I decided to overhaul the breeding tank again today and probably a good thing too as I noticed immediately that the heater was no longer working. I ordered a new one and set to work taking out the loose Java Moss and emptying the water out, it was at room temperature 20 °C. I knew that even if there had been Tetra eggs in the tank, they would in no way be viable given the conditions in the tank. Not only were the water parameters all wrong but now the water was also far too cold.
This prompted me to check the temperatures of my two larger tanks. Both were a stable 25 °C. It is my goal to cycle the empty larger tank using a handful of Platys and Guppies as they seem so much hardier than my Tetras. I will try to keep the water parameters between the two tanks as similar as I can until I remove the Livebearers and introduce the Tetras and Otos. At this point I will have to try and control the water parameters in both the breeding tank and larger Tetra tank keeping them as close as I can whilst attempting to lower the PH and hardness of the water slowly to produce viable conditions for spawning and raising fry. This is so the the breeding pair of Tetras don’t have too much difficulty adjusting to the breeding tank.
Should I succeed in raising Artemia as a food source, I will condition them with the live food in advance of placing them in the breeding tank.
So the experiment starts all over again, this time there will be some differences in how it is done. The live food source, introduction of peat and rigorous testing will be the new methods applied. I will keep the sides of the tank covered and dark as I did before. The tank will be disinfected and cleaned with white vinegar, rinsed well and filled mostly with water that has been boiled. I will monitor the water parameters very closely this time, aiming for soft slightly acidic but stable water. I may well add the peat sponge filter and even some peat balls to the substrate to adjust the parameters as naturally as I can. I will only add the Java Moss to the breeding tank after it has been under bright light for several days and is growing well. The Java Moss will be rinsed well and checked very carefully for any snails or snail spawn in advance of adding it.
I will add my pair of Neon Tetras after the tank has been continually monitored and tested and appears to be stable as softer water is more prone to fluctuations that could prove fatal to my fish. Once I am convinced the breeding tank is stable and at the correct levels it will be time to try and induce spawning again. This will be my second serious attempt and hopefully will prove easier now that I have the means of testing and adjusting the conditions. It could take some time though to create the perfect conditions and patience will be needed. So wish me luck.