Archive | April, 2012

It’s frog, toad, tadpole weather

15 Apr

We had a rainy night and a warm blast of air. The toads  started singing and this morning a pair were “making out” by the little pond. Also, a little Bullfrog was nestled in the plants.

You can see both the toads and the Bullfrog.

Since it is so warm, I scooped up a few (about 100) toad tadpoles and released them into the 30 gallon pond. The aquarium they were in is about 68F, and the pond is 64F.

I have been giving away a few tadpoles to my co-workers who have young children, and also one young lady took some to a school.  Still, I have about 1500 tadpoles to go!

I love this wet Spring weather, so good for the amphibians, and ducks.

Lionfish in trouble

9 Apr

Oh my goodness, my Dwarf Lion acts so healthy but I think he/she is in trouble. I just saw this bulge in the anal area, a prolapsed intestine I believe. What can I do? Nothing much I’m afraid. I’ll stop feeding the Lion for awhile, and make a water change soon.

I fear the worst. How can this just pop back inside? Not likely. And is it my fault? Did I overfeed the Lion and cause this?

This is my favorite fish. The prettiest,  most amazing fish.

Be careful what you wish for (toads!)

9 Apr

At first I thought these toads had laid 300 eggs, then I saw 600 tadpoles hatching, then I thought there might be 1000, then a day later I knew there were over 1500 and now I can say there may be 2000 tadpoles in this 10 gallon tank.

I have been pouring in a quart of green water (algae) from the turtle pond and sprinkling in some Hikari First Bites, a finely ground fish food for baby fish.

As soon as we get past this cold spell of 30 degree (minus 1 Celsius) nights I will put the tadpoles into the 30-gallon outdoor pond.

Fish food? Pet food? People food?

7 Apr

This blog has been a lot about Toads lately...

...and this breakfast dish is called Toad in the Hole.

No actual Toads were used. It was good but my flipping could have been timed better.

I love these!

And my dog loves these!

I cooked Smelt a few weeks ago. My fish eat these,too.

I made a Sausage Chili a few weeks ago and I am putting this picture here just to show off. It was incredible!

Because I am a cheapskate I bought this lunchmeat and it smelled EXACTLY like Alpo (a canned dog food). I could not eat it. I have been giving it to our dog because it really is dog food.

These dog treats look soooo good, but I have resisted trying them.

What a lucky girl!!

Watercress as a pond plant. I will have to eat some on a sandwich sometime soon!

Here's some Catnip. Some cats like it and others don't.

Cleaning the Protein Skimmer

7 Apr

I have the cheapest style of Protein Skimmer, an air-driven model called a Berlin-type Protein Skimmer.
It works great as long as it is kept clean.

After running a week you can see the proteins (urine, etc.) that have accumulated in the top section of the Skimmer.

This is the part of the Skimmer that is underwater. The black tubing goes to the wooden airstone.

I use a scrub pad to clean the wooden airstone. I replace the airstone 2 or 3 times per year.


The bubbles will eventually crawl up the tube and "fractionate". In other words, they will break apart and leave the nasty bits in the skimmer cup.

Balloon Molly died today

7 Apr

My female Balloon Molly died today. She was born in my Saltwater tank.  I set up the tank 4 years ago and put in a pair of Mollies to “cycle” the tank. The female had a few babies. I gave away most of them but this one has always been in one tank or another. Most recently she has lived in a brackish tank with a Puffer and some Endler’s Livebearers.  She didn’t show any signs of old age, she was looking good even yesterday.  Today, she is dead.

I like the Balloon Mollies. I think they have an awkward cuteness. As I understand it, Balloon Mollies were first seen many years ago by Floridian fish breeders who thought their fat little Mollies were sick, so they culled them.  Finally, someone let one grow up and breed and now we have these cute little buggers.

Mollies do so much better in brackish water. By brackish, I mean a saltwater solution. Let’s say about one-fourth as salty as a Saltwater aquarium. Mollies are so susceptible to fungus and “shimmies”. Instead of medication they need salt!

Wash out those filter cartridges

7 Apr

Let’s save some money!

When your filter cartridges get dirty, don’t just toss them out and replace them. Take them outside and hose them off, or spray them off in a sink.  They can last a few months before they fall apart.

Some folks recommend that they be washed off in de-chlorinated water to preserve the beneficial bacteria population in the filter. I will agree that that is great idea but the water that comes from my water hose or kitchen spigot is chlorinated and that’s what I use.

Besides, when I put in a new filter cartridge, there are no bacteria in there.

Turn them inside out and spray that off, too.

Keep an eye on your filter intake. Clean off the plants and algae to keep the water flow high.