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Old 03-04-2020, 03:47 PM   #1
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Arrow Aquarium addict here, couple quick questions please :)

I just realized 'aquarium addict' would've been a cool forum name... but I'm sure someone already has it. I'm happy to be here, and share with others in my/our love for this peaceful joyful hobby!

I know this is a broad first post, but feel free to reply to just one (or all 3), as you're able to help out!

(1) I live near a wetland marsh, with countless sources of freshwater moss and plants in flowing natural springs. Would I be able to introduce any of these to an aquarium, and if so, is there a certain prep/cleansing process to follow so my current water parameters and tank inhabitants aren't affected negatively?

(2) I have some cory catfish, and one in particular continues finding restrictive places to hide within the aquarium, such as nestling in a plant, burrowing into a small shelter, and recently (for a couple days-on-end) vertically swimming into a small opening in a canvas mast of a ship decoration I have. It looks uncomfortable and the stagnation has me concerned. While I know they're nocturnal is this normal behavior, or could it signal a pregnancy or signify poor health?

(3) I've read wildly varying opinions online and from many of the YouTube channels I follow, concerning alder cones and mineral balls in shrimp populated tanks; everything from 1 per gallon to 10 per gallon -- while others even say they can stay in 'forever' to generate bio-film for feeding, and others say after a while they should be swapped out for new balls/cones to maintain water health. Is there some sort of consensus here I'm missing, or does everyone simply have their own theory?

I HUGELY appreciate you, and sharing your knowledge on the above!
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Old 03-04-2020, 04:27 PM   #2
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1. Make sure it's legal in your area to collect plants and ask how much you can take. Quarantine them so you don't end up with a bunch of critters in your aquarium.

2. Check her fins for any signs of bacterial or fungal infections. Is she eating or losing weight? It may be parasites. What are your water parameters? What size tank do you have?
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Old 03-05-2020, 12:20 PM   #3
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Arrow

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaraB View Post
1. Make sure it's legal in your area to collect plants and ask how much you can take. Quarantine them so you don't end up with a bunch of critters in your aquarium.
Thanks Sara, I'll make sure it's legal.
-- How long should I quarantine
-- What signs/critters should I look for to gauge safety
-- Should there be any medications and/or countermeasures used, or simply take a week-or-four to place it in isolation underwater


2. Check her fins for any signs of bacterial or fungal infections. Is she eating or losing weight? It may be parasites. What are your water parameters? What size tank do you have?
-- She actually seems, over recent weeks, to be gaining weight slightly, and is about an inch, perhaps slightly more
-- The tank the cory is in, is a 20
If anyone has any insight on #3 in my original post, please lmk.
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Old 03-05-2020, 01:32 PM   #4
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I don't use the mineral/clay balls but alder cones I just drop in and leave them. There is nothing that will harm anyone living in the tank. If you want to give them a rinse under warm/hot water first fine. The only thing I remove if not entirely eaten are veggies.
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Old 03-05-2020, 02:03 PM   #5
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I don't use the mineral/clay balls but alder cones I just drop in and leave them. There is nothing that will harm anyone living in the tank. If you want to give them a rinse under warm/hot water first fine. The only thing I remove if not entirely eaten are veggies.
Thanks! This seems to make sense to me more than all the articles/blogs out there that give pretty restrictive "1-5 cones per gallon max" when they're so tiny.

I bought a big bag of these cones, so it'd be nice to use them more and give the Neocaridina something to enjoy.
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Old 03-05-2020, 04:17 PM   #6
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Quarantine for a few weeks. Mosquito and dragonfly larvae/nymphs are your biggest concern. They should both be visible to the naked eye, especially once they start getting bigger. Hydra can also be a concern and they are tiny. Maybe take a water sample once you get it home and check it under a microscope to make sure non are there.
I've not had to quarantine plants so I don't know what to do about medicating.

It'll be easier to tell if we had a picture of the corydora.
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Old 03-22-2020, 12:31 AM   #7
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On #3 the Alder cones last a long time but will fall apart, more so with larger bottom feeders banging them around. The little pieces fall off of the core stem.

The Tourmaline balls as well as any other rocks, DW and decorations will develop biofilm, the glass too. Aufwuchs too. Aufwuchs are little microscopic plant and animal organisms.

In my not scientifically backed up opinion, it seems you would need the 10 per gallon quantity to alter the chemistry of the water.

This begins a whole other issue with how one maintains their dwarf shrimp tank. The usual maintenance is small water changes to not alter the environment of the tank, upset the shrimp.

Additionally same with adding the leaves and balls it should be done gradually. Botanicals can alter the water chemistry pretty quickly usually by lowering the pH.

On #2 Sometimes they are finding foods in those places where the particles get stuck.

Otherwise no, the Cories are usually searching around and following each other around nearly non stop.

Cories lay eggs and they will be anywhere around the tank, on plants and the rocks and glass.
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Old 03-22-2020, 12:43 AM   #8
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Also, a note about the quality of dried botanicals.

If the pics are of mildewed leaves, my thought is do NOT buy them.

Example here - these are not recommendations or comments to not buy - I have not used either of these sellers - just the example of offering for sale for the pics

https://www.ebay.com/itm/80-pcs-200-...l-eWTI1snUZk6Q

vs.

this item
https://www.ebay.com/itm/20-pcs-Best...8AAOSwJ7RYSuus

If the quality of these two items is as the pics show, you could see which one looks higher quality. The first pics for sale isn't as bad as I have seen some leaves offered, with literally black spots all over them.

If you were going to add something to your tank you wouldn't use a fungus /black spotted leaf, you would use a clean clear looking leaf.
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