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Planning for 38-gallon community tank, looking for advice!

Discussion in 'New to the Hobby Questions and Answers' started by xxtarajean, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. Byron

    Byron Member

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    Right on, this is what I was trying to remember yesterday. And xxtarajean, try carefully pulling the Salvinia apart; they should lie flat on the surface in a sort of chain.

     
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  2. hobby5

    hobby5 Member

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    Don't do that. They are fine the way they are. Salvinia natans can look very different depending on conditions (light, crowding, nutritions, floating or kind of emers growth). The way they look now, they never have looked for me on a tank. So the new growth will most likely look different for you too. (More like Byron is expecting it.)
     
  3. squidneh

    squidneh Member

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    I browsed through the thread, and I didn't see anyone mention the fact that you'll have cories on gravel? That isn't ideal and could ultimately injure them. They do best/are happiest on sand, since they sift through it.
     
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  4. Toney

    Toney Fishaholic
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    Corys do just fine with gravel
     
  5. xxtarajean

    xxtarajean New Member

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    It's actually 25lbs of black sand with 5lbs black gravel on top and 5lbs blue gravel on top of that; it's already all mixing together as intended so should be fine for them!

     
    #35 xxtarajean, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
  6. xxtarajean

    xxtarajean New Member

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    We seem to have a little hitchhiker on our hands! I'm not able to get a very good photo of him because he's so tiny (less than a cm) but does anyone have any ideas what kind of snail he could be? His shell is just sort of brown and goldish. Maybe just a pond snail? He must've come in on one of the plants. We've had all of the plants in there since early this past weekend and I've spent so much time staring at the tank that I feel like I would have noticed him if he were there before because he's super active so he may have just hatched. I'm hoping it's just the one but we'll see over the next few days if any more hatch if that's in fact what happened with this guy!

    20180215_102628.jpg
     
    #36 xxtarajean, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
  7. Byron

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    Corydoras should always be over sand, nothing else, and a smooth sand. The fact that they may sometimes "manage" with gravel does not mean they would not be better over sand, nor does it mean they are not having problems.

    All species in the Corydoradidae family feed by taking up a mouthful of sand, sifting out any food particles, and expelling the sand out via the gills. This is a natural technique. They cannot do this with gravel. If you want healthy cories, have a plain sand substrate.

    I had fine gravel for several years, until I learned better. And I believe I have seen a difference in my cories.
     
  8. Byron

    Byron Member

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    This looks like a pond or bladder snail. They are completely harmless to plants. But having them is better for any aquarium. Snails eat organics, including fish excrement, breaking it down faster for the bacteria to deal with. And they can get everywhere within the aquarium, so they do a much more thorough job of "cleaning" than we could ever do ourselves. Let's hope you have more; this species breeds and lays eggs. The Malaysian Livebearing Snail is another good helper, it has a conical shaped shell like a horn of plenty.
     
  9. xxtarajean

    xxtarajean New Member

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    OH okay. I did notice after vacuuming yesterday that the gravel seems to have sunk to the bottom and the sand is on top for the most part. Do you think this is good or should I try to get all of the gravel pieces out? Again it's 25lbs sand and 10lbs gravel total.

     
  10. xxtarajean

    xxtarajean New Member

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    I've just read that pond snail numbers can get out of control pretty quickly! We do plan on getting a few mystery snails and/or a few zebra nerite snails both of which we've seen at the LFS so we were planning on letting those guys do some of the cleaning. Hopefully if there are more ponds we can keep the numbers under control or give some away if they get out of hand.

     
  11. Byron

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    If snails get "out of hand" it only means they are finding food sufficient to do so. If they cannot find food to eat, they will die. Which is why they are so useful. I have hundreds in my tanks, probably thousands in the larger tanks. They are there for a reason. The more you feed fish, the more excrement and the more food for snails. And any food missed by the fish will obviously be food for the snails. That is how you control them.
     
  12. Byron

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    Usually the finer grain substance, like sand here, sinks, leaving the larger grain gravel on top. If you have cories, I would recommend removing the gravel. If you want to pick most of it out, fine; or you could replace the substrate with plain sand like play sand.
     
  13. Toney

    Toney Fishaholic
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    Prove it Bryan.

    What really like sand is expensive filters........
     
  14. xxtarajean

    xxtarajean New Member

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    I actually don't mind a ton of snails, especially if they're beneficial. But you're saying if I don't overfeed then the numbers shouldn't get too crazy? I guess I just had it in my head that large amounts of them were bad as I've seen some people complaining about them getting out of hand. If anything in my opinion they'll add even more interest to the tank on top of keeping it cleaner so I won't worry about it. Maybe if that's the only one I'll add a few more so they can breed. Or are they hermaphroditic/capable of breeding on their own?

    Edited to add: also... will the larger snails we're planning on getting (3 zebra nerite and 3 mystery) eat these little guys?

     
    #44 xxtarajean, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2018
  15. Byron

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    Prove what exactly? That cories need a sand substrate? This is shown in the fish's physiology as I already inidicated, and it is proven in their natural habitats. No species of cory occurs over a gravel substrate. All species live either over sand or mud, with leaf litter in some cases. During the wet season they move into the flooded forest. There are no gravel substrates period. You can ask any authority on corydoras. I learned this primarily from Heiko Bleher.

    Responsible aquarists learn what the fish species requires, and then provide it. This is how you keep fish healthy.

    As for filters and sand, that is a problem of the aquarist not setting up the filter properly.
     

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