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Tank cycling and baby/juvenile Lucy

BradleyB

New member
Joined
Apr 13, 2021
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Location
Calgary, Alberta
I have a couple questions as we move forward with prepping Lucy's new home.

We received Lucy on May 11th as a tiny baby (maybe 3/4 of an inch long and have been lovingly tanking care of her in a small tub ever since. She is now about 2 1/2" long, eating small blood worms (tweezer-fed) and a treat of live brine shrimp every 2-3 days. We always feed the brine shrimp right before a water change, so the uneaten ones don't foul her water.

Lucy :)
PXL_20210611_174952938.MP.jpg


Lucy is currently living in a 6" x 12" tub in about 3 inches of water. She receives a 100% water change every day. Needless to say, as she continues to grow, the ammonia levels are climbing to the point where they now reach 0.25 ppm by the time I do the next water change. It's clearly time to move her into a larger home!

Lucy's current home
PXL_20210605_170154221.jpg


Her tank was set up in mid-April and successfully cycled a week ago. It's a 20 gallon long. I am currently dosing ammonia at a rate of 0.5 ppm every 48 hours. Ammonia is gone in 24 hours, it's taking around 36-48 hours for the nitrites to completely clear. There is currently a couple plants floating in the tank and they are keeping the nitrates at bay quite nicely. The water is still being heated to 76 degrees. My next planned steps in cycling will be to first stop heating the tank so it stabilizes at room temperature. This should be a pretty stable 68 - 70 degrees year round (we rarely get prolonged heat spells in Calgary, and we are in a basement suite). Once I know the tank is stable at room temperature, my thoughts are to lower the amount of ammonia to approximate Lucy's output, so that we can hopefully avoid any kind of crash once she's introduced. I would think that would just be some simple math.

First, I would welcome any feedback on my planned next steps in preparing her tank.

Second, my plan is to move Lucy into a 12" by 17" tub until she is ready/large enough to move into her permanent home. She is a very active swimmer, and I want her to have more space, but more importantly, I'm hoping that the larger tub will allow me to go back to water changes every other day instead of daily. I hate seeing her stress every day from being removed to allow for the water change and I want to minimize that all I can. I'm also thinking that I could incorporate a small sponge filter into the larger tub, so that there's at least some mechanical filtering.

Thoughts/comments?

Finally, when would Lucy be large enough to move to her permanent home? I'm hoping that it's no later than a month from now. Her appetite is very healthy and she seems to now be in the midst of a growth spurt :)

Lucy's future home. I am currently making a hide from slate, which will also have a couple planting areas incorporated into it. I am also going to add white sand to the foreground of of the tank, once Lucy is large enough for that to be safe.
PXL_20210611_175033528.jpg
 
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  • Jokerjay:
    My son and I have been looking for a water dog/tiger salamander for quite some time now with no luck has anybody know how or where to find any
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  • Jokerjay:
    @axolotl nerd, where can I find waterdogs or tiger salamanders my son has wanted one for a long time and I've been searching high and low with no luck
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    @Jokerjay, its a good idea to tell people where you are from. This is an international group. I have eastern tigers, im in the uk.
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  • axolotl nerd:
    @Jokerjay, as in water dogs do you mean axolotls? i suggest very heavy research and a fully cycled tank before even considering purchasing one
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    Axolotls are amazing until they get sick and then they’re a pain in the backside to treat - I recently lost two axolotls due to unknown causes
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    Anyone from the us? Looking for at least one or two axolotls for me and my son to have our own at-home project together.
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    i highly recommend “buyanaxolotl.com”- ive purchased from them and received a beautiful animal for relatively cheap, in great condition, and excellent shipping precautions. the breeders are a couple living in georgia (i believe, don’t quite remember) and they’re fantastic. sometimes their website contact page doesn’t work, so i’d probably try just emailing them. good luck and happy hunting!
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  • blubford:
    do those aquarium fans work well for axolotls
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  • Sheryl Fraser:
    My little guy got stuck in the filter yesterday. His back leg is red. Will this heal
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    Any recommendations on a water chiller for a 10gallon but will work for a 20gal when I decide to upgrade?
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    Anybody working with and breeding Salamandra salamandra salamandra?
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    heh
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  • Alexmcc:
    Hi all I'm new here I'm just looking some advise on cycle witch is currently driving me insane . So we are week 8 I'm dosing daily with 4pp of amonia and for the last week has been dropping to zero witch I no is good. But my question is my nitrites are sitting at between 0.50 and 1.0 PM and nitrates are between 10 and 20 and neither of these seem to be dropping. I have done 2 40% water changes a few days ago and no change the only thing I can think of is I didnt use the seachem stability stuff which I have now ordered but surely that shouldn't have much difference this far into cycling
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  • ytz13513:
    Dropping ammonia with rising nitrate and nitrite is good. It means the nitrifying bacteria is working. You just have to remove the nitrate from the water doing water changes. The level of nitrates is high and the nitrate is also high. The nitrite will be converted to nitrate using the beneficial bacteria and you can add them using quick start or allowing them to naturally grow in the tank. The latter option will take longer. The nitrate can be used by plants, so live plants can decrease the levels, but I would do a water change to get the nitrate at a level that is lower than 5 ppm. 5ppm of nitrate is natural and a good place.
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  • EvankingM:
    New here. hope this is the right place to post my question. I had 27 axolotyls aged 2-3 months old. main food has been finely chopped up bloodworms. no problems. I decided to introduce earthworms from my earthworm compost bin for variety. I finely chopped up 4 small earthworms and fed them to the babies. Within an hour 20 of the babies were dead. The remaining 7 (the smaller babies) survived and are now fine on bloodworms. Any ideas why the chopped up earthworms killed many of the babies?
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  • blubford:
    oh wow this place got a makeover
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    Yeah baby!
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    Looks really good. 😊
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    i agree
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    love the new look
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  • noahc808:
    does anyone know if fairy shrimp are good to use with axolotls?
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    noahc808: does anyone know if fairy shrimp are good to use with axolotls? +1
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