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Water, frogs

> Date: Mon, 22 Jun 1998 16:23:34 EDT
> From: BnGinMN at aol_com
> Oops, Sorry.  Water chemistry is 8.2 pH, no ammonia(finally cycled), nitrates
> below 35ppm,and hardness is 370ppm not 37. Sorry for the missing 0.

I seem to remember that you are somewhere on the south shore of Lake
Ontario.  I'm on the north shore, and wondered where the heck you were
getting such soft water.  Nothing wrong with Lake Ontario water.  The
GH is a little over 7.  Quite low in N and P.  Plants grow just fine.

> Anyway, back to the chemistry question.  Miami Bob explained to me how to get
> the hardness to the desired level.  One part R/O to one part tap =370/2.  Now
> that the hardness is down how do I get the pH to a level that my Alternanthera
> reineckii and the Nympoides aquatica are not being abused.

Put a little peat in your filter, and you probably won't need the R/O water.
It will take care of the pH too.

> Wow.  Another LFS, not the one selling the Aluminum plant, sold us two tiny
> Dwarf African frogs under the guise that they were truly aquatic and would not
> prefer a setup with some land and a waterfall or something.  The frogs seem to
> get their air at the surface.  

Yes, they are completely aquatic.  They don't climb out, but do breathe air.

> >No more liability than for selling you an african dwarf frog, and not
> >informing you that it will eventually grow large enough to eat all your
> >fish...
> My girlfriend really loves those frogs.  How big will they get.
> an ignorant aquaticist just trying to figure out what questions he should be
> asking.

There are two kinds of African aquatic frog commonly sold in North America.
One is Xenopus laevis, often called the African clawed frog.  These guys get
big and will eat your fish when they do.  The albino frogs are always X.laevis.
The other frogs are Hymenochirus spp, usually sold as African dwarf frogs.  
They stay tiny, love bloodworms, and may surprise you some morning with a batch
of eggs.  The easiest way to tell them apart is that Hymenochirus have webbed
toes on the front feet and Xenopus don't. (hymen = membrane, chirus = hand)

There are some good web pages on Xenopus and Hymenochirus, but I don't have
the URLs handy.