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Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Thu Jun 16, 2022 6:11 am
by OregonOutdoorsChris
Nothing too remarkable today. Everything is holding. So I went ahead with moving the juvenile pictus cats into the 60 breeder, along with all their hardscape and filter to bring all the beneficial bacteria over from their previous holding tank.
I'm feeling I went a little heavy with the gravel, so I may have to devote some time to thinning that out.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2022 8:00 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
The absolutely insane growth plant growth is really making me wish I still had male/female pair of Tatia reticulata.
PXL_20220621_045251440.jpg
I could only image that the egg scatterers would really appreciate that thick mat of Riccia fluitans. Not to mention the roots from the emergent plants. But I'm sticking with perugiae for now.

Fyi, impatiens seem to do extremely well growing out of fish tanks, imo, they put pothos to shame.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 9:32 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
I'm looking for input on how to improve the setup of my P. pictus tank.

Here's what they currently have...
Normally the tank just receives ambient room light, but extra illumination was temporarily added for taking this video.
Along the front, the 1200gph pump helped sort the substrate by size from pebbles to sand. Which is the one bit I'm pretty happy with.

Otherwise, most of the hardscape is odds and ends I had just laying around. The clay tubes and coconut hut are obviously not to these cats' taste and will be removed eventually. But even the slate caves aren't being heavily utilized, and everyone fights over the one overhand on the far right side of the tank.

Should I get some more slate and try to make more overhangs?
Any other thoughts on what sort of structure might make them feel more comfortable?

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 11:24 pm
by bekateen
If they are avoiding the other slate hides, then there might be something better about that spot which is related to current, lighting, width of open space, or distance (as far as possible?) from people looking at them (but based on the angle of this photo, I think the latter is not a problem).

Now that the sand is sorted, maybe redirect the water pump to flow higher in the water column, not so close to sand. That will calm the current at sand level and may make the fish more comfortable. Also, maybe add a literal tangle of branches?

Cheers, Eric

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Mon Aug 01, 2022 11:47 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
Thank you for the input. You've given me a bit to think about.

During that pondering I decided to setup a camera to figure out what are they doing when I'm not around.

In the dark of night, naturally, they're far more active.
Even in the bright day light, they do seem to use more of the tank than I ever suspected... so long as no one is around.
It seems like maybe a significant factor is that they are in fact hiding from me.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2022 3:21 pm
by characinkid
I've always liked pictus, great fish when kept in a group, and yours look really healthy. If it were me, Id remove about 50% of the large caves to make much more room for them to swim and then add a couple of branches to the tank to make it a little more natural.
Great tank and project.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2022 3:03 pm
by naturalart
Pictus are great 'day active' catfish. A fish I will own at some point. I like my tanks more 'natural' so I would ditch the square stuff and create some overhangs with some larger pieces of driftwood. And try to grow some anubis or Javamoss on the wood which could create some overhangs also. I would create more open ground for swimming. And from my eye the current definitely has something to do with it. It appears they like it. But I would reduce the flow just a tad, and observe for positive or negative reactions. My 2¢

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Sat Aug 20, 2022 8:48 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
Thank you for everyone's input, and sorry for the lack of replies. I contracted covid a few weeks back, and while it wasn't bad, basically just flu like symptoms for one day, what's hit me hard is how it substantially lowered my energy levels and stamina. I could start doing a task but only get a fraction of the way in before having to sit down and hydrate. So that has slowed me down in the fish room, and sapped what ever I had left for posting updates.

I removed the clay tubes and coconut hut, and moved the slate caves more to the center of the tank, making more swimming room around the edges where the pictus seem to like to swim. I've also played with moving the power head so that the flow is more diffused through out the tank as opposed to a stream down the front. All in all, the fish don't seem to have reacted either positively or negatively to the changes.

Though I am intrigued by how prevalent the suggestion to reduce the flow was, as I was under the impression these fish come from rivers with significant flow. What were people's thoughts on that? A neat side effect is this may provide me a way to mimic seasonal flows. Come January I might move the power head back toward the front and up the water change frequency.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 am
by OregonOutdoorsChris
For the pictus cats, their tank is coming along nicely. I managed to get a hold of some scrap 4" PVC drain pipe that I've been cutting lengths off of which has given the cats some much needed cover.
PXL_20220921_031334857(1).jpg
I still need to get some more wood, unfortunately the local parks department is too quick with the cleanup of fallen tree limbs. At a park near me there was a nice piece of madrone that got knocked down in a wind storm, but the parks department came through and cleaned up before I had a chance to get a portion.

In other news I'm getting started building up my school of Kryptopterus vitreolus. Here's one of the new comers with the 5+year old adults.
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The biggest problem is having to buy them piece-meal, as none of the stores seem to have many in stock at once.

So here's a question for everyone... how hard should I try to keep Malaysian trumpet snails out of tanks I intend to breed fish in? I feel like I'm fighting a losing battle with them, recently having contaminated another tank with a piece of wood that had been out of water and dry for the better part of a year, yet apparently still had viable snails and/or eggs in it somewhere. If they're generally considered harmless to fish eggs, I'd rather just give in and let it happen.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 6:04 am
by bekateen
OregonOutdoorsChris wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 amhow hard should I try to keep Malaysian trumpet snails out of tanks I intend to breed fish in? I feel like I'm fighting a losing battle with them, recently having contaminated another tank with a piece of wood that had been out of water and dry for the better part of a year, yet apparently still had viable snails and/or eggs in it somewhere.
Are you kidding?!? A year out of water and still snails? Holy cow!

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:53 am
by Shane
The biggest issue with the snails (any snail sp really) is that they can quickly become the main biomass in an aquarium if left to reproduce uncontrollably. The best long term solution I have found is to use snail traps to keep the population as low as possible. Don't go the Assassin snail direction. It is just trading one snail problem for another.
-Shane

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 3:04 pm
by dw1305
Hi all,
OregonOutdoorsChris wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 amSo here's a question for everyone... how hard should I try to keep Malaysian trumpet snails out of tanks I intend to breed fish in? I feel like I'm fighting a losing battle with them, recently having contaminated another tank with a piece of wood that had been out of water and dry for the better part of a year, yet apparently still had viable snails and/or eggs in it somewhere. If they're generally considered harmless to fish eggs, I'd rather just give in and let it happen.
Harmless to fish eggs, Ingo Seidel actually recommends them as egg and fry janitors in the "Back to Nature guide to L numbers".

I have them in all my tanks and have successfully spawning Corydoras(ln4) pygmaeus etc

Malaysian Trumpet Snails are live-bearers (including by parthogenesis) so it is usually small snails that move from tank to tank.

cheers Darrel

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:29 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
bekateen wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 6:04 am Are you kidding?!? A year out of water and still snails? Holy cow!
Dead serious. The wood was removed from a tank with trumpet snails almost exactly a year ago when I moved, and has been sitting on the dry garage floor since then. A couple months back, figuring it had to be safe by now, I added it to a snail free tank. Fast forward to the present, and I now have trumpet snails in that tank :-O

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:32 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
Shane wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:53 am The biggest issue with the snails (any snail sp really) is that they can quickly become the main biomass in an aquarium if left to reproduce uncontrollably. The best long term solution I have found is to use snail traps to keep the population as low as possible. Don't go the Assassin snail direction. It is just trading one snail problem for another.
-Shane
That gets to the secondary concerns I had, as I've seen with my contaminated tanks, not only significant bio-load, but they are strong competitors for any food that reaches the bottom of the tank as well. So the snail trap is a good idea to manually manage the population, thank you!

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:36 pm
by OregonOutdoorsChris
dw1305 wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 3:04 pm Harmless to fish eggs, Ingo Seidel actually recommends them as egg and fry janitors in the "Back to Nature guide to L numbers".

I have them in all my tanks and have successfully spawning Corydoras(ln4) pygmaeus etc

Malaysian Trumpet Snails are live-bearers (including by parthogenesis) so it is usually small snails that move from tank to tank.

cheers Darrel
That's reassuring to hear. So with all the input in mind, I think that I'll stop worrying so much about it, and embrace the trumpet snail contagion :))

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Thu Sep 22, 2022 10:06 am
by Jools
I think it depends on the fish you keep and how bothered you are by aesthetics. A number of my pleco breeding tanks (Hypancistrus, Peckoltia, Panaqolus) were infested with MTS, but I also had assassin snails and cherry shrimp in good numbers too. In my experience, the much more slowly reproducing assassin snails kept the MTS in check, just. In a large 36" tank, I would have about 30 of these.

Again IME, MTS will eat eggs and dead fry if either are left unguarded (either empty cave or swept out of cave) but IME male plecos remove any snails that get into the cave and I felt this strengthened their instincts for care. This is, after all, replicates what would happen in the wild (mostly, excepting black waters) and why plecos evolved to spawn in caves/guard etc.

Two great advantages I found with MTS may be useful to those with fishrooms.

a) If a filter goes south or the tank gets too hot and in any case if the DO drops, plecos will stay in caves until the very last but early on MTS will climb the glass in numbers. It's a very helpful early indication a filter needs cleaned or attention is required somewhere.

b) They are brilliant at eating food that plecos can't reach or don't want particularly in higher current set-ups. This is especially useful in tanks where lots rocks/caves and many 1-3cm youngsters which can be heavily fed / water changed.

Both these things are not hugely helpful if you have a few tanks, if you have 40+, they helped me.

In summary, I've learned to embrace the snail.

Jools

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 4:53 am
by OregonOutdoorsChris
Just some corys enjoying the Sunday morning sunshine

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 5:16 am
by bekateen
I know the odds are low, but do you have the C141 still? It's been several years.

Cheers,
Eric

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 5:26 am
by OregonOutdoorsChris
bekateen wrote: Mon Sep 26, 2022 5:16 am I know the odds are low, but do you have the C141 still? It's been several years.

Cheers,
Eric
Sadly, I've never had C141. For corys I've only ever had habrosus and paleatus, though I make sure to always keep some space open in the event I stumble upon some knaacki, C150, C141, or other beautiful spotty species.

Re: Starting a fishroom

Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 6:16 am
by bekateen
OregonOutdoorsChris wrote: Mon Sep 26, 2022 5:26 amSadly, I've never had C141. For corys I've only ever had habrosus and paleatus, though I make sure to always keep some space open in the event I stumble upon some knaacki, C150, C141, or other beautiful spotty species.
Sorry, I must have been confusing you with someone who used to live down by me in Central California. I sold him my C141 about 5-6 years ago. I thought he was you.

Well, that out of the bag, good luck hunting the other corys. :)

Cheers, Eric