Clearing particulate cloudiness

A cloudy aquarium due to substrate change or addition. Image from a member of the forum at the Reef2Reef website – https://www.reef2reef.com/.

I have posted about this before. Tank cloudiness due to high particulate concentrations is common when changing substrates or adding substrate for the first time. It is also an easy problem to solve. To do so you have a few options, listed below in no certain order. NOTE: It’s worth mentioning that cloudiness due to bacterial blooms and such require a different solution. That’s a post for another day. 

  1. Let your existing filter(s) do the work
  2. Add a new, temporary mechanical filter
  3. Do nothing and wait for the particulates to settle

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More on nerite snails

Olive nerite snail attached to glass. Photo by the author.

I have posted a couple of times about using nerite snails in cichlid tanks (search the site for those posts). If you aren’t familiar with them, let me add something that I didn’t mention previously. Though you may upright some snails that you find upside down, don’t expect them to always start moving immediately. In fact, sometimes you’ll see an upside down snail and the aperture will look empty. Neither means the snail is dead. 

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Calling all eartheater and Apisto enthusiasts

Apistogramma cacatuoides.
Photo from http://www.dwarfcichlid.com/.
Geophagus sp. Tapajos ‘Red head’.
Photo from https://azgardens.com/.

I’m looking for some Apistogramma and eartheater (Geophagus/Satanoperca) experts/enthusiasts to interview. Know anyone? Drop me a line if you do along with their contact information, if you have it. 

Maintaining consistent water parameters

Image from https://medium.com/.

One of the most detrimental aspects to good fish health is constant swings in water parameters. Once your tank is established, maintaining stable water conditions should be one of your first priorities. I consistently see cichlid keepers, typically newer ones in the hobby, struggling to understand why sudden changes occur in their water parameters. How does this happen and how can it be prevented?

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Upcoming internal filter review

OASE BioPlus Thermo 200 internal canister filter. Image from https://us.oase-livingwater.com/.

Thanks to the fine folks at Aquarium Life Support Systems and OASE Living Waters, I recently received one of OASE’s BioPlus Thermo 200 internal canister filters to review. I am really anxious to unpack this thing and get it going. I have used internal filters before, but never one this large. Recommended for aquariums up to 55g , the 200 is the largest of the three sizes in the BioPlus Thermo line.  

Whether you’re familiar with OASE or are just now learning about them, they make solid aquarium products. If you’re interested in an external canister filter, see my review of their BioMaster Thermo 350.

Stay tuned!

Avoiding water parameter problems

Tank maintenance check list. Image from https://www.talkfishy.com/.

I can’t tell you how many times I come across fish keepers whose water parameters have suddenly degraded and they don’t know why. There are lots of things that can cause ammonia, nitrite, or nitrate spikes or even pH crashes and changes. However, there is one pretty simple solution to minimizing the probability of it happening – routine tank maintenance and consistency. 

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Want a new t-shirt from The Cichlid Stage – for free?

The Cichlid Stage t-shirt, front. Photo by the author.
The Cichlid Stage t-shirt, back. Photo by the author.

One quick-acting blog reader can win a free t-shirt right now. I will even ship it for free (anywhere in the world)! To participate you must be a member of at least two of the Facebook groups listed. Below the list of Facebook groups are the rules. You must complete each step in the rules. The first reader that completes each step below wins!

  • Dwarf Cichlids World Wide
  • Shell Dwellers
  • Cichlid Keepers
  • Tanganyika Cichlids in the USA
  • African Cichlids Worldwide

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Crenicichla wallacii

For the pike fans out there, especially fans of the dwarf species, see the latest issue of AMAZONAS Magazine. It is subscription only, but is well worth it, in my opinion. Anyway, the January/February 2021 issue has a great article on Crenicichla wallacii, a beautiful dwarf species. The article also contains several great photos of both wallacii and another dwarf species known as sp. “Essequibo,” named for the river in Guyana in which it is found. Though most pikes grow quite large, the dwarf species usually max out at about 4-5″. For photos of wallacii, you’ll need to do a Web search or you can visit The Cichlid Room Companion’s C. wallacii page

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