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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Dave Millman
 
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Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Here's a chance to give back to the group: Contribute the story of your
worst planted aquarium mistake, and how you fixed it. Here's mine:

During Summer 2001, I read Ecology of the Planted Aquarium by Diana
Walstad. It's a great book, with lots of accessible science. The book
makes a strong case for soil substrates, so I decided to use one for my
first planted tank. The basic idea is to cover a layer of clean soil
under a layer of gravel, so the gravel keeps the soil out of the water
column.

Soil substrates have many advantages, and I'm sure that thousands of
aquarists use them successfully. Unfortunately, I failed miserably. What
the book didn't explain is that it's really hard to make any changes to
a soil substrate tank once you've filled it. Try as I might, I was
unable to move a plant, replant cuttings, add new plants, or do anything
in the substrate without releasing a torrent of soil into the water.

After a month of grief, I switched to 100% Flourite and have never
looked back. I replant cuttings every two weeks, and rearrange the tank
every month or two, without any worries about the substrate at all.
Haven't vacuumed it in a year either, but that's true of any planted
tank.

About 8 months ago, my Ancistrus sp. catfish started to breed in the
planted tank. Every so often, the male decides to dig a pit in the
substrate under his driftwood cave. If I were still using soil, that
would be a disaster.

It's my theory that people who succeed with soil substrates either 1)
plan the layout of their tank in advance, and make minimum changes over
time, or 2) go the low-tech route (no CO2), so they do less pruning and
replanting, or 3) are just smarter than me. Whatever the explanation, I
have yet to find a down side to Flourite.

My second worst mistake was not planting lots of fast-growing plants on
day one, as the experts on this group advise, but my guess is most
people on the group have made that error at one time or other and know
the result.



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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Ross Vandegrift
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

In article , Dave Millman wrote:
Contribute the story of your
worst planted aquarium mistake, and how you fixed it.


Buying large tetras before knowing how much they like to chew on
plants would probably qualify. They can be amazingly destructive...


--
Ross Vandegrift


A Pope has a Water Cannon. It is a Water Cannon.
He fires Holy-Water from it. It is a Holy-Water Cannon.
He Blesses it. It is a Holy Holy-Water Cannon.
He Blesses the Hell out of it. It is a Wholly Holy Holy-Water Cannon.
He has it pierced. It is a Holey Wholly Holy Holy-Water Cannon.
He makes it official. It is a Canon Holey Wholly Holy Holy-Water Cannon.
Batman and Robin arrive. He shoots them.
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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
kush
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Are you just trying to boost your self-esteem at my expense, Dave? I never
even told my spouse about this one...

I was doing weekly maintenance on the 180 gallon tank. I removed about four
5 gallon buckets of water, pushed the filter output off to the side and
balanced the light hood along the back of the tank. I had immersed my arms
up to the shoulder and was pruning plants, when three things happened...

1. I realized just how far off to the side I had pushed the filter output
spout because my socks started squishing, and
2. Cursing vigorously, I knocked the light hood into the tank, and
3. I finally understood the importance of using UL approved electrical
devices over large bodies of water that have your arms in them.

Feel better now?

kush

Dave Millman wrote ...

My second worst mistake was not planting lots of fast-growing plants on
day one... but my guess is most people on the group have made that error

at one time or other and know
the result.


Or have made the error over and over and over again thinking, "yeah, but
THIS time it will be O.K.!"

kush


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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Bruce Geist
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

LOL! Phew kush.. this is a very, very funny story. I am glad you are
still here to write about your experience! -Bruce
"kush" wrote in message
news
Are you just trying to boost your self-esteem at my expense, Dave? I
never
even told my spouse about this one...

I was doing weekly maintenance on the 180 gallon tank. I removed about

four
5 gallon buckets of water, pushed the filter output off to the side and
balanced the light hood along the back of the tank. I had immersed my arms
up to the shoulder and was pruning plants, when three things happened...

1. I realized just how far off to the side I had pushed the filter output
spout because my socks started squishing, and
2. Cursing vigorously, I knocked the light hood into the tank, and
3. I finally understood the importance of using UL approved electrical
devices over large bodies of water that have your arms in them.

Feel better now?

kush

Dave Millman wrote ...

My second worst mistake was not planting lots of fast-growing plants on
day one... but my guess is most people on the group have made that error

at one time or other and know
the result.


Or have made the error over and over and over again thinking, "yeah, but
THIS time it will be O.K.!"

kush




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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
kush
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)


Bruce Geist wrote ...

.. this is a very, very funny story.


And the more time that passes, the closer to funnier it gets. Maybe in
another twenty years, if I haven't drowned or electrocuted myself...




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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Marvin Hlavac
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)


"kush" wrote in message
...

Bruce Geist wrote ...

.. this is a very, very funny story.


And the more time that passes, the closer to funnier it gets. Maybe in
another twenty years, if I haven't drowned or electrocuted myself...




....you are lucky it was fresh water and not salt water. None of us would be
laughing about your story today ;-)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Marvin Hlavac
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)


"Dave Millman" wrote in message
...
Here's a chance to give back to the group: Contribute the story of your
worst planted aquarium mistake, and how you fixed it. Here's mine:

During Summer 2001, I read Ecology of the Planted Aquarium by Diana
Walstad. It's a great book, with lots of accessible science. The book
makes a strong case for soil substrates, so I decided to use one for my
first planted tank. The basic idea is to cover a layer of clean soil
under a layer of gravel, so the gravel keeps the soil out of the water
column.

Soil substrates have many advantages, and I'm sure that thousands of
aquarists use them successfully. Unfortunately, I failed miserably. What
the book didn't explain is that it's really hard to make any changes to
a soil substrate tank once you've filled it. Try as I might, I was
unable to move a plant, replant cuttings, add new plants, or do anything
in the substrate without releasing a torrent of soil into the water.

After a month of grief, I switched to 100% Flourite and have never
looked back. I replant cuttings every two weeks, and rearrange the tank
every month or two, without any worries about the substrate at all.
Haven't vacuumed it in a year either, but that's true of any planted
tank.

About 8 months ago, my Ancistrus sp. catfish started to breed in the
planted tank. Every so often, the male decides to dig a pit in the
substrate under his driftwood cave. If I were still using soil, that
would be a disaster.

It's my theory that people who succeed with soil substrates either 1)
plan the layout of their tank in advance, and make minimum changes over
time, or 2) go the low-tech route (no CO2), so they do less pruning and
replanting, or 3) are just smarter than me. Whatever the explanation, I
have yet to find a down side to Flourite.

My second worst mistake was not planting lots of fast-growing plants on
day one, as the experts on this group advise, but my guess is most
people on the group have made that error at one time or other and know
the result.





I recently did a very stupid thing. I have a 90g for which I just purchased a
great big expensive external canister filter: Eheim 2260. I was so eager to set
it up... I didn't bother re-using some of the old media... I didn't bother
leaving both the new and the old filter running at the same time for a few days
or weeks... I just wanted the new filter there and I didn't want my wife to see
two external canister filters there with all the hoses...

Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Eric Schreiber
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Ross Vandegrift wrote:

Buying large tetras before knowing how much they like to chew on
plants would probably qualify. They can be amazingly destructive...



Yeah, I've been kind of noticing that. My red-eye tetras aren't really
mangling the plants, but they do seem to go on chewing binges from
time to time.


--
www.ericschreiber.com
  #9   Report Post  
Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Eric Schreiber
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

"kush" wrote:

And the more time that passes, the closer to funnier it gets. Maybe in
another twenty years, if I haven't drowned or electrocuted myself...


Having received some nasty shocks myself (including three-phase 240
when some dingbat decided to wire a factory extension cord in reverse,
for reasons that never were sufficiently clear), I can assure you it
gets funnier over time. At least, funnier for everyone else.


--
www.ericschreiber.com
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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Bruce Geist
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water
quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


I goofed in dosing nitrate. You really can kill fish with stump remover...
it aint hard to do! I lost an SAE and a big beautiful black ruby barb
because of a mis-measurement. I am much more careful now.

-Bruce Geist





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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Dustin
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Question - What is an SAE?

Dustin
"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water

quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


I goofed in dosing nitrate. You really can kill fish with stump remover...
it aint hard to do! I lost an SAE and a big beautiful black ruby barb
because of a mis-measurement. I am much more careful now.

-Bruce Geist





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Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Tasslehoff
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

SAE- Siamese Algae Eater, there supposed to eat all types of algae.

"Dustin" wrote in message
...
Question - What is an SAE?

Dustin
"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water

quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


I goofed in dosing nitrate. You really can kill fish with stump

remover...
it aint hard to do! I lost an SAE and a big beautiful black ruby barb
because of a mis-measurement. I am much more careful now.

-Bruce Geist







  #13   Report Post  
Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Tasslehoff
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Shazbot, I meant -they're- not there.

"Tasslehoff" wrote in message
...
SAE- Siamese Algae Eater, there supposed to eat all types of algae.

"Dustin" wrote in message
...
Question - What is an SAE?

Dustin
"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water
quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com

I goofed in dosing nitrate. You really can kill fish with stump

remover...
it aint hard to do! I lost an SAE and a big beautiful black ruby barb
because of a mis-measurement. I am much more careful now.

-Bruce Geist









  #14   Report Post  
Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
SteveG
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

Siamese Algae Eater

http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_p...lgaeeaters.htm

If you get black hair algae, you would want to stock up on these fishes.
They're probably the only one that eats this type of algae.

"Dustin" wrote in message
...
Question - What is an SAE?

Dustin
"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
Well, it taught me that Discus fish really *is* sensitive to water

quality...
(everyone else survived, though)

--
Marvin
hlavac (at) rogers (dot) com


I goofed in dosing nitrate. You really can kill fish with stump

remover...
it aint hard to do! I lost an SAE and a big beautiful black ruby barb
because of a mis-measurement. I am much more careful now.

-Bruce Geist







  #15   Report Post  
Old 20-04-2003, 06:17 AM
Chuck Gadd
 
Posts: n/a
Default My Worst Planted Aquarium Mistake (Please Contribute Stories!)

On Mon, 06 Jan 2003 12:06:31 -0800, Dave Millman
wrote:

Here's a chance to give back to the group: Contribute the story of your
worst planted aquarium mistake, and how you fixed it. Here's mine:


I made a BIG mistake when I first set up my 75g tank. I spent all
spare cash buying the tank, stand, hood, CO2 rig, etc. I didn't have
any extra cash to buy fluorite, and didn't want this beautiful tank
sitting empty for a month waiting for the money. So, I used gravel
that I collected from a local river. It was hard work, collecting,
rinsing and cleaning it, but in the end, it looked very nice. I
filled the tank with the gravel, filled it with water, then over the
next few days I added a few plants and got the lights set up right.
After about a week, I was ready to start doing real planting. I
noticed a good bit of green spot algae on the front glass. I had one
of those cool magnetic algae scrapers to clean the glass on this
(relatively!!!!) massive tank. Back and forth a few times with the
scraper, and it was working well. Got it all cleaned and it looked
good. I had just removed the scraper, when I noticed I missed a spot
right in the middle of the tank. Instead of just using a normal
scraper or cleaning pad, I stuck the magnetic cleaner in again.
Unfortunately, I didn't notice that I had apparently gotten a little
to close to the bottom on the earlier cleaning, and some of that free
river gravel contained some particles that were magnetic. I pulled
the magnetic algae scraper, and gouged a 4 inch long scratch right
across the middle of the glass!

I threw the magnetic algae scraper in the trash, emptied the tank
(completely, water, gravel, etc) turned it around so the scratch was
now on the back, and refilled it. Haven't used one of those magnetic
scrapers since then.


Chuck Gadd
http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua


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