Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Starting over...(South American Biotope)

Well apparently I'm starting over with my 55 gallon tank...

What happened was I missed a water change one week, and wasn't able to do it until the next week.  Meaning my NitrAtes were getting out of control.  Then my guppies started dying.  I was keeping up with water changes again by then, but it wasn't enough to get the Nitrates down far enough, and keep them there. So my guppies continued dying.  Then last week, Zip died (RIP!), and I got the advice to start doing daily water changes to bring down the Nitrates.  The last four or five days I haven't been able to, so yesterday I lost a guppy (Yuki), a platy (Elena), and Muddy.  Today all I have left: 3 guppies, 4 platys, and my sister's 3 snails.

I've decided that I'm going to re-model, and do a biotope.  Meaning I'm going to try and make my tank as much like the fish's natural habitat as possible.  I'm doing a South American Rio Meta, and Orinoco rivers biotope.  My current stocking list is:
1-2 L444 Pleco(s)
6-8 Bandit Corys (A.K.A. Rio Meta Corys!)
8-10 Glowlight Tetras (if my sister decides to get rid of them), or 10-12 Cardinal Tetras
Malaysian Trumpet snails (though not from South America...)
And I also want a "center piece" fish, but I'm not sure what yet.
If I can get away with it I'm thinking about (for more exact stocking):
1 L444 Pleco
8 Bandit Corys
8 Glowlight Tetras
10 Cardinal Tetras
1 "Center piece" fish (possibly some kind of South American Cichlid)

So far plants I'm using are:
Red Cabomba
Amazon Swords
Christmas moss

Other decorations I'm using are:
Rocks, I want more, and I want some different ones.  I'm probably going to get some redish ones, and some more dark grey ones, but I don't really like the lighter ones I have.
Wood.  I'm going to try and find an oak log, and hollow it out before treating it, if I can.  I might hollow it after, but I want a hollow log for them!

Other than the dead fish my fish are doing good.  I've decided to remodel Damien's tank again, but I'm going to do a South Asian biotope with him! Though the shark is staying... :)

(This was part 1 of my South American biotope journal)

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Quick facts:
Bettas need at LEAST 3.5 Gallons of water, a filter, a heater, lights, and a thermometer!
Fish are not as easy to keep as most people think.
Guppies are also called "Millions Fish" because they have so many babies!
Bettas, and some other fish have an organ called the "Labyrinth" which allows them to breathe air.

What do you think about that?