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Old 11-05-2016, 02:33 AM   #1
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novice eel owner, any advice welcome

just getting back into aquarium owning after years of not having one, im 36 now and the last aquarium i had is when i was 17. right off the bat i pulled the classic rookie mistake and did not cycle my tank, i had water in it for about 48 hours before i put some fish and my tire track eel in. needless to say some fish have died and i feel like an *** but the eel and others have soldiered on and im sure the tank has cycled properly, ammonia has dropped to zero or nearly zero levels for days and nitrate levels are normal, on to the eel. i know nothing about freshwater eels and im not even 100% sure hes a tire track but i love eelson(my eel) already so any advice anybody could give would be very much appreciated. things i would really like to know are how much can i feed him? i want him to get big fast but i dont want to over feed him, so far ive been thawing out half a frozen cube of bloodworms and feeding him 3-4 by hand before i dump the rest in as other fish like them too, this is daily, could i give him more? another big thing i would like to know that google is rather vague about is what are some trouble signs that eelson may be sick or stressed? basically any general freshwater eel knowledge would be appreciated. thanks and sorry for the wall of text.

p.s. i enclosed a pic of eelson
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Old 11-05-2016, 02:22 PM   #2
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this not the proper place for this question or does everybody hate the new guy?
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Old 11-05-2016, 04:37 PM   #3
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Sorry they have not answered quickly. Your eel looks like a tire track and as such he should grow quickly. There care is roughly the same as any scaleless fish. They are sensitive to extreme water conditions and changes. These guys sometimes have issues with fungal infections from scrapes so sharp objects could be a problem.

These fish like plenty of places to hide when they want peace from the other fish in the tank. They also appreciate some sand areas to burrow in, say 3" wide down the side of the tank. Feeding, toss in 12-15 live black worms with lights out to allow him to hunt. They love chasing down feeder guppys, but it looks like the angels will take care of those for you.
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Old 11-05-2016, 06:00 PM   #4
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thanks for info, the 29 gallon hes in now is regrettably fine gravel(i basically set the tank up as just a general fish tank and got the eel after) but the 90 ill have ready for him when his bigger will be sand. i was thinking of 2 inches of substrate but you think 3 is better? i was going with 2 because the more sand the harder it is to clean but i really want this tank to cater to the eel. hes been on frozen blood worms so far but ill for sure give the live black worms a shot. when hes older i was planning on frozen blood worms and live ghost shrimp, people seem to say they dont really like feeder fish but ill go with whatever he prefers. do you have any information on keeping more than one eel? from what ive read it seems tire tracks really dislike other tire tracks, could my tire track get along with a fire or peacock eel or another type? i would love to eventually keep multiple eels but if there is a chance they wont get along i'd rather not risk it.
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Old 11-06-2016, 12:04 PM   #5
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Eels jump. I have lost multiple eels in th e past due to them jumping out of the tank. Tight fitting lid and you are gonna want to cover any open areas of the lid.

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Old 11-06-2016, 05:05 PM   #6
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im glad you brought that up as ive read a lot about that. how big were your eels when they jumped? ive ordered some 1/4 inch plastic marine/aquarium netting which i was either going to cut to cover the open spaces or just make a diy insert that completely covers the top. he seems like hes to small to get out as he is and i figured by the time he was big enough to jump out 1/4 inch netting would be able to stop him. do you think i need a finer mesh netting?
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Old 11-06-2016, 06:51 PM   #7
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Mine was atleast 5 inches when he jumped out. I don't know about the netting.

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Old 11-06-2016, 07:02 PM   #8
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I would think the finer th e better tho

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Old 11-06-2016, 09:37 PM   #9
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yah agreed, better safe than sorry.
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Old 11-07-2016, 02:03 AM   #10
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Here are a couple threads with info on having a "fish IN" cycle (with fish in the tank)
You might just read through there for pointers about what to look for to make sure you have a cycled tank.

Fish-in Cycling: Step over into the dark side - Aquarium Advice

I just learned about cycling but I already have fish. What now?! - Aquarium Advice

What I know about eels is limited, except for having many hides per eel and to keep them at a similar size was info I remember reading and their ability to escape spaces so small that you can't believe it could happen!
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Old 11-07-2016, 02:16 AM   #11
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thanks for the links, im almost positive my tank is fully cycled at this point, nitrates are at 40 ppm and ammonia is holding at 0. i also took a water sample into the local pet shop, they employ a marine biologist in their fish dept. and he has already given me a lot of solid advice. had him test a sample yesterday and he agrees its cycled, advised me to wait another week to put more fish in and im in no hurry to to so as the tank is mostly about the eel at this point. ive decided to do a full diy insert with fine mesh netting to prevent jumping as it seems that is the cause of most aquarium eel deaths. im thinking of starting an eel journal thread where ill post his pic once a week as he has been growing at an amazing rate. oh also ive recently noticed he has an almost chameleon like ability to make his markings go lighter or darker. if searched around and so far all i can find is this is normal behavior, any info on this?
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Old 11-07-2016, 08:56 AM   #12
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Plus one on the tight fitting lid. I was thinking eel = escape artist (but forgot to post (sorry!) as swimming pool testing got a bit more complex than I hoped).
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Old 11-07-2016, 09:42 AM   #13
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Also I had one jump into my filter and get inside the cartridge. Didn't find him till like months later

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