things can be the biggest issue. The simple things you ASSUME are fine. Hopefully the shrimp will be happily filtering soon. I love when the answer to a problem makes so much senss.

Anyone else have a silly oversight to share?

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Whether we are willing to admit it or not, we all make mistakes.  New and old fish-keepers alike.

I remember my first aquarium ( I didn't know what I was doing at all ).  Purchased the water conditioners, bacteria supplements and just started adding the chemicals.  Luckily, didn't have any fish in the tank yet and was 'trying' to grow beneficial bacteria, very quickly,  without an ammonia source.

The different types of bacteria take some time to develop, but I thought it was an instant thing and wanted to add a ton of fish, right away.

Needless to say, after watching @Cory videos on the Nitrogen Cycle (the one with the yellow, blue & brown M&M candy), it gave me a good understanding of what I was doing wrong & the proper principles involved in the nitrification process. 

Being a somewhat new fish-keeper, myself, I have learned much from many, especially just in the C.A.R.E forum alone.

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I'd be willing to bet most of us that use a Python or hose to fill our tanks have done it.  DON'T EVER WALK AWAY when filling your tank, LOL. The hose WILL fall out (I should invest in the hook Python makes) or you WILL forget how close to the top the water is. SMH, I hate to admit it, but I've done it more than once. Now I put a chair in front of the tank I'm filling and sit there until it's done.

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I was recently doing a water change on my son's 29 gallon and wasn't watching the bucket while I messed with some plants that had come up while gravel-vacuuming.  Then as it started to overflow, I over reacted and moved too quickly.  The next thing you know the bucket hits the ground the hose is still siphoning water from the tank and my son is finding out that his mom has a colorful vocabulary.

My only saving grace was the fact that the 5-gallon bucket landed bottom down.  So the water just splashed over the edge.   Instead of 5 gallons plus overflow, I only ended cleaning about 2 gallons of water out of the carpet.

The silver lining here is that it made me appreciate my python even more.  And I'm definitely going to look into extending my python hose like @Daniel suggested.

 

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When I do a "just" a water change, I use a pond pump to pump water out of the tank and into the sink.  I then just reverse it to fill the tank back up.  But when I do a gravel vac, I put the pump in a 5 gallon bucket and put the siphon hose into the 5 gallon bucket.  Well today after getting everything set up, I forgot to put the end of siphon nose into the 5 gallon bucket, it was on the floor.  Oops!  LOL

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18 hours ago, StephenP2003 said:

Just yesterday I left the aquaclear 30 on my son's tank running dry for over 24 hours. Miraculously the motor still works! 

Aquaclears are amazing, I've had the same experience. I just wish they would self prime if the power goes out. I use them on all my tanks except my 40 gal. breeder which has a canister filter. I put a sponge filter on my 20L so I don't have to worry about my white cloud fry from being sucked up and I like the ease of that also.

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On 8/25/2020 at 9:08 AM, Irene said:

I often forget to plug back in my heater after a water change, but thankfully it takes a long time for the tank water to change temperatures. 😅

My silliest mistake is the opposite of yours. I used to forget to unplug the heater before a water change. Probably broke half a dozen that way until I finally had one explode in my face as I began adding water back in. 

Nowadays, I have them and any other equipment that should be off during water changes on cut off switches... and I also have a small notch in my eyebrow to remind me to use them.

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For me, it’s forgetting that dry spider wood loves to float and ruin your scapes! Luckily, I remembered in time before the water got too high. I didn’t have any rocks big enough to weight it down since I just smashed them to make smaller rocks so I trimmed a piece of PEX tubing that I had and wedged it in-between the wood and the shelf that my Stingrays are attached to. Works pretty well.93515AED-8759-403D-8ACF-866783F5B11B.jpeg.e75c2fd2a134d507b546c7f1b8545c7c.jpeg

Edited by Ryan W
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So that just happened...

I always have a fine mesh on my siphon hose, except I was recently fully cleaning out the empty QT and forgot to put the mesh back on. I JUST went to do a water change on the betta tank, and glanced away for a split second while struggling to get the end of the hose to stay in the dang bucket.

Betta went on the waterslide ride of his life.😥

I felt horrible, even though he came out of hiding for treats almost immediately, and seems ok despite a small amount of damage to his tail. 

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22 hours ago, Brandy said:

So that just happened...

I always have a fine mesh on my siphon hose, except I was recently fully cleaning out the empty QT and forgot to put the mesh back on. I JUST went to do a water change on the betta tank, and glanced away for a split second while struggling to get the end of the hose to stay in the dang bucket.

Betta went on the waterslide ride of his life.😥

I felt horrible, even though he came out of hiding for treats almost immediately, and seems ok despite a small amount of damage to his tail. 

I did the same thing to a pea puffer one time. He came through it just fine.

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I've done a couple silly things. I went to clean the glass tops on all my tanks and didn't have a spare table to lay them on while I cleaned them and promptly stepped on the glass and snapped it. I've done it at least twice. After the second time I bought a folding card table just so I'd have something to take from one room to the next so as  to keep them up off the floor. Duh.

Also several months ago I pulled out a half a forest of Crypts in my 75g without replacing it with anything else. About the same time I upgraded my light to a Fluval 3.0 and promptly had hair algae everywhere. Took me a month to realize what I'd done. I still have a bit but it's on  the down slope. Now I do everything is slow increments.

Edited by Robin
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Today I noticed the flow from my in tank pump was choked way back. I figured the intake foam at the impeller was gummed up. I unscrewed the outlet and cleaned it out with a straw brush then pulled the pump and outlet tube up to clean the impeller etc. Everything was pretty gross but cleaned up nice. Reinstalled the pump and hooked everything up but never thought to pull the outlet tube off and clean it. When I plugged the pump in a cloud of mulm and crud from inside the tube flew all over the tank😵. My shrimp had a field day😅! Luckily because I had just restored the flow it all cleared up fast

Edited by Travis
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Doing a water change 2 weeks ago. Instead of hooking the python to the sink I always put it in the shower. Got it going and normally check to make sure waters coming out. Didn’t check this time. Luckily I went into the bathroom 5 minutes later and quickly realized the end was not in the shower. Could have been a lot worse but now I check it constantly. Even if I close the shower door on it to hold it in place.  

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I forgot to plug mt heater back in once. I noticed something was off Wednesday night. I stuck my hand in to pull out some dead plant material and realized the water was ice cold. I panicked and thought my heater had broken. I ran to my computer to order another one for pick up the next day and saw the unplugged cord. I plugged it in and what do you know. The heater turned on. I lost a few fish from that. My heater had been unplugged since my water change the previous Sunday. My tank is in thr basement. 

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I started my first planted tank with black sand over soil. At some point, I thought it would be cool to have some white sand under the Mopani wood. After a few weeks, I had checkerboard sand. I removed some of it, and added small river gravel as a new cap, but the sand still gets stirred up occasionally to remind me of what not-to-do.

Edited by Streetwise
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1 hour ago, Streetwise said:

I started my first planted tank with black sand over soil. At some point, I thought it would be cool to have some white sand under the Mopani wood. After a few weeks, I had checkerboard sand. I removed some of it, and added small river gravel as a new cap, but the sand still gets stirred up occasionally to remind me of what not-to-do.

it is amazing how that stuff migrates isn't it?! I made an un-planted white sand "beach" in one corner of one tank. I watched the eco-complete trickle down slope into it, which I expected, and then watched the sand magically become shifted all over the tank, where it settles under the substrate against the glass in little drifts...

Snails. I have watched them leave little snowy sand deposits as they move around the tank. I did not expect that at all. 😆

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Put 2 heaters in my 125 g as an 'insurance policy' to make sure I never totally lost heat, but then stopped thinking about it from that point forward. Fast forward several months and I noticed my fish were acting very lethargic. Eventually figured out that my tank that was previously set around 76-78 had dropped to I think 63 F. Amazingly I don't think I lost any fish to it, but I have no idea how long they were sitting in there doing nothing. The replacement heaters have digital temperature displays, a light to show when they're on, and I now actually check the temp on occasion instead of being an overconfident dumb dumb.

Another one of mine is more just ignorance. I'd never heard of pre-filter sponges at the time and my BN plecos had babies. I kept getting confused when I'd see a pleco hanging on the water outlet for my HOB, then later saw one inside the intake tube. While rescuing that one, I found a whole mess of them living inside my filter.

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