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Plants , bogwood , java moss and plecs..

bigmel

Member
Joined
16 Feb 2012
Messages
65
Hi All

My tank is a fluval roma 240 ltr .

I,ve planted it with vallis at the rear , swords mid ground and some java moss tied to the wood and some on stones in the foreground . Its a low tec job with just some root tabs for the swords and its really doing well .

Stock is 40 odd Tetras/rasboros mixed , with 4 x clown plec , 6 x ottos , 2 x twig catfish and 20 odd RCS plus 7 corys .

The only problem i,ve got is that the plecs are gnawing at the wood so much the java moss is always getting clogged and the tank has loads of fines in it .

Its a new (ish ) tank , all the water tests fine and i have stocked slowly etc. etc..

I,m thinking as its new ish perhaps the plecs have taken off a softer layer of wood and this will eventually clear up .

Its not that bad and from a distance it all looks great .............untill you get close . The filter is a external fluval 305 .

Any surgestions ?

Ta
 

bigmel

Member
Thread starter
Joined
16 Feb 2012
Messages
65
I seem to have sorted it , its 90 % better this morning :thumbup:

Even though i had only cleaned the external filter a few days earlier it was filthy with brown stained water and fines .

The new additions must have rasped away all the softer outer wood as i thought and over loaded the filter .

A good clean in tank water and a good hover round last night has done the trick .

Basically user error :oops: :oops:
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
12,491
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
It is the Clown Plecs (Panaque maccus), they are wood eaters and I think you are stuck with some saw-dust what ever happens, you should find that thinks improve as the tank ages, but you will need to syphon the organic debris fairly frequently.

You could try feeding them with a hard vegetable like Yam or Sweet Potato, and this may limit their wood eating. They need to eat wood, so putting a really hard wood, like Mopani, that they can't damage doesn't really help. The nutritional value in the wood is in the micro-organisms it contains (mainly fungal hyphae) rather then the structural carbohydrates in the wood itself. Research by an American Scientist, Donovan German <http://german.bio.uci.edu/Research_1.html#Nutritional_physiology_and_ecology_of> showed that they couldn't actually "digest" wood (more correctly didn't have the specialized gut flora & morphology shown by true xylophagous organisms), and had to process large amounts of wood to get their nutrients.

Another option is to feed them partially rotted soft wood or green wood as a "vegetable". This approach keeps them in good health, but they will still gnaw on all the wood in the tank, you can't stop them.

I'd try a thin branches of a green wood like Hazel (Corylus avellana) for them, this should be a preferred food item. The best food would be the spent logs used to grow "Shiitake" mushrooms (Lentinula edodes) <http://www.thompson-morgan.com/dispatcher?search=shiitake+mushroom>.

cheers Darrel
 

bigmel

Member
Thread starter
Joined
16 Feb 2012
Messages
65
Thanks guys

I appreciate the links :thumbup:

I relised they were wood eaters but i didn,t know how important it was .

I,ve got four as the dealer picked what we thought were two pairs and they have some co co nut caves covered in java moss i have made ( ya me 8) )

The wood i have in there is "sumatra " wood bought from a aquatic shop , this wasn,t about when i kept trops years ago but it is a much better shape , more twiggy than bogwood .

A quick google suggests this is to hard for them ???

Please advise :D

I can fit some proper bogwood in , a small piece if this is better for them . I have also bought over the weekend 2 x twig catfish which i,ve been after for years and never come across them .

Currently eating algae wafers and cucumber plus algae on the tank sides .

Thanks !


Forgot to say its perfetly clear now :thumbup:
 

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