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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just checking in. I've been on another aquarium forum since the start of my hobby almost 1 year ago but figured i might get more specified info and pointers here.

Currently I have a 110g fully planted tank.


A 30g planted tank with cherry shrimp.


and a 2.5g planted tank with cherry shrimp.
 

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Hi PUNISHER VETTE,

Been there, seen that! You are going to a great school, my best friend graduated from U of I with an engineering degree. And you have a nice scape! Welcome to APC! Lots of great helpful people here that provide excellent advice and support. Between classes and homework let us know something about yourself and how you got started in planted tanks.
 

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Very nice.

Can you please share the plant list, fish list, substrate, filter and your water change frequency?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Very nice.

Can you please share the plant list, fish list, substrate, filter and your water change frequency?
Sure.

I've got some American Vals in the back, Some Hygrophila in the back corners, Amazon swords in the middle and right, Wendii in the front right and left and middle, frogbit as a floating plant, and chain swords as cover(still filling in). I don't know the name of the tall plant on the left.

Right now i've only got 2 dwart neon rainbows, 2 rummynose tetras, 9 neon tetras, and 3 rasboras.

I use a Fluval FX5 filter. I have 260w of Compact Florescent with and extra 50w of grow lights that i never use...but could if i needed. I use Seachem flourish black gravel substrate.

I was doing 50% water changes each week but had a horrible time with algae and brown diatoms. Stopped doing that and now it's probably 50% every 2-3weeks and things seem better that way. My city was has a pH of almost 8.3 and is hard so changing it is hard. They are also messing with the chlorine a lot that has killed fish when i didn't double or triple the dose of dechlorinators.

I used to use dry fertilizers and had a CO2 system running but gave all that up when i couldn't find a good balance. The plants ended up doing much better when i didn't try as hard. I sometimes add a fert tab or some flurish and iron for the swords but not often.
 

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The plant in the back left looks like Anacharis (Egeria Densa).

How's the algae situation now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The plant in the back left looks like Anacharis (Egeria Densa).

How's the algae situation now?
I have BBA starting to get out of control. I plan on taking the driftwood out and treating that separately as well as dosing the tank with hydrogen peroxide.

Other then that the brown diatoms have subsided, i have a little algae in the fast moving areas(another form of black algae i think?...)

And the usual algae on the glass red and green

I think without the diatoms the plants have a chance and seem to be growing better.
 

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You may want to think about algae eaters like otocinclus (6-8), Amano Shrimp (5 - 10), True Siamese Algae Eaters (3-5) or some Redtail Garras.

The SAEs do tend to eat some leaves sometimes.

Also, what is you lighting schedule?

Good Luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You may want to think about algae eaters like otocinclus (6-8), Amano Shrimp (5 - 10), True Siamese Algae Eaters (3-5) or some Redtail Garras.

The SAEs do tend to eat some leaves sometimes.

Also, what is you lighting schedule?

Good Luck.
I forgot to mention that. I used to have 3 otos and 3 Amano shrimp at one time but now i'm down to only 1 shrimp and 1 oto. I had some problems with oxygen that killed off some fish, then i think my CO2/fertilizing didn't help, the pH has always been high, and the chlorine here is super high which may have lead so a few fish dying. All in all my fish handling skills are poor.

Right now i have the lighting on for about 10ish hours a day.

I bought this tank and it came with the driftwood. No clue where the previous owner got it because it really is a super rare piece. I do know he was from PA but that still doesn't explain why the driftwood was there.
 

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What is the pH of the water in your area?

Are you using dechlorinators for the water everytime you change the water in the tank? If not, you should be using them. Chlorine or Chloramine will kill fish, especially the sensitive ones.

As for the lighting, I'd reduce it to about 8 hours to keep the algae away.

Start with the hardy fish and you can add the otos later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What is the pH of the water in your area?

Are you using dechlorinators for the water everytime you change the water in the tank? If not, you should be using them. Chlorine or Chloramine will kill fish, especially the sensitive ones.

As for the lighting, I'd reduce it to about 8 hours to keep the algae away.

Start with the hardy fish and you can add the otos later.
The pH out of the tap is around 8.3ish but also pretty hard so even if i wanted to change it it would be a challenge.

I use dechlorinators every time but i just found out the other day that the city was doing something weird not too long ago and the local fish club said i should be double or even tripling the doses which i wasn't doing.

As for algae eating fish what kind would suit my tank and its parameters best?
 

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I do not know what your water problems are but do not mess around with the pH. The pH is buffered up to a higher level on purpose so your pipes do not rot from acidity. Check your pH (if it is important to you) after the tank sits for at least a day. The only folk that I know who regularly alter the pH in a tank are the Discus breeders and African Cichlid types. If you have a need to alter pH it can very naturally be brought up or down by various means but only if you have some very overwhelming need to do so.

Pay attention to what is being recommended by the experts for altering pH. Altering pH is a quagmire that is best to avoid if you can.

Going with the natural charateristics of your water supply is best although it is a great attraction to husband a species or species of creature that is different in some way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Welcome to the board!

Your tanks look nice.
I was starting to get used to the fact that it was a great tank but now after browsing some of the tanks on here it looks like i've got a lot more work to do.

But that's probably a good thing as it'll keep me focused on the tank more.

I kinda wish i didn't sell my CO2 tank and regulator now. Although it didn't work out so well i'm thinking i can slowly get back into it and monitor the changes more closely then just dumping everything into the tank at once.
 

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There are two things to keep in mind.

1. Something you do not want to hear is more studying but that is the key. There is a wealth of information on the NET but you have to read it but keep in mind that all of the info is not good so get a lot of corroboration to anything. Just about the time you think you know something dead on someone will chime in with, probably legitimate, experience that goes against normal reason. This may be due to different fish or conditions or just plain untrue, so be careful.

2. Your tanks are very nice. The gorgeous tanks that you are most likely comparing to are only that way for a quick photo and no longer and this after a lot of work to get there. For most of us this is too much trouble and if you are concerned with reproduction appearance is not a great concern.
 

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Welcome to APC :pop2:... Your tanks look nice & healty!
 

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You stumped me there. I have no experience with water pH of 8.3. Mine has always been around 7.

As for the Algae Eaters, American Flag Fish should do well with your pH. The rest of them do well for up to pH of 7.5 or so. Also, get some Red Cherry Shrimp and try them in your tank.

Good Luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
You stumped me there. I have no experience with water pH of 8.3. Mine has always been around 7.

As for the Algae Eaters, American Flag Fish should do well with your pH. The rest of them do well for up to pH of 7.5 or so. Also, get some Red Cherry Shrimp and try them in your tank.

Good Luck.
I have tons of cherry shrimp lol. Bought 100 at one time for my 30g and have slowly been transferring them too the 110g over the past few months. Then they also started to have babies in the 110g so there are quite a few.

I'm not too sure they do anything but they at least are really neat.

I think for fish i'll stay away from tetra's from now on and try more neon rainbowfish as they have done well and i think can stand my pH.
 

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They are part of the lowest in the cleanup crew. They do cleanup anything that's left in the bottom that the other fish missed. They also love the blanched zucchini, spinach and brussel sprouts that I leave for the otos.
 
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