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Old 01-26-2023, 09:06 PM   #1
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Smile Hello 👋 All.

Hi, I'm Nick, and I'm from Wisconsin.

I'm getting back into fishkeeping after four years of not having any fish. When I first started, I had MTS, with one 5.5 gallons, one 10 gallons, one 20 gallons, and lastly one 55 gallons, and all happened to be Marineland kits, they even had all Marineland artificial plants. Not all at the same time, but I probably switch to a bigger tank every 60 days. The 55-gallon was in my room. Till all my fish died from old age, I was in a hard time and never got time to order more fish. Everything is better now.

My current setup is now in my living room, with a Marineland 60-gallon, 2 Marineland Penguin Pro 375, 2 Marineland Precision 150 Watt Heater, 1 Fluval Q2 Air Pump, 1 Fluval Sea CP2, and 1 Fluval Aquasky 2 light.

My tank inhabitants are
2 Bushy Nose Plecostomus
6 Candy Cane Tetra
6 Odessa Barb
6 Scissortail Rasbora
6 Boesemani Rainbow
6 Cherry Barb
6 Congo Longfin Tetra
6 X-Ray Tetra

My old tank inhabitants were mostly livebearers, so I'm happy to have a new type of fish. It's a little hard reaching the bottom of my tank as it's 25 inches tall, and the stand is 28 inches tall, and I'm about 64 inches tall. I'm also happy that this is my largest tank. I never had Barbs or Rainbow. Also, this is my 1st time using real driftwood, and 1st time using a circulation pump.

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Old 01-27-2023, 11:13 PM   #2
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Hi Nick and welcome to the forum

Rainbowfish need plenty of plant matter in their diet so make sure at least half their diet is plant based. You can use vege flakes/ pellets, marine algae, live aquatic plants and some people use things like pumpkin, zucchini, cucumber, etc. But most rainbows don't eat them.

--------------------

What is the GH (general hardness), KH (carbonate hardness) and pH of your water supply?
This information can usually be obtained from your water supply company's website or by telephoning them. If they can't help you, take a glass full of tap water to the local pet shop and get them to test it for you. Write the results down (in numbers) when they do the tests. And ask them what the results are in (eg: ppm, dGH, or something else).

Most rainbowfish do best in water with a pH above 7.0 and a GH around 200ppm or above.
Most tetras come from water with a pH below 7.0 and a GH below 100ppm.
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Old 01-28-2023, 04:41 AM   #3
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@Colin_T

My GH is around 89.5 PPM ( I have a water softener )
My KG is around 250 PPM
My PH is around 7.5
My PO≥ is around 10 PPM (working on lowering it )
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Old 01-28-2023, 06:09 AM   #4
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Is your water softener an ion exchange unit?
If yes, they normally replace the calcium in the water with sodium. Long term exposure to sodium is harmful to most freshwater fishes and damages the kidneys, which leads to premature death from kidney failure.

Rainbowfish can tolerate salt better than the other fishes you have. Tetras, rasboras and suckermouth catfish don't do well with salt in the long term.

You mention the GH is around 89.5. Any idea what the GH is before the water softener?
If the GH is only around 150ppm without the softener, I would use water that hasn't gone through the water softener.

Phosphates could be coming from the tap water if your water supply is contaminated. Live plants can use phosphates. Floating plants use more than plants growing underwater.
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Old 01-28-2023, 04:09 PM   #5
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@Colin_T

According to my city, without going through the softener, it's at 315 to 325 PPM.

I'm thinking of adding SeaChem Fresh Trace.
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Old 01-28-2023, 09:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishlover94 View Post
@Colin_T

According to my city, without going through the softener, it's at 315 to 325 PPM.

I'm thinking of adding SeaChem Fresh Trace.
Wow, nice water for Rift Lake cichlids, not so good for tetras

You could get a reverse osmosis unit or make distilled water and mix it 50/50 with the tap water. That would give you water that is more suitable for the rainbows, a low enough GH for the tetras and other fishes, and remove the sodium from the water softener.

If money isn't an issue, you can buy reverse osmosis water from some pet shops.

Reverse osmosis (R/O) units waste a lot of water and might not be suitable if water is limited. You can get them from most hardware stores or online. If you do get one, look for a unit that has a 1:1 ratio for the waste water. R/O units produce waste water that has all the minerals and nutrients in. This is normally discarded down the drain or on the garden. Cheaper units often have a higher waster water ratio (2:1 or 3:1) whereby they waste 3 litres of waster water for every 1 litre of pure water they produce.

---------

The other option is a solar still. You can make a solar still, which would give you pure water, no waste water and be free to make pure water, it just requires a bit of sunlight.

Get a large plastic storage container and put it outside in the sun.
Pour a bucket of water into the storage container.
Put a clean bucket in the middle of the storage container. Have a rock in the bucket to stop it floating around.
Put the lid on the storage container.
Put a rock or small weight on the lid in the middle, so the lid sags above the bucket.

As the sun heats up the container, water will evaporate and condense on the underside of the lid. The water will run towards the centre and drip into the bucket. When the bucket is full of water, you put it into a holding container and put the bucket back in the storage container with another bucket of tap water.

You get pure water with a pH of 7.0, 0 GH, 0KH and no wasted water, no power used and it's cheap to set up. You could then use this water mixed with the tap water to get a better pH, GH and KH for your fish.
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