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 Post Posted: Sun Sep 04, 2022 11:37 pm 
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Thought someone might find this interesting. Dan's Fish, where I got my Pandas, draws there water from a nearby creek. This is how they have the potential to process 750 gallons per minute.

BTW, the building to the left at the beginning is my apartments.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5MtG9XaON2c

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2022 11:05 am 
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That's really interesting! I like how environmentally friendly they are in their setup.

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2022 7:57 pm 
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sboots wrote:
That's really interesting! I like how environmentally friendly they are in their setup.

Ya, they are pretty cool! What got me is that they are VERY picky as to what they are willing to sell. They actually have tanks with fish that don't meet their standards for selling. Dan, the owner, states that he may not feel right selling but will still give the fish a good home.

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2022 9:05 pm 
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Grrrr! I HATE suction cups that won't stay! In this case it is the cups for the tank heater but I DO have a solution. Normally one places a tank heater in a vertical position but I'm going to go horizontal using plastic wire ties to 'tie' the heater to the air risers (bubble tubes). Actually I think going horizontal with the heater makes more sense. Heat rises and, if the heater is vertical, it creates a narrow heat column. Water circulation rapidly disperses the heat through the tank but it would seem to me that having the heater horizontal would increase the width of the heat column increasing the efficiency of distribution. Doing this would also allow me to pretty much hide the heater behind the taller background plants. Anything wrong with my thinking?

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2022 10:06 pm 
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It sounds reasonable to me, but I have zero fish tank experience! And, yes, suction cups that let loose are a real pain!

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2022 11:50 pm 
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sboots wrote:
It sounds reasonable to me, but I have zero fish tank experience! And, yes, suction cups that let loose are a real pain!

Sadly suction cup failure is common with aquariums and is a pain to many. 30 years ago you had to pretty much pry a suction cup off a smooth surface. An other case of lost quality...

I may or may not have lost one of my Panda Garras; not exactly sure which would be better. Had four of the critters but have only seen three for a few days. There are pretty much two possibilities.
1) My rope fish is a predator and caught one. By the apparent interaction this is not a really high possibility.
2) The danged things got frisky and I'm going to have 100 of the things. The missing fish would be a female protecting the eggs.

I got four of the Pandas hoping that two would survive the rope fish. Watching the tank the rope just ignores the Pandas. I have seen them face to face and the rope shows zero interest as the Pandas are a bit large to fit the rope's mouth.

If I end up with a few hundred Pandas I hope the Rope is hungry. ;) Hey, I have no interest in breeding and free food is free food...

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 11:53 am 
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:rofl2:

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 5:46 pm 
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The following items should finish the tank; both are driftwood with one having a plant (Anubias) mounted. With fish like my Pandas one should have wood for them to gnaw on. Of course what I get won't look exactly like the images. I think they should both blend well with my tree trunk.

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 5:53 pm 
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I never knew that fish gnawed on wood!

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 6:28 pm 
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sboots wrote:
I never knew that fish gnawed on wood!

Yes, fish such as plecos, Garra and some corys will gnaw on wood for fiber. Also the wood will attract algae growth which is a staple food for my Panda Garras. Especially fish like Garras and plecos will do wood. Many others will also. Pretty much any fish that has a raspy type mouth.

The pieces I ordered are small with an average size of ~6 inches. Even though small pieces it would take many years for the fish to cause a need for replacement. The problem with wood is that it leeches tannin to the water which can cause a bit of a brown or green tint. After time the color tint will go away. You can prevent the tannin leeching by boiling the wood just like a tea bag. It is tannin in the tea that colors the water. Of course I can't do this with the piece with the plant so likely won't bother with the other but may to lessen the tannin coloration.

Here is what I mean by a fish with a raspy mouth. Many also call them suckers. Just about any fish you have seen in an aquarium that moves around on the glass, and other surfaces, using their mouth fits this group. LOL! Sometimes I think I know more about this stuff than I realize. :mrgreen:

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 9:44 pm 
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That's interesting stuff. I knew about the algae eating, but not actually going for the fiber in the form of wood scrapings.

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 Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2022 10:41 pm 
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sboots wrote:
That's interesting stuff. I knew about the algae eating, but not actually going for the fiber in the form of wood scrapings.

Here is some more interesting stuff... ;)

I picked up a container of thin earth worms to feed to my rope fish but they burrow into the gravel before the fish even has a clue they are there. I was worried that they might just rot and foul the tank but this seems to be not true as they can live a long time under water. Now I wonder if they just may be beneficial by 'stirring things up' and getting rid of garbage. :dunno:

I especially found this article of interest.
https://www.allaboutworms.com/earthworms-are-quite-happy-underwater

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 Post Posted: Sun Sep 11, 2022 2:33 pm 
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Missing Panda Garra seems to be back. No idea where it was for the last ~5 days but it is back now. Mayhaps it was playing hooky from 'school'... :mrgreen:

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 Post Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2022 6:38 pm 
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I got my 4 new foreground plants today and once again from wetplants.com they are pristine. I just have the two pieces of driftwood to go to finish the tank... at least until I change my mind on something. :mrgreen: The driftwood is scheduled to ship next week.

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 16, 2022 9:42 pm 
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While I LOVE the things I give up on trying to keep a Rope Fish in check! They should be called Houdini Fish! I hadn't seen my rope in almost two days. Just before the disappearance I had the hood open on the tank putting in some foreground plants. After that the stupid thing just was not there. I even tipped up my hollow tree trunk looking and the beast just was not in the tank.

Of course I figured he escaped while I was doing the plants when I was rinsing and not looking. So I'm tipping up my chair and couch looking for the thing along with laying on the floor looking under the table that holds the tank... No Rope Fish. It has to be somewhere! :dunno:

I just finally found the critter in the pump chamber for the built in sponge filter. When I was doing the plants the pest must have decided to check out the pump. The beastie is alive and well. :) Of course I had to break down the pump's outlet hose and pull the pump to get him but he is fine. In the future I will remove a LOT more water when working on things. Or I MAY just strangle the beastie. Hey, it has lungs; I could strangle. ;)

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 16, 2022 10:08 pm 
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:o

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 Post Posted: Fri Sep 16, 2022 10:28 pm 
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sboots wrote:
:o

Hey, like I said from the beginning, the critters are extreme escape artists. I'm just glad that the beastie ended up in the pump chamber instead of out of the tank. While they can live quite a while out of water it would have been too long.

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 Post Posted: Mon Sep 19, 2022 9:33 pm 
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Happy to say that the rope fish, Clyde, is getting acclimated. One of the main concerns is that you don't know what they are used to eating. For myself I have always used meal worms as the main protein. Clyde seems to have gotten used to the worms. Each evening I'll toss in 3-4 of the worms and Clyde now comes out of the tree trunk just about as soon as the worms sink to the gravel and chows down of a couple. The other two are gone by morning as he gets hungry again. Ropes are naturally nocturnal but can be 'trained' to be less so. At first Clyde pretty much ignored the worms but now seems quite happy with them. I also prefer to feed live food to a rope over using protein pellets. I give him the worms and I know what he is eating. If I use the pellets I don't actually know what is in the stuff.

I'm thinking about breeding the meal worms so I don't have to buy. They aren't expensive as a container will last 3-4 weeks and costs ~$5.50 but why pay when I can probably have for free. Just use the saw dust looking stuff they come in and mix with rolled oats and they will propagate quickly. I'll use a Tupperware type container with holes in the lid. The breeding can even be controlled which is necessary as they propagate quickly. If you start getting too much of a population just toss the container in the fridge. They will stay alive but go dormant preventing more breeding. Need to increase the population... just take the container out of the fridge and add a bit of moisture. LOL! Call it another science project... :mrgreen:

Another reason for breeding the worms is, if I ever find the Cichlids I want, they will also chow down on meal worms.

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 Post Posted: Mon Sep 19, 2022 10:08 pm 
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:-) Science!

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 Post Posted: Mon Sep 19, 2022 10:29 pm 
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sboots wrote:
:-) Science!

It really is Steve. Take ammonia which is not wanted in the water. Still there are different types. Say you do a test for ammonia and it shows .5 PPM. With the parameters in my tank the actually really bad stuff, NH3, is actually only .0004 PPM which isn't an issue. The rest is NH4 which is not nearly as bad. If I'm remembering right NH4 is actually ammonium, not ammonia.

But, at the same time, you have to have ammonia or the good bacteria has nothing on which to feed. Live plants help a lot with tank health but you have to have the good bacteria.

The goal is actually 0.0 ammonia and nitrites but .25-.50 PPM of nitrates. Nitrates are pretty much OK and feed plants. The only practical cause of nitrates is that the good bacteria has done its job. Without the nitrogen cycle working you won't normally get nitrates... Ammonia>nitrites>nitrates.

I don't know the modern equipment but I DO know the science. ;)

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2022 10:43 am 
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I think it's way cool. I hope that you didn't take my last one word reply as making fun of the idea -- I am impressed at what you know about the subject and enjoy reading about your progress.

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2022 5:31 pm 
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sboots wrote:
I think it's way cool. I hope that you didn't take my last one word reply as making fun of the idea -- I am impressed at what you know about the subject and enjoy reading about your progress.

Not at all.

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2022 5:58 pm 
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I love reading about your adventures with your tank, even though it's way over my head when it comes to the science of it all.

I've never seen the fish you have and know nothing about them so it's interesting to find out about them. :D

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 Post Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2022 6:36 pm 
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JoanA wrote:
I love reading about your adventures with your tank, even though it's way over my head when it comes to the science of it all.

I've never seen the fish you have and know nothing about them so it's interesting to find out about them. :D

Sigh, there is SO much 'science' involved. You are literally trying to duplicate nature.

For an example I would LOVE to setup a 'flow through' water change system but it is just not feasible in an apartment as you would need to run a water line to the tank and have a drain. To do a flow through on my 20 gallons I would need to setup a siphon drain on the tank with a valve restricting the output flow to ~6 gallons per hour with the output line low in the tank on one side. High in the tank, on the other side, would be an input line with a petcock type valve like the float valve in a toilet tank. Such would pretty effectively totally change out the tank water ~4 times a day sort of acting like a slow moving river. While this kind of system is closer to nature it just isn't going to happen in an apartment.

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