So I've been here a month or so and haven't posted here yet so here I am !
I'm Steve and I started this fish tank back in June. My wife brought home a 50 gallon hexagon tank from Goodwill that she found for like 25 bucks. Never owning a fish tank before I didn't want to mess with resealing it and to be honest the glass was rather hazy. So it went back.
Anyway I was thinking of a fish tank because for one I wanted something the kids (7 & 4) could participate in. And I thought it would be good entertainment for our cat also !! Poor cat, just can't figure it out yet why she can't get to them.. I put a chair there for her so she could be close.. lol
So this thing is long from being done. But I bought a 36 gallon bowfront and I scored some used gravel from a lady that saw us at Goodwill with the fish tank and wanted to give us a 5 gallon bucket of black gravel. I thought the glofish would interesting for the kids so that is the route we went and they picked out the fish. Got the typical cabinet at the pet store. Yeah I wish I could get a real one, ok I could but I'm not paying that much. If I ever get a bigger tank I will likely make a decent one out of real wood.
My Son picked out a Dalmatian molly, a black molly, a couple green Globarbs and two snails, one yellow and one brown. My daughter picked out about 3 yellow glow Danio's and two red Glo Tetras. I added 3 red glo Danio's. Hopefully I got all those names right.
The girl at the store told me to get a bigger tank than I thought I wanted because everyone always wants a bigger one later. I thought 20gal at first so I settled on the 36gal since I've never owned anything beyond a fish bowl with a betta before. Anyway I'm already thinking 75gal, haha she was right. So probably far far (years) in my future I'm going to shoot for like a 125gallon.
So setting this up, I used about 10 gallons of natural spring water from the grocery store, 20 gallons of regular tap water from where I work, and 6 gallons of our well water. Our well water can be a little murky to me so I didn't want a ton of it. I lightly rinsed the used gravel with nothing more than water and put it in the tank and I added a few decorations. Wanting this to center around glowing decor is difficult as I haven't seen much out there other than some wacky fish tank decor that I don't much care for. I just add some thing when it peaks my interest. Latest is the white Anemone which actually glows nicely and moves quite nicely also. I just ordered a couple more things so those will be going in next week. I want some larger rock and I have a small piece of black volcanic rock in there. I wish I could find a bigger piece but it seems to be a no go without having to shape it which I am not interested in doing (yet). I may go with some white coral type looking rock as that might look pretty decent with the lighting. But I want something that is larger and goes almost to the surface.
About a month after I had this set up I decided to switch out some of the gravel on the left side to black sand. At the same time is when I switched the bulb to the Actinic light to let it glow. The pics below are close but it has a little bit of a purple hue which the pics don't show well. I've been doing about a 5 gallon water change weekly, which I still use about 2 gallons of tap water and 3 gallons well water, all treated with water conditioner. Worse part was when I removed the gravel and added the sand I forgot to shut off the pump... doh!! ya sand in the pump is not a good thing. Sad part was I knew to shut it off and just wasn't thinking.
The black Molly died about 8 weeks into it and a short time later the brown snail died. I didn't think much of it. Last week our yellow snail died. Which I think they were not finding the pellets I was using. I finally got the API master test kit and tested it today.
High Ph 8.2 <- not sure I understand why there were two Ph tests??
Honestly I wasn't sure what all those numbers meant other than I thought the ammonia was high, though not terribly high. I had just done a water change yesterday. I've had this setup about 3 months now. I had let it go two weeks without a water change until yesterday so maybe I needed a bigger water change. Hope you enjoy the pics.