Maguro's Life Story

I purchased an adorable redcap oranda from PETCO and although it is cute and spunky when I bought it...I did notice it is not in perfect health.
Hello my name's Maguro...yes, it does mean tuna in Japanese.
My cute little friend here seems to have a yucky case of fin rot. Not only are its fins tattered, but it seems to have some black fungus covering the edges. If I can't get the fins to improve within two weeks it may get returned to PETCO because when fins continue to rot and lose more and more growth...eventually the fish will not have a tail and will more than likely not survive. It also appears to not have perfect looking scales, not sure if these were removed or something else, but hopefully it can build up a better slime coat by using the proper water conditioner.
My owner took me to a sushi restaurant during our first day together...she thinks I look like maguro nigiri, hence my name Maguro.
Also, I have never owned a goldfish like this (comet's yes, oranda's no) and I am beginning to wonder if it has a heart condition or this is normal behavior... I will see its gills move in and out, it swims about a bit and then it decides to stop...its gills stop moving and it remains motionless at the bottom (still right-side up of course). Its gills then start moving again and it swims about after seconds of being motionless (which feels like minutes at times)...or could it be sleep apnea?

I will keep this post updated with an "after" photo within two weeks time (or less).
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Day 1- Added my tap water with Maguro's petstore water (added random chemicals to test how fish would respond). Maguro had eaten a little flake food but did not seem to be a fan of brine shrimp.

Day 2- Changed out all Maguro's water with my tap water (added random chemicals to test how fish would respond). Maguro did not eat any food.

Day 3- Soaked Maguro in clean tap water with Jungle Clear Water (active ingredient: potassium permanganate) for 30 minutes. Solution: 5cups Water mixed with 1/4tsp Jungle Clear Water. However, after doing the soak for the first time I'd only recommend to leave the fish in the solutuion no longer then 15-20 minutes, then remove the fish from this soak and move onto the next step here (during the soak was the most active I had seen Maguro since I got him). Next I mixed together 1/8tsp MelaFix, 1/8tsp PimaFix, 1/4tsp Tetra AquaSafe and 9cups of clean tap water (I will do this treatment again tomorrow for its water change). I crushed up a little flake food and Maguro ate a bit of that, Maguro did not seem to care much for algae wafers.

Day 4- Today Maguro was his most active-self thus far, he was eatting and swimming around more, even after the water change today. I did notice a few white flecs (looked similar to dust really) on Maguro's wen yesterday, was wondering if it might have been a bit of white spot but I couldn't really see it today so it may have cleared from the treatment already. I do think Maguro may have some constipation so I will probably feed it a grain of epsom salt during its water change tomorrow. I also purchased some Aqueon Color Enhancing Goldfish Granules today along with Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Aquarium Salt which is said to help clear numerous ailments for goldfish (1/2TSP of API Aquarium Salt per 1 Gallon of Water for Goldfish).
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Day 5- I actually caught Maguro going to the surface of the water this afternoon, several times in fact, since he had only been staying at the bottom of the bowl. He does not seem to stop breathing anymore like before. Maguro is also eatting EVERYTHING (Algae Wafers, Flakes and Granules)...including his own poop (disgusting I know), so I decided to give him a bit more food then I had been. I made a gallon of water with 1/2tsp of aquarium salt and a 1/2tsp AquaSafe, I then added 5cups of the mix to a bowl with 3/4tsp of Jungle Clear Water and left Maguro in there for 15minutes. However, the salt in this mix seems to absorb the Jungle Clear Water and turns it tea colored instead of purple colored like before so I do not think the salt is an effective combination this time. I then placed Maguro with 10cups of clean Aquarium Salt mix with 1/8tsp MilaFix and PimaFix.
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I also fed Maguro a tiny grain of epsom salt today, which was a little challenge all its own. First I had to lift Maguro out of the water, next I had to cover one of its eyes with my finger (everytime my hand moved in to place the salt into his mouth he'd close his mouth). So once the eye was covered I brought my hand around and was able to wiggle the salt into his mouth and dropped in a few drops of water to make sure the salt went down (as it'd stick to his lips and come back out).

Day 8- Maguro was seeming to get better until today, for some reason all he wanted to do was float around and do the back stroke while blowing bubbles at the waters surface. The black fungus on his tail has maybe gotten a little less dark due to all the Aquarium Salt water changes which I have been doing over the past few days regularly, but it's really hard to tell though to be honest. I personally think Maguro has gained a little weight and his wen seems bigger to me. I do think his tattered fins have been mending a bit and becoming less jagged and more rounded. Although I fear something internally is harming him today and I am not even sure he may live past today or the next few days. He is currently undergoing a Marcyn Two water treatment for today.

Day 9- Maguro is still alive! Apparently I may have fed him a bit too much flakes and brine shrimp yesterday and he took in too much air thus causing him to float upside down a bit while blowing out bubbles. He was well and normal this morning. However, I am concerned about the black fungus because it seems to have gone onto the tip of his dorsal now, even though it doesn't seem to have spread elsewhere on him. At this rate I am beginning to think to just move him into a tank by himself rather than the 10cup bowl I have been quarantining him in, perhaps less stress of daily water changes and chemicals may be more effective then what I have been doing to treat the black fin rot fungus.

I also did more research on the fungus which says...
In general, fin rot occurs when the fish is stressed. The most common cause is...

-Poor water quality (which couldn't be the cause for it getting worse since I change it everyday)
-Overcrowded environment
-Handling of your fish

To help prevent fin rot, make sure you...
-Do water changes every week (have been doing daily)
-Test the water (to make sure all is ok) (water is fine)
-Try not to over feed
-A little bit of stress coat should help keep out bacteria and allow electrolites from being lost (Instead of a treatment type med)

If there are red streaks or fuzz growing on the affected areas, then you can treat for baterial or fungal infection. Otherwise, just keep nitrates low. Sometimes these things may have permanent damage so if the slits don't fuse back, but don't become infected then don't worry.

So this means that I need to monitor his food intake, use stress coat rather than treatments, provide it with more swimming room and less handling of my fish. So yes as I stated before Mag's will be moved into a 10gal aquarium to see if he makes any progress. For more tips and advice on treatments checkout the link, I will also try raising the water temp in the new tank environment.
Perhaps an inner parasitic infection causing the sunk-in appearance and red spots.
Day 10- No Maguro isn't dead, this is just one of his recent tricks...err problems. Second time that I have cleaned his water that he decides to turn sideways or upside down but later on he goes back to normal. Not to mention he hasn't seemed to have eatten in the last few days. I think the black fin rot doesn't seem as dark as it was although it is still present as you can see. He also has some other black fungus on his wen now along with ick yet again.

Day 11- Marguro seems practically dead today, he has been laying on his side again since this morning on top the water, all limp bodied and barely if at all breathing and hasn't ate in days. At this point I don't think there is much else to do accept say goodbye to Mags, return him back to the store and hopefully get a refund. R.I.P. lil fishy.


PETCO Acclimation Tips/Guarantee

I just purchased a new fish yesterday from PETCO and decided that for those of you that have PETCO stores in your area and wanted to know what their aquatic life policy states upon purchase then here is their acclimation tips/guarantee written word for word...

-Before adding new aquatic life to the aquarium, float the bag on top of the water for a minimum of 15 minutes, no longer than an hour to allow the aquatic life to adjust to the new water temperature. The water temperature in the bag should be the same as that of the tank prior to placing the fish into the tank.

-Aquatic life, introduced into an established tank, can carry disease and/or may become aggressive or be attacked upon its release. Change or move the decor to alter the established territories. Feeding established fish prior to introducing the new fish may help alleviate potential aggression in the established fish. PETCO will not refund or replace established aquatic life that have been injured or become ill as a result of introducing new fish.

-In a properly established habitat, we guarantee our freshwater fish for 15 days from the date of purchase. A receipt and water sample is required for all refunds or exchanges (please see store for details).

-There is no guarantee for saltwater fish or other marine life. These animals have unique requirements, and are very delicate. They are not recommended for the beginner aquarist.

-PETCO provides a care sheet for all our Aquatic Life Care sheets are available from any associate in the store or at www.petco.com

I can't say I totally agree with what they have written here, how would they really know if it was "established aquatic life" unless you told them? Also, what good does a water sample do when you could have changed the water the fish was in prior to returning it? I am also not totally sure that within 15 minutes the water in your fish's bag could have adjusted to the exact temperature in your tank. PETCO should have healthy aquatic life to sell to people so I do not understand why it says: "can carry disease" who would really want to buy fish from a store like that after reading this? Luckily I have 15 days to return my freshwater fish if need be.


Death by Moss Ball and Review

Sadly with all the different methods of water testing, chemicals and new products that come on the market it can also result in tank fatalities. In under 24 hours I placed an Exo Terra Moss Ball into my tank and lost all of my fish (I did post my review on the product on the stores site as a warning), I had found two fish barely holding on, but they were too far gone to make a recovery.

On the upside, I will get my $5 back for returning the moss ball which I can use toward purchasing new fish. Ironically the same day all my fish had died I got an e-mail from Petco reminding me that it was also my guppies birthday and I can get a 10% discount.
I am still debating loading the video of the night I added the moss ball into my tank so that you can see how spooked my fish were... wish I had realized why they were so scared at the time.
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Above are a few images which are inspiring me to create a new aquascape, I especially like the 3rd photo the best.


How to Quarantine

I am sure everyone has their own method to quarantining their fish for those that do it, but this is how I do it. Here is another website which has some good tips and advice on it as well. Since most of my fish aren't too costly in price and a lot of fish stores have a short return policy I'll generally quarantine my fish within a week's time (7 days).

Step 1: Have your new fish tank setup at least 24hrs before purchasing your new fish. This means your water is new and unused (no other fish in the tank), the decor has been cleaned and the filtration system, and you have put in the proper chemicals to treat the water for your new fish.

Step 2: Once bringing your new fish home place it into a plastic bag (if not already in one) and place it into your water-filled tank. This will let the temperature in the bag adjust to your aquariums temperature (important if you use an aquarium heater). I don't like to leave my fish in the bag for 24hrs since they're already a bit stressed, so I'll wait several hours before placing any new fish into the aquarium.

Step 3: Remove the bag from the aquarium and place it into an appropriate sized bowl. Cut the bag open and carefully pour the water and fish into the bowl. Next use a fish-net and scoop the fish out of its old pet-store water it came in. Slowly place the fish into your aquarium water and release the fish into the tank.

Step 4: Inspect your fish making sure it is swimming normally and seems in decent health, you may want to watch it on and off for several hours before proceeding to the next step.

Step 5: I then use chemicals and such to treat common fish diseases such as ich, slime coat, fungus, etc. Now is probably a good time to give your fish a little bit of food as some fish when under stress won't take to food right away and it will just become waste (Guppies, however are typically eager to take to food rapidly as they always beg for food even when they aren't exactly hungry at all). Be sure not to overfeed your fish or use too much of any chemical treatments.

Step 6: After watching the fish for a week, if all seems well with them I will do an entire tank cleaning of my current fish tank and place all of my fish in the tank together. Be sure to return any fish that do not look healthy (or dies) back to the store, if this is the case you may want to continue another week of tank quarantine on the fish you keep and repeat this process over. Once all your fish look healthy then proceed to place all your fish in a clean tank to live together.

Tip: When looking your fish over to insure its overall health look at its coloration, scales, gills, swimming pattern, fins, eyes, diet, behavior, etc. Remember that not all fish get along well with other fish and could possibly eat, kill or nip at other fish, be sure do research prior to purchasing new fish or keep them in a separate tank, use a divider or an in-tank box/net if necessary. This is also my method if I find any of my current fish seem ill as well.


Quick Tank Update

I purchased the Top Fin Greek Pavillion with Airstone for my 10 gallon fish tank recently but unfortunately it was slightly too wide to fit inside the tank, so either I'll return it or keep it until I decide to setup my larger tank again in the future. I did look at some of the other Greek style decor they had but I opted to purchase the Conceptual Creation Stack Stones I found in the terrarium isle instead. The devils ivy in my tank has grown a lot so I trimmed down the length of the vines and re-anchored them back into my tank. I am considering setting up another tank I have because I am looking into the possibilities of purchasing a Ranchu in the near future and I would not want a goldfish type living with my current fish. Unfortunately I did lose one of my store bought guppies during my week vacation (and no it was not the barb lover, hah). I also purchased a fisheye lense for my DSLR camera so you can expect to see a lot more of those photo's to come. I have been medling with my water quaility lately and it has been a learning experience which I hope to share more of soon.

Hope you enjoyed my quick video!


Fishy Behavior

A few months ago I purchased a new male tequila sunrise guppy and several small gold barbs. I've noticed that my new guppy does not seem to be interested in mating with my young female guppy, but rather tries to entice my small gold barbs with its mating dance ritual and my gold barbs have no real interest in him what-so-ever. I have heard that guppies are capable of mating with mollies, platties and sword-tails, but mainly because they all reproduce live-bearing fry, although more often then not the fish which are born can be too mutant for survival. It has been said that a male guppy is more persistent mating then these other live-bearing species and that it can cause harm to other female species. So perhaps my guppy is in no way capable of reproducing with a gold barb and perhaps he is more enticed by the gold barbs because they have similar colors as himself. Or it could possibly be a sign of aggression but it does not seem like overly aggressive behavior as when my guppies fight they have a nose to nose stare down and move around the tank until one seems to tire himself out and retreat.


Current Tank Setup & Fish *Updated*

I've recently donated dozens of my guppies(all but one actually) to live in aquariums all around DC, so I'm now down to one 10 gallon fish tank (purchased from Petco) which has made life a lot easier now that I'm in college. I kept only one of my bred guppies, purchased 2 new guppies, bought 5 small gold barbs which will hopefully grow to befriend the 2 larger barbs I currently own and I still have my 1 black neon tetra(whom doesn't seem to mind being solo).
Although I have 11 fish currently in a 10 gallon tank, I did purchase a new Aqueon Aquarium Power Filter (20gal) filtration system which is made to accomodate a larger tank. I could classify my tank as overstocked by a smidge, as for each 1 inch of fish should be 1 gallon of water(this is a rule of thumb I learned in school but some say otherwise for different fish) although the larger filtration system should hopefully make up for the tank size. I do like the Aqueon brand for power filters thus far and my only complaint is that the lid of the filter seems to rattle a little on occasion but this might just be my indicator to clean out the filter cartridge or replace it.

My fish's current staple diet is the Aqueon Tropical Flakes, this seems to be their favorite of the many different flake foods I've tried in the past...I honestly think they love this more than the Hikari Freeze-dried Brine Shimp I give them as a treat.

I haven't had much luck with any aquatic plants I've purchased from local pet stores so I decided to take some of my Devil's Ivy, snip off a few vines and place them into my tank. Surprisingly it seems to give off a lot of oxygen into the tank and started growing roots almost immediately. I really am not sure if this plant is toxic or not but the fish don't seem to be harmed thus far and it has been in their for nearly 4 weeks now.

I have a new Aqueon Deluxe Full Fluorescent Black Aquarium Hood (20" Length) which is setup on a timer so I have it running for a good 8hrs starting at sundown. I didn't really care for the color and brightness this hood gave off but I think it's starting to grow on me and the plants seem to be doing great so far.

As for substrate I use a mix of old gravel I've been using for awhile now which I believe is a mix of PETCO Nutmeg Mix Aquarium Gravel, PETCO Pebble Beach Mix Aquarium Gravel and PETCO Rock Gravel Accents in Black Miami Beach. This combination makes for a natural looking gravel substrate and the rocks help keep the Devil's Ivy in place.

The background of my fish tank is a design I created on my computer which took 3 whole sheets of print paper and a little tape to adhere it all in place.

As for water conditioners and additives I'm currently using Jungle Plant Care Solutions Fertilizer and Water Conditioner, PIMAFIX and MELAFIX (I use them all as directed on the bottle).

After 2 weeks I changed a little more then a liter of water and added some of my water additives to it, washed off the Aqueon filter cartridge and placed it back into the filter. I also used my new battery operated Eheim Gravel Vacuum which does work nicely and is great for getting out any debry the filtration system missed, this doesn't seem to disturb the fish while I'm using this either.

So that's pretty much it for how I run my current tank setup, its been working great, the water still looks clean enough to drink and my new barbs seemed to have a grown a bit!


Filtration Idea

I've recently been trying to design my own undergravel filtration system, using that of a regular power filter, the base of an undergravel filter and some clear tubing.

With a normal power filter it doesn't really pick up everything from the bottom of a tank and with a normal undergravel filter setup it has a noisey pump, lacks power in my opinion and lacks filtration.

By removing the tube from the power filter and the undergravel filter and connecting one end of clear tubing to each device (trimming the tubing to fit) I now will have created a filtration system which actually filters out under gravel debri, provides filtration and carbon through the power filter and you won't have anything that takes away from the natural beauty of your fish tank as you do with most power filters.

I have yet to assemble this idea yet but if you've tried it or you have similar modification expericienes I'd love to hear about them!


Fun Tank Decorating Idea's

I find that one of the funnest parts of creating a fish tank is decorating one! Here are a few little creative idea's I came up with to be more fish tank trendy, enjoy!
At most fish stores you'll find the usual natural looking backgrounds for your fish tank. If you want something more unique and different you could use a little tape and adhere nearly anthing to the backside of your fish tank...posters, pictures, drawings, wrapping paper or even these designs I created in MS_Paint and printed out (it does help if it's waterproof if you're concerned about possible water damage).
Decorating inside your tank? You don't need to use plants, you can use everyday items (as long as they're waterproof and fish friendly). You could use household items like dishes, pottery, action figures or even a tasty looking plastic hamster home as shown here.

Tired of looking at tacky fish food containers? I like to use a small spice rack to create a colorful display peice by my fish tanks but you could also use any other type of storage containers or jars.

Have any creative tips of your own that you'd like to share? Drop a comment or two, I'd love to see your creativity!


Guppy Personality Traits

I haven't came across much on guppy behavior aside from them being considered "schooling" or "community" fish, basically meaning they like to be kept with other fish (preferably their own kind I'd assume).
Honestly males and females act totally different most of the time...

~Males tend to chase, school together and occasionally pick a fight with other males.
~Females act more independent, not always looking for affection and generally eat more.

In a guppy world where eating and breeding are basically what they do, it only makes sense that they generally act this way. Occasionally I will see a guppy showing unusual behavior then its tank mates, which makes me question their true intelligence and individuality.

Here are two examples of this individual personality...

During a full tank cleaning I began removing all my guppies from the tank, which guppies are generally very easy to net as opposed to other fish I have. After checking to make sure no guppies were left in my tank I began to scan the water to see if I had any possible fry hiding in the gravel. Upon my visual search I then barely noticed one adult female cowering and hiding behind my filtration system, this was an unusual personality trait in my usually friendly guppies.

I had a female store bought guppy that really only felt comfortable around younger fish and fry, but it took me observing my fish daily to realize her behavior didn't seem too normal. I remembered when I had purchased her it was just her and tiny fry living together in a busy frequented pet store. She was either infertile or was reluctant to mate, as the entire time I had her (over a year at least) she had never reproduced. She was much more shy around older guppies and she would even occasionally stress herself resulting in an ick outbreak (but this was only once in a blue moon) while my other guppies were all happy, never had an ick outbreak and age was never an apparent issue.


Although I've found that some guppies act different in major ways it makes me question how different each guppy personality really is and if their relationships, health, well-being and so forth can change a guppies personality traits (rather then its mood on occasion as when a fish is ill), or if it's just an inheritated trait much like the way the majority of my males and females generally behave.

Sexing Guppy Fry

I believe I've figured out how to sex tiny guppy fry and it doesn't seem to be a super easy task but here's a new method which I believe MIGHT be accurate from my knowledge of guppy breeding (I haven't done any outside research on this topic).

Guppy fry are about a few millimeters in length with possibly no color thus far and it may take a few weeks or perhaps days to actually tell your male and female guppies apart using my method here. It helps to have a bright tank light on and to use your eyes rather then up-close photos to actually them apart.

As tiny guppies you may notice if you look VERY closely that some of the fry actually flex their gonopodium up toward their bodies and back out again, the guppies you see doing this are probably males as adult males are generally doing this during mating rituals with females. It may take some patience to see a guppy flex its gonopodium but if you can at least get a good visual on the transparent fins then it makes it slightly easier. If it doesn't flex its gonopodium after at least 5 minutes of viewing then it's possibly a female.

Another way is to look at the shape and size of their bodies. Female fry I believe are slightly more rounded in the chest/belly area and males tend to be slender/straight thus appearing very slightly smaller then female fry.


Guppy Fry

When I cleaned out one of my guppy tanks a few weeks ago I syphoned this tiny fry right into my dirty water bucket, apparently it's the only one from this new mommy guppy I have. Perhaps just a lucky fry, between the other fish that could've gobbled it up, the two filters that could've sucked it up...it managed to beat the odds. I'd make a guess that this will perhaps grow to be a female, anyone else want to take a guess?


Water Quality & Changes

I'm seriously not sure if a chart like this exists or not for an aquarium, but I created this chart to give my opinion on how you should calculate your water quality. In other words when you would probably need to calculate your water changes and full tank cleanings. Granted everything in your tank is working properly and gets maintained during your aquarium cleanings, so of course varying factors could pose issues outside of this chart(such as plants, lighting, fish, chemicals, etc) so it is important to always use your better judgement(I'm not responsible for what happens in your tank).

Reading the Chart...

This means the water is brand new, never used, 100% clean.
This means the water with your current fish setup is currently at its best water conditions.
As one to two weeks pass your tank will get to be an average quality level. A water change should be done no later then 14 days (2 weeks), if you haven't done one by now.
Your water quality is now becoming bad for fish, they may be more prone to disease or possibly death at this stage.
This level can be deadly for your fish. Tanks should be 100% cleaned at this stage. It is possible your fish may seem fine at this point but there are some things we can't always see with the naked eye. If you were to do a 50% water change the fact of the matter is it still contains toxins left from the remaining water and adding new water won't help at this stage (just as acid would be to your flesh, adding water to acid would still make it harmful to you).

Helpful Tips...

-Any new tank with brand new never used water would be considered a "0" on the scale.
-Once fish are added and a tank is setup the first day is consider "1" on the scale.
-50% water changes are typically not recommended by most aquarists.
-For those of you that may not have noticed already you can really only go the first 2 weeks(14 days) of a 100% new setup before needing to start a water change.

How To Use...

First you must find out how many days have passed since your last tank cleaning(the one performed with totally new "0" water), in this example here we'll say 8 days have passed which would put your tank at a "8" on the chart. As you can see by the chart this would make your water "Average" in cleanliness and you could go 6 more days without a water change but lets say you decide to clean your tank on that 8th day. So now you decide to empty 25% of your tank water and add a new 25% water to the tank. This would now put your tank at a "good" level "6" on the chart.

8 / 4 x 3 = 6

Now lets say you go 10 days after your level "6" change had been done, so we'll be adding 10 to our 6 which puts our tank at a "bad" level "16" on the chart. Bad on the chart represents your water needing immediate attention before serious health issues could arise in your tanks water. So now you decide to change 50% of you tanks water and this puts your quality at an "average" level "8" on the chart.

10 + 6 = 16 / 2 = 8

Now lets say after your level "8" you neglect to do any water changes in your tank for 22 days, this now puts your tank at a "toxic" level "30" on the chart. Since it's not recommended to do over 50% water changes(doing so would only bring the water to a bad level "15") it's best to do a 100% water change to get your water back to a "new" level "0".

8 + 22 = 30 / 2 = 15

Also notice that going from 30 to 15 would be like taking 15 days off your tank, where as going from 14 to 7 during a 50% water change is like taking 7 days off. The higher the days you take off the more the water quality drastically changes, thus causing more stress to your fish. The more frequently you do water changes, the less likely it is to harm your tank. I wouldn't recommend doing 50% water changes if the days off you're removing from your take would equal over 10 days. If for some unknown reason you're having trouble changing a toxic level "30" completely I'd possibly suggest only changing 25% of the water which brings it to a bad "22.5", wait 3 days and change another 25% of water which would now bring it to a bad level "19.125". At this point I'd wait another 3 days and now change 50% of the water, waiting longer then 3 days would only add to the toxic levels again so doing this would bring your water to an average level "11.06". You're still not out of the clear yet so wait another 3 days and change 50% again, this now brings you to an average level "7.03". You can now wait 6 days before doing another 50% water change bringing you to a "6.525" level and your water should be back on track for weekly(7 days) 50% water changes. Also if you're not sure what your water quality is this may be an ideal method for getting your tank on track to a healthy ecosystem once again.

30/4x3=22.5 + 3/4x3=19.125
7.03+6/2=6.515 (round the decimal up to the nearest whole number and you have a level 7)

P.S. Never add new fish to a tank that isn't "new" level "0". As you can see water chemisty is changing from day 1 and new fish that aren't acclimated in your current tank aren't adjusted to their quality level of water, you could risk killing your new fish otherwise.


Sexing Guppies

I've bred guppies long enough to be able to give you 5 basic ways to determine which guppies are male and which are female.#1 Generally male guppies are much more vibrant and females are duller in color(although I've been breeding my females as photographed here to have more color then a lot I've seen). You may even see your male guppy doing an awkward dance during courtship to show-off these possible colors.

#2 The females gonopodium is typically fully expanded outward, and the males is usually tucked up toward his body and really only comes down during brief moments before mating with another guppy. The gonopodium is an anal fin used to impregnate. However, both sexes are capable of expanding and contracting their gonopodium.#3 At the end of the abdomen you may notice an often dark almost circular area which is called the gravid spot, if your fish has one then its a female. The gravid spot tends to change colors from pink to almost black(sometimes a combination of both), the color differs depending if the guppy has eggs inside of her or not. When the female has eggs/fry inside her the under belly will appear fuller and her body more rounded in shape(as seen above) and she may even start to develop a hunched/slumped spinal appearance.

#4 Males and females tend to act differently, the females being more submissive and independent and the males are more often found schooling together, perhaps acting a bit more aggressive and generally sexually mature males chase after the females.

#5 Adult females are generally larger then adult males, it also seems as most females continue to give birth their bodies seem to continue to get larger, where as the males seem to stop growing.
*Note* Some say the dorsal and caudal fins are usually bigger on males then that of the females. Although I believe I've seen some females with a fairly long dorsal fin.