How I came into the hobby. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
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How I came into the hobby.

I was a restless,troublesome, young man/boy of seventeen.
One evening a few day's/night's before Halloween, I was out in the wood's with the hound's ,training the young dog's which were used for hunting raccoon's.
We were about to reach Miller's creek when I heard the sound of hoof beat's approaching from well ahead of us .
As the hoof beat's got louder,and much closer on the dirt road, I could make out what appeared to be a wagon or cart being pulled by a runaway team of four Horses.
In the wagon itself ,was a very large cloaked figure which I thought looked to be trying to get control of the run away horses and I moved to the edge of the road so as to get out of the way.
Suddenly, the cloaked figure pulled hard on the reign's and brought the wagon to a screeching halt directly in front of me.
The young dog's,,, frightened, took off for home ,and I was left face to face with the Grim Reaper.
He inquired if I was interested in taking a ride with him through the ages as he put it. "I promise you "he said, "It will be the ride of your life".
I hesitated a moment when he growled. "If your scared,,just say your scared".
At seventeen, I was full of myself and not scared of nuthin and told the old demon "make room" and I climbed aboard.
The ride was as advertised the ride of my life as he drove the team of horses at break neck speed's through the centuries while cracking a whip above their head's,and it was nearly thirty five year's as I recall, before he slowed the wagon down to the point where I thought I might be able to jump without breaking my neck.
I barely managed to escape from the wagon which oddly enough ,wound up close to the same spot where I foolishly climbed aboard.
As I picked myself up from the road the old demon sent out a howl and laughed.
'Didn't I tell ya it would be the ride of your life?" he asked, and then I must have blacked out for when I awoke, I was alone on the dirt road with nothing but the pitch darkness, and the sound's of the owl's that one hear's just before the dawn in these wood's.
It was at this moment, that I decided to put away the bottle of who hit John that I swiped from grandpa's stash behind the barn, and promised the good lord that I would make ammend's and lead a more wholesome life.
I decided to start catching baitfish for sale as bait for a few old fisherman who lived close,and this in turn led me to purchase my first slate bottom aquarium so that I could keep the fishes alive during the colder month's and I enjoyed watching them through the glass .
I have not seen the old Demon in many year's, and I am in no hurry to make contact with him again.
The young dog's grew old and passed away ,but not before we enjoyed many a moon lit night running the raccoon's.
I too hope to enjoy a few more moon lit night's so long as I am able.
I miss the bottle now and again,but not enough to chance once again finding myself on the white knuckle ride I took that evening.

P.S. Feel free to share how you got into the hobby.

Last edited by roadmaster; 01-16-2015 at 11:36 AM. Reason: P.S.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 01:39 PM
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As I child I had always wanted fish. Throughout my life I have always gravitated to water, mainly streams and small lakes were where I felt most relaxed, particularly mountain streams where the continuous trickle of water over rocks would drown out my own thoughts.
I have been sick most of my life(many many worse then me though) and at 28 I had a liver transplant after about 6 months of liver failure(which upon reflection I did a lot of hilarious things, for instance walking outside in the snow wearing nothing but boxer briefs and a box of teddy Graham's as a shoe, it seems ammonia building up in the brain distorts reality), and a diagnosis of cancer 4 months post op I found myself not able to be where I wanted to be, which was outside. So, I decided to bring nature inside. I started with a 5.5g betta tank, and quickly went to a 10 with a few neons as well.
Enter wisteria and the planted era that would follow. Today my 65 is continuously evolving and my son's 20 long is suited for him, a dwarf puffer and a Lego Star Wars theme including an at-at and an ewok being chased by a storm trooper on land speeders.
My wife says I spend too much time on my tank, I say not enough. That's comprimise.

If in doubt, add more plants!

My not-enough-plants-but-not-enough-space-to-put-anymore-so-will-start-going-up-box-of-water.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 02:00 PM
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Roadmaster, what a great story! I'm glad you got your life under control. There's nothing but heartache in a bottle, for you and the ones you hurt.

Jeepguy, I hope that you're healed now and living a healthy life.

I've had fish since I was born. I would pour my bottle in my Mom's tanks, trying to feed the fish. LOL

As I grew up, I always had at least 5 fish tanks. We lived near the lake and there were Swordtails, Mosquito Fish, etc. that were up against the shore. My Dad would take me there with a 5 gallon bucket and net to catch them.

At fairs, I would have to throw the ping pong ball to get a gold fish.

Later, a friend owned a pet shop and she would let me go with her to the suppliers. That was like putting a kid in the candy store and saying get what ever you want!

That same friend took me to one of her maintenance jobs and when the gate opened, there was, what I thought at the time, a huge pond in the corner it koi swimming. I was mesmerized. I had no idea you could have a pond in your yard.

So the next day, yep, I started digging a "pond". The next day it was empty. LOL Since then, I've built 12 real ponds. I had 5 ponds at one time at my old house. I now have a 30x70' mud pond, 3x71' lily pond and 10x25' 5-7' deep koi pond.

I was bored, having winter withdrawals last winter, and started looking around for something fishy to play with inside. A friend gave me an old aquarium and I raised a batch of Angel Fry on my bathroom floor. While looking for info on the fry, I found Planted Tank websites and I was hooked.

Meganne, who posts here, had one and she helped me set up my 75 gallon tank. Of course, I had to have another one so I set up a 5 gallon a few months ago. I wish I could have a dedicated room to them so I could keep setting up more tanks. I love the creative aspect of it.

I can't remember many times in my life when I didn't have at least one aquarium.

Fraternity of Dirt #160
75 gallon - CO2 injected
5 gallon tall cube - CO2 injected

Wish I had an entire room dedicated just for more tanks!
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 02:12 PM
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It's all my father's fault.

When I was 8 years old, his doctor wanted to get rid of a fish tank, so he came home with an 8 gallon Metaframe slate-bottom tank that we proceeded to put on the radiator cover since it didn't come with a heater. The radiator cover didn't collapse, but the few fish that tank came with did start to look a little distressed when the cold weather settled in.

That was 50 years ago. I've been without a fish tank for a three year stretch in the middle of that when 70 hour weeks, a new house, a commute you wouldn't believe, and trying to be a father, made the choice an easy one. Real life comes first.

My youngest is in his last year of college, I run 24 tanks and there WILL be more, I just built a detached workshop and greenhouse that will finally be done this spring, and I just bought my first trio of fancy guppies in about 45 years.

In just under 3 years I quit working full time.

That would be coming full circle.

Angelo

"Why can't my wife see all of this stuff as an investment?"
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 02:16 PM
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For me, while helping a friend move out of his dorm on move out day I say someone throw out a fish tank with all the equipment needed to set it up (filter/lights). After killing my first fish because I did not even know that you needed a dechlorinator I did my research and in doing so I stumbled upon different aquaecapes and have kept fish tanks ever since then.


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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 03:03 PM
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I'm new (not to fish, but to planted) - haven't even started my tank but in planning stages.

I saw a pic of a pretty 5 gallon planted on facebook and I guess it got me thinking I wanted to try it. I love having fish so I thought it would be fun to try. Right now I have a 5 gallon with a betta, he will move to my new big tank once I get it. Unless I decide to keep him alone so I don't have to worry about what other fish I have in the big tank. I'd like some angelfish. If he stays alone, I'll probably re-do his tank.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 12:31 AM
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My Grandmother had tanks and I always loved watching the fish when we would go to her house. For Christmas about 50 years ago, Grandma wanted to give my siblings and I a puppy but Mom said no. Whe got a 10 gal instead. It only took about 2 weeks for it to become mine.

HEY! Your sleeves are wet.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 12:52 AM
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My story is not dramatic at all. It all started for me only about a year and a half almost two years ago. While looking for a nightlight for my two young children's room, I got the bright idea to get an aquarium for their nightlight. So I bought a complete 10g setup from Craigslist for $40. After listening to the lfs people and cycling my tank the way they told me to, with fish in, I started doing my own research. Now four tanks later I'm looking at buying a house with the requirement of space for a fish room.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clayman View Post
My story is not dramatic at all. It all started for me only about a year and a half almost two years ago. While looking for a nightlight for my two young children's room, I got the bright idea to get an aquarium for their nightlight. So I bought a complete 10g setup from Craigslist for $40. After listening to the lfs people and cycling my tank the way they told me to, with fish in, I started doing my own research. Now four tanks later I'm looking at buying a house with the requirement of space for a fish room.
Maybe no drama, but it may be one of the more common scenarios. If you're "hooked", and it seems like you have the bug, stay focused on keeping the kids part of it and active in it and bring elements of it down to their level. It's tough, very tough. I thought my son would be the one of the three, but even he lost interest when he reached his teens.

Angelo

"Why can't my wife see all of this stuff as an investment?"
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 01:00 PM
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I wouldn't give up on the teenagers. They have more pressing issues right now. LOL

It will come back to them when they settle down.

Fraternity of Dirt #160
75 gallon - CO2 injected
5 gallon tall cube - CO2 injected

Wish I had an entire room dedicated just for more tanks!
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 01:51 PM
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I've always had tanks. Something my parents got me into to teach responsibility. My uncle owned a fish store back in the day. 3 years ago I grew tired of plastic scapes and wanted more of a challenge. So i started down the rabbit hole. I had to put my 9 year old pit down due to cancer. After that I started to fill the void with more tanks. We are in the process of buying our first home. More tanks cometh.


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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-17-2015, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
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I wouldn't give up on the teenagers. They have more pressing issues right now. LOL

It will come back to them when they settle down.
Oh, I know that. It gets even tougher as they get their way through college. He's gonna be 22 soon! If he decides he wants this house somewhere down the line, he'll have on hell of a head start with 24 tanks and counting! I commuted to college and kept tanks in my room the whole time and even found space in my first apartment. It's a whole different set of circumstances for some.

Angelo

"Why can't my wife see all of this stuff as an investment?"
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-18-2015, 01:50 AM
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When I was born, my father had a 125 gallon African Cichlid tank. Apparently, my parents would put me in my baby seat thingy and sit me in front of the tank to stop the crying that babies do. Once I was about 5, my parents got me a 2 - 1/2 gallon tank which had a few live bearers in it. I then graduated to a 30 gallon long African Cichlid tank and began working at the LFS in my teens. It was cool because my boss was a marine biologist and I became the go to guy on African Cichlids. So, this has continued for years. I lost my 7 year old Cyphotilapia frontosa burundi back in late 2014. That sucked. So, after keeping Africans for so long, I figured that I'd try something new. So now, I have a 65 gallon planted tank. I'm a newbie and it is SO EXCITING learning from you guys here. I'm enjoying learning about different plants and seeing what I can grow and learning by failure and success. My tank is low tech right now, but I would consider going high-tech once I learn more. I like the gadgety stuff. :p
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-18-2015, 12:11 PM
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One of my first birthday gifts as a youngster was a very large drum shaped fish bowl with 2 goldfish and some sprigs of anacharis. Those goldfish lived for many years. For Christmas, (when I was 11 years old), I was finally allowed to have a REAL fish tank---a 10 gallon with a box filter, air pump, orange and purple gravel, some plastic plants and a reflector hood with incandescent bulbs! Wow! That was the best Christmas present ever!
Since then I've always had fish tanks. Now many decades later, I have 5 aquariums, and thanks to the great info on this forum, four of them have live plants. The fifth tank has goldfish (which are still my favorite fish). What a fun, relaxing and rewarding hobby!

"Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Last edited by Saxtonhill; 01-18-2015 at 12:13 PM. Reason: spelling
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