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Old 05-04-2005, 03:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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That is a good bulb to use although it has a pink hue to the lighting it gives off. I suggest the UltraSun instead. You ought to get another light strip or get a dual light strip for the tank. You'd do better to have 3 wpg of lighting. 3 wpg on a smaller tank is still low-tech because they require more lighting than larger tanks. For instance I have close to 10 wpg on my 5.5 gallon tank and that is still not insane.

To use the dual light strips get a glass top for you tank and just set them on top. Also get a timer for the outlet and set them to be on for about 10 hours a day. That way the lighting is consistent.

To start out with you only need Flourish Excell, Flourish Comprehensive, Flourish Potassium, and Flourish Nitrogen. Stay away from the Phosphorus for now. Dose them according to the instructions and you should have a good start. With a tank that small buying the ferts does not cost that much.
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Old 05-04-2005, 03:36 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jess7
Just got home. I keep getting more and more of this brown stuff on my gravel.. Could it be algea? Someone mentioned diatoms???
This is really making me want to switch things over...
But is it going to be as simple as:
1.) Take the fish out
2.) Take out old decorations and gravel
3.) Put in either Flourite or Eco-Complete (after rinsing flourite of course)
4.) Fill tank halfway (with new water?) and put in new plate and decorations.
5.) Let sit for a couple hours
6.) Return fish to their home
7.) Voila! Is it basically that simple?

Is my tank going to have to cycle again cuz that was a real pain!
The brown stuff is probably diatoms, and raising your light level can help that.

As for your switch over -
1. Take the fish out and put them in some of the tank water. I always line a bucket or trash can with a plastic bag, then poof it and close it up just like they do when they bag fish in the store.
2. When you take your old decorations and substrate out, put it in some tank water to keep it moist and retain your bacteria. Same goes for your filter media.
3. Yup, if it's Eco-Complete, you can just dump it in your tank. If it's flourite, you'll want to get that prepared before you start anything else. Here's a good link for step by step instructions - http://www.vickisaquaticplace.com/fluorite.html
This is partly why I prefer the Eco over the Flourite - it's much faster....
4. You can use new water as long as it's almost the same as for pH and hardness. There is no benefit to using the old water for bacteria purposes since it doesn't live in the water column, but on the other surfaces in the tank, and ornaments.
5 & 6. There is no reason to let it sit for a couple of hours. The faster you can get your fish and other things back in, the better. That way there's less worry about your bacteria dying off if it sits too long too. Just be sure to refill the tank with water of the same temp as the fish are in at the time, and dechlorinate it.
7. It's that simple.

If you follow the above steps and be careful not to scrub any surfaces and add your old ornaments and stuff back in, you won't have to worry a bit about a recycle.

BTW, good for you about being careful about overstocking, but you could easily add 3 or 4 more Oto's without being over loaded.

Good luck!
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Old 05-04-2005, 07:17 PM   #13 (permalink)
 
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That was a great article!
Do you know where to buy a dual flourescent light hood?
I really don't want to mess with cutting a glass cover or anything...
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Old 05-05-2005, 07:22 AM   #14 (permalink)
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You ought to be able to purchase a 10 gallon glass cover at just about any decent pet store that deals in aquariums. If you can't find a dual strip light just get another single one and rest two singles on top. For good online prices I like www.bigalsonline.com

So long as you start with a lot of plants in the tank cycling is not really an issue at all.
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Old 05-05-2005, 08:09 AM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Also was wondering if you guys could suggest some good low light plants, besides java fern and java moss?
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Old 05-05-2005, 10:30 AM   #16 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grandmasterofpool
To start out with you only need Flourish Excell, Flourish Comprehensive, Flourish Potassium, and Flourish Nitrogen. Stay away from the Phosphorus for now. Dose them according to the instructions and you should have a good start. With a tank that small buying the ferts does not cost that much.
I found them all but Flourish Comprehensive. Do you mean Iron?
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Old 05-05-2005, 04:16 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Jess, there is a Seachem Flourish & a Seachem flourish trace; I would use both. I would also get Seachem iron and Excel. IMO, these four will be all that you need in the beginning, later you can get others like Nitrogen, Phosphates, Potassium if they are needed.

Some low light plants Anubias, Hornwort, Crypts.



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Old 05-05-2005, 04:35 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jess7
Also was wondering if you guys could suggest some good low light plants, besides java fern and java moss?
Anubias, some Crypts, Giant Hygro, Hornwort, and maybe Stargrass are a few that come to mind.
Check out the "Plant Finder" https://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...der/index.php? and you can look up low or medium light plants and their requirements.

BTW, I can't remember if it's already been covered, but you can buy a glass canopy that's ready made for your size tank for less than $8 http://www.petsolutions.com/Perfecto...433160-I-.aspx
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Old 05-05-2005, 07:00 PM   #19 (permalink)
 
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Thanks guys...
I had ordered some Java Moss online and got it tonight and attached it to a rock
.
I also bought a Marineland hood with a 17W Flourescent bulb and a glass canopy AND TIMERS!!!.
Now I have a 15W and a 17W hood with standard bulbs.
Can I use a 15W bulb in a 17W hood?

I think I'm going to order the Zood Med Ultra Sun bulbs online like you suggested.
Have any of you guys ordered any bulbs made by Hagen like the Power-Glo or anything??

I'm going to order the plants, Eco-Complete, and the ferts and then I think I'm ready to go!!!

I can't wait!
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Old 05-05-2005, 07:48 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I'm going to warn you against using eco-complete. They have had issues lately with batches of it raising GH and KH significantly. Stick to SeaChem's Flourite, Onyx, or Red Sea's Flora Base. The Hagen bulbs are okay, but don't compare to the zoomeds. You can use a 15 w bulb in a 17 w hood just fine so long as it's the same size.

The Flourish Comprehensive is sometimes labeled as simply just Flourish.
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