Monday, February 11, 2008


I will build this article as i go along and update as things happen or i change my tanks for any reason. It will be a bit topsy turvy untill i get things in the right order.

I am going to start with the weekend:

9/10 february 2008:

I nearly lost my zebra danios yesterday morning. I had moved them last week into the tank I was using for the angel fry. All seemed to be ok and put in some plants so it wasn’t so bare and as a growing on tank for the plants.
Any way long story short I did a WC yesterday and all was ok. Last night they seemed to by a little dozy but not being to good my self I thought it was just me.I got a wake up call in the morning from my partner that something was wrong with them. I got and seen them and new some thing was wrong. Did a 75% WC and then did a water test.
OOOOhhhhhh boy no wonder they were not in best form. Ammonia had gone through the roof as had nitrites. Got them out I hope just in time and let them settle in the other tanks water before placing them back into the larger tank.Today they all seem to be picking up and getting back to normal.
BUT when I got up this morning I found I had lost one of my first fish I got “boasmani rainbow” I was devastated to have lost one of my best friends. Had her for 2yrs. So I did water checks again and the small tank ammonia 0 but nitrites still through the roof (only plants in there now) and checked the 240L and now I have .25 ammonia, and pH has dropped to 6 or less so for some reason every thing is going wrong this weekend and I don’t know why or what is happening I am just doing WC on the 240 in the hopes I get it sorted out and not lose any more friends.

This is my 240L tank set up 12mths ago. I have let it go over grown of late because of ill health but have just lately started to redo the tank.
It started as i was doing a WC and started to trim back a few plants, and one thing led to another and before i knew it i had trimmed every thing right back.
I wasnt planning on doing this but i started so i now have to finish it.

I trimmed all the plants starting on the right side of the tank and in doing so found two "ehinodorus ozolots that i thought i had lost some time ago. So i removed a lot od dead & damaged leaves to clear space for them to go back in. Although i didnt intend and have no replacement plants to go in the empty spaces as yet i re layed them the best i could to end up with what you see below.

On the left side i did the same sort of thing, i srtipped dead and old leaves to again leave gaps.
I removed all the plants on the left side as some were the worse for algae and cleaned them up the best i could. i am going to replant the left side with what i have left of the original plants.
I have noticed in the few days this has been going on that the tank is a lot brighter with not being so over grown and the plants are pearling more than ever.
its 12mths since setting the tank up and needs new tubes so they are on my shopping list at the present moment.

11th February 2008:

Yesterday (Sunday) I did water checks on the 240 and found ammonia had risen above zero of which I had never had I this tank since setting it up. I checked again this morning and found ammonia was still above zero but below .25 but was enough to have me worried as to why this has happened.
I have over the past few days done a lot of cleaning and moving plants around as well giving the filter a damn good clean out which was long over due as the filter pads where like a mud bath, I didn’t touch the bio balls when I cleaned the filter out.
I also today did another trim of the hair grass at the front left side of the tank. I am still trying to work out the best way to re plant what I have taken out and have in storage at the moment. I have also acquired some artificial bog wood pieces one of which I want to use in the tank but again haven’t yet decided on its position.

The tank stats at this time are:
pH = 6
ammonia = .25
nitrites = 0
nitrates = 5
kH = 2
gH = 4
p04 = 0

Although kH has risen from 1 the pH has dropped from 6.4 down to 6. so when ammonia has gone I am going to buffer to raise the kH to 5 and this should also raise the pH back up again.

12th February 2008:

I checked all stats again this morning and every thing was back to normal again.
Now all stats are safe again I want to get the pH & kH up higher. I am aiming for
kH of approx 5 and pH higher than 6.

I added 2 teaspoons of baking soda to approx ½ litre of tank water and mixed well till all had dispersed.
I waited 4 hours and rechecked the water stats. The pH had risen from 6 up to 6.4 and kH had risen from 2 up to 3 so I intend on adding another 2 teaspoons of baking soda tonight.
Given the last rise of 1 kH & .4 pH I would expect to see the same rise again which should take the reads to pH 6.8 & kH 4.

13th February 2008:

Checked all stats again this morning and I am now happy with the results although a little surprised at the kH, I had only expected a rise of 1dg.
The kH has risen by 2dg not 1dg as I had thought it would from 3dg to 5dg.
The pH has risen as expected from 6.4 to 6.6.

The full tank stats now are:
pH = 6.6
Ammonia = 0
Nitrites = 0
Nitrates = 5
kH = 5
gH = 4
P04 = 0

I have added in total over 48hrs 4 teaspoons of baking soda to the 240L tank and this has had the result of raising the pH from 6 to 6.6 a rise of .6
kH has risen from 2dg to 5dg a rise of 3dg.

The stripped angels have spawned again (that’s another story) over night so I would assume all is ok with in the tank.
All that leaves me to do now is to finish re laying the tank as I have not been able to the last few days.
I need to finish the left side that have the plants tied with lead weights at the moment and to trim around the right side where the bog wood is. I am hoping to have this finished by the end of the week or early next week.

I think I have also created my own problem with trying to re lay the tank. with all the messing about over the last week I seem now to be going down the algae root again as I did last year with constant cloudy water and green dust algae on the glass.
I will be watching very closely over the next few days as to what is going on. I have removed a lot of the plants and I think that this could be the problem as there is to much nutrients in the water for them to take up. I am going to reduce the lighting over the next week by cutting out 1 set of lights and to see if this helps until the pants start to grow back or I can get my hands on some extra plants.

19th February 2008:

Well since the 13th all has been so so with the tank. There is a constant white mist in the tank at the moment but I have put this down the all the re arranging of the plants and a major gravel vac last week.
I am in the process of completely re scaping the tank and have already got a nice piece of bogwood for the new scape. I am just waiting for the plants to arrive which have been ordered but not 100% sure when they will arrive. Here are some pics of the bogwood.

The plants I have ordered are:

Name of plant qty tropica No

Bolbitis heudelotii x2 006
Ceratopteris thalictroides x2 005A
Cladophora aegagropila x3 000C (moss balls)
Hemianthuus callitrichoides x3 048B
Hygrophila corymbosa “red” x3 053
Hygrophila difformis x2 051
Limnophila aquatica x2 046
Nymphaea lotus x2 019
Pogostemon helferi x2 053H
Ricca fluitans x2 001
Shinnersia rivularis x2 053E

Total 25 plants

28th February 2008:

Well all is not what I had planned. I am having trouble getting my plants I ordered and lost the angel fry (again) and ended up having to do a BO to get rid of the pea soup in the tank. The GW was because of all the moving about and up rooting the plants so that’s my own fault. I uncovered the tank today after a 3 day BO and its all gone and all fish seem to be ok and came racing over to the glass when I un covered the tank its great when you know your appreciated and some one is made up to see you, even if it is only because they want feeding LOL.

In the mean time I was board and I set up my first nano tank LOL

to give an idea of the size of this tank i have used a normal size pen.

The actual tank is the lid off the API master test kit.

9th March 2008

Time just seems to be flying by and I am getting no where with rescaping the tank.
I still haven’t got the plants I ordered and have had to re order them again.
So I set about designing the layout as I had only a mental picture in my head. Although the picture below is not the best I know what it is supposed to look like LOL.

The layout is not final and is likely to change before it is complete.

28th march 2008

Been a while since I updated so here we go.
I finally got my plants in but most didn’t arrive. I only ended up with 12 out of 25 I ordered so I haven’t been able to complete the re scape fully at the moment.
I still have a couple of plants to go in and have to still do the right hand side of the tank. but below is how the left side started off of which is going to change again.

this pic is 4 days after planting the "limnophila aquatica" at the rear left. it has shot up.

also at this time both sets of angels have spawned agin