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Old 06-11-2011, 09:50 PM   #1
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Newbie, here!

Hi everyone! I'm Katie. I'm new to this form, but not very new to aquariums and all things fishy. I'm mostly into cetaceans (whales and dolphins) but I've recently found a new love for keeping fish.

My confidence in maintaining aquariums was boosted after I successfully set up and kept a 55g freshwater aquarium for over a year (we had to move to an RV park after that :P) It was a present for my dad after he came home from a 9-month tour in Iraq - the look on his face was priceless! There's a couple of pictures (first one was during the initial cycling; got a few zebra danios to help with the ammonia - those things could probably survive in puddles of acid! Second photo's a few days before we bagged up all the fish and took them to the LFS so we could move.)

So now I'm a sophomore in college (anyone go to Michigan State?) and am dead set on getting a planted freshwater Biocube 14. I had planted a couple of Amazon Swords and a....hygro, I think? I dunno. I was really uneducated about plants back then; they all died from lack of nutrients and probably my lighting. I figured you could just stick 'em in and let them grow; apparently that's not the case for all plants :P For the 14g, I really want to have some neon and diamond tetras; the ones my LFS in Michigan offer are beautiful! I don't know a lot of fancy talk (or abbreviations; there are so many here! O_O ) about aquariums, such as lighting and CO2, so doing a lot of browsing around and asking questions will probably do me some good. I was thinking (if it's necessary) of getting one of those Hagen or Nutrafin CO2 systems; I think you have to add sugar or something in order for the process to go through... right? :'D *oblivious* I wanna try using that eco-complete substrate stuff for plants, or something along those lines. I'm still down to the very basics when it comes to specific species of plants and their requirements, so once I get the Biocube started this fall, help on that sort of stuff would be greatly appreciated.

But yeah. The only fish I currently have is a beautiful black Betta splendens named Phantom (anyone know what kind of genetic strain he is?). He's such an awesome guy, I love him. X3 Currently he's in one of those 0.8 gallon betta cubes, but I ordered a 5 gallon (not a hex. Not. A hex. X_x) for him and am waiting for it to get here. Hopefully we'll be able to fit it somewhere in my camper until I go back to school in August, lol. Despite the small size of his environment, Phantom's really active and healthy, both physically and mentally. I even taught him to eat from my hand, target the tip of a pencil and swim through a key chain hoop! I'll have to post a picture of it sometime during a training session. I use a tiny flashlight as a bridge, haha XD I have hopes of becoming a marine mammal trainer someday and love teaching cool things to the pets I have.

The photos I've posted of the betta are a little old - there's only one silk plant and that plastic grass ball...thing. I can't wait to get him in the 5g with a snail or a couple cherry shrimp (or maybe both? I've heard some iffy things about betta and shrimp; do they do okay together?).

Anyway, sorry for the essay, lol. I hope to see you all around, and most of all learn as much as I can about this awesome hobby.

-Katie

(Edit: Huh, for some reason the photos don't show up for me. O.o Perhaps they were too large?)
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:52 PM   #2
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:57 PM   #3
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