30 Gallon Tank Hillstream loaches and rosy barbs in a planted tank.

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So I decided to make a journal for my tank, if not for others then just for recording my own progress.
On the road so far:
2020-10-07. I receive the tank and equipment.
2020-10-08. I start it. I plant moss, Ludwigia repens, hornswort (RIP), Java fern and pearl weed (those two aren't in a pic as I bought them later that day).

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I cycle it fishless using ammonia and fish food. I plant some Vallisneria. Despite toxic conditions, ramshorn snails that got in with plants are growing and breeding.
2020-10-25. The tank is cycled, I change 70% of water, because the nitrates are off the charts, and get my first INTENTIONAL aquarium pets - 3 mystery snails (purple Leela, blue Shran and yellow Wolf, latter of which turns out to have big gash in its shell that I somehow missed when picking them) and ~10 off-colour cherry shrimp (and a marimo ball). Water is dark because tannins.

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The moss looks amazing, while other plants struggle.

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2020-10-27. First fish! I get 3 rosy barb boys, as they didn't have any girls at the time. They're so hyper and fast that I name them Flash, Quicksilver and Bolt.
2020-11-03. I finally get 3 female rosy barbs, name them Tasha, Kira and T'Ana. The moss turns yellow and pale for some reason, and to make it worse the girls munch on it 24/7 like cows. I plan to wait a couple of weeks before buying the hillstream loaches to make sure barbs aren't sick, since the loaches are so much more expensive.
2020-11-06. Well... With an excuse of covid19 situation getting worse and uncertainty about the restrictions rising, I get 5 reticulated hillstream loaches, one of which later turns out to be SE01 instead. I name them Dax, Tal, Sec, Hei and Bai. I also get some more plants: Pogostemon helferi (the only one of this batch already growing), Limnophila sessiflora (looks bad, but alive), Pogostemon erectus (same as Limnophila), Proserpina palustris (RIP), and guppy grass (also probably RIP at this point).
2020-11-07. Annoyed about how badly all my plants look, and the fact they look slightly better in better lit areas, I reach a conclusion I need additional lamp to increase my lighting from very low to medium. It takes a couple of weeks to arrive though.
Somewhere around this time I buy 4 Amano shrimp, and later 1 bamboo shrimp (named it Sigma). And since Wolf is not looking good (its shell is degrading and unlike Leela and Shran it hasn't grown a bit), I get another yellow (more like orange actually) snail Donna.
2020-11-23. I install the new lamp. I buy more gravel (which is also smoother and looks nicer) to stop my plants getting uprooted everytime I vacuum the tank.
2020-11-24. I add the additional gravel, and while it rescape a bit. I also change a sponge of my internal canister filter to a denser one, as the original one wasn't doing proper mechanical filtration. My filter has a separate compartment with ceramic media for biological filtration, but in fear of crashing the cycle I leave the old sponge near the filter just in case.

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2020-11-25. Leaving that sponge in backfired big time. Two fish got stuck in it, and T'Ana got top third of her fin bitten off in her helpless state. I separate her to a 4 gallon bucket with a tiny filter, I add a piece of that old sponge to it to speed up its cycling. She hates it there, but I'm too afraid she might be fin-nipped even further in her clumsy state, and that if she dies while hiding somewhere, I'd have a hard time getting her out with all that hardscape.

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2020-11-26. I get some water lettuce from a neighbour. "Some" is actually an understatement, he gave me way too much, but the bright side of that was that I could throw some of them to T'Ana's bucket, giving her a cozy hiding place. I placed the ones I chose for the tank inside a ring made from plastic tube and anchored with a sucker thing, so they don't float all over the place. The roots look less green than I imagined, still not sure if they really fit in.

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2020-11-27. The moss is showing some growth again, I guess the additional lamp did work! I tie it a bit more thoroughly around the branches, because the barbs made it really loose.
 

Betta'sAnonymous

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Really liking that scape!
 

Basil

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Very nice! I’ve always like rosy barbs but didn’t realize they were plant munchers. My golden diamond barbs are the same way. I finally gave up keeping anything planted in their tank and went all java fern and anubias.
 
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Basil said:
Very nice! I’ve always like rosy barbs but didn’t realize they were plant munchers. My golden diamond barbs are the same way. I finally gave up keeping anything planted in their tank and went all java fern and anubias.
I knew what I was getting into before buying, as I've read mixed opinions about barbs in planted tanks, the average outcome being that they'll munch on some plants, but not all of them and won't eat it entirely. In my tank they only graze on moss. I'd also say that they somewhat lost their interest in it over time. If at first the females were grazing all the time, now they nip on some stems here and there, but aren't as voracious. Maybe they lacked something in their diet in the shop, or maybe me giving some peas made them realize there are more delicious ways to get that fiber.
 

Basil

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V1K said:
I knew what I was getting into before buying, as I've read mixed opinions about barbs in planted tanks, the average outcome being that they'll munch on some plants, but not all of them and won't eat it entirely. In my tank they only graze on moss. I'd also say that they somewhat lost their interest in it over time. If at first the females were grazing all the time, now they nip on some stems here and there, but aren't as voracious. Maybe they lacked something in their diet in the shop, or maybe me giving some peas made them realize there are more delicious ways to get that fiber.
Yeah mine weren’t plant munchers until I had to move them to a smaller tank. They get peas once a week and I added spinach another day. Hoping they leave the anubias alone lol!
My tiger barbs and cherry barbs completely ignore the plants.
 
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Today I got scared by one of the hillstreams. As it was sitting on glass, it looked like half of its underbelly turned brown. Turns out it was sitting in a partial shadow of the driftwood. I am, however, somewhat concerned about another hillstream loach, the smallest one, Tal. Since my rescape he just sits on glass on one side of the tank, and doesn't get off to eat. He moves around on the glass, but there isn't much algae on it to graze on, and its belly is visibly concave. It was the only one of my fish that got really stressed out by the rescape, and I guess it hasn't recovered yet. I hope it starts feeding soon.
T'Ana seems to be doing well in her quarantine bucket. Yesterday I scooped her out with a transparent cup to check on her condition (I can't see a thing in the bucket), and I think her tail is healing, and there are no signs of infection. I think I'll keep her there for a few more days until the splits in the part of the tail that was not bitten off heal, and put her back to the main tank.
 
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RIP Tal, the smallest of my hillstream loaches . On top of that, another hillstream, Bai, seems to have suffered some sort of trauma near its gill. The whole area on one side looks red when looking from below, and there seems to be a small wound when looking from above. No idea what happened. None of the fish seem agressive towards it. I can't help thinking I might have accidentally hit it with a syphon doing a water change today, since it looked fine yesterday...
 
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Post-dinner hangout at filter output aka fish jacuzzi. All gang is here, only Quicksilver is hiding in the shadows watching them ominously. Soon.
 
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It looks like Bai got well and is goofing around
 
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New skill - now I can tell my hillstream loaches apart not just from their top side, but their bootom side too. Dax, the spotted one, has a fin pattern different enough for it to be visible from below, so I could tell it apart for a while. But recently I noticed that Bai has white troat, Hei has black throat (conveniently, as that's what their names mean), and Sec has pink one (I even was worried there's something wrong with it, but it's doing fine so I guess it's just what it looks like). I'm also starting to notice differences in body shape, and I think Bai is the only girl in the group and the rest are the boys. Would certainly match the personalities, as Bai stays out of all their squabbles.
 
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Oh my goodness, Christmas miracle - there are baby fish in the tank. I'm seeing several rosy barb fries swimming around. Their chances aren't great, because if it's not the parents that will get them, then there are hundreds if not thousands of hydras about the same size as they are lurking everywhere. But maybe...
 

Jacklynn

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V1K said:
Oh my goodness, Christmas miracle - there are baby fish in the tank. I'm seeing several rosy barb fries swimming around. Their chances aren't great, because if it's not the parents that will get them, then there are hundreds if not thousands of hydras about the same size as they are lurking everywhere. But maybe...
Hydras? Good luck with your little fry! Merry Christmas.
 
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Jacklynn said:
Hydras? Good luck with your little fry! Merry Christmas.
Yeah, hydras are everywhere. I think it has to do with a fact that there's always a lot of suspended particles in the tank, making feeding easy for them. I was considering getting some fenbendazole, but the closest veterinary clinic closed up for quarantine period, and it's not sold online in my country, and I don't feel like driving to some further clinic to see if they have any, and I should quarantine my mystery snails for the period of treatment if I got it, so I don't know... In other words I'm just being lazy.
 
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My bamboo shrimp was gone for over a week and I was starting to think it died, but today I found in a new hiding place. Less visible than before, unfortunately. It's sitting under the hillstreams' favourite rock, in sort of a cave formed by the rocks.
 
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I added some new plants lately. A couple of weeks ago I got red root floaters, with a few Salvinia minima and frogbits mixed in, and Heteranthera zosterifolia, all growing - slowly, but steadily. Then more recently I've got Nymphoides, Cryptocoryne wendtii kompakt, Bucephalandra narcissus and a whole lot of Bolbitis ferns. One of Limnophila sessiliflora shoots really took off lately, already reached the top.
The animals are all doing well. Bai the hillstream seems to have gone all the way down in the pecking order while she was injured and is chased away during feeding time, but I see her scavenging around in other times, so I hope she gets enough to eat. To be exact, the other hillstreams treat her exactly as they treat each other, it's just that unlike the rest she never stands up for herself and flees. Barb fry disappeared, as expected. Bamboo shrimp is in hiding again, haven't seen it for days.
 

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The new plants look good! Watch out, depending on the type of nymphoides, it could take over the tank eventually! If it's N. aquatica, it'll be fine, but N. hydrophylla can send out so many leaves and runners that it overtakes everything else.
 
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Kribensis27 said:
The new plants look good! Watch out, depending on the type of nymphoides, it could take over the tank eventually! If it's N. aquatica, it'll be fine, but N. hydrophylla can send out so many leaves and runners that it overtakes everything else.
It's Nymphoides hydrophilla Taiwan. I plan to keep it pruned so that it only shades the ferns that are growing on that side and judging from staghorn algae growing on them are getting too much light. Based on what I've read in several unrelated sources, they propagate by forming plantlets on their leaves, and not runners, so it shouldn't be too hard to keep it in check, unless that info is wrong.
 
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I got fed up with washing my internal filter sponge every few days and bad mechanical filtration, so I switched my internal Aquael Turbo 500 to used external Fluval 207. I put the ceramic media from the internal filter to the external filter's section meant for it, so the cycle wasn't affected. It's been running for a few days, and I wouldn't say it's doing anything special in terms of mechanical filtration. It's either still too weak or it's simply impossible to have completely clear water with the rosy barbs. At least it doesn't clog all the time, so that's a step up. Also it provides way more water movement, even though in theory it's only 1.6 times stronger than the internal one. I took out the airstone and disconnected the compressor, because one, it seemed like an overkill, two, the compressor would buzz annoyingly sometimes. I kind of miss the sight of the bubbles, but I definitely don't miss the buzzing. My first impression of the external filter was that it's noisy too, but as it worked for a while it got quieter and the sound itself got more pleasant.

So time ago I tied the willow moss that is growing on the big wood in my tank, in hopes that this would prevent rosy barbs from tearing it apart and litering all the tank with it. It backfired, making it easier for them to eat, and they pretty much exterminated it. So now my neighbour gave me Java moss, and I tied it to the wood. So far I haven't seen the barbs eating it, so hopefully I'll have a cozy moss cover on that wood again.

Today I watched barb boys Bolt and Flash spinning in circles around each other for a few minutes. I guess it was some disagreement about the girls . They weren't nipping each other, so it was quite fun to watch.

I wonder if Bolt will ever regrow his tail (he's in the photo below). It was like that when I got him 3 months ago and it's just growing proportionally to its body, but it stays in this weird trident shape. T'Ana lost a third of her tail and has nearly regrown it by now, jet the dents in his tail aren't growing. I don't think he has rot either because it would be worse by now, wouldn't it?
 
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Sigma the bamboo shrimp is a cowardly dumbo... There is a good flow in the tank and visible amount of suspended particles, but no, it stays in hiding between the stones on the bottom where there's obviously no flow and scavenges through mulm on the bottom as if it had no other way... :confused:. You're big and fat, nobody's going to eat you, geez...
 
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Bai the snail rider taking Leela as her mount this time. The val eventually gave in to their added weight and sent them both back to the bottom.
 

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Cool Hillstream loach by the way!
In most fish cases I think that his tail will grow back or replenish itself. Just make sure that they keep a really good slime coat on themselves and do many water changes, twice a week at most if you want to see quicker changes. I do this with my Angelfish that possibly get damaged fins.

Very beautiful tank as well! I love how you used the driftwood as a big tree almost Super cool tank and coming along nicely!
 
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Phormist said:
In most fish cases I think that his tail will grow back or replenish itself. Just make sure that they keep a really good slime coat on themselves and do many water changes, twice a week at most if you want to see quicker changes. I do this with my Angelfish that possibly get damaged fins.
Yeah, but the weird thing is that this one fish I bought like this and it haven't changed in 3 months, while another fish lost HUGE part of the tail while in my tank, and already regrown it to the point where it's in better condition than the one that I got with already nipped tail. Do male and female fish differ in their rate of regeneration..?
 

Phormist

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Yeah, but the weird thing is that this one fish I bought like this and it haven't changed in 3 months, while another fish lost HUGE part of the tail while in my tank, and already regrown it to the point where it's in better condition than the one that I got with already nipped tail. Do male and female fish differ in their rate of regeneration..?
Possibly but I have no solid information on whether they do or not. It could all come down to their genetics...
 
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Me: I'll only give my fish 1 algae wafer, so it's not enough for Amano shrimp and they eat some algae for a change.
Amano shrimp: grabs 1/4 of a wafer all for itself.
 
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Today I bought two more hillstream loaches, bringing the total number to 6. No quarantine, as I have nothing sufficient for a needy species like hillstreams. The guy in the LFS said they were there for a few months, which would mean they're the same batch as the ones I bought before. However, they are noticeably smaller - which I guess says good things about my tank, right ? Continuing the naming theme of 3-letter, 1-syllable names (Dax, Sec, Hei, Bai), I named these two Cas and Din.
This is Cas:

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Cas is very nervous little fish, kept zooming across the glass back and forth for a good couple of hours. Eventually it tired itself out and was just sitting on the glass, but when I fed the tank it cheered up a bit and joined the others to feed. It is noticeably lighter than my other hillstreams, me and the guy in the shop looked long and hard at it to make sure it's actually lineolata (they were the last two there).
This is Din:

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Din is more chill, I didn't really see it while the light were off, and when they switched on I found it grazing on stones already.
There were a lot of pecking going on around the feeding time between the old ones and the new ones. The new ones were a bit more shy, but they weren't completely submissive, which I guess is a good thing, that they can stand up for themselves.
 
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It's been 2 weeks since I purchased two additional Sewellia lineolata. No problems have emerged, and they fit in just fine. They're pretty low in pecking order, but they stand their ground. They also provide the old omega, Bai, a bit of a break. And although addition of 2 small fish doesn't sound like much of a difference, they really improved the general visibility of the hillstream loaches.
It's interesting how the single Sewellia SE01, Dax, has a completely different daily routine than all of the S. lineolata. In the morning, when the lights come on, all the lineolatas are sitting on glass. They sort of have preferred areas, Bai and Din in one end of the tank, Hei and Sec on the front glass, and Cas on the opposite end. They don't move much during the first half of the photoperiod, meanwhile, Dax is all over the tank, grazing. Then comes siesta and they all become more or less active. Then, when the light turn on for the second time in the evening, it's the lineolatas grazing everywhere, while Dax is just chilling on its stone.

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For two weeks now I'm observing 3 baby rosy barbs, that managed to avoid being eaten by their parents and are living in a bush of Limnophila sessiliflora. At the moment they're about the size of a wheat grain, so they are still at risk of being eaten, but they did survive this long so maybe they know what they're doing

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I hope this sort of thing will become common recurrence as the vegetation thickens, and I might even make a couple of bucks selling the offspring. Does anyone know how long rosy barbs take to grow from fry to showing their colours so they can be sexed? I tried googling it, but didn't find any info on that.

The addition of Java moss instead of willow moss was a gamechanger, I'm so gratefull to the neighbour for suggesting that. Barbs don't eat it and it's not soft enough to be torn during their mating frenzies, so my tank is so much cleaner now! I used to pick torn mosses off other plants every couple of days, and now that doesn't happen at all. Some stray moss ends up near the filter intake sponge, but not nearly as much as with willow moss. There's still surviving willow moss here and there, but somehow the barbs don't notice them when they're scattered, and don't graze on them as much as when they were all in one place.

I tried to fight staghorn algae using liquid carbon, but nothing happened. I didn't dose much because I didn't want to kill my Vallisneria. Vals are fine, but Limnophila sessiliflora turned brownish and ugly, almost as if it had brown algae on it. So I stopped the treatment. The Limnophilla is growing back nice green branches now. I'd like to trim it, but as mentioned above there's baby fish living in it, so I'll wait until there are more new branches to provide hiding spots, or until they move out. I guess I'll have to make peace with the staghorn, there isn't that much of it anyway.

I've read this theory that sometimes the cause of algae is not the excess of nutrients, but the lack of them, preventing the plants from growing fast and outcompeting them. My nitrates are always low and most of my fast-growing plants are indeed growing slower than they should (except Ludwigia, I even sold some), and my water lettuce got really small, so I'm doing a bit of an experiment with fertilization - despite it being a low tech tank, I bough ferts with macronutrients. I started fertilizing the tank and today I could register some nitrates with my test strips (I accidentally bought ones that has 10 ppm as the lowest value, so I'd always get 0; now it's bit paler than 10, maybe 7 or so). I'll keep monitoring the nitrates to see how fast the plants are consuming them, to avoid overfertilization.

My tank at the moment:

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Fishkeeper25

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It looks like Bai got well and is goofing around
the hillstream loach: Giddy up snail
the snail: Um excuse you?
 
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This week I did a 3 day blackout to fight the staghorn algae. Today I ended it. There's certainly less algae, but some remained. Especially on African fern and pearl weed. I notice that some plants are more "sticky" than others in a sense that even when the algae die off they just don't fall off. Like when I had brown algae in the beginning, as new tanks do, and then they disappeared from everywhere, they remained on pearlweed until those parts were simply covered by new growth, but never fell off.
I've read that one of the reasons for staghorn algae can be dead spots in water circulation, and that you're supposed to have all plants slightly moving, which was certainly not the case. Although I don't think it's the reason, as some of the most infested spots were dead in the middle of the flow, I though it wouldn't harm to add more flow. So, I took out the old internal filter out of storage, took off all its accessories other than the intake sponge to make it as compact as possible, installed it in the opposite end of the tank than the external filter tubes, and turned the flow towards the front glass (the external filter blows along the back glass). I also put it as deep as hardscape allowed (external output is near the surface for oxigenation). It took a bit of playing around to get the right spot and intensity not to blow the plants around too much. The fish are certainly having a blast. Although external filter output is strong, they don't play in it because it's near the surface and they don't really like to be there, or maybe it's too strong. Now the internal filter flow they alway loved, it was kind of pity when I took it out and they lost their jakuzzi.
I also somewhat reduced lighting intensity, as I suspect the real culprit of the algae is low CO2, and I don't plan to do anything about that. I used to have 2 intervals of 4 hours with 2 lamps on, now I set it for 2 intervals where 2 lamps are on for 2 hours, and then only 1 is on for the other 2 hours. I hope this will suffice because I like to see my tank as much as possible and some of my plants like intense light.
 
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New photos of baby rosy barbs. It seems that only 2 remained, but these two have grown significantly and I think they should be more or less safe. Technically, the adults could swallow them, but it would take some effort, and they're really careful and fast to hide. They are at least 1.5 cm/ 0.6 in in lenght (tail included).
 
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Today one of rosy barb females, Kira, has died . Not sure what happened. Several days ago I noticed she was missing a couple of scales and there was a bit of redness where the scales used to be. It didn't seem like a cause of much concern. Then yesterday there was a rather large and pink wound on her side, with several scales missing, and the ones around the wound pineconed. She was acting normal, so I thought she might pull through. Yet today she became passive and eventually died. My hypothesis is that she got injured and it got infected. I hope it wasn't a disease all along and that healthy fish won't catch it. I did a water change yesterday in hopes to help her heal, I wonder if I should do one today to dilute any bacteria she might have spread, or am I overthinking?
 

Phormist

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Today one of rosy barb females, Kira, has died . Not sure what happened. Several days ago I noticed she was missing a couple of scales and there was a bit of redness where the scales used to be. It didn't seem like a cause of much concern. Then yesterday there was a rather large and pink wound on her side, with several scales missing, and the ones around the wound pineconed. She was acting normal, so I thought she might pull through. Yet today she became passive and eventually died. My hypothesis is that she got injured and it got infected. I hope it wasn't a disease all along and that healthy fish won't catch it. I did a water change yesterday in hopes to help her heal, I wonder if I should do one today to dilute any bacteria she might have spread, or am I overthinking?
I would possibly do a water change, definitely not overthinking. That’s a pretty rational concern, I wouldn’t do a full water change but maybe just do half of what you normally do or only do a 25% water change.
 

Kathylee

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Today one of rosy barb females, Kira, has died . Not sure what happened. Several days ago I noticed she was missing a couple of scales and there was a bit of redness where the scales used to be. It didn't seem like a cause of much concern. Then yesterday there was a rather large and pink wound on her side, with several scales missing, and the ones around the wound pineconed. She was acting normal, so I thought she might pull through. Yet today she became passive and eventually died. My hypothesis is that she got injured and it got infected. I hope it wasn't a disease all along and that healthy fish won't catch it. I did a water change yesterday in hopes to help her heal, I wonder if I should do one today to dilute any bacteria she might have spread, or am I overthinking?
Sorry about your fishes, but your tank looks really great! The plants & scape came out very well!
 
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I think Bai (one of the hillstream loaches) is dying. I've noticed it and Dax and just sitting on the back of the tank not feeding yesterday evening. However, today Dax is feeding and seems to be fine. Bai, on other hand, was just sitting on the glass all day, increasingly inactive. When I fed all fish, it stayed on the glass, but it happened to be in Cas' territory, so it kept bothering it, trying to scare Bai out. Normally Bai would swim away from bullies, but now it just slowly wiggled away, not far enough to get out of Cas' sight. Eventually I quarantined Bai in a bucket both to give it peace and stop Cas touching it, in case whatever Bai has is infectious. At this point the quarantine is more of "make as comfortable as possible" kind of thing than actual hope it will make it, but I just don't have clove oil for eutanasia, and also I'm only like 95% sure it will die, so you know, not feeling ready to abandon those 5% too soon.
No idea what is wrong with it. I tested water, it's NH3 0, NO2 0, NO3 ~7. No injury, no symptoms of ilnesses that I know of. It doesn't look starved. I guess there was a reason it was an omega in pecking order and never managed to climb higher. I always thought it lost its status a few months ago when it was injured. It healed, but maybe the injury had long term health effects. I really hope there isn't something infectious happening in my tank. Will be doing a water change tomorrow, as it's time for it anyway.

Edit: Bai was dead this morning. Bye Bye Bai Bai .
 
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On a more cheerful mode, all 3 baby rosy barbs are growing. Surprisingly, at a very different pace. They all started more or less the same, but now one of them is twice as big as the other two. It's also the most brave and active one, although I'm not sure which is cause and which is effect: is it big because it's brave and gets more food, or is it brave because it's big and therefore more confident. Since sex is unclear and they have no names, I refer to them as #1, #2 and #3 based on size in a descreasing order. Here you can see #1, the biggest one. Others are harder to catch, as they tend to hide behind the plants.
 
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Made a couple of rather nice pictures of babies #1 and #2. Today 1 was chasing 2 a lot, probably establishing itself as an alpha among the young. 2 had a siphoning accident during the last water change, which caused frayed tail, but it's fine otherwise.

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#1 next to a juvenile shrimp.

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#3 is still more cautious, mostly hanging out in darker corners and extra fidgety, so no chance of taking a nice picture of it yet. Here's one extra blurry where it's side to side with 1.

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Mudminnow

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Those two little rosy barbs are awesome. Congratulations on raising them. Also, your moss and other plants look nice and healthy. Well done.
 
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Today I replanted 2 crypts - I moved them from foreground, one to midground and another one to a corner - because it seems that from 3 C. wendtii kompakt only one is a real deal, and other 2 are just a regular C. wendtii, way too tall for the foreground. I made a big mess replanting them, hence the cloudiness in the photo.
It seems that red root floaters and salvinia will gradually disappear from my tank. IMO, red root floaters should be called red root sinkers instead, because they are SO. BAD. AT. FLOATING! They get sunk by fish, by water flow, by maintenance, etc. - and then they die. IDK what's the deal with salvinia, it floats like a pro, but it just turns black and dies. Water lettuce got really small in my tank, but it is propagating. My innitial reason for getting RRF and salvinia were that the lettuce roots were way too long for the centre of the tank and were blocking the view - but now that they're short they will be suitable to replace the dying species. I also have frogbit, which grows and propagates well despite fish eating its roots and snails eating its leaves. Ironically, when I saw one mixed in with red root floaters, I thought it will almost definitely die in my tank, because the internet said "don't get the leaves wet under any circumstances!!!1!!" and I really can't be bothered with that; and yet, currently it looks the healthiest out of all my floating plants .

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V1K

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Another hillstream loach, Cas, is dying. This being the 3rd one out of 7 I can't help thinking I'm doing something wrong, but I can't think of anything beyond water parameters and they are fine. This evening I noticed that it looks like it hasn't eaten (concave belly) and doesn't join others for food. No other external symptoms visible. It's becoming increasingly weak, not strong enough to go up a glass or rock. Other 4 are active, with normally looking bellies, foraging all over the place... Cas was the one harrassing Bai before it died a month and a bit ago, so I wouldn't rule out some sort of disease? Now Cas is harrassed by Hei, if Hey dies next I'll know for sure it's a disease. I think I'll just take it out to minimize contact, I don't think it has any chances of recovery anyway.
 
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