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Posts posted by gardengirl

  1. My fish change colors as they age. I always pray they'll hold on to their black, but in most cases it fades and is replaced by red/orange or orange. Daryl, I've got a little green/gray fantail growing out right now and am patiently waiting to see what this little guy turns into. All his siblings are colored up, but he's still as green as green can be! In my pond they ALL start out black and turn colors over time..... I do have a few fish that have stayed all black, including a few commons in the pond, as well as the new little ranchu I got from the goldfish show last fall. A lot depends on their genetic makeup.

  2. Karen, 78 degrees seems a little high for goldfish. That's the first thing that popped in my head. I typically keep my fish at about 74 degrees. Is there anything in the tank that could have caused the fish to get injured? Any rocks, open filter intakes, sharp edges??? Do you have a picture of the fish?

    Do you have aquarium salt?

  3. Sorry, Andrea, I see that I neglected to respond to your water change question. I changed about 2/3 of the tank -- 60%, which is a little more than the 50% I normally do.... I was also scrubbing A LOT of brown algae off the sides of the tank and the water was clouded for awhile after the change. Maybe the diatomaceous algae overwhelmed the bio-wheel/filter??? I have no clue.

    The Calico is still acting strange this morning, but he did eat his Sunday Peas. :) I'm going to test again and do another water change after I drink another cup of caffeine and wake up. :) :) :)

  4. I heard that those show fish were shipped from Singapore for the show. A fellow koi-board member said they were in severe stress when I posted on another board that I lost the $40 oranda as soon as I got home. It just curled up to the intake and was dead the next morning. The dealer said he'd replace the fish and I asked if I could get a new one next spring. He said sure. But this calico ryukin has never acted normal.

    Anyway, Shamu is my "canary in the coal mine." I definitely think he was oxygen deprived or something because he acts so strange. He is not "right", but we love him.

    I tested ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH this evening when I noticed the erratic behavior. The ammonia was slightly elevated. I mean it was just a tiny shade deeper than the yellow that it normally is.... What's strange though is the nitrite and nitrate. Both were slightly elevated. The nitrite was .25 and the nitrate was 5 ppm. I couldn't believe it since I just did a water change today and this is an established tank! Maybe I was overfeeding this last week? I have no idea.

    SO, I double dosed PRIME to neutralize the nitrite and nitrate and deal with the ammonia. Shamu is acting a lot more normal now, about an hour later. He's not nearly as erratic. The poor thing...... I swear I had no idea how this happened -- especially after a water change. I even tested the tap water, thinking the water company was messing around again, but it's zero for everything (high pH as usual though)..... Luckily, you can dose up to five times the normal dose of PRIME to detoxify the nitrate and nitrite -- I LOVE that stuff!

    I also pulled up the Python hose from the basement. If they aren't better by tomorrow morning, I'm doing another big water change, using the PRIME again, and adding salt......

  5. My big Calico Ryukin, Shamu, is acting strange tonight. He's swimming in the bubble streams, turning upside down and floating back up to the top of the tank....

    This is the big show fish I got at the goldfish show earlier this fall. I bought two from the same dealer and lost one as soon as I got home. This Big Calico has always acted somewhat "challenged". He has always moved very erratically through the water -- doing death spirals to the bottom of the tank -- nearly crashing and going sideways at the last minute. It takes your breath away, darn fish. I swear, just as I think he's going to crash head-on into the glass he veers off..... Sometimes he'll swim sideways, backwards, circular..... you name it.

    I did a tank change today and the other two fish seem fine, but I worry about him. He's big-bodied and I swear his mind is not all there. I heard from another fish keeper that the shipment I bought from at that show came in very stressed out. The fish were not seasoned well and there were all kinds of problems. Not what I wanted to hear after I bought very expensive fish!

    The little Ranchu I got from another dealer is doing terrific. Should I be worried about my big calico, Shamu?????

  6. The snail was alive and trucking along the bottom of the tank. No problem there. I did a big water change, rinsed the media and the tank smells fine now. I was worried that one of the otos had died, but I didn't see a body. Go figure. You never know, lol.... The "seven dwarfs" are doing really well and schooling all over the tank after the water change, but they weren't acting funny before it either....

    I did notice a big bunch of anacharis on one side of the tank. It had grown thick and was all over the surface on that side of the tank. Maybe it was impeding flow from the filter? I shook it out in the water and netted up any debris that floated free.... I still have no clue though. :unsure:

  7. I went down to the fish room and there was a funky smell coming from my 75 gallon goldfish tank. I change the water every week, but only like 30% because any more and the filters run dry. I took water samples and ammonia, ph, nitrite, nitrate all tested normal..... No problems there. I shut down the filters and did a big water change -- like over 50% hoping it would be okay.... The dechlor I use is PRIME and that always has a sulfer-like smell to it, but it was the tank that smelled funny......

    What would cause smell in a tank like that. I have seven baby fantails growing out in the tank with two Penguin Bio-Wheels Filters on it. (All are less than the size of a ping pong ball right now). There are also three tiny otos for algae control, and one quarter-sized mystery snail that hitchhiked in on a plant..... Water Change every week at 30% and filter media rinsed weekly. Media changes every two to to four weeks alternating each filter......

    It was SO WIERD!!! Any ideas?

  8. Gosh, if that were me, I be putting my goldfish in the boyfriends 75 gallon tank, and letting him have the 38 for his lizard, LOL..... Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine just had a great article on what to put in a ten gallon aquarium. You should definitely read the article. There is a dwarf species of cichlid mentioned in the article. I believe it was Neolamprologus brevis -- a cute little shell dwelling cichlid. It said a pair of them would do well in a 10 gallon, so you'd be good with them in a 14. Stay away from the tin-foil barbs. They get HUGE.

    Here's a link to the article:


    I think you have to sign up for the site to see the whole article, but it's easy. OR just go out and get the current issue of the mag.

    Personally, I like Rams. You could do a pair of gold or blue rams in a 14 if it were planted heavily. Include some dwarf catfish, and you'd have a nice set up. OR maybe you would like a pair of honey gouramis and a little group of otos, perhaps five in a planted tank with the pair of gouramis. The little pygmy cories stay under 1.5 inches and are adorable...... Tetras are nice. I've had a nice little school of the serpae tetras in my 12 gallon tank for years. If you want to go the livebearer route you could do platties (I LOVE the blue ones), or guppies. Just be prepared for a lot of offspring, LOL... Which means another tank to raise the fry in :unsure:

  9. I'd leave the bubble wall in the tank a little longer and see what happens. Is there any way to turn the flow down on your air pump? A smaller current may help the little pearly gain her strength.

    The "Seven Dwarfs" I have in the big 75 gallon grow-out tank LOVE to get in the current from the bubble wall. They swim really hard against the current then let the current take them to the top of the tank and then they swim to the bottom to do it all over again. LOL, silly fish. It must be like riding a roller coaster for them -- they're always so happy to swim back to the bottom to do it again. LOL.

    A fish breeder once told me that rapid water movement in the tank is good for goldfish. It strengthens them and gives them exercise, but I like to be sure there are a few still spots in the tank for them to rest too. My big calico likes to "sleep" in the corner of the show tank where the water is still at night.

  10. Five gallons should be fine, but stay on top of your water changes. I had a big 8+ inch pond fish inside in a 15 gallon tote bin for more than a month to treat for something this fall and did partial water changes every single day to be sure the water wasn't going toxic. I almost hated to put her back in the pond she got so friendly. She would splash the dog and it was hilarious...... I wouldn't keep her in that small of a QT forever, but it worked for what I needed it for.... Stay on top of the water changes, and don't forget the dechlor and you should be fine.

  11. I like my python. :yeah:

    I LOVE the PYTHON Systems! I have FOUR of them -- One 25 footer for quarantine tanks, another 25 footer for the fish room, a LONG 75 footer with extended tube for the show tank upstairs, AND the Python Pond Vac. I think the Python is the invention to made it possible to go from just one or two tanks to many tanks for a lot of hobbyists. I still have to use small tubing and a bucket for fry tanks. There's no way I'd chance it with the python in those tanks with the baby fish, but for MOST of my tanks the python is the way to go......

  12. Hey Shamu, Congratulations on the new tank. I'm so jealous. That's the tank I wanted for my fish room, but I ended up with a used 75 gallon. I don't think we could have gotten a 125 down to the fish room in the basement with the way the steps curve anyway. A 125 is great because you can actually get to the bottom without having to get up on a step ladder. Some tanks are just too deep, but a 125 is perfect.

    My 75 in the fish room is not level. When I fill it up I can see that it slopes from right to left -- the left side is a little lower than the right. I think it's because my concrete floor must not have been poured level. I just fill it up so to where I can't see the water at the rim and forget about it..... 2-3 mm is no big deal. I'm sure the tank can handle that.....

    Tell your dad that he can have his tropical planted tank when he BUILDS YOU A POND, LOL....... :D

    Really, I'm very excited for you.....

  13. I had the polished black river rock in my show tank but was bothered at how much gunk got stuck in and under the stones, so I took them out. It still looks pretty nice and the intake for the filter is resting on the bottom of the tank, so it sucks most of the poop out for me..... I potted up the plants and they look alright. I may still go to gravel someday, but for now this looks nice and it keeps the tank a lot cleaner.

    Before I had this show tank I broke down a smaller tank I had in that location and washed the gravel. It was full of gunk and stunk so badly, and this with me doing weekly water changes. You just cannot control what gets down in that gravel!

  14. The six original baby guppies are getting larger, BUT the female surprised me a week ago with NINE more babies! I got another 5 gallon tank and the female will be separated from the male. I remember reading that they can produce babies every 28 days and she was right on schedule! LOL.

    I'll post pics when I get the Guppy set-up up and running. I'm putting in four 5 gallon tanks and a 20 long just for guppies. One tank will be for adult males, another for breeding, another for young males, another for young and mature females, and the 20 long will be for babies to grow out in .......

  15. I guess anything is possible, but the cement can leach chemicals into the water and alter the pH, so I wouldn't do it. The big koi keepers typically build very deep ponds (6-8 feet deep) by using block walls and mortar. Then they use liners inside that OR paint on a marine grade type of coating. It's like liquid fiberglass which cures and creates the permanent lining. I get the impression that it's a lot more hassle and more expensive than rubber lining however.

    If you're building a timber frame/wall, then go the easy way and put a liner in the thing. A good quality rubber liner will last for years, doesn't leach anything into the water, won't crack over time and can even be plumbed for a bottom drain if you wish.

  16. For just a little more you could get a 100 gallon horse trough -- it's deeper, bigger, and better built. The raised pond in the first post is alright, but not deep enough, IMO. Also, it's raised and would freeze a lot easier in the winter. The horse trough could be moved indoors in the winter.

    The raised pond in the first pics is similar to something I'm trying to put together for breeding fish this summer in my garden.... Only I want to go with 300 gallons -- deeper, larger.

  17. Can you isolate him in a hospital tank and salt the water? Add aquarium salt to .1% today, then go to .2% tomorrow and go to .3% the next day. He might have gotten cut up from the suction..... Then again, if a fish is sick and not doing well they stop swimming and get stuck to the intake of the filter.

    How is he today???

  18. UV is effective as long as your GPH flow is within the confines of what you wish to kill - All 7 of my tanks are set with an independant pumping system that flows at a 70 gallon per hour rate - - the rating to get down to affecting Protozoa etc- - if your flow rate is to high you are only affecting algae and alike - The bulbs are not cheap - in my setup they are $70 a piece- 2 per tank per year....replacement.

    Just wondering, can UV kill ick????

  19. Sheri,

    How do I syphon the bottom out? My hubby is going to get me some cage wire that has little holes in it so the cats can't get their paws inside and some metal stakes. It will be easy for me to remove to clean the pond when I need to, it will allow sun and air inside. What kind of food do you recommend I get for them? I only have some brine shrimp, flakes, Salad Supreme wafers, Pro-Gold, and gel food and also peas and veggis, fruit.

    Also, do the water params in a pond need to be the same as in a tank?

    I'm not sure if there is a pump, or filter, but I will try to check that out on Friday, or tomorrow if I can get back over there to really look at the pond.

    You can vacuum the bottom with a wet-dry vac, or get a Python Brand Pond Vac. I recommend a good floating pond food. There are many out there. Hikari is what I use, but there are others. I feed wheat germ in the spring and fall and regular food in the summer months. I would limit the food until you get the pond cleaned though. Too much food in a pond with decomposing plant matter can spell disaster. Water perams should be the same as tanks. You might put in some underwater plants like anacharis for them to hide in, as well as a water lily or two for summer shade. The plants will help balance the pond as well.

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