?s about fairly new tank

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by drewnation, Nov 25, 2012.

  1. drewnation New Member Member

    I recently obtained a 10g tank, i currently have 1 honey gourami, 1 oto, and 2 mickey mouse platies, i have 1 anubis plant and a fake floating plant and another decoration (looks like an ancient tower thing, the oto loves it apparently lol).
    I was wondering with the gourami should i have something for it to hide in?
    Also, the floating fake plant is a supposed to be like bamboo leaves and I'd say it takes up arond 30-40% of the top of the water, should i remove it?
    I have not seen the gourami eat and ive had him almost a week (got the 2 platies at petsmart on blk friday).
    I got the gourami some frozen blood worms and fed him some about 3 nights ago and it seems he ate SOME of them but there was alot of leftovers (removed with 30% water change that im changing weekly). What else could i try and feed him, feel bad for the little guy..
    Also when i do a water change i can see a good amount of particles in the water, is that normal? after replacing the water and having the filter on for a little they seem to go away but should i change more than 30% weekly or is that 2 much already?

    I'm really new at this and want to upgrade to a much bigger tank soon but trying to get the basics under control first.
    Thanks in advance for any of your info/input it will be greatly appreciated!!!!! Andrew~

  2. Daac Well Known Member Member

    Hello, first of all you need to read about the nitrogen cycle. This is very important to fish keeping and is something you need to know about before continuing. Going off that you should probably get a test kit like the API master kit in order to test your water so see if it is safe for the fish. They may be stressed from ammonia buildup. As for the floating plant as long as the fish can fit through it and get to the top easily it should be fine and they probably enjoy its cover. I'm sure the gourami would like a hiding place and live plants like wisteria and java ferns make great places to hide as does driftwood. The particles in your water could be a bacterial bloom which is very good (read about the nitrogen cycle) or it could just be minerals and bit from your tap which is normal and is nothing to worry about. Right now your top priority should be reading up on the nitrogen cycle. This will clear up a lot for you. Good luck and welcome to the forum!

  3. drewnation New Member Member

    Thanks for your reply! I have the API master test kit, on the readings the ammonia and nitrite are fine the nitrate is only one that seems to show up but is still well below 5ppm. The tank has been running for almost 2 months now, try and get the test in every week or every other. Should i do the test before the water change or after? I just did a 30% water change last night (3g).

    I have gravel for the bottom and heard that live plants are okay in the gravel, is that true? I also got some API leaf zone for the current plant since the tank is not directly in the sun but does get a little light as well for hopefully speeding up the growth of the plant. Is the gravel okay for live plants, will they thrive in it? Was hoping to eventually remove the fake plant in place of live plants.

    Forgot i could add some driftwood in there, that will give it a much more real feel. Where do you recommend getting driftwood online or at a LFS? Thanks again for the response!!
  4. Terra Well Known Member Member

    If you're getting 0 ammonia and nitrites and more than 0 nitrates then you're cycled! :) You can't ever get rid of nitrates completely unless you have a good number of live plants, but that's ok. As low as yours are it's great, up to 20 is normal and below 40 is safe for most fish. Do water tests before changes.

    Plants are for the most part fine in gravel, your anubias is actually better attached to something. If you plant the rhizome into the gravel it will rot and die. The rhizome is the thicker green part above the roots, keep that above the gravel, you can plant the roots. What most folks do is use thread or rubber bands to attach them to things like your ancient tower or to rocks or driftwood. By the time the thread decays the plant will hopefully be rooted onto the object.

    If you can find driftwood local it's probably cheaper, people charge a good bit to mail it. I have bought a couple pieces of Malaysian driftwood from drsfostersmith.com for only $5-10 and about the same in shipping. They're not big and magnificent, but they're good for my anubias and fish :)

    Anubias plants are super slow growers, and they're ok in low light. Watch for algae, if you provide too much fertilizer for such a slow plant, you might get algae instead. Some more low light plants you might try are anacharis (that stuff grows like a weed in my worst lit tank), java fern, any anubias type plant, and a lot of the crypts (cryptocoryne wendtii for example is pretty), and brazilian pennywort.
  5. Daac Well Known Member Member

    I agree with tha above although I have never been able to keep anacharis alive. You could try it though. I've always had luck with moss, ferns, wisteria, onions, and aponogetons. Any driftwood should be fine so long as it is properly dried and everything for putting in a tank (you can't just cut a branch off a tree and put it in your tank). Some plants will thrive in gravel but I prefer the look of sand and it is easier to plant in. The plants aren't so hard to keep down in the substrate. I also really love dirted NPT tanks which is where there is a layer of dirt below the sand or gravel and plants do amazing with this. You can see some of my threads that have information about these but you would only want to do one when setting up a new tank. SO it wouldn't work for your current tank but if you are up for a challenge and want some great plants definitely consider trying a dirted tank. If you have any questions about it just let me know because I have done a few now and if I don't know I'm sure somebody else on here does. I'll post my thread links in a min...

    Here ya go:
  6. drewnation New Member Member

    Thanks guys loving the info/advice! So i can attach any or all live plants to driftwood? I was under the impression that sunlight hitting the roots would kill the roots. It's safe to put a rubber band in the tank and it will eventually break once the roots have anchored in and can remove it then?
    Terra, thanks for the site, looking up info on it as we speak.
    Daac, looked at your NPT links awesome stuff. Planning on upgrading to another tank soon and almost certainly making it a NPT.
    Looking up additional info on the plants aswell to see what would be best for my setup, thank you so much for the info yall!
  7. Terra Well Known Member Member

    lol Daac, that's funny on the anacharis.. I wonder what I'm doing differently, cuz that's the only plant I seem to be unable to kill.

    When I ordered my very first plants I had a 10 gallon tank with the incandescent hood that it came with... which was beyond low light. Everything except the anacharis and pennywort died, and the pennywort was brown and struggling by the time I upgraded to some CFL bulbs in a better color range. The anacharis however, was actually doubled in size.

    Depends on the plant... rooted plants and stem plants you can push down into your gravel. Stem plants you can also leave floating if you prefer or weigh them down with a plant weight. Anubias plants and java fern have that rhizome that needs to stay above the gravel, with roots that will attach to rocks, wood, toys, or can be planted to grow in the gravel. I believe the rhizome gets nutrients from the water, which is why it needs to be uncovered. For my anubias I tied it with some brown thread to my brown driftwood, so you can't see it. For my java fern I've used a rubber band to hold it down onto a flat rock, then buried the edges of the rock under the substrate so only the middle part with the rhizomes are showing. Neither of those have grabbed ahold of their base yet with roots, but I'm hopeful they will some day :D
  8. Daac Well Known Member Member

    Yeah I dont know why I can't keep it alive haha. But yeah only rhisosome plants can be tied to driftwood and for the rubber band that will work but using a sewing cotton thread would be better. They are smallerso they cant be seen and will take much longer to break down giving the plant more time to anchor itself. Most rubber bands would only last a few weeks or months.