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Beginner learning- lighting question

908 Views 9 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Baidatank
I wasn’t sure if I should post here or in lighting…but alas, here I am, because ultimately I want to keep the aquarium pretty low tech (read: low cost). Also, I am not 100% sure my issue is lighting related!

A little backstory: tank purchased as a Christmas gift for children.
Basics of the tank:
37 gallon tank, purchased the TopFin essentials starter kit found here (Top Fin® Essentials Aquarium Starter Kit | fish Starter Kits | PetSmart) which comes with a basic “bright white led light”.

15 fish:
2 leopard danio- long fin (about an inch)
1 zebra danio - long fin (about an inch) we lost the other one due to ich
3 mollies -silver lyretail (about 2 inches), 1 Dalmatian (about 2 inches), 1 black (under 1 inch)
2 cosmic blue danio (about 1 inch)
3 lyretail delta guppy (under 1 inch)
2 gold twinbar platy (about 1 inch)
2 blue wag platy (each a little over 1 inch)

we have live plants …about 8 individual plants….4 varieties: narrow leaf fern, Amazon sword, Anubias congensis, windelov Java fern, planted in CaribSea Eco complete.

About2 weeks in, we had an ich situation. So in an attempt to treat that, in addition to medication (2 rounds of super ich cure, and Fritz Coppersafe) I raised the temp of the tank to 82F. That was a whole thing…but I don’t think impactful for my current plant issue.
I usually dose with 1 mL Seachem flourish about 1x per week.

Based on my stocking levels, and my daily testing (ammonia/ nitrite/ nitrate - all zero), I believe the tank to be cycled and nitrogen balanced (aka, the plants are using what the fish/ bacteria are creating), but I never saw an extreme ammonia spike (we did fish in cycling for the sake of a magical Christmas surprise-yikes. While it was the right choice for us given the circumstance, avoid if possible).

ANYWAY…..on the the issue at hand: I noticed that some of my leaves are starting to turn translucent. To me this is due to one of 3 things:

1. the high temp of the water (slowly returned to 75*F- confirmed today.
2. Some sort of nutrient deficiency
3. Lighting issue

Thoughts? Are they just still getting used to life in the net tank? Is it because I hear it so warm(78-82) for so long (~3 weeks)? Is it because of some nutrient deficiency? Do I need to invest in a better light?

I want the tank to be as self sufficient as possible. We all enjoy it, and want what’s best for the fish and the overall tank ecosystem….but we don’t have a ton of time to dedicate and don’t want it to become a money suck, either.
Thanks in advance for sharing your thoughts, experience, and expertise!!
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