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Tub Experiment


jbo

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Hi all,

So I have this experiement I want to do with a couple of feeder fish. Are you worried yet?

In all seriousness, after the holidays I plan on getting a 20-30ga tub from nnnnnn and setting it up for fishies. I want to put in a couple of normal commons (feeder fish) and see how fast they grow compared to my overstocked 29 ga tank. I'm going to be using fish from my 29 ga tank, however since buying more when I already have too many seemed silly, so I want to make sure I do it right and don't kill them.

My plan is to get the tub, get a 40 gallon TopFin filter (the $23 USD vvvv one), about 12 lbs of gravel that's big enough that they can't get it in their mouth and choke, and a cheap plant or two for extra oxygen and fishy hiding places.

Other than that I'm not sure what to get. I can build a hood/lid from the normal tub lid and some plexiglass that I have laying around. As far as a light goes, however, do fish lights have anything special about them that makes them different from normal florescents (sp?) or do they just wrap the bulbs in a pretty box and charge twice as much? In other words, does it have to be a special light as long as it's bright enough?

Any other ideas/suggestions?

Jim

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Well, if you really wish to do a valid experiment you must change only one thing - the number of gallons that each fish occupies. All other things must be the same - same water, same changes, same light, same food, same temperature/ph/parameters, etc.

Since this is not monitarily possible, you are going to have to extrapolate your findings and draw conclusions that are not necessarily based on hard fact.

Yes, light is a factor in goldfish health- but not a great one. The gravel is also of little importance, except for how it can possibly effect water purity.

Far more important is the water quality. A "40 gallon Top Fin filter" is FOR 40 gallons? For a 20 gallon tub, it should turn the water over at least 10 times an hour - or 200 gallons per hour. More is better.

Food is a big factor. You will find that fish in an overstocked tank may not get the ideal amount of food. In your new tub, they may get more. This could affect your results.

I would say just set the tub up with the minumum of things. Do not skimp on the filter. A fantastic filter and cycle is necessary for valid results. You should have enough light that your fish are not in the dark and you can see them well and make sure they are healthy. Finally, properly balanced water parameters and a very good food fed at a regular interval is a must. This should give you enough information for a general conclusion.

If you wish to design a "scientific experiment" for true interest's sake or for publishable results, I would suggest you do two identical tubs.

I design and judge elementary/high school/ college science fair projects and would be happy to help you design such a project so that it meets requirements.

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Just wondering, I remember on that board that there was a person with the name Daryl, he or she, (I am not really sure) knew a crazy amount about fish keeping. Very very helpful, (like you!) Acme closed though and I had only been on the fish board there for a day or two, but then I found Koko's :wub:

Anyway I remember "Daryl" was the first person that informed me that goldfish were not for bowls! I mean, who would have thought? They are called Goldfish bowls aren't they LOL!! So then I went out and got a 10 gal (my first tank :D ) Then I found Koko's and started learning in earnest.

But I remember "Daryl" telling me I could use a rubbermaid if I couldnt' get a tank....I thought the idea of fish in a rubber maid was very odd, and I suppose that's what made me think of "Daryl" from acme, this thread on tubs. :D BTW I have a rubbermaid with fish now, odd or not LOL

Jessica

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Thanks for the advice! I was really only looking for something to satisfy my curiosity that didn't have to follow the scientific method. Your post has intrigued me, however, and now I am considering it.

I think that it would be a good experiement to set up several tubs in an identical manner except for the number of fish ranging from overcrowded to way more room than required and measure their growth/health changes.

If all went as expected, it would give people an example of why tanks are overcrowded, even when they do not seem to be.

The problem is, I can't guarentee that I'll be at my apartment every day to make sure they get treated equally for more than a month or so at a time. How long do you think such an experiment would have to last?

Also, what would you use for a control group?

Jim

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Well, of course the best way would be to use "clones" but that is not possible. Stepping down the ladder of ideal, a group of same size, same breed fish, (for example - comets or such) would be good.

I think I would go for the "simpler" varieties, as opposed to the more exotic ones. There are huge differences between individual fish in the more exotic ones and you potentially have other problems to deal with (temp., wen growth problems, food location, senstivity to nitrate, and competition, etc.). Comets or shubies would be a good solid choice. A group of homogenius fry from the same spawning would be an excellent start.

Comets and other "simpler" fish also have greater growth potential and thus might be easier to measure over a shorter time span.

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This would not require a "control" group as such. An "overstocked" tub, vs. a "lightly" stocked tank would be the only variables. With care, all other uncontrollable differences could be minimal.

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