A couple of years ago, we gave Jon and Gloria each a 10 gallon aquarium for their birthdays. The experience was...traumatic. No matter what we tried, we had fish dying every week. I had a five gallon tank as a kid, I don't remember it being that hard to keep fish going. I know it wasn't, in fact. We finally had only one tank going, with one goldfish, "Dancer," who lived quite a while. My wife and Gloria both liked to talk to Dancer when they fed "her." But then when Dancer died, both my daughter and Leslie were heartbroken. So the tanks set empty for two years. I just wasn't up for "Jim! Another fish died. Again." Sigh.
Then last summer a friend offered up a 75 gallon aquarium and stand, for free. I spent part of the time since painting the stand (it was black). Then the holidays got in the way. But finally we moved it all upstairs to our dining room. This weekend I went and bought a filter and heater and gravel and we filled it. Now it is just going to settle in for at least a week. My plan is next Friday (i.e., pay day - even "just" what I bought yesterday was expensive, and it was all on sale!) I will buy some testing kits to stay on top of the water condition and a bunch of live plants. I will then let those get established for a week or two before we start to slowly introduce fish. Hopefully this time by carefully monitoring water, paying close attention to tank ecology, etc., we can keep the fish alive much longer.
My plan is to have a completely "Buddhist, pacifist, non-violent, non-aggressive, peaceful, laid back" aquarium. So we will be picking types of fish that all want to live together in harmony. One thing I want is a bunch of neon tetras, because they aren't "nippy," they look cool, and I want enough of them so that they actually "school" together. Because I think that will look cool, and the tank is certainly big enough. How big? This big:
|The tank is four feet wide, for scale.|