Moving on up....to a 10 gallon

sairving

I had the urge to go from a 5-gallon tank to a 10- gallon. I had been debating on what size to get or buy a fluval flex for a few weeks. My grandma passed away unexpectedly in August. Planning a new tank turned into a good way to get my mind off of everything going on.

One sale at Pet supplies plus later, and I became the owner of a shiny 10-gallon tank. My first goal after buying the tank was to find a fun piece of driftwood. After 25 mins of digging through all the driftwood at my lfs, I found the right piece.


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The next thing I had to figure out was the substrate. My first tank was 3-gallons and I used aquasoil. It was an unbalanced mess of a tank. Then I bought a 5.5-gallon tank. I used Seachem flourite. That tank was balanced but I didn't get great plant growth.

I spent three days thinking maybe I should just use pool filter sand. Then I found a bunch of YouTube videos from Father Fish. If I didn't have to put fish in the tank immediately, I would have tried his deep sand bed, dirted tank method.

Instead somebody suggested a really good compromise. Buy a small bag of fluval stratum to place where the plants will be and cap it with sand. Everyone was sold out of small bags of stratum, so I bought a small bag of Brightwell Aquatics FlorinVolcanit aquasoil instead. I put the entire bag on the bottom and capped it with sand.

If anyone wants an aquasoil that doesn't leach ammonia, FlorinVolcanit is your best choice. There were no ammonia readings at all after the tank was set up. It's perfect for already established tanks.

I'll add more later so this doesn't turn into a novel-length first journal post.
 

sairving

About a month ago, after picking up a bag of pool filter sand and receiving my aquasoil in the mail, It was time to set up my brand new 10-gallon tank. My friend volunteered to help. It goes much faster when you have an extra person.

Step 1

Drag my non-fishkeeping friend, who is helping, on an impromptu shopping trip to the lfs. Look through the bin of dragonstone for a decent-sized rock. Find one, randomly look at fish, forget something else, look at more fish, my friend looks at the saltwater fish. 50 mins later we leave.

Step 2

Remove betta, snail, and plants. Break down the old tank

Step 3

Empty out the fish tank stand and flip it over to the 20-gallon side.

Step 4

Rinse the pool filter sand, place in tank, forget to add aquasoil, swear as we pull out the sand, add aquasoil, and cap with sand.

Step 5

At this point we are hungry. I order food on Door Dash.

Step 6

My friend realizes how much work aquariums are and is glad she has a ball python instead. Mostly because ball pythons don't need tanks full of water.

Step 7

Add hardscape, plant the tank, add seeded filters, fill with water, and add inhabitants to the tank.

Step 8

Door Dash arrives with food. Time to eat.


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This was the tank right after setup. The water was still a little cloudy and the plants weren't in their final location. About 3 days later I went on Marcus Fish tanks and bought some crypts and anubias.
 

sairving

After my order from Marcus FIsh tanks showed up, I moved some of the hardscape to its current location and planted my new crypts. The crypts and anubias coffefolia arrived in really good condition. Louie the betta's new tank had been running for two weeks at this point and the filtration needed tweaking. I had a sponge filter and an Aquatop Forza 5-15 running. Eventually, the plan was to add about 6 pygmy corydoras.

I took a trip to Petco and bought an Aquaclear 20. Unfortunately, the impeller was noisy. Back the Aquaclear went to the store. The Aquaclear 20 was replaced with a Seachem Tidal 35. I love this filter! It's silent and has a big basket for filter media. Just baffle the flow and you can use it in a 10 gallon with a betta.

I have no idea what type of driftwood I bought, but it still leaches tannins.


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otterblue

I'm sorry for your loss. Hobbies can be really therapeutic during times of grief.

On the plus side, your tank looks really awesome!
 

MyFishAddiction

Following! Tank looks very nice.
 

sairving

I'm sorry for your loss. Hobbies can be really therapeutic during times of grief.

On the plus side, your tank looks really awesome!

Thanks. This tank has been therapeutic. Just planning for it got my mind of everything going on and put me in a better mood. I've been pretty happy with how it's been looking. Right now the tank is going through its diatom phase so things are kind of ugly. I also had problems with the pygmy cories I bought. Ended up having to treat the tank for parasites this weekend.
Following! Tank looks very nice.

Thanks!
 

JustAFishServant

Thanks. This tank has been therapeutic. Just planning for it got my mind of everything going on and put me in a better mood. I've been pretty happy with how it's been looking. Right now the tank is going through its diatom phase so things are kind of ugly. I also had problems with the pygmy cories I bought. Ended up having to treat the tank for parasites this weekend.


Thanks!
If I were you I wouldn't touch those tannins. Keep them, they're better for the fish (including pygmy cories) anyway. Then again, maybe I'm biased and just like backwater tanks way too much :p
 

sairving

If I were you I wouldn't touch those tannins. Keep them, they're better for the fish (including pygmy cories) anyway. Then again, maybe I'm biased and just like backwater tanks way too much :p

If the water out of my tap wasn't liquid rock, I would totally have a blackwater tank. I add Indian Almond leaves and adler cones after every water change. At some point, I will probably start running peat in the filter again.

Update Time! (No idea why the update was merged with my reply.)

I finally have time for an update! Things have been busy around here. We've been cleaning the carpet for the holidays and the desktop PC took a dump. Under normal circumstances, we would upgrade but hardware is crazy expensive right now and there are no GPUs anywhere. The local computer shop is going to try and resurrect the desktop. I'm really glad I bought a Chromebook a few months back.

Anyway.....

I started lighting this tank with a finnex planted plus clip. I decided to play around with the photoperiod. Everything was going well. The light was on in the morning and evening. One day though, I found a fluval Aquasky at a really good price ($40). I decided to splurge. In anticipation, I watched all of Bentley Pascoe's videos on the Aquasky. I tweaked one of the settings he uses and put the light on my tank.

All was going well until the roots of my amazon frogbit and driftwood became covered in algae. I dialed back the lighting by 10% and removed the frogbit. Yesterday, I removed some of the algae from the driftwood. I fully admit to being lazy with tank maintenance last week.

Here are the settings I'm currently using on my aquasky. I really really really like the Aquasky. If you are growing medium to low light, undemanding plants. The aquasky is a really awesome light.



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I'll post about the issues I had with some pygmies and current pictures tomorrow.
 

sairving

About 3 weeks ago, I bought 3 pygmy cories from my lfs. The fish seemed healthy for about 5 days. One morning, I found a dead pygmy. It didn't look like he'd been attacked by Louie. Later that morning, pygmy 2 is sitting on the bottom looking rather skinny. Pygmy 3 is zooming around the tank and eating like normal. Thinking it could be parasites, I medicated the tank with API general cure. I lost another pygmy. Now I have one pygmy. One of these days, I'm going to have to get some more.

During this whole mess, I had an algae outbreak and had to remove my floating plants. I haven't managed to get the tank completely balanced yet. My plants have been doing well. I added some jungle vals, another crypt, and anubias. So far, I have been really happy with this tank.

These pictures are from October 22nd.


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I took these a few days ago


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