07 September 2015

I got one anyway

A few new inhabitants today. Two nerites for the 38 gal, zebra striped ones. Once acclimated and put in the tank they immediately set to work scraping green algae off the front glass.
And a final male cherry barb (making a dozen here). This guy is slightly bigger than Sangre, which I didn't expect (Little Mr. Red has caught up in size to Buster so I have a hard time telling those two apart now. This fish didn't seem stressed at all, being in a new place, even though I left the lights on. Distracted the others with a feeding of minced peas and the new barb swam around in the back of the tank flicking his fins, looking interested in stuff- before long he was out in the open holding his anal and pectoral fins as wide as possible, displaying to everyone and vying for position with Sangre. Not shy, this guy! I call him Kink, because the tail fin has a bend off the base of his caudal peduncle.
I have one new oto for the tenner. Most of the otos in the petshop tank actually looked good- no clamped fins and round 'thumbprint' tummies. The one I got has looked perky and alert the entire time- even when floating in the bag,
and first let loose into the tank.
It does look a bit thin to me,
but I saw it poo and it's already been nibbling at surfaces.
When it was first in the tank Oliver cruised over to inspect the new fish and I waved my hand sharply outside the glass, the movement made him shy off so he didn't distrub the new oto. It's only been in here a few hours and already coloring up, no longer pale with stress.
And I got a surprise freebie in the oto's fish bag- this tiny bit of green floating plant:
It's duckweed. Very small.
A lot of people don't want this plant (just like they don't want malaysian trumpet snails). It's invasive. It multiplies like crazy. It looks cute, but I've heard it is awfully hard to get rid of- you have to pick out every tiny little plant bit and it clings to stuff....  I've seen it floating in tanks at the petstore for a while now and every time I ask about it, someone tells me "you don't want that, it will take over your whole tank. You'll never get rid of it." Well, I've been warned and I'm trying it anyways. I took a chance when I found it, and let it float in my tank.

I'm not worried about it clogging filter intakes because my sponge filter sits on the bottom- so the only annoyance would be it clinging to my own hands, tools I put in the tank, etc. I never have to trim plants in here anyway, so I think it won't be too much trouble to just scoop some out each week to keep it in check (and feed to the worm bin) plus I want shade for my anubias. Looking close, I see that the lower leaves which are shaded by upper ones, don't have the algae. Some leaves are half clean and half blotched with algae, a dividing line exactly where the light hits. I've moved my light strip up a fourth of an inch (resting on the edge of the plastic trim channel that holds the sliding lid now) but don't want to dim further because all the other plants in here are doing well with the light level.

So I'd been thinking about getting some floaters- azolla caroliniana or frogbit or well, duckweed. If the mild current in Oliver's tank keeps it more or less on one side, I'll reposition the filter so the floating plant tends to be on the side where the anubias is...

Oliver keeps grabbing the little plant and spitting it out again (I think he assumes it's a fly I've given him). If it survives that and this one tiny bit turns into numerous plants, hey that would be impressive.

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