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Re: [APD] My goldfish are dying

Melis here (Don's wife)

On Thu, 1 Jun 2006 13:13:24 -0700, Vaughn Hopkins
<hoppycalif at yahoo_com> wrote:

>May I suggest that you not spend money on an undergravel heating cable, 
>nor on laterite?  Neither is needed or especially beneficial for 
>growing plants or keeping fish healthy.  It would help more to spend 
>that money on good lighting, good test kits, including a pH meter, a 
>pressurized CO2 system, and some ADA aquasoil or other good substrate 
>Vaughn H .

This, I think, is good advice. I would suggest you do
more research about growing plants in aquarium setting.
aquaticplantcentral is a good forum for further reading
and research. Also one called plantgeek. 

You may not realise there are more than one way of
growing plants in the home aquarium. One that's been
popular in europe quite a while and gaining adherents
here is outlined in Diane Walstad's book 'Ecology of
the Planted Aquarium'. Great book, explains how you can
use soil topped with sand or gravel, sunlight and
little or no filtration to achieve a planted tank that
is nearly zero-maintenance. Fish and the food you feed
them feed the plants, plants absorb and grow on the
ammonia, nitrites and nitrates the fish create. Only
maintenance is occasional topping up from evaporation
and occasional pruning of your extremely happy and
flourishing plants. No algae, no ammonia spikes, no
expensive  CO2 equipment, no tanks every couple months,
no risk killing your fish either if you get the CO2 mix
wrong. 3-6 small water changes a year, blissful,
low-tech fishkeeping. 

Obviously I like and do these kind of tanks myself,
love and highly recommend them. But don't set one up
based on the above alone: do your research! Ideally,
buy the book. Diane Walstad hosts a group on the
aquaticplantcentral web site called El Natural

I repeat: do your research. It will save you buying
equipment you don't really need. 
Imagination is more important than knowledge.
   -Albert Einstein

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