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My apistos are super shy

VicMIkFish

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6
Hello guys,



I'm trying to breed apistogramma Baenshi Inka in a 20 gallon planted tank. It's been over 2 months since I got them set up. They are not alone, they are with some Loreto Tetra to act like tither fish. Ever since I got them set up, they are always hiding in the coconuts or behind the filter. I almost never get to see them, and when I do, they hide straight away. At first, i tought they were just being shy and acclimating. But as time went by, the situation wasn't getting any better, so checked for pH and hardness and noticed it was pretty high. I then decided to add Indian Almonds Leaves to lower it, and it worked, but my Carbonate is still pretty high. It's been two weeks and nothing has changed. I really don't know what to do with the situation, can you please help me. (NOTE: The tetras are doing perfectly fine, and it's not my first time keeping apistos I have some Panduros in my 55 Gallon that are breeding.)



Thank you
 

Mike Wise

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A. baenschi, like most nijsseni-group species, are fairly out-going and confident. The exception is if their tank is too bare/open for their liking. Then they hide. It's a natural response to hide from potential predators. A picture of your tank could be instructive. A. baenschi can be choosy about who they accept as a breeding partner, although less so than some other nijsseni-group species. Your 'pair' may not be compatible. For nijsseni-group species I always recommend letting fish choose their partners.
 

MacZ

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Germany
I then decided to add Indian Almonds Leaves to lower it, and it worked, but my Carbonate is still pretty high.
Leaf litter usually doesn't do anything longterm and effective with KH still present. If any you get a short-term effect of maybe 0.5 pH points down. And please keep in mind, 0.5 points is the accuracy of your usual hobbyist pH-testkit. Unless you use lab-grade testkits your pH test results have to be read as "X +/- 0.5".
 

VicMIkFish

New Member
Messages
6
A. baenschi, like most nijsseni-group species, are fairly out-going and confident. The exception is if their tank is too bare/open for their liking. Then they hide. It's a natural response to hide from potential predators. A picture of your tank could be instructive. A. baenschi can be choosy about who they accept as a breeding partner, although less so than some other nijsseni-group species. Your 'pair' may not be compatible. For nijsseni-group species I always recommend letting fish choose their partners.
Here is a picture of the tank, they seem to get along well because one time hadn't seen them in over a week, so checked the coconut, and they were both in there.
 

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VicMIkFish

New Member
Messages
6
Leaf litter usually doesn't do anything longterm and effective with KH still present. If any you get a short-term effect of maybe 0.5 pH points down. And please keep in mind, 0.5 points is the accuracy of your usual hobbyist pH-testkit. Unless you use lab-grade testkits your pH test results have to be read as "X +/- 0.5".
What do you recommend?
 

MacZ

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3,189
Location
Germany
Rainwater would do, too. The decisive point: You have to get KH down and KEEP it there. So you will want to switch to RO/distilled/rain water as a sourcewater permanently.

And I have to add:
The exception is if their tank is too bare/open for their liking. Then they hide. It's a natural response to hide from potential predators. A picture of your tank could be instructive.
Mike hit it exactly, it was also my first thought and the picture confirms it. The tank is still much too open, much too little structure. You will want to add a lot more wood and a lot more leaf litter. And replace the rock in the middle which is very likely responsible for raising GH/KH/EC in your tank.
 
Last edited:

VicMIkFish

New Member
Messages
6
Rainwater would do, too. The decisive point: You have to get KH down and KEEP it there. So you will want to switch to RO/distilled/rain water as a sourcewater permanently.

And I have to add:

Mike hit it exactly, it was also my first thought and the picture confirms it. The tank is still much too open, much too little structure. You will want to add a lot more wood and a lot more leaf litter. And replace the rock in the middle which is very likely responsible for raising GH/KH/EC in your tank.
That helps me alot Thank you. How much should i replace/add to the tank(distilled water)? I'm going to buy more wood and java moss today. I will also add more floaters. I will keep y'all updated with a picture when i set everything up.
 

VicMIkFish

New Member
Messages
6
If your panduros are breeding in the 55, and uses the same water as your breeding tank, then water most likely is not the problem.
Yes, but there is a huge piece of drift wood that makes the tank almost black water(in the 55). And when i tested the water the ph and kh was wayyyy lower then in my 20 where the baenschis are.
 
Last edited:

MacZ

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3,189
Location
Germany
That helps me alot Thank you. How much should i replace/add to the tank(distilled water)? I'm going to buy more wood and java moss today. I will also add more floaters. I will keep y'all updated with a picture when i set everything up.
Basically until you have 100% RO in the tank or until the EC won't go down much further. You should do a series of 25% waterchanges within a week. Please keep adding leaf litter and wood (moderately), so you don't get a problem with too little humic substances. PH is secondary, the EC is first priority. PH will follow suit once the EC is down. Just so you know: you will have to keep using ro/distilled/rainwater. So don't just do it, first make sure you have a 9lan to provide it. Luckily you can soon go down with waterchange frequency and percentage once you did the switch.
But I concurr with Mike insofar as once you have countered the minerals from the rock you are soon on the right track, maybe even with not so big amounts of soft water.
Still the wood and the leaves are important.

And a side comment: I highly doubt the oiece of would is able to make your other tank blackwater. The EC and the ion concentrations define blackwater, not the colour or the pH.
 

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