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Posts posted by gardengirl

  1. Sushi, "Sakura" was the name Olivia gave to one of the fish -- the largest of the bunch. It's about six inches long with a red circle on her head..... very pretty dark red, so I hope she throws dark red fish with white and black. I want tri-colors that look like little koi.

    The red and white ones are called Sarasas, and the spotted one is a Shubunkin.... I LOVE that shubunkin because it's got orange eyes -- so unusual!

  2. Oh yeah, they're holding on to their weight all right, LOL...... They get fed twice a day -- your food in the early AM and ususally bloodworms, or my fish chow in the early pm.... I'm really trying to bulk them up as much as I can before the cold weather sets in.

    My outdoor fish are on wheat germ pellets now, as the water temps are down, but your fish are still bulking up because they're in warmer water and can take it..... They've got about ten more days. Pray for good weather!

    I had to laugh that they took off when I took the camera out, LOL..... Silly fish. They're taming down though and "visit" when I put the food in. I dont' want them too tame though as they'll have to fend for themselves out in the big pond soon..... I don't hand feed those fish or allow them to come up and be handled, unless I'm up to my shoulders in the pond and they want to come and "kiss" my arms, LOL.... Taming them too much is a danger out there......

    I can't wait for spring to breed that big sarasa (Sakura, I think? I can't seem to keep them straight, LOL) to my inky black comet. I'm hoping for beautiful tri-colored babies. :-)

  3. Are you sure you don't have any electrical current going through the water? That can make fish jump. He's probably just happy and jumping. My goldfish in the big pond jump all the time. You can hear their tails slap the water.

    I'd get a screen on top of that tank soon or else you may have a tragedy on your hands......

  4. I LOVE the idea of an "adoption day"...... That's cool. You could have a raffle and give away free stuff. How about sponsoring the local fish club and they could have meetings at the store, after hours? You could even let them auction off extra supplies, like our local fish club does.

  5. Dealer's fish are sometimes offered at shows too close to the time of import. They are stressed from travel, and then, when additionally stressed by traveling to show, being purchased and traveling AGAIN to a new home, they succumb to stress related problems.

    Thanks for your reply Daryl, I think what you said about the dealers selling fish too close to import is probably what happened in this case. I called the guy who owns the LFS that was at the show and he was rather gruff about it -- said none of the other fish died from that show out of 120 fancy goldfish, and that my pH was probably too high. I take that with a grain of salt, because the little Ranchu I bought from the really good dealer with the farm in Thailand is acting perfectly fine and happy AND all my fish do fine with my pH.... I said it was a lot of money to lose, especially for me since I'm a teacher, and he said, "Well I'm a guy who owns a pet shop so what can I tell you?" LOL, it was rather silly of him, but WHATEVER. I really don't think this was my fault.

    The oranda was stressed and acting strange from the minute I got it home. The guy at the LFS said he would make it right but that he generally does not guarantee live stock at all.... I'm thinking, who doesn't guarentee livestock at all? Maybe his pH is vastly different from mine, so that could account for why 50% of all the fish I've gotton from him don't make it..... I have no clue. His fish certainly look fine. I don't get it.

    ANYHOO, I dashed out of school when the bell rang and zipped up to the local chain petshop and got that little oranda with the black moustache I saw the other day. He's happily swimming around the tank, eating anacharis and is actually a prettier, darker orange than the 40 dollar fish, so I'm happy. Even the calico is doing better today. He's still flashing a little, but they all go up to .2% salt tonight. Any issues will be taken care of soon. Oh, and the lights are on and everyone is swimming merrily around. The tank looks great. I'll post a pic later.

  6. Olivia, The fish are getting very tame now. They come up to visit with me when I feed them. I gave them frozen brine shrimp tonight and they Wolfed that down. (Didn't find live this weekend.) They LOVED it. Anyway, I got the camera out and they disappeared, LOL...... I managed to get one shot of them hiding out in the anacharis though. It's not great but you can see they're doing fine.


    The bubbles in the pic are from the salt in the water. I just moved them up to .3% salt yesterday and it gets a little foamy on the surface from all the action of the powerhead..... One more week in the salt then we go to fresh, do a treatment for flukes and then they can go in the pond...... It's going to be just in the nick of time too. :)

  7. i will get the water tested tomarow.

    Lak, is right. Ammonia can build up to dangerous levels in the tank.... You don't know anything is wrong until the fish go belly up...... The fact that you're doing 50 percent water changes is good, but you still need to test the water....... just to be sure you're fish are safe.

    Okay, who uses those hang on the tank ammonia detectors? Do they work? In this case, one of those would be a wise decision.....

  8. Shamu, go to www.skippysstuff.com. They will show you how to make your own "skippy" filter inexpensively. I have one in a 100 gallon horse trough, but for a 500 gallon pond, you can get away with something a lot smaller...... Check out the smaller filters. They are super easy to make if your dad is even a little handy.

    Wow, from 350 gallons to 500. See if you can get him up to 1000! LOL.

    As far as cleaning, you can clean it when you see the filter pads getting dirty, or the bottom getting a little grungy. I bought a big shop vac with a pump out feature and that does a great job of vacuuming the bottom. In the beginning though, when I couldn't afford a shop vac, I had a Python Pond Vac and it did a wonderful job of getting the gunk off the bottom of the pond and also with emptying the Skippy Filter when I wanted to clean it.

    A Python pond vac is not that expensive, but it really helps on the maintenance end of things. Now THAT's something that can be wrapped for under the tree, LOL. :)

  9. No it just sounds like some people think I'm gonna pull this off next week or something. I've been working on and researching this for almost a year now.

    Okay, I'll bring a bring a big cake in the shape of a goldfish -- chocolate okay for you?? How about next week???? You think you can be open then, LOL.

    Seriously, it takes time and MONEY to pull it off without losing your shirt. I owned a business for five years and came from a family that owned stores for decades. It CAN be done, but it takes a lot of work and dedication. You can't expect a profit for three years and are lucky if you lose money the first year, break even the second, and make a little bit the third year...... Most businesses fail because people jump in before they are prepared..... Of course, this isn't news to you Olivia. You've got the degree, so you know..... Planning is a very good thing! I'm totally stoked for you though.

  10. That's great husbandry, but the ammonia goldfish put into the water is toxic and burns their gills. You can test for it, but you can't see it. Eventually the ammonia will win and the fish will suffer in such small quarters. Imagine a fish the size of a cantalope melon swimming in your ten gallon tank. Now picture THREE melons swimming in your tank -- that's how big some of those fancy goldfish get...... so you can see you'll need a bigger tank.

    You can get away with what you're doing for a small amount of time. I've got nine teeny tiny baby fancy-tails in a 10 gallon QT right now, but they get a 50% water change every third day. They're growing fast and will need bigger quarters by the new year..... Right now they are the size of peas so ten gallons seems like an ocean to them, LOL....

    Can you eventually upgrade to a 30 gallon tank or even a 55????

  11. Well, it's Monday and the oranda died while I was at work. Hubby watched it all day and it cozied up to the intake, took it's last gasp and was hauled out of the tank before the other two fish got to it. (sigh) There goes 40 bucks -- I've got to say that's expensive rose fertilizer.... darn it.

    The calico has been doing better. He's been in his corner a few times, but came back out and explored the tank. He ate well last night too, so hopefully I won't lose him too. I put the lights on when I got home, but will turn them off in a little while. The anacharis needs some light or it will turn to mush.

    I've salted the tank to .1% and plan to take it to .2% tonight or tomorrow...... The little ranchu is happy in his new home. The tank is HUGE compared to him, but he's got lots of room to grow. He's so adorable.

    I was at the local chain store yesterday picking up a new air pump and they had orandas that were smaller than the one I got, but far prettier. I could have spent 7 bucks on an oranda instead of 40..... Sheesh, I feel stupid. Let's just hope the calico fantail doesn't go belly up next. At this point I have a 50 percent success rate with that LFS -- not good enough for me, so I'll take my business elsewhere.

  12. I have that same problem with siphoning the gunk off the bottom -- if the container is on the floor my Python Clean-and-Fill doesn't get a lot of suction. It still does the job though, only a lot slower.

    I was worried about bowing out with the Sterlite, opaque containers I got from nnnnnn, so I got two of them and put one inside the other. That worked great. I have smaller containers though. One holds ten gallons, and the other, longer one holds 15 gallons. I don't fill them all the way up to the top either.

    I use two corner, inside box filters with airstones on each container and rinse the media when I do a bottom vac every three days. I also have heaters on the bottom and gravel in bags from an established aquarium to help with ammonia issues. So far, the babies I've got in both containers are doing GREAT!

    I also have a bigger, 36 inch fiberglass, terra-cotta looking round flower pot type container that I use as a QT. It has a big power head and filter on it and works great, but the power head was a little pricey. It was like $70.

    I even have lighting on my containers. For the little ones, I cover one end with a piece of glass and lay an old aquarium light across the top. You MUST make sure the glass is secure and not flimsy or too small, otherwise your light will surely fall in the water. For my big 70 gallon QT I have a shop light above it with a piece of plexiglass between it and the QT.

    If you don't mind my asking, what are you using the container for????

  13. Maybe you should just leave the lights off for a few days!

    Sheesh, I guess, LOL... Maybe I should. Isn't that the WIERDEST thing? Silly fish had me WORRIED all day long. I'm wondering if they're still on Singapore time, LOL..... Maybe it's jet lag???

    You should see this. They're swimming all over the place right now. It's the strangest thing. They ate a couple of shrimp pellets which I was so thankful to see that. Gosh, I'm just so glad to see that they appear to be alright.....

    The little Ranchu has stolen my heart. He's such a little trooper -- has been munching on the anacharis and algea all day -- LOVED the bloodworms I threw in there this afternoon. He's adorable. I need to get pics for you all, but he's gonna be hard to photograph. He looks like a swimming black stone right now, LOL. I got him from Gunn from Fish Corner, who had the most beautiful fish at the show. He had one orange and black telescope goldie that I was BEGGING him for, but it was already sold, darn it. He started the show with 600 (!) fish on Thursday and was down to like a 100 by the time I showed up on Saturday. Man, that guy's fish are so popular.

  14. Olivia, They will ALWAYS be YOUR fish, hon. :) I'm their second mommy, okay? We could write a book -- "Olivia's Fish Have Two Mommies", <snerk> They're doing great, btw. Hubby helped me do their tank change tonight.

    Anyway, this is SO wierd. The oranda sat still, hovering in the center of the tank ALL DAY -- staring out into space -- you know how they get sometimes. The calico fantail laid down under a clump of anacharis with his fins sprawled over the rocks ALL DARNED DAY. I was sure these two were going to be goners....... The little Ranchu was all over the tank all day long, acting like he's been in this tank since day one. He's stolen my heart.

    So I'm figuring that two out of these three fish are gonna go belly up soon. I was up at the LFS looking at fish, trying to figure out what I'm gonna buy next because these two are so obviously NOT going to make it. Anyway, I was sitting here watching Law and Order with my hubby and the timer on the tank light clicked and the light went out..... SO, what do you suppose those fish did????? HUH? HUH???? LOL.

    They started swimming around and exploring the gall-darned tank, that's what. They are rooting around in the gravel RIGHT NOW and even ate a couple of shrimp pellets I threw in there. There they go -- the calico is shimmying left and the oranda is wiggling right, swimming like there's nothing wrong at all....

    Could they have been freaked out by the lights??? And to think I've been worried all day long! :blink:

  15. Gosh, Shamu,,,, I hope you can convince them. They'll probably LOVE having a pond once it's in. Convincing them is the hard part though.

    Wow, how does one wrap a 350 gallon pond for Christmas? LOL. If you were my kid, we could have a dozen ponds..... :) All my kid ever wants is more video games, LOL..... He does love animals though.....

  16. Hi Olivia,

    Yes, I've got the airstone running, and will put an air wand in there later today when I buy one.... Also, the Eclipse has excellent airation of the water as it goes over the pad, then the bio-wheel. All I have are frozen bloodworms, but I'll try those later.... Maybe the LFS has some live brine too. I'll check when I go out. Your fish would probably love that. (They're in their own QT by the way -- not exposed to these new fish).....

    The little Ranchu is acting great, but these other two are really a concern. I'm going to salt the tank today and start my QT process as usual. Two weeks at 80 degrees with .3% salt followed by two treatments of Fluketabs is my normal QT process, so these guys will go through that too..... I'm taking them to .1% salt today hoping that the salt will help with any issues.....

    I've gotton fish from this same dealer before and had them stress and sit on the bottom of the QT for a couple of days. The last little tri-color shubbie did that, then perked up with the salt..... So maybe that's all it is.... STILL, I wanted everyone to be HAPPY and SWIMMING JOYOUSLY around the new tank, LOL..... You know how it goes. I'd hate to have spent $65 on fish that are going to go belly up on me....

  17. Okay, so I bought three fish at the show yesterday. The little black ranchu from the dealer with a fish farm in Thailand is doing great. He started eating algae off the rocks in the tank as soon as I released him last night. He didn't seem to go into shock or anything. This morning he is moving all around the tank and acting like a little character. I'm so glad we got him.

    The oranda and the calico, from another dealer are another story. The oranda is staying suspended in the middle of the tank and had absolutely zero interest in eating this morning. He's just hanging there in the water.

    The calico went to the bottom of the tank and laid on the rocks last night and was still on the rocks today. He is moving a little, but mostly is just sitting on the bottom of the tank. Neither the oranda, or calico fantail wanted to eat either...... I'm thinking they were probably fasted prior to being shipped. They are from Singapore, shipped to a LFS that I've done business with before.

    So is this acclimating behavior in these two fish or what? All tank perameters are fine and the ranchu is acting like nothing happened from transport from Thailand to North Carolina to Maryland and then to Virginia. He seems to be taking it all in stride, LOL, the silly little thing, but the other two are a concern to me.......

  18. Yes, I bought three fish for my new show tank. I got a calico fantail, an oranda and a little black ranchu which is the cutest thing I ever saw. I didn't prefer ranchu before I saw them in person, but my hubby really liked the little guy so we bought him. :) He's such a little character and the dealer was the nicest guy. He really took his time with us.

    This little Ranchu didn't have the roundest back -- there was one better in the tank, and the dealer even said it had the tiniest kink in the tail, but we didn't care about conformation. He's going to be a pet, so we bought him because maybe no one else would want him. LOL, I'm like that -- always rescuing the runts.

    Anyway, yes, we bought fish and are very happy. I'll post pics as soon as they settle in.

  19. Hubby and I went to the koi/goldfish show in Maryland today and it was really great. I posted a few pics in the goldfish photo section here on KoKo's. There were a few goldfish vendors and I got three fish for my new show tank. I got a solid black ranchu, a calico fantail, and a orange and black oranda. The ranchu and oranda are my first fish of that type, so I'm pretty excited. My hubby helped me pick them out. He's not really that into fish, but he really got into the show. It was funny.

    I also got a great deal on fish food, a new pond de-icer and leaf netting for my big pond. I was really happy with the bargains, but wished I'd had the extra cash for a back-up pond pump and air pump. Oh well, next year...

    The koi were cool too. Some of them were over 35 inches long and looked like they weighed at least 40 pounds. One of the exhibitors said that it takes two strong men to carry each of those biggies. I met fish lovers from all over -- West Virginia, Minnesota, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and near our home town in Virginia. It was great to talk to people who love fish as much as I do. Gosh, I wish I could have stayed the whole weekend, but all the hotels in the area were sold out, so we made the 2 hour drive home....

    Take a look at the photos page on MAKC and let me know what you think. I'll post pics of my new fish once I get them settled in. It was a long ride home and they're stressed now, so I want to settle them in for the night. I'm exhausted but happy! :)

  20. Hubby and I went to the Mid-Atlantic Koi Club show in Westminster, Maryland today. It was really great. There were dozens of goldfish, some were really HUGE, others were lovely. I got some pics, but most of them are really fuzzy. Sorry.

    This fish was really HUGE -- like ten inches across.



    I REALLY liked this tri-color a lot.... It was very unusual in person. You can see all the rows of goldfish tanks behind this tank:


    This calico was HUGE too:



    This fish almost had it's eyes obscured by the massive wen. It's a miracle it could carry that amount of weight around on it's head:





  21. Yeah I rescue fish and take them to an Aquatic Vet when I come across things I can't handle on my own. I'm actually considering going back to school myself to study aquatic veterinary medicine. It's funny that you mentioned that because my husband and I were just talking about that!

    I wonder what the degree for an aquatic vet entails.... Is is just a regular degree with a year or two of specialization????

  22. Great idea Olivia. Over the years I've toyed with the idea myself. Too bad we don't live closer -- We could be partners. :)

    I love the idea of an "information area" to the shop. You could even offer a computer station, so customers could sip coffee and go to KoKo's in your shop...

    Most pet stores make their profit on the hard goods -- the $300 aquarium to put the $1 fish in..... Our local LFS even has a separate store of just aquariums, pumps, and stuff, aside from his main fish store. The hard goods are what make the profit, so you want to keep that in mind.

    I've always wondered how pet shops filter those long banks of tanks. I think they're all drilled and run off the same system.

    Anyway, you might want to do a search for Takashi Amano's store in Japan. He's the leader in planted tanks and has written several books. He has shops in Japan that are beyond amazing..... sort of like what you're trying to do.....

  23. Wow, what a stupid store manager....... Is there any way you can talk to the owner, or is this a chain store? Poor fish. I really feel that the fish come secondary to the equipment in these stores. They make so much more off the sale of the aquarium, stand, filter, filter media, and other stuff, that the fish are almost an after thought...... They don't have to keep the fish alive and healthy because all the money is in the hard stock/inventory.

  24. Mine would be in a dedicated room for the fish, in the basement on stand on a concrere floor, so no problems there. I haven't gotton an email back from the guy yet though....... hope he didn't already sell it. Anyway, if he did, I'll hold out for the 125 long. I love that size for a planted tank.

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