I got my little tank set up last weekend, but it took a few days for the water to clear, so I’ve waited to share any photos/info on it. I’ve also relocated it to a dresser in my sewing room. There will be some changes with power cord management, but I like how it looks sitting in the corner, where I’ll be able to see it while I sit at my sewing machine.
I do need to drag out the water test kit, since in the last week, I’ve had three Red Cherry Shrimp fatalities, and one Horned Nerite Snail fatality… so, meet Nigel, Horned Nerite Snail #2, since #1 was still under warranty. He’s slightly larger than the last one, with brighter coloring and bigger “horns”. I hope this one makes it!
I bought five Red Cherry Shrimp last weekend, and ended up with six, as one was apparently hiding in some of the moss they added to the bag for transport. Unfortunately, three have already died. I’m not sure if I added them too soon with the aquarium still cycling, or what’s going on. Hopefully I don’t have any more losses!
So, far, at least, Jack seems to be happy – I think bettas only build bubble nests when they’re happy… or at least not sick or struggling with the water parameters. Of course, as the betta I had my freshman year in college can attest to, they’re also pretty hardy fish since my idea of “cleaning the fish bowl” then was a 100% water change, complete with scrubbing the bowl (which also had no filter or heater)… so perhaps the “happy” guess may not be all that accurate after all!
Substrate: Fluval Plant & Shrimp Stratum, purchased from Petco, but it can also be found on Amazon. I’d bought the 8.8 pound bag because I wasn’t sure if the 4.4 pound bag would be enough to get a decent depth. Since Petco will match their online prices, it ended up being a couple of dollars cheaper, with the added benefit of instant gratification.
Decor: Marimo moss ball and Mopani wood from Petsmart, a petite Anubias nana (glued to the Mopani wood with Seachem Flourish Glue, which I suspect may actually be overpriced superglue, but I figured this way it was at least supposed to be aquarium-safe), as well as what I think is a variety of Java Fern (Windelov?), but I wasn’t smart enough to write it down before I chucked the packaging.
Light/Filter: what came stock with the Fluval Spec III
Filter Media: The Fluval Spec III comes with a sponge with two cutouts, one for Biomax rings, and one for carbon. I’ve stuffed a 100g bag of Seachem Purigen in the slot with the carbon for the time being, and I’ll probably be removing the carbon soon, since it’s really not necessary, but I was hoping it would help clear up the water faster since the substrate made it rather cloudy at first.
Heater: 25 watt Marina heater