Saturday, June 30, 2007

Fish diseases

The fish diseases are divided into two groups; Tropical and Coldwater. It is divided into two categories not because there is a distinction between them but because they apply more often to the class of fish under which they are listed. The suggested cures and symptoms apply to both classes. Obviously all nets, instruments, etc should be sterilized after use to prevent the spread of infection from the isolation tank.

Tropical diseases
White spot is the most common ailment, being simply a form of chill or fish influenza. When weakened by a sharp fall in water temperature the fish is unable to resist a tiny parasite that lodges on it, causing an irritation, a swelling visible as a tiny white spot the size of a pin point. These spots often appear first on the tail, next the fins and finally the body. If unchecked this disease will sweep through the tank as an epidemic.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Types of aquatic greens

Ambulia


Ludwigia



Myriophyllum




Hygrophila

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Friday, June 15, 2007

Fish as pet!



Betta can be found in most of the pet stores. It does well in a small container but for a permanent home, a large goldfish bowl is good enough. The bowl is to be kept in a place where the temperature is stable and without direct sunlight. If taken care properly it lives up to two to three years old.




An aerated aquarium.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

My List updated!

Kitchen Experiments Elliottwave Signal Internet-Crazy Blog Newopps Blog Make Money Online Review Center Little Penang iFlicks Healing tips and home remedies Ornamental Fish Grasp! Seize! Get hold of it! Life Snapshot Mental Freedom, Por Favor Eat. Live. Be Merry! Funny Junk Addicting Flash Games Pictures Video Clips mott’s island Clinke Bidding Directory Blog Easy Home Cooking FrenzRSS.com Pink Poison Store Show Me Health Biz The Undeniable Beauty - Revamped An Anonymous Journal Cyberpartygal Blank Canvas She Rambles On charcamayne Money Online Adsense Money Tips For Adsense Belajar Cara Membuat Blog Wordpress Usahawan Internet Peluang Perniagaaan Internet iNicholas Made In Penang Syaf The Geek snapshots of life with Cheng Leng iCalvyn.com Blogging Through Depression & Life Trying to Save Money novatech personal playground Little World Of Thoughts Sumber Dekorasi & Laman Anda Menarik.com INSIDE MY MIND Sleepy As Usual thoughts ---> blogs Share Everything In Life Value Bookshop’s Reading Notes Tips and Tricks to Happy Parenting BERSAMA MEMBINA KEJAYAAN THE BITCH CLUB datotalrandommessy.grey Artmaker BlogWawasan.com life is beautiful Adino Online Penang Homes Physical-e A Mom's Diary Health Freak Mommy mrdefinite.com - It’s hot Tracking Movies SquareCookies MonkeyWong Voice of a Glass Doll Online Article Directory Bambang Wise Life Advice Kaklong Online Portal Down Memory Lanes Sleeping Princess Online Bisnes Forex Marketing Blog project010 ProTechWang.Com Bleargh Pigeon Card Pianologist KCLau’s Money Tips The Great Swifty Speaketh Mr & Mrs. Imran If fate allow our destinies to meet From chopstix to steak knives Where's My Noose? Duke Amiene Rev Mum & Kids In Wonderland Yum-Yum Cuisine Software, Web Development and Technology just another ordinary story Mummy In Vain's Little World How To Solve Your Question FáLLiÑg LéÃVéS add this to my life Free Encyclopedia High Paying Keywords try-test arshad's photojourney EvelynHolic RajaBLog.info Lovelymummy's Bay My Yummy Cruise Home Sweet Home Lovely Mummy OnlineBisnes Malay Blog Purest of e2wen MyAnimes MySpace Blog Badruzamani.Org Parenting Life Forum Newbie Bisnes Internet & Blogger Mohd Sufian A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words hcfoo's blog Amazing Grace The Sanctuary Welcome To cHrIstInA_YY's Pink World Defying Destiny Dead Boredom Seeking Freedom Travelogue An amazing & adventurous journey Erin Nurjenna [B][E][A][U][T][I][F][U][L] Fluffy's Day Off My Fairy-Tale Once Upon A Time Money Making Blog Bubba Stuff Little Raymond's quaint melody Seraph Chronicles Route Brumeuse Coder's Talk Reggae And SKA Art Of ApOgEE THE VEGEMASTER LIFE Boonage Coretan Pengalaman Mat Silverhorsegunnysack BLUEAPPLE scribbles Diet & Detoxification Karma Kameleon Hsien's Dirty Little Secret The Rojak Blog keeyit My Life Online Fun Stuffs Donny's Bits Nicholas Chan's Blog dream of's DESIGN strike freedom 115 Truly Malaysia It's another new day Lisan's Scribbles Ramblings of a 22 years old The Towering Joe Life's a Breeze Life's Roller Coaster AceOne118 In His Time in His time The New Sanctuary a life full of surprises Sketches of Life Shannon's Old Space Pikey Dude SEO & Online Marketing Blog ShowMeMoneyBiz.com Snapshots kahpengBlog I am Who I am yung . silent whisper Simple Life One blog.One girl.One story The World Through My Eyes Why Malaysia? Etcetera~Etcetera Giddy Tigers Make Money Online: Exploring The Dark Side of Blogging Xilly's Blog Malaika Xiao Yu My Home Recipe SQKIKI’s Simple Tech Nukilan Jejari Azhad ITCHY HANDseng Just My Lil' Organic Life Oooh La La... Weird World of MerapuMan Fibre Art The World at My Fingertips Organic Income Organic Parade Shopping Flavor Daily postings of a chung ling student Something about LAI KennyP’s Technology Blog Women Mumbles KuKuJian.com Lyon & Wien Under The SUN Crumbs In Life SotongZai's Flow In the Ocean allthingspurple Christene's Kitchen toxicle.org [ Wood ] [ Earth ] [ Cheap ] [ Flight ] COMtech Ah Ling's blog http://judychow.blogspot.com/ ~WoOLaLA~ vivivava Design My Mothering Corner Shoppingmum’s Home Office My Filling Station Shopping Mum All about Beauty Shoppingmum and Kids datotalrandommessy.grey Notes from my heart Joy Montessori wahlau's online hut Cedric’s Asylum mott’s mutterings Just My Thoughts delephant Incoherent Ramblings HOT STUFF Make Money Online with Malaysia Love AGLOCO MONTESSORIMUM.COM Funky Cookies Earn Money Online PabloPabla's Whatever Make Money with Blogging Paris Beaverbanks Free Links Giveaway Free Blogger Templates Blogsreview.Net Making a Living 5xmom How to be a Better Blogger My Women Stuff Hochiak! Delicious Asian Food Best Recipes Champagne Tastes on a Beer Budget Daryl's Discovery Journey The fluff must go somewhere

Monday, June 11, 2007

How to eliminate hydra

The aquarium can be purified by raising the temperature to 100 degrees F for twenty to thirty minutes (no fish present) or by introducing Blue or Leeri Gourami fish which will eat the hydra when forced to do so by sheer hunger. Therefore, stop feeding them for a while. Some English water snails will also eat hydra, but they have the bad habit of eating plants as well.

Another way of eliminating hydra is to black out the tank entirely, leaving only a 2 in x 2 in gap on the side facing the light. Within a few hours all the hydra in the dark tank will have gathered on the 2 in x 2 in opening and can be easily wiped off with a sponge.

For the pond, one quarter of a grain of potassium permanganate can be added for each gallon of water. The dosage can be doubled if there is no fry. This should be left for two or three days and the water then gradually changed until half to two thirds of the original has been replaced. The fish need not be removed. Another alternative remedy for the hydra infected pond is ammonium sulphate added to the water at the rate of one teaspoonful to every ten gallons. This will destroy the enemies but not the fish.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

More on water enemies

The dragon fly larva

It is similar to the Water Tiger except that it does not swim much but lies in wait for its prey. The victims are merely held by the pincers and are then destroyed by its hard mouth, which can do amazing damage even through the study scale protection of quite big fish.

Hydra

It is different from the two described earlier, being very much smaller and capable of harming only fry. Its presence is betrayed by a group of bunch of thread-like streamers or hairs hanging in the water; these are the tentacles. Each hydra is roughly 3/4 inch long, having about half a dozen tentacles spread out like a star fish. Since it invariably seems to multiply rapidly, ways have had to be found to remove the vast numbers other than by emptying and cleaning the pond or aquarium.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Water Enemies - The Water Tiger

For both tropical and coldwater fish, the great danger when catching live foods for a pond or aquarium or when procuring plants from untried sources is that the water enemies will be introduced as well. These are small aquatic insects which can kill or harm baby fish and in at least two instances even medium sized adult fish. The main water enemies are the Water Tiger, Dragon Fly larvae and Hydra.

The Water Tiger
It is a long and thin insect, shaped rather like a caterpillar, and has two vicious pincers with which it can hold its victim and through which it can suck its blood. It grows to 1 1/2 inches or more but probably its most dangerous size is half grown as it is then difficult to detect. A good swimmer, it can tackle and kill fish twice its own size.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Sealing a tank

The sealing compound of mastic is often specially made to remain soft for two months. If the glass of the empty aquarium gets shaken away from the metal frame, during a journey for example; the internal water pressure of 10 Ibs per square inch will tend to push the soft mastic into any gaps that may have been caused and so to re-seal a leak. Once the water has been put in, a leak that is no greater than a drip will stop of its own accord as the mastic is pushed into position gradually over twelve to forty eight hours, provided the rate of the leak does not increase.

An aquarium full of water should not be moved, or it will be seriously strained by the internal water pressure.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

"My List"

My List stands for the giving hearted and goodwill of Malaysians to help one another and also most definitely for the Malaysian Boleh! spirit in the great big world of blogsphere!


Introduction
The purpose of My List is to gather all Malaysian blogs under the banner of unity and creating a huge bookmark. So much richness can be found within our very own Malaysian blogs and this will open up our minds and hearts to the lives of our fellow bloggers. If you are keen to participate, kindly read this page entirely for instructions and guidelines.


Who can Participate?
Malaysian bloggers residing anywhere on mother earth.
Non-Malaysians whose blogs feature anything pertaining to Malaysia (example: Malaysian food, Formula 1 in Malaysia and etc).
Blog submitted must be of good quality contents. Please do not submit your blog which is less than 2 weeks old.


Dateline for Participation
31st May 2007


Important Guidelines
One reminder email will be sent once the final list is updated on this page after the deadline.
All participants must then feature a brand new post before 15th of June with the final updated and complete list of participating Malaysian blogs downloadable directly via the email or from this dedicated My List page.
All My List Post must be permanent and accessible.


Submitting Your Other Blogs
You may submit as many blogs which is owned by you but each blog entry must contain their own My List post.


How To Participate
Download My List in Text format.
Make a new post promoting My List and guide your fellow Malaysian readers to this page if they are keen to participate.
Copy the entire Text File you downloaded.
Paste it at the end of your post. (You can arrange it however you prefer if it goes lengthy but ensure the entire list is there)
Publish the post and ensure all links are in working order.
Submit your contact details and the permanent url of your MyList post by using this contact form.
Your blog url will then be added to the list.
Post a new post of the final My List after receiving an email notification as mentioned in the guidelines above. This is done to ensure everyone will benefit from this even those who participate later or close to the deadline.


My List Participants
The Undeniable Beauty - Revamped An Anonymous Journal Cyberpartygal Blank Canvas She Rambles On charcamayne Money Online Adsense Money Tips For Adsense Belajar Cara Membuat Blog Wordpress Usahawan Internet Peluang Perniagaaan Internet iNicholas Made In Penang Syaf The Geek snapshots of life with Cheng Leng iCalvyn.com Blogging Through Depression & Life Trying to Save Money novatech personal playground Little World Of Thoughts Sumber Dekorasi & Laman Anda Menarik.com INSIDE MY MIND Sleepy As Usual blogs" href="http://chriskong57.blogspot.com/" target=_blank>thoughts ---> blogs Share Everything In Life Value Bookshop’s Reading Notes Tips and Tricks to Happy Parenting BERSAMA MEMBINA KEJAYAAN THE BITCH CLUB datotalrandommessy.grey Artmaker BlogWawasan.com life is beautiful Adino Online Penang Homes Physical-e A Mom's Diary Health Freak Mommy mrdefinite.com - It’s hot Tracking Movies SquareCookies MonkeyWong Voice of a Glass Doll Online Article Directory Bambang Wise Life Advice Kaklong Online Portal Down Memory Lanes Sleeping Princess Online Bisnes Forex Marketing Blog project010 ProTechWang.Com Bleargh Pigeon Card Pianologist KCLau’s Money Tips The Great Swifty Speaketh Mr & Mrs. Imran If fate allow our destinies to meet From chopstix to steak knives Where's My Noose? Duke Amiene Rev Mum & Kids In Wonderland Yum-Yum Cuisine Software, Web Development and Technology just another ordinary story Mummy In Vain's Little World How To Solve Your Question FáLLiÑg LéÃVéS add this to my life Free Encyclopedia High Paying Keywords try-test arshad's photojourney EvelynHolic RajaBLog.info Lovelymummy's Bay My Yummy Cruise Home Sweet Home Lovely Mummy OnlineBisnes Malay Blog Purest of e2wen MyAnimes MySpace Blog Badruzamani.Org Parenting Life Forum Newbie Bisnes Internet & Blogger Mohd Sufian A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words hcfoo's blog Amazing Grace The Sanctuary Welcome To cHrIstInA_YY's Pink World Defying Destiny Dead Boredom Seeking Freedom Travelogue An amazing & adventurous journey Erin Nurjenna [B][E][A][U][T][I][F][U][L] Fluffy's Day Off My Fairy-Tale Once Upon A Time Money Making Blog Bubba Stuff Little Raymond's quaint melody Seraph Chronicles Route Brumeuse Coder's Talk Reggae And SKA Art Of ApOgEE THE VEGEMASTER LIFE Boonage Coretan Pengalaman Mat Silverhorsegunnysack BLUEAPPLE scribbles Diet & Detoxification Karma Kameleon Hsien's Dirty Little Secret The Rojak Blog keeyit My Life Online Fun Stuffs Donny's Bits Nicholas Chan's Blog dream of's DESIGN strike freedom 115 Truly Malaysia It's another new day Lisan's Scribbles Ramblings of a 22 years old The Towering Joe Life's a Breeze Life's Roller Coaster AceOne118 In His Time in His time The New Sanctuary a life full of surprises Sketches of Life Shannon's Old Space Pikey Dude SEO & Online Marketing Blog ShowMeMoneyBiz.com Snapshots kahpengBlog I am Who I am yung . silent whisper Simple Life One blog.One girl.One story The World Through My Eyes Why Malaysia? Etcetera~Etcetera Giddy Tigers Make Money Online: Exploring The Dark Side of Blogging Xilly's Blog Malaika Xiao Yu My Home Recipe SQKIKI’s Simple Tech Nukilan Jejari Azhad ITCHY HANDseng Just My Lil' Organic Life Oooh La La... Weird World of MerapuMan Fibre Art The World at My Fingertips Organic Income Organic Parade Shopping Flavor Daily postings of a chung ling student Something about LAI KennyP’s Technology Blog Women Mumbles KuKuJian.com Lyon & Wien Under The SUN Crumbs In Life SotongZai's Flow In the Ocean allthingspurple Christene's Kitchen toxicle.org [ Wood ] [ Earth ] [ Cheap ] [ Flight ] COMtech Ah Ling's blog http://judychow.blogspot.com/ ~WoOLaLA~ vivivava Design My Mothering Corner Shoppingmum’s Home Office My Filling Station Shopping Mum All about Beauty Shoppingmum and Kids datotalrandommessy.grey Notes from my heart Joy Montessori wahlau's online hut Cedric’s Asylum mott’s mutterings Just My Thoughts delephant Incoherent Ramblings HOT STUFF Make Money Online with Malaysia Love AGLOCO MONTESSORIMUM.COM Funky Cookies Earn Money Online PabloPabla's Whatever Make Money with Blogging Paris Beaverbanks Free Links Giveaway Free Blogger Templates Blogsreview.Net Making a Living 5xmom How to be a Better Blogger My Women Stuff Hochiak! Delicious Asian Food Best Recipes Champagne Tastes on a Beer Budget Daryl's Discovery Journey The fluff must go somewhere

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Measuring the capacity of a tank

The gallon capacity of an aquarium can be found by multiplying in feet the length x width x height x 6 1/4 . For example, an aquarium 2 ft x 1 ft x 1 ft holds 12 1/2 gallons. One gallon of water has 90,000 drops, weighs 10 Ibs and exerts pressure on the inside of the aquarium glass of 10 lbs per square inch. (All figures are approximate).

Saturday, May 19, 2007

The kind of water II

Unless we decide to breed very seriously with rare fish, we should not concern ourselves with the water PH.

Water that has remained quite untouched is likely to give different PH readings at different times of the day because interaction of the chemicals contained in it is always taking place. Further, one pint of water of PH 6.5 mixed with an equal quantity of PH 7.5 does not necessarily give a reading of PH 7.0 because one water may be 'buffered'. 'Buffered' water has a high mineral content and the influence of all these dissolved solids has to be overcome before there is an alteration in the PH reading. Tap water and rainwater are not usually 'buffered'.

Friday, May 18, 2007

The kind of water

In different localities, water varies very considerably. Quite apart from the question of being hard or soft, the actual composition of the water varies with the amount of salts, minerals and other such substances dissolved in it. These are usually referred to as "TDS" or total dissolved solids. Water with a high TDS content is known as 'heavy' and is not always good for fish, the opposite is known as 'light'. Unless we are preparing seriously to breed the more difficult kinds of fish, we need not concern ourselves with this question at all.

Sodium bicarbonate added to the water will make it alkaline; acid sodium phosphate or very heavily diluted hydrochloric acid have the opposite effect.

Special sets are sold for measuring the changes in PH.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Cleaning the tank

Keeping the tank clean is very important and quite simple, provided specialist advice is followed. Annoyingly enough, this advice consists mainly of a series of 'don'ts'.

Do not buy your fish from a dealer whom you distrust or whose technical knowledge as an aquarist you feel is insufficient.

Do not buy too many fish or too few plants so that the balance of your tank is upset.

Do not overfeed. Live food or its substitute is very helpful.

Place the aquarium in a sensible position; not backing on to a window, not in too bright a spot, not in a strong draught unless your dealer has been warned of that and has provided strong heaters.

Siphon off the bottom occasionally and wipe the inside of the glass very, very gently.

See that the heating elements of the tropical tank work well.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Type of filters

Sub gravel filters
Hidden below the sand level, these catch the dirt and concentrate it in one place. The top sand appears clean, so does the water, but the dirt is still there in the tank until and unless you remove the whole filter and siphon off the dirt.


Corner filters
The biggest hoax ever made on the unsuspecting aquarist. The filter is small, neat and cheap; it is so small that it becomes saturated in an hour or two and after that you are just fooling yourself.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Function of the filter

The filter will remove floating particles and some gases, notably carbon dioxide. It will also provide a form of aeration by circulating the water.

It will not remove algae, nor the sediment at the bottom of the tank unless this has been stirred up and is suspended in the water. Thus water suffering from white or green cloudiness is not normally cleaned. Neither will the filter remove parasites that carry fish disease.

Therefore, is it worth the trouble and expense? Frankly, no. Like aeration, it is a useful adjunct but it is not an essential part of the balanced aquarium.

Please note that marine aquaria are not being discussed here, and marine filtration is therefore excluded.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Filtration

Filter is no more than a container for the air lift and the 'three layers'. It can be hung inside or outside the aquarium, depending on its size. The amount of work it can do is governed by its own area and by the rate of the water filtering through it.

The first layer of the filter has to be renewed most frequently, bearing as it does the brunt of the work by removing the larger floating particles. The sides of the filter, if it is being hung outside the tank, should be shielded from excess light, as should all connecting tubes, so as to discourage the formation of clogging algae.

The three layers must, of course, be packed down tightly so that the water has to percolate through and cannot run down quickly. Obviously too the layers will have to be of a reasonable area and of a sufficient thickness.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

What is the filter

A filter is a device for removing floating particles of the larger kind from aquarium water and even for absorbing some of the gases therein.

It is usual to connect the air pump to an 'air lift' by means of which the aquarium water can be pumped back into the tank after it has been siphoned from it and passed through the filter.

The filter normally consists of three layers; the first - such as the fine sand, spun glass or cotton wool. Their functions are to remove floating particles. The second layer is the activated carbon which is the core of the apparatus which even removes the gases and some of the organic compounds such as toxic products due to the presence of fish in the water. The third layer is merely a coarse layer of small stones allowing the filtered water to percolate to the bottom of the 'air lift' through which it is pumped back into the aquarium.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Aeration II

What if the aeration stops? There are numerous reasons why this happens, one of them being the failure of the pump. Others may be while we are moving the fish to another tank. For whatever reasons, we should keep an eye for trouble. Fish accustomed to aeration will suffer in still water.

It is better to regard aeration as an auxiliary or a reserve, something that can be turned to for help in case of emergency, such as the sudden arrival of extra fish. Therefore if we have a tank with a small air surface, keep only a few fish. If we have more fish, then get a larger tank.

Putting more fish in an aquarium with small air surface and providing an aeration to them is not a good action. It takes only one fish to catch a disease for all in that cramped aquarium to succumb to it. The cure is to have a larger aquarium, with larger air surface. Providing aeration to overcrowded aquarium is not the answer.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Aeration

It is not true that we can always and at all times double the proper number of fish in a tank just because aeration is provided. The utmost that the aeration can do is to keep the water at full oxygen content and to help eliminate harmful carbon dioxide gas. In fact, it can easily fail to do even that if the water temperature is raised thus automatically lowering the oxygen content. Aeration will also fail to keep the water at full oxygen content too, if the carbon dioxide content is raised by dirt or other matter fouling the tank by the fish present being too numerous, too big or too fast swimming.

Aeration does help but to credit it with doubling the fish capacity of a tank is going too far. If a tank will satisfactorily hold twenty five fish without aeration, then thirty two to thirty seven is the maximum when constant aeration is provided. In this case, thirty to forty per cent increase in the amount of fish is considered reasonable enough when aeration exists.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Why do plants die?

The reasons are:

Their feet are too hot if the tank is above a radiator; a piece of protective asbestos over the radiator should normally suffice.

Too little, or unevenly spaced toplighting, especially if the tank is more than 15 inches deep.

Water too acid.

Not enough fish to fertilize the plants.

Plants were allowed to get too dry after planting.

Not enough room to grow; either thickets too thick or lead weights too tight.

Wrong kind of plants, or more rarely, unsuitable water in the tank for that particular type of plant.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Various types of plants

There are the tiny, delicate, lovely and hard to obtain hair grass.

Also there are plants that form a lump on their own, such as the broad-leaved, light green amazon sword, the serrated-edged aponogeton undulatum and the very useful plants that will thrive in great heat and even in dim light - the cryptocorynes.

Numerous aquarium plants just float on the surface of the water and are not rooted. They draw their nourishment from the air and the water. The favourites are riccia, azolla and duckweed. They are useful in providing shade in breeding and as oxygenators.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Strong Oxygenators

Vallisneria and Sagittaria are two of the plants that give off more oxygen than most. Vallisneria leaves have a stripe down the centre diving them into three nearly equal stripes of two shades of green. Both plants are normally found in three types, straight, twisted and giant. Anacharis, propagated from cuttings and found in several varieties, especially Elodea, is another strong oxygenator.

Other plants propagated from cuttings are ludwigia and hygrophila. Ludwigia, some species of which have leaves that are tinged with red in the summer and autumn. While hygrophila is similar to the former but comparatively rare and of a very light and pleasant shade of green.

There are also bushy plants, such as myriophyllum, ambulia and cabomba.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Aquatic greens II

Planting effects are more decorative if done in thickets and not in single stems. Obviously, the thickets should not be congested so that the individual stems have enough room to grow. Four to eight in a bunch is reasonable provided that the fish can swim about freely.

The disadvantage of plants taking in oxygen at night, instead of giving it out, is not serious if the aquarium has a large enough air surface. It helps if the aquarium light is kept on for longer periods when greenery is first planted so as to give the plants a better change to take root. This is particularly true in winter when natural growth is slow.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Aquatic greens

Lead weights wrapped round the base are sometimes used to prevent the newly transferred plants from floating to the surface of the water, but they are very liable to damage the plants unless used most carefully. If planting pots or trays are favoured, they should be big enough and deep enough.

Another reminder about these lovely aquatic greens is to keep them wet. If they are allowed to dry even momentarily for example when being transferred or while in the process of being planted, they will suffer for weeks. In fact, they sometimes will shrivel and die. Great care must be taken if for any reason the aquarium is being disinfected. The plants can easily be damaged by being rinsed in water that is too hot or in a disinfectant that is too strong. One quarter grain by weight of potassium permanganate in a gallon of water makes a strong enough solution to wash off most parasites from the leaves.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The need for plants

In an aquarium, plants are not merely for decoration purposes. They serves to complete the scientific balance of the modern aquarium.

Moreover, the majority of community fish have a definite preference for a planted tank where they can find shade, privacy and hiding places when they are feeling out of sorts or are anxious to evade the attentions of a particular fish, be it a bully, a rival or too ardent a suitor. In spawning and rearing of the young, of course, plants play a very definite and important part.

So how do we care of aquarium plants?

First of all, plants in community tank need light. They should be rooted in aquarium sand, but not too deeply. Loam and earth are not necessary for their growth. Loam can breed harmful bacteria unless sterilized. If this is done, loam has little use to the plants; after all, part of the plants' function in a balanced tank is to 'absorb' the droppings of the fish. These fertilizing media being broken up by the plants, simultaneously promoting their own growth while disposing the droppings.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Plants

Plants are often classified as tropical and coldwater but it is proposed here to divide them into aquarium or pond plants. Tropical plants will root in a coldwater tank kept in the normal living-room of a home, especially if an aquarium toplight is functioning. Strictly coldwater plants, on the other hand, are normally considered to be those that will thrive out in the open, winter or summer.

The main distinction of the two categories are that those grown with the aid of artificial heat, eg in a hothouse are for an aquarium while those grown in the open are for pond. It should be noted that although the same plant is often found both indoors and out, the pond one tends to be larger and coarser.

Monday, April 23, 2007

More on breeding I

A temperature that is excessively high forces the growth of the fish and seriously weakens their constitution. It sometimes overdevelops the finnage too.

All along the line, inferior fish should be removed. For example, with fantails, veiltails and Moors; the ones with only single tails instead of the prized forked tails can be detected well before they are fourteen days old and should be taken out. Later as body shapes develop, the poor quality should be ruthlessly sacrificed. By the time three months have passed, the selection should have been completed.

Within two weeks, the fry are past the infusoria stage and will swallow finely powdered dry foods, dried eggs, oatmeal, etc. Nevertheless, take great care not to foul the water. It should be partly changed especially if snails are not able to cope with the work. After a few more days, micro worms, finely sifted Daphnia and not quite such powdered dry food should be introduced to the fish. Within three to four weeks, the last stage of tubifex and chopped white worms can be fed. By this time, the worst danger is over.

In the meantime, the difficulty is now to get the fish to colour. The scales should be transparent so that a good body colour can be seen through them. Opaque coloured scales would result in a dark, uninteresting fish. However if the parents are from good stock, the required temperature maintained, space is ample, plenty of live foods were constantly given and enough sunlight, the fry should colour within eight months. Some will colour within four months. A constant drip flow of water into the aquarium helps enormously. If a year goes by without the colour showing through, then having a good fish is doubtful. The general conditions, including the surrounding colours and their inter-action with sunlight influence the fry development.

The above descriptions apply to coldwater aquarium fish in general.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

More on breeding

We are still talking on breeding of coldwater fish.

The eggs, transparent, adhesive and the size of a pin head are laid in clusters, no two individual eggs being in contact. Within twenty four to forty eight hours, the infertile ones turn opaque, almost milky. There always seem so many of these that we might be frustrated, but patience and diligence are usually rewarded.

70 to 75 degrees F is a good temperature for the incubation and in four days, fry should appear. They are free swimming within forty eight hours and will need green water and infusoria. Most of all they need plenty of space. Warmth, space and ample food are all essential.

As many as one thousand fry can result from a good spawning, so that the problem of space is pressing. It is strongly advised to pick out the best specimens as soon as is practicable and to concentrate on them alone, disposing of the others. Aeration is helpful right from the commencement of the incubation period.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Breeding of coldwater fish III

Sexing the fish is difficult. In exotic specimens such as the Veil-tail and the Fantail, the males are often as full bodied as the females. Only at breeding condition do the male tubercles appear as raised white dots on the gill plates and on the pectoral fins. Absence of these dots might mean that the fish is a female or that it is a male not ready to breed.

Once spawning starts, however, the females can easily be picked out as they are vigorously chased and nuzzled by the males. Two or more males should be used to 'drive' each female in the well-known chase which may last a few hours or even two or three days. Thus frequent replacements of plants to catch the eggs as they are scattered and plenty of swimming room are essential.

In the aquarium, a good supply of aeration helps. The water temperature should not be below 60 degrees F or above 80 degrees F. In the earlier temperature the fish tend to be sluggish and in the other, the fish will lack oxygen. Temperature between 68 - 72 degrees F is ideal while bright light, especially sunlight is appreciated.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Breeding of coldwater fish II

As mentioned earlier, ponds should be periodically emptied to ensure that overlooked eggs or fry from previous matings have not remained behind to grow and to interbreed with the chosen parents.

If we decides to do the breeding in ponds, we may still be well advised to hatch the eggs in an aquarium and to keep the fry indoors for the first crucial ten weeks. A pond that is more or less bare, except for ideal spawning plants at the shallow edge, practically forces the fish to spawn on these plants which can then easily be removed to an aquarium. Thus, fresh supplies of plants should be available to keep up with the spawning.

It is important that these bunches of plants be frequently rinsed to shake off dead algae or any other such foreign matter that could later prevent the eggs adhering properly.

If the parents are not separated from the eggs, many of these will be eaten. Even more important, once the fry have appeared it is the slower swimming ones that get less of the food and are more subject to being attacked. The slower swimmers are usually those with the longer finnage - the very fish that we would most like to save.

Obviously, spawning starts with good-quality parents that have been separately brought up to the best possible condition. It is a bad mistake to use inferior fish as the resulting fry are just not worth the trouble. Each prospective parent should be known to have come from good stock and even if not perfect in itself, be known to be capable of producing good young.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Breeding of coldwater fish I

The first question when deciding to breed coldwater fish is, should we breed in a pond or in an aquarium.

Two advantages of the pond are:

Large volume of water

In good weather, natural foods for the young fish are abundance

Breeding in ponds has its disadvantages too:

Especially in British climate, apart from extremes of heat or frost and ice, the normal temperature variations are very great and there is little that we can do to control them. Furthermore, these changes are rapid, occurring within a few hours.

There is also a great discrepancy in the amount of light, especially sunlight and an evenly spread supply is almost hopeless.

The above two disadvantages however have their attenuating factors. Although the atmospheric temperature changes very quickly, a fairly large volume of water is affected only slowly and cushions the fish from the worst of the shock. This is if the water is 3 - 4 feet deep. Secondly, the fish seem to have a natural ability to pick out the coming weather and will normally spawn just at the start of a good spell. Nevertheless the good weather, especially in Britain have a nasty tendency to fade off after a very few days.

Though natural foods are abundant in open ponds, so too on occasions are fish lice and water enemies. The pond should thus be capable of being thoroughly cleaned.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Breeding tips

If the water in the shallow breeding tank is too low to hold an immersion thermostat comfortably, the latter can be immersed into a jar standing in the tank. Thus the water temperature of the tank will govern that of the water in the jar, so ensuring correct response by the thermostat.

In removing fry, it is advisable to use a fry catcher, as netting may harm them. This is used in a scooping action. The fry are being allowed to swim into the bowl.

Keep the water level of the rearing tank well below that of the tank sides as a protection against draughts. A glass cover is an additional protection against temperature fluctuations and dust. This is important at this fry stage.

Breeding is all about conditions, waters, fish, foods, sunlight and the likes which vary from place to place, time to time. Patience is therefore essential, as periodical failures and disappointments are quite certain to occur.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Infertile eggs

Eggs that prove infertile, often becoming covered with fungus should be removed. However, effort should be made to find out why they do not hatch in the normal way. It is often found that some, or even many, eggs are covered with fungus but it is rare for all to be bad.

Snails eat eggs and should be removed from the breeding tank. But in rearing tank, snails help to keep the bottom clean. They too do not eat the fry.

Why eggs are infertile?

Wrong temperature

Too much or too little light

Dirt

Infected infusoria culture that breeds fish enemies or harmful bacteria

Unsuitable water that might contain harmful gases. We can either filter or use rainwater to avoid this problem.

Water PH. If new water has been used, try ‘seasoned’ water. Leave tap water in bright light for a day; without disturbing the precipitate that will have formed at the bottom, siphon off the water in to another clean container and leave it there again in the sunlight to mature for a further twenty four hours or forty eight hours. The siphoning gets rid of any insoluble or floating matter.

Eggs not fertilized: due to the pair of adults do not harmonize. We can use two or three males to one female.

The tank is too small.

Monday, April 16, 2007

How to move the eggs

When lifting out the plants holding the eggs, sudden temperature changes should be avoided. Moreover, do not expose them to the air too. So, how should we do this? Just place a bowl under these plants, raise the bowl, taking care to keep the plants, roots if any, and eggs submerged and so to move them still in their same water to the rearing tank of the same temperature.

General questions such as whether the water should be ‘old’, green or what its PH should be, or whether the floor should be spotlessly clean or covered with some mulm, can only be answered in the case of particular breeding adult fish. Nonetheless, the fry will need ‘mature’ water for their growth.

The same applies to temperature and aeration. What we should bear in mind is that fish accustomed to constant aeration will have to be taught gradually to do without it before they are transferred to still waters. If the tank is large enough, there should be no need for aeration.

In breeding, cleanliness is the utmost important thing. Danger of infection will have to be watched most carefully.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Types of eggs

Different types of fish have varying preferences and methods of laying their eggs but the following general remarks will serve as guideline:

Adhesive eggs
Fish are being careful when choosing the spot where these adhesive eggs will be laid. They usually choose broad leaves of a strongly-growing plant. Fish lay eggs at the underside or inside of small flower pots or even on the hollow of a conveniently shaped rock. Some fish however merely scatter their adhesive eggs which should be caught by bushy plants group in bunches.

Non adhesive eggs
This type of eggs are either scattered on thickets of plants, noticeably on those with fine leaves. The plant not only serves to catch the eggs but hiding them and the newly hatched fry from the dangers of being eaten. Alternatively, the eggs are placed in carefully formed and guarded nest. Some fish use a hollow in the sand while some fish are bubble nest builders.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Feeding the fish with infusoria

The best way is by ‘drip method’. How should we do this? Just fix a jar containing the infusoria water above the tank level and the water is allowed to drip into the tank through the rubber tube. The rate of flow can be regulated by a type of clip that can be adjusted to squeeze the rubber tube at any given pressure. Therefore the bigger the opening left inside the tube the greater the flow of infusoria.

How much should we feed the infusoria to the baby fish? The only advice is to use common sense but infusoria must be given early and constantly until the fry have outgrown the need for it. The bellies of the fry should always be full. Continue feeding the fry until they are about three times their original size. If we stop feeding too early, the fry may die. Feeding them with infusoria too long may stop their growth.

The real problem is when the fry are too big for infusoria and too small for ordinary foods. Rotifers, newly-hatched brine shrimps and dry powdered food can be fed to the fry during this difficult stage. Later, finely sifted daphnia can be introduced to the fry. Nevertheless, if the fry spit out the food, it is still too big for them. Use a magnifying glass to check on this.

In addition, at this stage, fry should be fed frequently; up to eight times per day. A limited amount of sediment should be allowed to accumulate as it helps to grow the plants and infusoria.

The above is a general guide on how to feed fry with infusoria. What we must bear in mind is certain type of fish (fry) needs more detail guides.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Preparing infusoria

Infusoria can be prepared in many ways, some of which as follows:

Method 1:
Leave outside leaves of a lettuce in water and in bright light for three or four days. When the water especially round the leaves becomes white or milky, the culture is ready. One drop examined under a microscope will be seen to be teeming with life, appearing as continuously moving dust-like particles. Pond water (free of all enemies) is better than tap water. After about four days, the culture “dies”.

About three bruised leaves per quart of water can be used in this method. Bruising hastens the decomposition of the leaves and the birth of infusoria.

Method 2:
Leave finely sliced potatoes or any other vegetable in water till they begin to smell. Cow dung gives especially small infusoria that can be used for tiny fish.

Method 3:
Pour boiling water on chopped up hay, leaving it to stand in the sunlight till the water becomes light brown.

Method 4:
Using some such mixture as the peel of one potato, one split pea, one yellow skin of a banana, one spinach leaf, thirty drops of milk, one tiny piece of fish to about two gallons of water and leave in the light as described above.

All the above four cultures smell and go foul after three to five days.

Method 5
To overcome this difficulty the cultures can be sterilized. Slow boil for twenty minutes a mixture of almost any vegetable. This slow boil will kill the bacteria of putrefaction. Then the mixture should be left to cool for a day and be carefully protected against dust. We may call this ‘the culture’.

At the same time, similarly boil for twenty minutes separate quarts of water, each containing one of the above ingredients (hay, lettuce, potato, etc). Pour into separate jars and leave to cool for a day, protected from the dust.

Next add six or seven drops of the culture to each jar, keep protected from dust and leave in the bright light for three days. The water will be teeming with life and the infusoria is ready for use.

Advantages of method 5:

The different infusoria of oatmeal, hay, lettuce, etc are separate and fish will soon show which particular one they prefer

The preparation will not ‘die’ under two weeks

There is practically no smell.

Risk of infection is greatly reduced if all implements are sterilized.

All the five methods of making infusoria, are affected by temperature. If the infusoria water is at 80 degrees F or above, the cycle of events is accelerated that makes the culture ready sooner but it dies more quickly. Whereas under 60 degrees F, the development is slow. The best temperature is therefore between 65 to 68 degrees F. Infusoria, like fish, however is affected by temperature changes. Therefore they will tend to suffer if put in an aquarium with vast different in water temperature.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Rearing and feeding the fry

The mating and spawning process is often easier than the rearing of the fry. The commonest difficulties are insufficient or unsuitable food at the early stages and lack of space.

When the eggs are hatched, or the viviparous babies are born, in both instances a ‘yolk sac’ is attached to the fry. It supplies sufficient food for the initial period which may last from a few hours to three days, especially if supplemented by liberal quantities of green water to the tank. Green water is rich in baby-food!

When the yolk-sac is gone, it is our responsibility to feed the fry. This is done by providing infusoria early and constantly.

What is infusoria? Infusoria are living organisms in water on which fish can live until they have grown enough to eat normal foods.

Before we discuss more on infusoria, let’s talk about the importance of breeding trap. Breeding trap is used inside the rearing tank, so as to separate the parents from the eggs or the young. These traps can be done by using finely meshed wire, or any method allowing the eggs or live babies to drop through gaps into the rearing tank. The gaps must be just big enough for them but too small to allow the adult fish to follow. This is necessary if the parents are likely to eat the young fish or their eggs. Otherwise, it is not necessary.