How did you get into this hobby? - Page 5 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #61 of 86 (permalink) Old 08-11-2018, 03:32 AM
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Growing up I used to visit the family farm in northern WI. Aunt Trudie ran the house and she was pretty much the LFS and bird store for the small farming town. She had bird cages and fish tanks everywhere. I "helped" her take care of everything one summer. My parents bought me a 20 gallon and had it set up when I returned home. Aunt Trudie sent me home with some 250 fancy tail guppies and they made the 3 day car trip with very little loss. The glory of that first tank...swirling colors everywhere was amazing. My jealous younger brother decided to turn the heater to full one night and they all died. However, that 3-4 days solidified my love for aquariums. 40 years later and I still want to reproduce that first tank... completely unhealthy for the tank but my goodness it was beautiful.
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post #62 of 86 (permalink) Old 08-11-2018, 03:49 AM
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I still want to reproduce that first tank...
Buy two guppies, wait 4 months. ; )
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post #63 of 86 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 09:59 PM
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It was a gradual progression after my dad won a goldfish for me at a carnival. It was black and I named it Swimmy after this book.

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post #64 of 86 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 10:41 PM
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It was a gradual progression after my dad won a goldfish for me at a carnival. It was black and I named it Swimmy after this book.

Ha! thanks for sharing, I just ordered a copy for the kiddo's. We were getting a little "Aesop'd out" here lately
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post #65 of 86 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 10:54 PM
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Ha! thanks for sharing, I just ordered a copy for the kiddo's. We were getting a little "Aesop'd out" here lately
You're welcome, I'm always happy to help cultivate another generation of fish fans.
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post #66 of 86 (permalink) Old 10-10-2018, 04:53 PM
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I first got started in the hobby when I was in high school overseas. Back then it was just about keeping fish, and I was able to turn it into a bit of cash: I saw a lot of business (restaurants, office receptions etc) with filthy tanks and offered my services as a cleaner/maintainer.

Fast forward to adulthood when I got back into it with a proverbial 10G. Thats when I started with live plants, mainly for the sake of the fish: I firmly believe in giving them as natural an environment as possible which of course includes live plants. While I wish I could channel the late Amano and actually come up with something attractive, my first priority is happy fish.
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post #67 of 86 (permalink) Old 10-10-2018, 09:09 PM
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In 1991 I was 14 and I lived in a trailer park full of scumbags just north of Detroit. I had some older friends that were in their late teens. Someone gave them a 220 gallon tank. They put it in the kitchen it was almost as wide as the trailer. My buddies put 30 piranhas in it. We would feed them mice. Half the trailer park would cram into the trailer to watch them eat. My buddy could have charged admission. I was fascinated with aquarium ever since. A couple years later someone gave me a 29 gallon set up. I kept oscars and tiger barbs. I never had a desire to keep piranhas. Kind of been there done that. I became fascinated with planted tanks when I saw them in magazines in the late 90's. I never really understood how to do one until I got the internet in the early 2000's. Been in the hobby a long time. I remember back in the late 90's seeing zebra pleco's for $40.
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post #68 of 86 (permalink) Old 12-28-2018, 09:10 AM
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I got into it back in 1972 and have been off and on since then. My mom had a tank and I wanted my own, she had a 29 gallon Metaframe with the stainless steel frame. I got a 20 high, my first fish were a Red Tailed black shark and a Khuli loach. I got a couple of Bloodfin tetras and a Green Cory cat a few weeks later and I was hooked. I got into breeding Bettas, Port Cichlids and different Cory cats.
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post #69 of 86 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 02:30 AM
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Back in 1972 I started with guppies and gold fish ( no filtration) Now I have 400 gallons system full blown reef, 25 gallons cube natural plants tank and 40 gallons Dutch style started. Almost forgot and a 7000 gallons koi pond
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post #70 of 86 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 02:48 AM
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Ive had ornamental and reef tanks my whole life. This was the next thing to try, plus its beautiful.
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post #71 of 86 (permalink) Old 07-25-2019, 10:17 PM
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One of my dad's friends said he used to have oscars and arowanas and gars and other cichlids as a kid, and my dad had an old 10 gallon tank in the shop so I did 100's of hours of research and then got 11 neon tetras, 1 platy, 2 shrimp, and 2 snails. only the tetras remain today, and for not much longer either.(They have 'terminal' fin rot).
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75 gallon planted tank. About to stock.
10 gallon QT

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post #72 of 86 (permalink) Old 09-30-2019, 04:34 AM
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Love this thread and stories people share!

Lets see for me I used to work as a valet/bellman at some hotel and a guest gave me flowers in a bowel after an event the previous night. So right away I was thinking "hey this'll be great for a fish tank!" And you can guess it years later been obsessed with this hobby lol
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post #73 of 86 (permalink) Old 09-30-2019, 03:39 PM
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When I was in grade school the Science teacher had a 10 gal guppy tank in her classroom. I was fascinated by that box of water. I suppose I was always talking about it at home so my parents decided to get a small aquarium for home. My dad had a friend where he worked who had a fish shop at his home/garage... We went there one evening and came home with a 29 Gal setup. I still remember that Dynaflo filter, lol, and the Vortex Diatom Filter for occasional polishing. ( I eventually ended up with the Diatom Filter which lasted many many years.)
Anyway, within a year my dad opened an aquarium/fish store in the small town where we lived. Of course we all had to work there LOL, Several years later he closed it, but the hobby has remained with me since. I've had many setups over the years, Community tanks, Discus, I've bred Angels and bettas. Kept a Saltwater Reef tank for a few years also. I took a hiatus for quite a few years but back now.
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post #74 of 86 (permalink) Old 10-01-2019, 02:17 PM
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When I was about 9 or 10, we had a project in school to set up a mini-ecosystem, complete with mosquitofish. The teacher offered us to take them home (provided we filled out a care sheet explaining how we would keep them!) and I got 8, including 1 male.... From there it was a slippery slope, when my mother suggested we get a catfish to keep the bottom clean, and opened the floodgates to actually buying fish
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post #75 of 86 (permalink) Old 10-01-2019, 04:52 PM
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At 20 ( about 31 years ago- cough) got a job at a garden center/feed store that had a corner of about 20-25 fish tanks. Part of my job was to take care of the fish. I knew absolutely nothing about fish. Beyond knowing a rudimentary bit about the nitrogen cycle, my manager knew little else, so I had to seek out information in fish-care books.
This was way before the internet so went to the library and found a book written by William T. Innes in 1966 called Exotic Aquarium Fishes. A month later I had my own copy of this book.

I then became the fish "go-to" employee. Everyone around me thought i was a bit strange for being so interested in the care of fish. This is also where my interest started on helping others when their fish were sick: learning the active ingredients of medications, narrowing down symptoms: looking at water, environmental stress, and disease pathogens.

I soon set up an aquarium with blue gravel and a princess castle. It was lovely. LOL. And, since then I have had at least 1 fish tank running continuously for 3 decades.


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