7g Office Cube QUICK RESCAPE 9/30/14 - Page 3
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Old 07-13-2014, 11:47 PM   #31
AquaAurora
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Originally Posted by BTuesdays View Post
But Xerxes was so epic! He stole a motorcycle and then rode in it. So does he have any tank mates?
Currently just Auto the oto (so original) + misc pond, ramshorn, and Malaysian trumpet snails. Want to get a nerite snail and another oto so he/she's not alone.
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Old 07-28-2014, 05:06 PM   #32
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Default Rescape!

So I got sick of the old look, especially since all the stems had melted off leaves at the bottom 1/3-1/4 SO when I did a water change yesterday I removed most of them and dumped them in my over flow plant 10g. All that's left is Rotala Rotundifolia, Hygrophilia sp. tiger , Hydro sp Japan, and a hidden single Staurogyne Repen (the others completely dissolved). Pardon the lettuce and dirty glass.. need to get back in there and clean that up..



And I've never shown the lid so thought I'd toss a pic in, its 2 pieces, one around the pipes and another that's easily removed/pushed back a little for feeding and cleaning. Made from Lexan polycarbonate with my husbands handy help cutting it to fit


If I could get my hands on some nice inert and non jagad rock(s) to avoid Xerxes shredding himself on, I'd love to make a scape with rocks near the back, rotala behind it on back wall, and hydro japan all around the tank as a thick blob (got a large floating wad of it in the 10g). I'd use locally found rose quarts but the other betta I had (20g) managed to wreck his fins on it.. though Arist'oto' was a delta with long fins.
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Last edited by AquaAurora; 08-06-2014 at 06:29 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 08-02-2014, 03:51 PM   #33
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Default Filter Fix and Oto Out...

So yesterday I found my tank was missing about 1g of water.. it has a lid so no cat could get at it.. found that my dog (who has developed an unfortunately fear of thunder which has progressed into a fear of rainy days thanks to stupid brat nieces screaming at thunder booms a few years ago when they visited...) had been under the desk (where canisters are) and apparently pushed up against them and messed up the threading of the outflow of the eheim to my tank (where it screws into the bottom).
Had to turn off and unhook the filer, confirmed it was the leak source at the sink and removed all media, put into tank water in bins and spent a good half hour ripping the house apart looking for tephlon tape with my husband.. couldn't find any so had o go grab some from a hardware store. When i got home I remembered to throw prime into the tank to bind any possible ammonia build up during the "off time". Taped the threadings of the outflow, gave it a new "o" ring and screwed it back together (with help of hubby). After passing a quick water test aka no leaks put media back in and hooked it back up. BY now the tank was about 4-5g full instead of 7 (from taking water to keep media wet). And of course turning the filer back on I got the obligatory mess of loose mulm and such shooting out.. so got to do a water change. Unfortunate the inline heater temp rose a bit from being in stagnate water (and then heating only about 1/2 the regular water volume) and got up to about 82F (usually barely 80). It went back down after the water change/top off (which I had to wait 1-2 hours to do to heat the bucket water with another heater to avoid dropping temp and stressing anyone).

Well unfortunately my oto Auto just passed about a half hour ago.. I have no idea why exactly.. I tested ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate and all were in perfect parameters (0,0,10) done right after Auto passed. I'm assuming it died from 1 of 3 things:
Temp raise yesterday, though gradual and only 2 degrees.
Ammonia buildup during the first hour the filter was offline, though it would not be much.. I'd expect the plants could have handled it.
Those nasty air pockets (what are they called again?) escaping sand when siphoning, but I have MTS in there to till the sand and prevent that..
Soo nothing conclusive but now poor Xerxes is alone (except for all the MTS in the sand and itty-bitty ramshorns). I dosed Melafix and will for 3 or 7 days just in case it was a disease of some sort.. though Auto never showed any signs of sickness (no discoloring, had a decently filed belly (he was never fat), nothing abnormal sticking out of him, no weird behavior except the minute before he died).. Hoping it was nothing nasty that will take out my betta boy.. Will try adding 2 new otos to the tank after they finish quarantine (have 8 in right now) in about a week.
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Old 08-06-2014, 03:42 PM   #34
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SO I decided to pull my newest batch of otos (8) from quarantine after a week instead of waiting 10 days and put them in their respective tanks. 2 went into the 7g and they seem to be doing well. Tank glass it looking a little better but they still have a bit of work to do. I'm not sure what Xerxes thinks about them joining the tank, he seemed happy solo (built a bubble nest again after having stopped for a few weeks), but he's not pestering/pecking or flaring at them so I guess he doesn't have a "GTFO!" attitude thankfully. Not too worried about these guys getting out since I have a lit, though there is a small gap for the filter pipes, they'd need some real good aim to get out... More worried the otos in the 20g (5) will decide to go carpet surfing from lights on/off startling them before they settle in. The last oto from the batch of 8 went into the 12g with the 3 pre-exsisting otos.

[added]
Took some photos.. .. the otos are cutely hanging out right now but they're still a little skittish of the betta ..he does not charge/flare but when he swims near them they sometimes dart away).
Xerxes decided to photo bomb my oto shoot.. "pay attention to meeeeee"


Then look all innocent after"... what??"


Also added a little salvia minima floaters to grow out and give more plant matter for Xerxes to bubble nest in or just hide from the light as it gets to be a wider mass.

Last edited by AquaAurora; 08-06-2014 at 06:27 PM.. Reason: added photos
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Old 08-07-2014, 01:39 AM   #35
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It's funny that your betta is photo-bombing you, meanwhile, I can't get a clear shot of mine unless he's distracted by the plants(and by 'distracted', I mean half hidden by them while he investigates, lol.)
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Old 08-07-2014, 02:09 AM   #36
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It's funny that your betta is photo-bombing you, meanwhile, I can't get a clear shot of mine unless he's distracted by the plants(and by 'distracted', I mean half hidden by them while he investigates, lol.)
Lol Well I can never get an in-focused, non blured side view (profile) shot of him.. sometimes front.. but mostly he's out of focus or moving around too fast to get a shot... but tahts when teh camera is out, when nothings in my hands he periodically stops to check something out in the tank (I think he hunts the baby snails).
No advice for snails, nerite maybe? but they leave infertile eggs all over the place from what I hear (eggs won't hatch without salt or brackish water?) never tried one myself but I'd like to.. not sure if Xerxes would eat off its antenas... uh there are apple snails and rabbit snails but have no knowledge of them and if they clean well and are plant friendly or not..
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Old 08-07-2014, 12:51 PM   #37
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Sorry about your Oto

Xerxes is such a cutie! Pretty sure bettas are one of my favorite fish of all time
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Old 08-07-2014, 04:35 PM   #38
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Sorry about your Oto

Xerxes is such a cutie! Pretty sure bettas are one of my favorite fish of all time
Me too, but, got new ones ^^
Thank you ^^ I love his look though he's changed a lot from his original photo when sold to me (he use to have a lot more yellow in his fins but the blue is creeping over it). I can't say what my favorite fish is yet.. still so many more I want to try..
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Old 08-10-2014, 07:38 PM   #39
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He finally let me get a decent side profile shot.. he's stretching his head up to see if I'm going to pop the lid and feed him... his pose reminds me of some odd modeling photo shoot pose or a loose yoga "cobra" pose O.o This is also the closest to a "flare" pose I've managed to photo graph.. he doesn't fall for the mirror trick.. just looks at himself like "damn I'm sexy!"

Anyways you can see the yellow in his fins is getting gobbled up by the blues.. hes also come some red spots but only on the anal fin. His ventral fins are a peach-ish-red with another few red dots.
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Last edited by AquaAurora; 08-18-2014 at 05:16 PM.. Reason: cropped photo
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Old 08-18-2014, 05:13 PM   #40
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I have a desperit itch to rescape this tank, but a dickens of a time settling on the particulars.
One thing I do want is either a frosted glass look or black background, I'm sick of looking at the Eheim pipes (also may paint eheim inlet/outlet black for tank if I go that route for background).
For plant layout and hardscaping options.. so many ideas...
First one being the use of large smooth river rocks with at least one large and 2-4 smaller ones about center in the tank (or slightly back from center), with the area in front of it covered in hydro japan and have some of the ;clover' growing up the rocks or in the crevices between them. Hygro tiger around the sides and just peaking over the top of the rocks, and rotala along the back wall.
A slight variation would be to not use smooth river rock but some local found rocks (still need to soak and test them to see if they effect ph or harness).
Yet another idea is to use all the floating riccia i have in a tupperware bin and tie it to small broken bits of slate to make a carpet on the substrate and wedge some in between the rocks (whichever is chosen to be used), with a bit of hydro japan growing out of it (not too much though).. or have the hydro elsewhere in the tank but the hygro and rotala in the same general areas. And either have the whole bottom coverd in riccia or make an island of green on the black 'sand' (in which case everything would be shoved tot eh back right side by the intake to hide the pipe).

A whole 'nother idea is to scrap the rock and go with driftwood.. no idea what I'd do for scaping details until I got a hold of the wood though.

I know as soon as I settle on one scape plan, something awesome will appear that I could have used instead. I'm not too worried about messing in the tank with Xerxes in, but otos seem so delicate I worry about stressing them with a rescape or trying to net them out temporarily for a rescape...
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Last edited by AquaAurora; 08-18-2014 at 05:55 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 08-27-2014, 07:11 PM   #41
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Default My tank is full of wierdness

Xerxes is weird, he seems to have decided to become a bottom dweller and has made a 'cave' under some of the hygro tiger staging on of the side walls, right against the substrate.. So much for upper water column fish! The surface has a good bit of salvia minima growing now so he has decent shaded spots, and some thicker clumps of rotala... but the odd ball just seems to have an affinity for getting into odd places (below plants against substrate).. I think that's actually his 'bed' as I couldn't find him this morning before lights turned on and didn't want to turn on lights prematurely and startle him away.. thought I saw a bloob on that side wall in the hygro... yep my little wierdo.
Also the otos in with him are freaking stubborn or stupid. They never seem interested in the blanched veggies I put in. Well I didbust one of them on a zucchini slice once, and resting on the spinach, but not eating it... I think most of the oto food ends up in the snails stomachs instead...

In other news the rotala is growing nicely, I've been trimming the tops and replanting them to cover the whole back wall of the tank rather than just the corner. The hydro japan is about ready for a trim and replanting too as its growing taller than the hygro tiger, which loves to pretend to be a foreground non stem plant. Also the hygro has some nice orange on the ends, possibly from the extra light or ferts I've been dosing (started adding iron and slightly increased potassium)
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Old 08-31-2014, 02:34 AM   #42
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Ok so I'm sick of the scape enough now to redo it. My wonderful hubby went rock hunting with me by the creek the past few weeks, he fond a nice rock, doesn't wack out pH or hardness like some others.

Photo taken after rock was water tested, bleach cleaned, washed, and put into over de-cholirnated water again (where it is now). Unfortunately the otehr side has some permanent green-ness to it (I think from algae) that I can't get off so it limits positioning options.

Going to move the tank to the opposite side of the desk tomorrow (its giving a hair algae problem to my hubbys tank), and rescape it. Not sure what I'm going to do about the fish (leave them in or put them in a bucket).. otos can be so sensitive..
Will posts new pics tomorrow or next weeks after scaping.. sadly I'm too lazy to mess with riccia and mesh on stones so it'll be hydro, hygro, and rotala.. plus the salvia.
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Old 09-02-2014, 08:34 PM   #43
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Default Life likes to screw up my plans...

Had an incident with the 20g on Monday and got to spend all day dealing with that instead of rescaping the 7g like I wanted.. Will have to try again this Sunday. Short version of the story: I hadn't cleaned out the hob filter sponges in 4-5 months, filter was not happy x.x
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Old 09-07-2014, 02:23 AM   #44
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Default So.. tired...

So I spent yesterday gutting and redoing the 3g bubble bowl (removing plants and manually removing hair algae from them, dipping plants, rinsing, taking all substrate out of bowl, cleaning bowl, sifting new soil, added new sand, replanting.. then did the same today (except substrate stayed) for my husbands 12g long, removing his fish to a bucket so i could clean plants and replant the tank with excess from the bubble bowl..
After all that I'm suppose to rescape this 7g tomorrow.. uhg too tired.. just going to 2/3 drain and move to opposite end of desk to reduce light going into my husband's tank from my light.. will rescape it next weekend...
Anyways too tried to do much now so went looking at aquabid for bettas on a lark, forgot my browser auto fills in frequently viewed links, it gave me the link to Xerxes auction! So you can see how much he's changed:
then:

now:
Name:  Xerxes_almost_flare11.jpg
Views: 76
Size:  129.6 KB
I've never been able to get him to flare like the seller photo, but then I don't try too hard ^^'' Don't particularly know why that seller listed him as "green" but whatever
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Old 09-23-2014, 08:58 PM   #45
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Default Raoking some floaters

So the saliva minima is growing like mad and making it hard to get the surface cleared enough at the designated feeding spot to give Xerxes his food. SO I've decided to raok off 2-3 small ziplock bags of the stuff. Since this is from a betta tank, I wnated to first try to raok on a betta forum: bettafish.com. If you are a member there (or want to join the site real quick to hop onto the raok) the thread for it is [here]. That sites is not so planted tank oriented as this one (hell its the whole theme of this site) so I'm not sure if anyone will join over there... if not then once the raok deadline passes I'll re-open in the wtb/raok section of this forum and update here with another post.

In other news I still haven't re-scaped this tank yet (I really really need to get off my butt and do that!) but I'm still getting stuff together for the 55g setup (moving 20g plants/riparium/fish to 55g) which I'm hoping will happen this weekend... so maybe the weekend after that I'll get the 7g done. Rotala needs a trim again as its trailing on the surface, love this stem plant! It and hygro tiger which I trained to grow like a carpeting plant (good hygro *pets*) it only grows upwards when it runs into the glass (runs out of room)
.
Xerxes still doesn't know I have 2 other betta boys, he's never seen them.. I wonder how he'd react if I brought one over in the small cube for a quick visit (not put into the tank just get to see eachother through the glass).. Xerxes would probably get indignant, not flare, and just swim away..
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