Duckweed has its uses, I had it in one tank deliberately. But more substantial plants are needed to provide shade. Water Sprite is #1, and Water Lettuce and Amazon Frogbit. Some stem plants do the job nicely, Pennywort left floating was good for me.
Brilliant, thank you :) the other plants are coming along nicely so things are looking a bit less bare already. Will look for some of the above.
 
Little update and things are looking much greener! Added some frogbit and the elodea densa finally arrived - after I'd already ordered more, so now I have loads. Left some floating and some in rings for now as I planted a few more crypto bulbs so will wait for those to grow before releasing the rest. I know my decor isn't the most natural (think I mentioned before I let my nieces choose it lol) but the plants should make up for that, and the fish are always in and out of the holes in the decor so they clearly don't mind!

Left the tank lights off all week to kill off the cyanobacteria, I'm pretty sure I transferred it over on a bit of decor from the old tank where all my problems were, so hopefully it won't come back but will seek advice if it does. Couldn't see any this morning when I did a water change but did give the decor a quick scrub just in case.

The corys are doing well, I think I'm starting to get my confidence back now so may think about adding something else if all continues to go well. I'm super paranoid so am checking water parameters pretty much daily.
 

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Added 4 lovely coloured mystery snails today 😍
 

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So although my initial plans when upgrading were just to add more cories to my existing group to help them feel safer, I have got a little group of a dozen pygmy cories today. No pictures yet as I have the tank lights off so that they can settle but am watching them explore, they seem very characterful for such little creatures. Will try and get pictures when I can.

I didn't see the snails for a day or two when they first arrived but they're doing well and are pretty rapid.

So we're now up to:
5 julii cories
4 panda cories (may get 1 more as I like equal numbers!)
12 pygmy cories
4 apple snails

I still see the 3 adult cories the least, these are the ones I transferred from my old tank. They are always the most shy, I don't know if it's because I had them in less than ideal conditions when they were growing up so never felt safe?
 
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Argh I've discovered some hitch-hiking snails in the past few days, must've come in on one of my plants. Have removed 5 so far, there's one more hiding that I lost sight of before I could get him. I only wanted 4 apple snails so these guys are very unwelcome :lol:

Bought a couple of new plants, anubias nana and an amazon sword. The pygmies are enjoying resting on the broad leaves, will have to try and get a picture.
 
This is definitely not a pest snail lol.
 

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Put a couple of new items of decor in - I foolishly let my nieces pick something from our local store so that's why I have the skull :lol: perhaps not my first choice but it should provide a lot of hiding places.
I read in a scientific journal once that skull's give Corydoras nightmares and PTSD :D haha, it's nice to read your progress. I've not taken the time to really look at other people's threads since I joined.

With the elodea densa, i used to view that (wrongly) as just some random pond weed! But I got some to go in my tank during the cycle last week. Only a few bunches to add some green! I thought I would throw them away once the tank was cycled and get ready the plants of my choice (Vallis, Crinum thaianum, and as many moss balls as I can afford) but I quite like the elodea densa now and might make them part of the family!

I love Cory's. Before, when i kept fish about 10 years ago or so, I had a 4 foot tank with about 30 Albino's and 10 Bronze and they were breeding like mad. I tried to raise as many fry as I could, but it was hard. I don't really want them breeding this time, as I can't afford to go mad like years gone by and up with multiple tanks in my house, but when they spawn the behaviour is beautiful. You can always watch it on YouTube. There are also some nice sticky threads on here with some corydoras in the wild.

EDIT: We must have similar size tanks, as mine is 110L
 
I read in a scientific journal once that skull's give Corydoras nightmares and PTSD :D haha, it's nice to read your progress. I've not taken the time to really look at other people's threads since I joined.

With the elodea densa, i used to view that (wrongly) as just some random pond weed! But I got some to go in my tank during the cycle last week. Only a few bunches to add some green! I thought I would throw them away once the tank was cycled and get ready the plants of my choice (Vallis, Crinum thaianum, and as many moss balls as I can afford) but I quite like the elodea densa now and might make them part of the family!

I love Cory's. Before, when i kept fish about 10 years ago or so, I had a 4 foot tank with about 30 Albino's and 10 Bronze and they were breeding like mad. I tried to raise as many fry as I could, but it was hard. I don't really want them breeding this time, as I can't afford to go mad like years gone by and up with multiple tanks in my house, but when they spawn the behaviour is beautiful. You can always watch it on YouTube. There are also some nice sticky threads on here with some corydoras in the wild.

EDIT: We must have similar size tanks, as mine is 110L
Haha I think the skull gives ME PTSD but the corys seem to love it! Everyone else has nice wood or stones but I have the skull lol. It could've been worse, my nieces originally wanted to pick a fluorescent castle! o_O

In my old tank elodea densa was the only plant I'd been able to keep going and at times it grew like crazy! I think it complements the rest of the plants I have quite well.

That's really cool that you used to breed corys, that's definitely not my intention with my bunch but it'd be interesting to see it if it ever happened. I enjoy watching them go about their business, I know they're not the most exciting or bold fish but I like their characters, and given I'm still a novice (in my eyes at least) I'll be sticking with them. The pgymys are actually much less shy than I thought, they often come over to see what I'm doing when I'm messing with something inside the tank.
 
We have some new additions in the tank today, 5 tiny ADF's. These were the first aquatic pets I ever had and I have a very soft spot for them. This may be a little controversial for some as I know some say they should be kept on their own to make sure the fish don't steal their food, but I'm used to feeding them by hand with a pipette to make sure they get their fair share. The plan is to try and train them to come to the surface to be fed, I had some success with this in the past so will see how I get on with these little guys.

Only just got them so they're a bit shy but managed to get some pics.

Definitely won't be adding anything else to this tank now as all my inhabitants are super peaceful species and I don't want to mess with it any more.
 

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I don't know a thing about these. I never kept anything like it. I typed into Google "ADF diet" and I got results for "alternative day fasting" for humans LOL. Intially i still thought it was about the frogs and that you can only feed them every other day!

So, are they not confident grabbing food then? Basically, is that a potential issue? Great that you can get around it with the technique you said.

It seems they can enjoy things like bloodworm. I used to give my Cory's frozen blood worm once a week and they loved it. Maybe check on that with the peeps on here.

What i am thinking is that if you put a frozen block of blood worms in warmed up tank water in a cup (not your bf's cup for tea), and let them defrost. Turn the filters / flow off for 5 mins, and the blood worm will disperse nicely on the substrate (and evenly (ish) if you do it right). I wonder how the ADFs will respond?

If you get out-muscled at meal times by a group of small Cory, then you definitely have issues :oops:
 
There is more reason to not keep ADF with fish than just the food. Fish will sometimes nip at the frogs. The frogs may bit onto a fish. If it becomes necessary to treat any fish issue, the frogs can suffer. It is the general advice in the hobby to not keep amphibians with fish.
 
I don't know a thing about these. I never kept anything like it. I typed into Google "ADF diet" and I got results for "alternative day fasting" for humans LOL. Intially i still thought it was about the frogs and that you can only feed them every other day!

So, are they not confident grabbing food then? Basically, is that a potential issue? Great that you can get around it with the technique you said.

It seems they can enjoy things like bloodworm. I used to give my Cory's frozen blood worm once a week and they loved it. Maybe check on that with the peeps on here.

What i am thinking is that if you put a frozen block of blood worms in warmed up tank water in a cup (not your bf's cup for tea), and let them defrost. Turn the filters / flow off for 5 mins, and the blood worm will disperse nicely on the substrate (and evenly (ish) if you do it right). I wonder how the ADFs will respond?

If you get out-muscled at meal times by a group of small Cory, then you definitely have issues :oops:
They have pretty poor eyesight and aren't very active about looking for food in the same way that fish are, so they can miss out if the food isn't targeted right at them. In the past I've defrosted worms/daphnia/brine shrimp and then used a pipette to give it to them, that's my plan with these guys so will see how they go.

They're still tiny so plan is to feed them twice a day for the first couple of weeks to make sure they're all getting enough until they hopefully get used to it.
 
There is more reason to not keep ADF with fish than just the food. Fish will sometimes nip at the frogs. The frogs may bit onto a fish. If it becomes necessary to treat any fish issue, the frogs can suffer. It is the general advice in the hobby to not keep amphibians with fish.
I have a QT tank that the frogs could move into permanently if I do notice any issues, or if any of them need medical treatment in future. I will of course keep an eye on them all, I've kept them together before but I know that doesn't necessarily mean smooth sailing this time.
 

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