An aquarists trials and pleasures

Recent
days have witnessed both the trials and pleasures of the aquarist. No sooner
had we received a new lighting unit for the 180 litre tank than the temptation
arose to re-establish the multi-filtered 30 litre one. The large aquarium is
well stocked with plants and piscine inhabitants, three fantail goldfish, three
white cloud minnows and eight long-finned white clouds. Whilst collecting the
replacement lighting unit. we were rather attracted by some juvenile red
Chinese minnows (although my suspicion that they were the self same long-finned
white clouds was quickly confirmed) and, to this end, I set up substrate,
plants and a mini rock cave and set about maturing the filters. Within a week
we were ready to introduce five of these juveniles to this environment.

 

These
new acquisitions are a constant source of delight as they shimmy and shake in
the vicinity of the filter outflow, dramatically so when feeding on daphnia. Now
as I sit in my favourite chair, large aquarium to my left and small tank
diagonally opposite, I’m spoilt for viewing choice.

 

No
sooner had the new fish acclimatized themselves to their new environment than I
became concerned about Callie (a calico fantail) in the large aquarium. For a
few days she has been resting much more frequently on the bottom of the tank, and
then after her feeding frenzy hanging, almost motionless, for interminable
moments with dorsal fin apparently weighed down by the water’s surface.
Yesterday evening, a new tendency emerged; Callie began (not infrequently)
rolling over onto her back. It seems like her swimbladder problem has returned so,
the only option is to top up the 28 litre treatment tank. Tank duly topped up,
and live bacteria added for good measure, I added 55gms tonic salt before
transferring the invalid thence.

 

Within
a short while Callie was on her back again, despite the extra buoyancy of the salted
water, but then she only has just over half the depth of water than in the main
tank. Next task was to dissolve 1ml of swimbladder treatment in ½ a litre of
warm water and add that to the treatment tank. By the end of the evening she
was steadying herself against the filter housing before swimming off in normal posture.
Whilst she’s undergoing these treatments (the swimbladder treatment to be
applied again on the 4th, 8th and 12th days),
it’s one of the rare occasions when I attach the aeration unit to the pumps
outflow valve to counter any oxygen depletion.

 

Today,
the patient seems quite settled and enjoyed a snack of freeze-dried bloodworm
mid-morning and, a few flakes of food this evening.

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