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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm so excited!!! Me ---->:bounce:


I just planted this ten gallon tank yesterday and added the rocks today. It's GORGEOUS if I do say so myself. ;) *blush* Of course it's nowhere near the beauty of some of the tanks I've seen here, but I lubb it anyway. ;) It's low tech ~ no CO2 or lights yet ~ just sitting in a sunny window. I couldn't wait for my lights to come in or my DIY CO2 to be built. Just HAD to plant something NOW! So I did. ;)

I'm a total newbie to planted tanks. For a month now, I've been reading through the forum threads to learn all I could, rounding up plants via the SwapNShop forum and collecting other equipment where I can find it. Finally last Tuesday my Soilmaster came in. I rinsed and rinsed and rinsed that stuff before putting it in the tank and it was STILL cloudy three days later. Hubby and I had gone "clamming" in one of our spring fed creeks and found a dozen or so freshwater clams, so he said, "Why don't you put some of those in there to clear that water up?" I have the clams in clay pots with sand so they're easily found, so put one in the tank. Cleared it up in a day!

Right now I have one male betta in there, but he'll be moving out soon. I have some red cherry shrimp coming in soon that I traded for in the SwapNShop. That red betta, Sarge, is rather agressive so I don't think he'd make a good tankmate for the shrimp. I have a really laid back betta that I might try in there. He doesn't bother ghost shrimp, so he may work well with them. If not, it'll be a shrimp only tank.

Man, I'm about to pop! And can't wait to get more plants to fill up the other four ten gallon tanks I have. This is SO MUCH FUN!!! :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That's the exact tank I'll be putting your cherries in, Yoink! :biggrin: Good to know you think it'll be okay. ;) (Yoink and I have been PMing back and forth in our trade of pond plants for shrimp. I've been driving him batty with questions since I've never had them before.:redface: :icon_lol: )

Thanks, ResGuy! :biggrin:

SFCallen, those are mostly your plants in there ~ almost all of them. They were all so healthy and easy to plant that I hardly had to "clean" them up any at all! I'll keep an eye on the temp and algae as well ~ thanks for the concern. I've got new drapes going in that window soon, and I plan on them being dark/heavy so I can block light when I need to.

:biggrin:
 

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Looks nice! Keep up the great work!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks, Jebar! You, too, Rnakas! :biggrin: Nope, IanMoede ~ your Java moss and riccia are in my fry tank waiting for my bettas to spawn. I was thinking about putting some riccia in there, but figured I'd better wait 'til I got lights and CO2. I can't imagine the hell it would be to get algae off of riccia! LOL!

And my shrimp are on the way!:bounce: Can't wait to see them in there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Shrimp got here yesterday and they arrived in GREAT shape. Thanks again, Yoink! :proud: I can't believe how many he sent me. DH counted 38 and I counted 39 before they started moving too much to keep count ~ and that's with some hidden under the little batch of plants included with them! I'll bet there are fifty or more in there!

I put them in the tank and they went to town on the hair algae right away, abandoning a sinking algae wafer I'd given them. Man, was I ever glad to see that. Like an idiot, I put a few rocks from my creek in the tank before disinfecting them and that algae popped right up in no time. *sigh* But looks like it wasn't a bad thing after all ~ made their new home even more comfy for them. Serendipity!

After a few hours, they started swimming around a lot, up high off the substrate, back and forth across the tank. I was a bit concerned, but DH loved watching them. The tank is next to his chair for now and he sat there for hours staring at the tank. Looks like these will be good for his blood pressure. :wink: I got on here to look for info on whether that was normal or not and found a thread that said when a female molts she lets off hormones that make the males go crazy. Sure enough, I found what looked all the world like an empty exoskeleton laying on the substrate with a shrimp eating it.

This morning they're a lot more subdued. We only saw about a dozen foraging out in the substrate near the front of the tank. I did find a few more in the "forests" in the back corners. I've also read on here that they hide well, so out of a hundred you may only see a dozen or so, so I'm not worried.

What I LOVED seeing this morning was one eating a little bunch of that hair algae! As I sat drinking my coffee, I watched her munching down! It was a piece about 3/4" x 1/2" and she finished it in no time! No wonder the tank looked a lot cleaner this morning. They're quick!

I've also noticed atleast three females with saddles. Looks like I might get a population explosion in a month or two! I'm really looking forward to it as I have another tank with a bare bottom and plants in pots that have started growing hair algae as well. I think I'll move the betta out of that one and put some cherries in there once the number grows enough to do that.

I've been reading about the "super red" cherries and thought I might try my hand at selectively breeding for that trait, so I might start that with the second tank ~ just moving the reddest ones into it. Out of the four or so adults I've seen, there are two females that are REALLY red, so maybe I can have some success. Even if I don't get super reds, it will help me start a second line to backcross so I can keep them from inbreeding. Breeding Longhorn cattle and racing Paint horses for years has given me a good working knowledge of genetics, though breeding on this large of a scale with this many individuals and at this fast of a pace is a bit new to me. Cattle's gestation is nine months and horses is almost a year, so breeding these guys will be like instant gratification!:icon_lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I think I positively IDed the algae as hair algae. Atleast it sure looks like the hair algae on this page: http://www.aquariumalgae.blogspot.com/ The shrimp have made short work of it though ~ it's almost gone completely! LOVE those shrimp!

Speaking of shrimp, this morning I saw four females with saddles rooting around in the front of the tank. Lord knows how many more saddled ones there are in there. Can't wait for babies. :)

Plants are growing. That's pretty cool! I still don't have any CO2 or extra light besides sunlight. Don't even dose anything either. My lightbulbs should be in the mail soon, so I should have more light on the tank soon. I've ordered ferts from Rex, too, so will be using those soon. Then I'll do the DIY CO2 as well.

I need to get off my butt and paint my aquarium shelves so I can set up more tanks. My two eldest step-sons built a REALLY nice setup for me ~ a set of shelves custom-sized for ten gallon aquariums, one on either side of the big windows in the living room, and a long shelf all the way across the top. There's room for six ten gallon tanks and equipment below. Handy! I just need to paint them and then fill them up. I need to get on that.
 

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Sounds like you are having a lot of fun with this tank :) That's great, congratulations on all the saddled cherries!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks, RESGuy! :biggrin: Yep, I'm having a BLAST, especially with these little shrimpy guys. I spin (wool into yarn) and have my spinning wheel set up in the living room not far from their tank. It's so relaxing to sit and spin and watch them. DH is still getting a kick out of them, too ~ told his mother about them and she said, "How long 'til they're big enough to eat?" YAHAHAHAHA!
 

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Thanks, RESGuy! :biggrin: Yep, I'm having a BLAST, especially with these little shrimpy guys. I spin (wool into yarn) and have my spinning wheel set up in the living room not far from their tank. It's so relaxing to sit and spin and watch them. DH is still getting a kick out of them, too ~ told his mother about them and she said, "How long 'til they're big enough to eat?" YAHAHAHAHA!
That's great :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have EGGAGE!!! Today I did a big water change (50%) and it really stirred them up. I saw about twenty of them rooting around the front of the tank and counted SIX saddled AND FOUR with eggs!!!!! WOOT! WOOT!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks, RESGuy!
LOL! I'm still on cloud nine about it. I think it's due more to the health, generous amount and size/age of the ones Yoink sent me than my care for them, so I shouldn't be getting my hopes up so much ~ time will tell if my care is good enough to have them hatch successfully. Yoink set me up so that I can't fail if I do things right from here. I hope they can hold on to them all.

How exciting!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
WOW! These little things DO breed like rabbits! I counted SEVEN with eggs today! I counted them three times to make sure none of them were counted twice and sure enough ~ seven! I tried to get a picture of one but no luck.

Still see quite a few with saddles. I did get a pic of some of them. This is a bad picture, but you can make out the bright yellow on these two:


And here's a full tank picture. You can see how much everything's grown. I'm surprised at how much that is!

I've added some pellia to cover the "naked legs" on the stems to the right. Looks better I think, but I imagine I'll find an even better solution eventually.
 
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