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Re: [Freshwater Aquariums] Re: New member intro and questions

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  • Patrick A. Timlin
    I don t think Paula was saying they ARE stunted now, but that goldfish kept in smaller than ideal tanks will have stunted growth in the long run. Unfortunately
    Message 1 of 17 , Jun 29, 2008
      I don't think Paula was saying they ARE stunted now, but that goldfish kept in smaller than ideal tanks will have stunted growth in the long run.

      Unfortunately neither of your tanks are suited for goldfish. My general advice for goldfish is a minimum of 20 gallons for a single goldfish and then at least ten gallons more per goldfish. So two goldfish should have at minimum a 30 gallon-long (not a 29-gallon high) tank. And that is if you are talking about fancy breeds or common Shubunkin goldfish. For Comets, those are truly pond fish (as are Koi) and do not really do well in any sized tank.

      If you truly like the goldfish, I think you could keep them in the ten gallon for a little while if you were willing to upgrade to a larger tank (30+ gallons) later.

      As to your hex tank. It is about 18 gallons. But hex tanks are tall tanks with out a lot of surface area which limits the amount of gas exchange at the water's surface. Surface area is really the factor that determines how many fish you can put in a tank, not total gallons. Because you can only put as many fish in there to the point where the fish use up of the oxygen in the water faster than it can dissolve in (gasping fish at the surface). In the case of your hex tank, while about 18 gallons, the surface area is only about 177 square inches. Compare that to your 10 gallon which is a 10x20 inch tank and has 200 square inches of surface area. So as you can see, your 18 gallon hex has LESS stocking capacity than your 10 gallon. So be careful.

      As to fish choice, we could suggest a million different small great fish. Unfortunately we do not know what you local stores carry. So instead you might visit your stores and keep a list of fish you liked and report back and we can then give you our opinion of those choices.

      Patrick Timlin

      http://www.geocities.com/ptimlin/




















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    • blue_lkb
      Hi Patrick, ... goldfish kept in smaller than ideal tanks will have stunted growth in the long run. Ahh, ok, I guess I misunderstood that. Gotcha. We will
      Message 2 of 17 , Jul 7, 2008
        Hi Patrick,


        > I don't think Paula was saying they ARE stunted now, but that
        goldfish kept in smaller than ideal tanks will have stunted growth in
        the long run.

        Ahh, ok, I guess I misunderstood that. Gotcha. We will definitely be
        looking to find them a new home, since it sounds like they aren't
        going to work for our situation (I know, we should have checked it
        out before buying them). They are, I believe, comet goldfish...if
        those are the ones I'm thinking of. I know I was online one day
        trying to find out which type they were.

        > As to your hex tank. It is about 18 gallons.

        Oh, bummer, I thought (was hoping!) it was larger. Okay, so hex tanks
        aren't the way to go if we want very many fish. How many do you think
        would be okay in this one?

        > So as you can see, your 18 gallon hex has LESS stocking capacity
        >than your 10 gallon. So be careful.

        Ooh..we'll be careful about what/how many we get!

        > As to fish choice, we could suggest a million different small great
        fish. Unfortunately we do not know what you local stores carry. So
        instead you might visit your stores and keep a list of fish you liked
        and report back and we can then give you our opinion of those choices.

        From what I saw in the stores and online, my favorites are bettas,
        ghost shrimp (I think they're kinda neat), dwarf gouramis and cherry
        barbs, I think. I can't remember what the details on the cherry barbs
        were - like, if they are compatible with bettas, etc. My husband
        likes the algae eaters, so I thought maybe an otto cat (I think those
        are the ones, someone else mentioned, that don't get so large?). Any
        suggestions on these fish and how many would be appropriate for our
        tanks (10 gal. rectangular and 18 gal. hexagonal) would be awesome.

        Best regards,

        Laura

        P.S. Sorry it takes me so long to respond; I'm working every day and
        don't have internet at home, so have only been checking email when I
        get time. I do appreciate and read all the suggestions and info,
        though!
      • Patrick A. Timlin
        ... Ya, comet goldfish are really pond fish as they will easily hit a foot in length and even in a smaller tank can quickly get to 8-inches. So small tanks are
        Message 3 of 17 , Jul 10, 2008
          --- On Mon, 7/7/08, blue_lkb <blue_lkb@...> wrote:
          > We will definitely be looking to find them [goldfish] a new home,
          > since it sounds like they aren't going to work for our situation
          > (I know, we should have checked it out before buying them). They
          > are, I believe, comet goldfish...

          Ya, comet goldfish are really pond fish as they will easily hit a foot in length and even in a smaller tank can quickly get to 8-inches. So small tanks are not great choices for these type of fish. It is too bad since goldfish are cool fish with personality, but often they are kept in too small quarters, with a lot of people trying to do the old "fish bowl" setup with short lived results.


          > Oh, bummer, I thought (was hoping!) it was larger. Okay, so hex
          > tanks aren't the way to go if we want very many fish. How many
          > do you think would be okay in this one?

          Hex tanks do have their advantages depending on what one might want to keep in them. For example, some of the long grass like aquatic plants can get very long and usually go up and across the water surface on normal rectangular tanks. These plants are great for hex tanks.

          They also are good for creating paladarium type tanks (half water & half land/air) with a little water fall and that sort of thing. Also they often make good terrarium tanks for frogs, salamanders, and that sort of thing.

          Anyway, besides the smaller surface area of a hex tank, the other thing to keep in mind is there is little side to side swimming space, so you want to pick fish that are not manic swimmers back and forth (such as Danios) and try to pick fish that either spend more time hovering/coating or tend to move up and down (say small cichlids that live in communities in rock walls).

          I think Cherry barbs, that you meantioned liking, would be a good choice as they are small and one of the few barbs that really don't need large schools as they actually seem to be a bit solitary. A male and a couple females would be plenty and would fit nicely into the hex. Ghost shrimps, another you mentioned, also would work well in such a tank. They are cheap, so buy a ton of them (say a dozen+). Some larger fish may eat ghost shrimp, but cherry barbs would probably leave them alone. Otto cats, yet again something you meantioned, would also work well as they stay small.

          The thing about otto cats is they tend to be sensative to changing conditions and may not be in the best shape when you get them. These fish are wild caught so they sometimes are a little travel worn when you get them. My own experience with them is that you can buy a bunch of them, say 3-6 and within a week or two, lose 1/3 or half of those. But then the ones that settle in nicely tend to be very hardy in my tanks and go for many years. The only thing is, I would wait until the tank has been set up and running for a while (month+) and actually has some algae grown before getting ottos. They really do best if introduced into a mature tank and a new tank will offer little for them to graze.

          So assuming you set that hex up for those three, shrimp, Cherry barbs, and Ottos, because all are small and clean little guys, I personally would have no issues throwing in a trio of Cherry barbs, let the tank run in for a couple weeka and cycle. Then when you are sure ammonia and nitrite levels are at zero, throw in a dozen ghost shrimp. See how that goes for about a month or until algae starts to appear and then try adding 4-5 otto cats with the assumption that you may lose a couple in the early weeks.

          Change a couple of gallons of water on a weekly basis and you should be in great shape with that tank.


          For the regular ten gallon tank, you could go with the same sort of stocking levels, say 10 or less small (under 2") fish or maybe something closer to a half dozen to eight slightly larger (~2 to 2.5") fish. Again change a couple gallons on a weekly basis and you shouldn't have any problems. I consider those stocking levels to be about normal to maybe slightly light if you stick with really small fish. This is the kind of stocking level where if you go on vacation for two weeks, leave the fish untended/unfed and your filter broke the day after you left, you would likely come home to find them all happily swimming around and ready to be fed.

          Patrick
        • blue_lkb
          Hi Patrick, Would bettas work in my hex tank? Would they (well, they as in a couple of females *or* a single male) do ok with some of the other fish you
          Message 4 of 17 , Jul 14, 2008
            Hi Patrick,

            Would bettas work in my hex tank? Would they (well, they as in a couple
            of females *or* a single male) do ok with some of the other fish you
            mentioned? I really like bettas, so would love to have at least one in
            one of the tanks, if possible.

            Thanks for the suggestions! It really helps to have someone more
            knowledgeable with fish suggesting different types and how many, etc.

            Best regards,

            Laura
          • pam andress
            I have bettas in most of my tanks. Both my 55 gal tanks have a male. My 15 gal has 4 females and when not trying to get them to breed, My other tanks also have
            Message 5 of 17 , Jul 14, 2008
              I have bettas in most of my tanks. Both my 55 gal tanks have a male. My 15 gal has 4 females and when not trying to get them to breed, My other tanks also have a male in them. They do fine with my fish, but do like the tanks that don't have much movement (water) and have places to hide (plants).

              Pam



              To: freshwateraquariums@yahoogroups.comFrom: blue_lkb@...: Mon, 14 Jul 2008 22:41:24 +0000Subject: Re: [Freshwater Aquariums] New member intro and questions




              Hi Patrick,Would bettas work in my hex tank? Would they (well, they as in a couple of females *or* a single male) do ok with some of the other fish you mentioned? I really like bettas, so would love to have at least one in one of the tanks, if possible. Thanks for the suggestions! It really helps to have someone more knowledgeable with fish suggesting different types and how many, etc. Best regards,Laura






              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Patrick A. Timlin
              Hi Laura, As Pam already mentioned, bettas, mainly the males, do not like much water movement. This is especially true for the males because they have to drag
              Message 6 of 17 , Jul 15, 2008
                Hi Laura,

                As Pam already mentioned, bettas, mainly the males, do not like much water movement. This is especially true for the males because they have to drag those long fins around and if you are constantly fighting water current dragging against long flowing fins, it can be very tiring and not healthy in the long run. Think of taking a couple beach towels, attaching them to yourself like a cape and then going for a swim.

                The other problem with males in a hex is that because they do not swim around a ton, they often spend a fair amount of time resting. Either on the bottom or if you have plants, they will wedge themselves in a plant up near the surface. It is a long swim from the bottom of a hex for a male betta to get a gulp of air.

                This is not to say a male betta won't work in your hex, but these are things to keep an eye out for. You can always try it and if you find your betta has trouble with the other fish or seems not to do well in that tank, you can always remove him and put him in his own one-gallon tank, pickle jar, large plastic box, or any other roughly 1-gallon or larger container.

                Females, because they have short fins, tend to do a bit better in normal tanks. Also in nature, male bettas tend to stay put guarding a nesting area while the female are the ones who travel about, mate, then get chased away. So they tend to also be a bit more suited to swimming around larger areas.

                Patrick Timlin
                http://www.geocities.com/ptimlin/

                --- On Mon, 7/14/08, blue_lkb <blue_lkb@...> wrote:
                > Would bettas work in my hex tank? Would they (well, they as in a
                > couple of females *or* a single male) do ok with some of the other
                > fish you mentioned? I really like bettas, so would love to have at
                > least one in one of the tanks, if possible.
                 

                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • blue_lkb
                Hey all, Have been getting tired of looking at my oh-so-fake plastic plants and been thinking more about adding some live plants (ok, I admit, I went and
                Message 7 of 17 , Aug 13, 2008
                  Hey all,

                  Have been getting tired of looking at my oh-so-fake plastic plants
                  and been thinking more about adding some live plants (ok, I admit, I
                  went and bought a java fern to put in my 55 gal...and I hope that
                  sucker grows, because it's really small right now!).

                  What other plants would be good for a beginner? I saw Patrick's post
                  on the hornwort and other plant that are good floating plants. Also,
                  I was reading back through old messages and saw where it was
                  mentioned that hex tanks are great for some types of plants that grow
                  really tall. Are there any that would be appropriate for a beginner?


                  > Hex tanks do have their advantages depending on what one might want
                  to keep in them. For example, some of the long grass like aquatic
                  plants can get very long and usually go up and across the water
                  surface on normal rectangular tanks. These plants are great for hex
                  tanks.

                  Best regards,

                  Laura
                • Tom Reagin
                  Anubia Fraizeri (?sp)  Slow grower, hardy. Does not require high light conditions.  As with all plants grow better in cooler water.  Gets quite
                  Message 8 of 17 , Aug 14, 2008
                    Anubia Fraizeri (?sp)  Slow grower, hardy. Does not require high light conditions.  As with all plants grow better in cooler water.  Gets quite tall--eventually.  I think very attractive.  I got mine from Wilma Duncan.

                    Thomas G. Reagin, O.D.
                    104 Church Street
                    Decatur, GA 30030

                    Voice (404)378-3694
                    Fax (404)373-0741






                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • pam andress
                    A lot depends on how you want to take care of them. How long you keep your light on, what kind of light and how often you want to feed them. Do you want to get
                    Message 9 of 17 , Aug 14, 2008
                      A lot depends on how you want to take care of them. How long you keep your light on, what kind of light and how often you want to feed them. Do you want to get into CO2 or not. Then you have to watch what fish you have as some will uproot them, some will eat them etc. I personally love live plants and if they don't make it, I just get more or different ones depending on why they didn't make it. Red plants are beautiful, but I can't get them to work for me. They need more light and many need CO2 which I don't have nor want to add. I have gotten plants from various sources and I'm thinking about helping someone in his business selling them. I will have a lot to learn if I do, but his plants are great.

                      One side note, when you get live plants, many times you get snails on them. There are ways to kill the snails if you don't want them, but you have to do it before you put the plants in the tank.

                      Personally, I have 6 tanks set up right now and ALL have live plants. I have spent a lot of money on fake plants and I will not use them if I don't have too.

                      Pam



                      To: freshwateraquariums@yahoogroups.comFrom: blue_lkb@...: Thu, 14 Aug 2008 01:37:44 +0000Subject: [Freshwater Aquariums] Aquarium plants




                      Hey all,Have been getting tired of looking at my oh-so-fake plastic plants and been thinking more about adding some live plants (ok, I admit, I went and bought a java fern to put in my 55 gal...and I hope that sucker grows, because it's really small right now!). What other plants would be good for a beginner? I saw Patrick's post on the hornwort and other plant that are good floating plants. Also, I was reading back through old messages and saw where it was mentioned that hex tanks are great for some types of plants that grow really tall. Are there any that would be appropriate for a beginner?> Hex tanks do have their advantages depending on what one might want to keep in them. For example, some of the long grass like aquatic plants can get very long and usually go up and across the water surface on normal rectangular tanks. These plants are great for hex tanks.Best regards,Laura






                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Patrick A. Timlin
                      Java Ferns are great, but can be very slow growers. It depends a lot on water conditions as well. For example, I had java ferns growing 8-inch leaves in a
                      Message 10 of 17 , Aug 17, 2008
                        Java Ferns are great, but can be very slow growers. It depends a lot on water conditions as well. For example, I had java ferns growing 8-inch leaves in a small ten gallon in my previous town that had to be pruned out constantly to make room. When I moved to my current house (ten years ago), my java ferns have never grown as well since (and that same ten gallon tank has been running continuously STILL and the Java Ferns don't do as well.

                        However the Crypts are doing well. Crypts are great plants if you have patience to wait for them to adjust to your tank and grow. Under lower light they grow slower but will grow faster if given more light. Many of the common ones can be kept under low or higher light and the main difference will be growth rates.

                        Any of the Sag and Val grass type plants are the ones I referred to in taller tanks and many are easy to keep and are not demanding. They also do better than many other types of plants if you have water that leans towards the hard side.

                        As someone else pointed out, any of the Anubius plants can be great. Expensive and slow growers but do well in many tank with low light and no special substrate, CO2, or that kind of stuff needed. Some people claim these work well with (along with Java Ferns) with plant eating fish who won't eat them. However my Silver Dollar can't read (even after having her for 13 years now), so apparently doesn't know this and happily chomps away at them if I try to add them to that tank.

                        Patrick Timlin

                        http://www.geocities.com/ptimlin/

                        --- On Wed, 8/13/08, blue_lkb <blue_lkb@...> wrote:
                        From: blue_lkb <blue_lkb@...>
                        Subject: [Freshwater Aquariums] Aquarium plants
                        To: freshwateraquariums@yahoogroups.com
                        Date: Wednesday, August 13, 2008, 9:37 PM











                        Hey all,



                        Have been getting tired of looking at my oh-so-fake plastic plants

                        and been thinking more about adding some live plants (ok, I admit, I

                        went and bought a java fern to put in my 55 gal...and I hope that

                        sucker grows, because it's really small right now!).



                        What other plants would be good for a beginner? I saw Patrick's post

                        on the hornwort and other plant that are good floating plants. Also,

                        I was reading back through old messages and saw where it was

                        mentioned that hex tanks are great for some types of plants that grow

                        really tall. Are there any that would be appropriate for a beginner?



                        > Hex tanks do have their advantages depending on what one might want

                        to keep in them. For example, some of the long grass like aquatic

                        plants can get very long and usually go up and across the water

                        surface on normal rectangular tanks. These plants are great for hex

                        tanks.



                        Best regards,



                        Laura


























                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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