Move to a New Place, Aquarium Breaks

I’ll be writing here for a long time. Much time has passed since the last post, and even more has happened.

The biggest change is probably the need to find a new aquarium.

There was an urgent move for a new job. The owner of my previous apartment put the apartment up for sale when he heard that I was moving, and I had to leave quicker than I had planned.

The move was so swift that the aquarium seemed to get knocked down. In the new apartment, it broke up. Now I’m exhausted, and have fatigue after moving.

Back to the aquarium. The gluing of the corners tore apart, as there were no frames in that kind of aquarium design.

Since I moved and started a new job, I had no time for the aquarium. The fish had to live in a small temporary tank until I gave them to a friend of mine who has several aquariums.

Little by little, I hope that I have time to engage properly and think about what kind of aquarium to set up next. And for this new one I’m thinking of putting led lights for a fish tank. I have to go over the pros and cons first.

Well, moving into a new space forces me to purchase quite a few new items anyway. The list of must-haves is very long.

There are lots of other things to do and buy after a move, like new furniture inside the house. And now that I have a nice patio, some outdoor furniture, and area rugs, and I need to take care of the small backyard garden, etc. Hopefully, I don’t need to buy new plants that much!

The new house is not properly designed for the installation of smart doorbells, thermostats, or smoke detectors/carbon monoxide detectors, etc. And as an engineer, this area is one of my interests, so I’ll spend some time on those first.

I’ve also been thinking about the transfer of this blog under a new title. More on that later. So that this post wouldn’t be complete without photos, I’ll post this beautiful aquarium photo from the free photo service, better than nothing.

Problems with Aquarium Snails and Overgrown Plants

The aquarium has been in use for a couple of months now.

Dwarf hygro (Hygrophila polysperma) is growing at a rapid rate. I should do some harvesting as they obscure all light.

Snails are also increasing at a rapid rate. I need to have some snail-eating fish in my tank, probably. Any Yo-Yo or Clown Loach would hopefully control the population of snails.

Platys continue to breed, after a break for a week, but the water changeover started it again.

I got more platys from a friend. I was afraid the bigger ones would eat them, but yes, there seemed to be at least eleven still alive yesterday.

I also bought an aerator pump while shopping, pretty hard to keep up. Particularly in the evenings, when the other sounds are muted, the buzzing is a little tiring.

However, a shelf may not be the best platform. Hollow shelves seem to increase pump resonance.

Some fish seem to like the bubbles from the aerator. They get from the bottom to the surface with the bubbles, swim back to the bottom and come up with the stream again.

I will change the order of the plants shortly. The fish tank does not look good yet, and Dwarf hygro causes headaches. I’m not sure I’ll leave it in the pool at all.

On the other hand, it looks really good when it grows well, but at some point I always find that it has taken almost the entire pool.

I woke up to the idea of ​​buying new plants for the whole tank. Or maybe a new tank. Then I started to think that for a moment …

Maybe now is the time to get new lamps for the pool. The lower plants in the bottom are in poor condition and clearly not getting enough light.

Getting rid of extra plants

The month of June has already begun. Yes, time goes by quickly. I’m on sick leave; it’s an excellent time to update the blog a bit.

The first tetra pair spawn was in this pool already after a week.

Usually, I feed fish once a day, but now when I have time (not working full time), I feed a new pool twice a day and spawning began immediately.

Today, half of the tetras are in beautiful spawning colors, although the temperature in the pool is a couple of degrees less than usual.

I gave away a bunch of plants that had grown well in the old pool, and I didn’t want to fill the new pool with them right away.

I have a little love-hate relationship with some of those plants. It is nice and beautiful when the plant grows slowly and stays in its reserved area. But then when those cuttings are pushed in, at every point, and in the middle of other plants, the nerves go.

Here you can read more about best aquarium plants.

I was supposed to give away a few plants, but somehow there were only a couple of bundles left in the pool.

And I am still without riccia.

Last week a little Topaz arrived in my pool. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a good picture of that nimble and busy guy. As the picture might make it clear, it has a greenish-gray color and hardly any yellow. It’s still small, but the zucchini gets devoured.

Finished! The aquarium is to the house!

The fish have now been living in their new aquarium for a couple of days. No picture yet, because the pool does not quite please my eyes.

The new apple tree branches have also dissolved a little yellow, so the picture would not be the best. I also donated a large pile of plants, and I would search for new plants in the pool: rust, rickshaw, and some shallow foreground. Tetra would miss the flock a bit.

How did you start your hobby?

I’m wondering how other aquarists have started this hobby?

Mine may not have been the most common.

One fateful night, I dreamed of an aquarium with beautiful fish. The dream was so real, that in a couple of days, I was sitting and reading all about the aquarium fish, and the plants I could find.

I got an old 100-liter pool with a couple of dozens from my schoolmate. I got the techniques needed with the tank, and so the fish arrived.

And on that road there now, after a long pause, 300 liters in the corner of the living room.

The book is still in the hands, though this time it’s a new aquarium plant book.

And what has changed?

Sometimes it feels like nothing, on the other hand, the inside filters have changed to the outside, the pool bigger a couple of times, and the feeling that the hobby is getting more expensive all the time.

Maybe it’s a sign of something. If something I’ve learned so fiddling with water and drying floors.

Designing the Interior of the Aquarium

It’s time to design the interior of my new aquarium.

When decorating, I do not draw in advance any plan on how to put plants and rocks, etc.

There is something in my mind that I would like the aquarium to look.

I made a photo collage containing ideas of what I would like.

I’m planning on putting a larger bump in the back corner with lots of protruding twigs and rocks, preferably red.

There would be open space around the bump and bare sand for the catfish to swaddle.

I wish I could find some red or brown plants. I want some shallow plant on the edge of the basin, but I don’t know what yet.

The idea would also be to build stone pillars in the aquarium. So that I would drill a hole through the stones, from which I would insert a plastic tube into which I glue the stones. Finally, the pillars would be secured to the bottom of the basin. So they would be glued to the bottom glass.

In addition, the substrate of pool filter sand, but have to check if it has a natural look.

The back wall panels are now glued. There is still dust on the slabs from the slab saw because the slabs were too large without the pool being cut. For small fish, there are small caves made of slate and silicone.

Heat problems

The temperature outside (and inside) rises. The heat of the aquarium was already 30 degrees.

Raising the lamp higher and removing the lid from the plexiglass, positioning the filter outlet pipe so that water circulates as much as possible on the surface of the pool, and luckily, the temperature dropped to 28.5 degrees.

Hopefully, now everything survives for a while. Well, luckily, the heat increases the spawning tendency of lemon tetras, something bad, and something good.

New job

But I got a job, so the pool project hasn’t been as active as I’d hoped. I’ve had so much work to do, but it is only a temporary job.

The aquarium project is lagging behind schedule; I would have hoped to have the fish in the pool by now.

Well, anyway, now the backgrounds are glued, ground nutrients and sand laid. Also, stumps and a few rocks are on the bottom.

The pool does not yet look what I wish it would look like. I would like more apple tree twigs.

Of course, the color of the strains, some dry and some wet, adds to the confusion. Plants will undoubtedly improve the look, and the positions of the strains will probably change.

All in all, at this point it looks good!

Setting up first Aquarium

Today, a new 85 gallon (320 l) aquarium came from the house of my friends. It was an extra at their home.

My friend installed some soundproofing for the power filter chamber from the gym mat. The whole setup is a little bit DIY, but it is working.

He also drilled holes to the filter cabinet for wires and hoses.

There was a 10 cm lifting stand mounted on the base to raise the aquarium.

The original stand is a bit low, and the aquarium itself is also low. However, I can not put the stand any further up, I’m not that long, and I need reach to the bottom of the aquarium also.

The aquarium is angular, made of plexiglass, so it is quite easy to move.

The bevels on the front wall are also a big plus; I get a headache from the curved front panel …

Overall the tank and stand are in excellent shape.

The tank is from Tropeakvarier. Googling made it clear that it is a Danish design (tropeakvarier.dk). My friend bought it from the yard sale, so no idea how it came to here!

For the lightning I would like some metallic or the like, new ones are quite pricey, probably I will be looking for used one.

Until I find something suitable, I can use my friend’s old and little bit inefficient light, but anyway it is working still.

The filter is Eheim 2017.

I’ll probably take also a small filter as a trash collector.

The heater comes from Hydor’s.

I like Hydor’s heater; it has temperature control scale, which is not exact, but nice anyway, and I shouldn’t have to worry about it getting water inside so easily.

Anyway, it is clear to read and see whether or not to warm up.

As a backdrop to this new aquarium, an exterior wall tile is what I’m after. It should be water-resistant, unlike interior tiles. The color is pretty lukewarm, reddish brown. The tiles I will attach with clear aquarium silicone.

The tile has an uneven surface that will hopefully add some vitality, as well as lights and shadows.

Back to aquarium hobby after many years

Hi! Here, a 60-year-old engineer writes about his aquarium hobby. My blog will focus on the creation of a small aquarium and the problems around the subject that are per dozen.

I have to analyze and investigate all kinds of issues related to how to make an aquarium, and how to take care of it, such as:

  • How do you set up an aquarium?
  • Is it easy to handle?
  • What fish is suitable for a small aquarium?
  • Big or small aquarium?
  • Sand or a gravel base?
  • Internal or External Filter?
  • Soft or hard water, high or low pH?

You learn by doing. And I hope my learnings are useful to others. I like to share my experience so that you do not need the same mistakes like mine.

And I already had made lots of mistakes! My aquarium experience so far is based on school days, when I founded my first aquarium. A 40-liter catastrophe project ended up with the Platys overcrowding and the algae revival… But, fortunately, it did not kill my passion for this fascinating underwater activity, as aquariums still interest me.

After working and living for ages abroad in a multilingual environment (over 20 years in Austria and Dubai), I’m moving back home. It takes some time to get language back (and it wont be perfect anyway since my parents were from Germany). So it is a little bit like reverse culture shock. I apologize for it at this stage.

The subject of the blog will range from aquarium management to a broader range of aquatic sciences and phenomena, and what I now think is aquariums interesting.

I try to set my tone in a way that is ideal for beginners (as I’m a beginner myself), but it also offers something to chew to more experienced aquarium enthusiasts.

I’ve been using different kinds of Computer Aided Design (CAD) software through my previous worklife like Ideas, Catia and Solidworks. Now that I use CAD more for hobby, it’s free options like Draftsight and SketchUp. So after using all that stuff, this WordPress is totally different, but hopefully not that hard to learn.