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Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

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Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:14 pm

Ok I started with a 13g then got a 37g then got a 55g. It sure seems to me that the 13g is the one I have to keep a more vigilant watch on. My 13g has a couple of plastic plants and a decoration in it gravel substrate and now 6 Rummy nose. It has been cycled for a few months now. Just wondering if putting some real plants would help?
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by CAAIndie on Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:16 pm

I love having a planted tank. They look great, provide cover for your fish too. Since they use the nitrates, it's great too. You still need water changes, but it's nice to have something else using them too.

Smaller tanks are harder to maintain though, the greater the water volume the greater the stability.


Last edited by CanadaAquariaAdmin on Wed Feb 12, 2014 11:03 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:26 pm

CanadaAquariaAdmin wrote:I love having a planted tank. They look great, provide cover for your fish too. Since they use the nitrates, it's great too.

Smaller tanks are harder to maintain though, the greater the water volume the greater the stability.
I love the looks of them also. I guess I have to start somewhere so might as well be the 13g. Apparently Rummy nose like well planted tanks, so to make their life better i might as well get at it. Smile 
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by cephalotus on Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:43 pm

Fast growing plants - for small/first tanks I like frogbit, which floats on the surface like lily pads and is not fiddly to grow - can really help with chemical stability. Still hafta watch the heat and not forget regular water changes, though.
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:55 pm

@cephalotus wrote:Fast growing plants - for small/first tanks I like frogbit, which floats on the surface like lily pads and is not fiddly to grow - can really help with chemical stability. Still hafta watch the heat and not forget regular water changes, though.
Thanks for the info. Is that similar to duckweed? Lemna minor. Just had to through in the scientific name, first time I've used one. Lol. Yes heat. Is warmer better or cooler? Taking fish into consideration of course. Or does it matter?
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by guppyguy on Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:06 am

Well I have more small planted tanks than big ones. Having live plants in any tank is beneficial and with help with overall water quality.  Having my tanks densely planted tank has keep the water in great shape between water changes Cool 

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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:25 am

@guppyguy wrote:Well I have more small planted tanks than big ones. Having live plants in any tank is beneficial and with help with overall water quality.  Having my tanks densely planted tank has keep the water in great shape between water changes  Cool 
Yes I Have seen your pics and vids. Nice. I gather you are a breeder. Was that how you started or did that just happen as you went along?
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by cephalotus on Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:55 am

Platy - Frobit (latin name Limnobium Smile) is sort of similar to duckweed but the leaves are a lot bigger, like a couple of centimeters in diameter. I don't like duckweed because all the little bits are impossible to get rid of. Frogbit is at least big enough that it is easy to scoop out all the plant bits if you want to remove it.

Re: heat, it really depends on the inhabitants and what their preference/tolerance range is. I just find that with the smaller water volume, even small adjustments to heater output can result in relatively large swings in temperature. You have to be a bit more careful so that you don't inadvertently cook/freeze your critters.

The best/ideal way would be to set up the tank with the heater for a few days WITHOUT inhabitants (which should be done anyway to cycle the tank). That way you can observe the magnitude of your temperature adjustments without affecting anything living in the tank, and hopefully perfect your temperature to a stable level Smile

In general, most fish would rather live in stable conditions, even if they fall outside the "recommended" levels for that species (pH, water chemistry, temperature, etc.) than ones that fluctuate wildly. Because smaller tanks hold less water, water changes and other adjustments are more likely to cause swings in stability.
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by guppyguy on Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:12 am

@Platyful wrote:
@guppyguy wrote:Well I have more small planted tanks than big ones. Having live plants in any tank is beneficial and with help with overall water quality.  Having my tanks densely planted tank has keep the water in great shape between water changes  Cool 
Yes I Have seen your pics and vids. Nice. I gather you are a breeder. Was that how you started or did that just happen as you went along?

Thank you and yes I do breed fish and when I actually started out I had no plants and no breeding either. But breeding came first after and plants followed after that.

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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:34 pm

@cephalotus wrote:Platy - Frobit (latin name Limnobium Smile) is sort of similar to duckweed but the leaves are a lot bigger, like a couple of centimeters in diameter. I don't like duckweed because all the little bits are impossible to get rid of. Frogbit is at least big enough that it is easy to scoop out all the plant bits if you want to remove it.

Re: heat, it really depends on the inhabitants and what their preference/tolerance range is. I just find that with the smaller water volume, even small adjustments to heater output can result in relatively large swings in temperature. You have to be a bit more careful so that you don't inadvertently cook/freeze your critters.

The best/ideal way would be to set up the tank with the heater for a few days WITHOUT inhabitants (which should be done anyway to cycle the tank). That way you can observe the magnitude of your temperature adjustments without affecting anything living in the tank, and hopefully perfect your temperature to a stable level Smile

In general, most fish would rather live in stable conditions, even if they fall outside the "recommended" levels for that species (pH, water chemistry, temperature, etc.) than ones that fluctuate wildly. Because smaller tanks hold less water, water changes and other adjustments are more likely to cause swings in stability.
Thanks cephalotus. Frobit, lol, i guess I misread the name. And yes heat changes quite easily in a smaller tank, as i experienced recently. Only a couple of degree change but enough to make my Rummy Nose's loose their red nose's. A stable tank is much easier to keep than trying to keep changing parameters.
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by Platyful on Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:55 pm

@guppyguy wrote:
@Platyful wrote:
@guppyguy wrote:Well I have more small planted tanks than big ones. Having live plants in any tank is beneficial and with help with overall water quality.  Having my tanks densely planted tank has keep the water in great shape between water changes  Cool 
Yes I Have seen your pics and vids. Nice. I gather you are a breeder. Was that how you started or did that just happen as you went along?

Thank you and yes I do breed fish and when I actually started out I had no plants and no breeding either. But breeding came first after and plants followed after that.
I noticed that after I put some live plants in with my rummy nose's they were much more active and playful. I gathered that they take awhile to get used to new surroundings and like densely planted tanks. They are still shy but are loving the plants to dart around in. Haven't checked nitrates since i put the plants in but hopefully the usual readings will be lower after my weekly testing. Another issue with small tanks.
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by GaryE on Wed Feb 19, 2014 4:19 am

I've watched underwater video of rummynoses in nature. They like to be close to stands of plants, but they swim in the open water using sunlight and their silver bodies as camouflage. The water in the video had a huge flow - we would be swept along in it.

It's not something you'd ever be able to come close to in a small tank. Just current along would be impossible.
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by guppyguy on Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:22 pm

@Platyful wrote:
@guppyguy wrote:
@Platyful wrote:
@guppyguy wrote:Well I have more small planted tanks than big ones. Having live plants in any tank is beneficial and with help with overall water quality.  Having my tanks densely planted tank has keep the water in great shape between water changes  Cool 
Yes I Have seen your pics and vids. Nice. I gather you are a breeder. Was that how you started or did that just happen as you went along?

Thank you and yes I do breed fish and when I actually started out I had no plants and no breeding either. But breeding came first after and plants followed after that.
I noticed that after I put some live plants in with my rummy nose's they were much more active and playful. I gathered that they take awhile to get used to new surroundings and like densely planted tanks. They are still shy but are loving the plants to dart around in. Haven't checked nitrates since i put the plants in but hopefully the usual readings will be lower after my weekly testing. Another issue with small tanks.

Plants can bring out the fish more natural behaviors and make them feel more comfortable.

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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by mikebike on Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:26 am

I find small tanks take a lot more work to maintain

I agree that small planted tanks are easier to maintain.

Mind you I am talking about 100 ABNP fri in a 2 gallon plastic bowfront to grow out. 
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Re: Are smaller tanks harder to maintain.

Post by JayB on Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:54 am

Small or large, the easiest tanks to maintain are the ones with easy access. Tanks which are too tall or have limited access because of space restrictions can be a real pain-in-the-butt. Other than that, is the fact that when things go wrong, it happens more quickly in a small tank and thus one must be more vigilant.
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