| | Greetings from another California newbie
Hi! My name is Judy and this is my first post. I was referred to this website from a link I found during a Google search for how to deal with what I think may be "black algae" in a small bookcase aquarium. Music is much more my "bag" and passion than fish, but I must say, I really enjoy my time spent taking care of these "tenants."
My adult son bought this aquarium for me three or four years ago as a birthday present. It sits on the kitchen counter, next to the sink - where I can enjoy watching the activities of my housemates while doing the dishes. The tank started out with a small pleco and 5 orange and black platies. Except for three coolie loaches which I added to the tank about eight months ago, I've never bought any other fish for it. The pleco has gotten bigger and the platies were having so many fry, I ended up getting the coolie loaches in an attempt to keep a natural balance, and because I love to watch them swiggle and dance when they're not hiding somewhere. I still get fry - but not like before. I once counted 24 young platies in this 7 gal. tank! It was amazing to see these little slivers of fish coming out from plastic clumps of breeding grass during feeding time. After they got big enough to gift to friends and grandkids, I began thinking about the circle of life and my tolerance for the thought of some baby fry becoming coolie loach food. As the adult platies have learned how to guard the breeding grass when there are young fry in the tank, I don't feel quite so guilty by having the coolie loaches loitering around. The platies really seem to act as a family -and have never, ever shown agression to one another. I use API Stress Coat, Stresszyme, Aquarium Salt, and AmmoCarb as needed during water changes and filter maintenance. I would like to begin using real plants successfully. I feel bad when they go to a plastic leaf and take a nibble. If my little friends had a little music in them, I bet they'd be singing, "Ain't Nothin' Like the Real Thing, Baby!" And I'd agree with them! LOL