2015 Fluval Spec V Aquarium Journal

If you are interested in the daily in’s and out’s of keeping an aquarium, here is the journal I have kept for our Fluval Spec V aquarium for 2015.

We rescaped the aquarium at the end of 2014 and it has remained in that configuration for the whole year.  Maintenance consisted of a water change and filter clean every 7 to 14 days.  I dosed dry fertilizers on the water change day; I dosed dry CSM+B fertilizer for trace elements on the following day. One thing I don’t bother recording is the daily addition of 10 drops of Seachem Excel.

Fluval Spec V Aquarium with Green Neon Tetras

About every month, I do a trim down of plants.  The tank has a single horned nerite snail that is still going strong; we got him February of 2014.  We have a nice colony of red cherry shrimp that we also put in February of 2014.

Fish are (5) green neons at the end of 2015.  We started with (7) in August of 2014.  Two died in the fall/winter of 2015, but the remaining are doing well.  Most information puts the lifespan of small aquarium fish at around 2 years, so we will see how the remaining do.

Planted Nano Aquarium

Equipment was unchanged for 2015.  I replaced the top sponge filter in January, which cost a fraction of a $USD.  I’m still using the sponge filter that came with the tank when we set it up in 2014.

I’ve already discussed why it’s a good idea to keep a Journal for your aquarium.  Probably seems excessive to some, but it doesn’t take long (copy past most of the information for routine maintenance) and helps me keep track of how long it’s been since I have performed a water change and added fertilizer.

Here is the Journal as I kept it for 2015:

1/1/2015:

Ph (low range test):  7.6 (could be higher)
Ammonia: 0.0 ppm
Nitrite: 0.0 ppm
Nitrate: 5.0 ppm

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

1/3/2015:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

1/7/15: 

Replaced foam/pot scrubber sponge at top of filter.

1/12/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

1/13/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

1/19/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

I took most of the bocopa carolina stem plants out (that have grown up to near the surface) and trimmed them back down to 2-4 inches.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

1/20/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

1/25/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

I took several larger annubias out, split them, and glued on new rocks.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

1/28/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

2/3/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.
2/4/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

2/12/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

2/13/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

2/23/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

2/25/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

3/5/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
I took most of the bocopa carolina stem plants out (that have grown up to near the surface) and trimmed them back down to 2-4 inches.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

3/6/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

3/16/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

3/17/15: 

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

3/30/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.
3/31/15:
Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

4/11/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

4/12/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

4/13/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

Cleaned / regenerated Seachem Purigen

4/21/15:

The cryptocoryne are melting for some reason. Maybe not enough fertilizers as I have been going longer between water changes, or higher tank temps.  Trimmed the dead stuff off.

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

4/22/15:

Cut more dying stuff out and changed 1/4 of water.

Setup auto fish feeder as we are going to Florida next week.

4/23/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

4/24/15: 

Leaving tomorrow for week long vacation to Florida.  Dialed back the light timer for a bit less time on each day.  Got the Eheim auto feeder set.  Topped off with as much water as possible.

5/2/15: 

Back from vacation.  Water only evaporated about halfway down the return grids.  Scooped about half the water out and replaced for a quick water change.  Lots of algae – probably because Seachem Excel didn’t get dosed.

5/8/15: 

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

I took most of the bocopa carolina stem plants out (that have grown up to near the surface) and trimmed them back down to around 4 inches.

5/9/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

Ph (low range test):  7.6 (could be higher)

Ammonia: 0.0 ppm
Nitrite: 0.0 ppm

Nitrate: 20.0 or 40.0 ppm

5/15/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

5/16/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

5/25/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

I uprooted all of the cryptocoryne parva that I could find at the front of the aquarium; it had become buried and I wanted to replant with more of the leaves above the substrate. I trimmed the roots off and replanted.  lots of flying detris.

I also took out the petite annubias, removed them from the rocks, trimmed, and re-glued to the rocks.  I ran out of time and patience and threw some of the bad looking pieces away so I have less now.

5/26/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

6/6/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

6/7/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

6/16/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

6/18/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

6/28/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Trimmed a few BC down to size.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

7/8/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Trimmed more BC down to size. Replanted some tops and moved some undulata around.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

7/12/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

7/21/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.

Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

7/23/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

8/4/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4.

8/5/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.
8/11/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate)

8/16/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.
Trimmed and replanted a few stems of bacopa caroliniana.
8/17/15:
Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.
8/24/15:
50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

8/25/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

9/5/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.
9/6/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

9/18/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

9/20/15: 

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

10/1/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

10/3/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

10/12/13:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

10/13/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

10/18/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Used pipette to blow water deep into substrate to move detris up. Clouded everything up prior to the water change.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

10/20/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

10/29/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Trimmed and replanted almost all the bacopa caroliniana – it had grown up to the surface.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

10/30/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

11/10/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

11/11/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

11/18/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

11/20/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

12/8/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

12/9/15:

Dose 1/32 tsp (‘smidgen’) of csm + b dry.

12/26/15:

50% water change. Rinsed out filter media and vacuum water from filter section.
Dosed 1/16 Teaspoon (pinch) of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate);  Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of KH2PO4 (Potassium Phosphate); Dosed 1/32 Teaspoon (‘smidgen’) of K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate.

I have not recorded the exact date, but two of the green neons have died this fall and winter, including the big one that had a tumor on her back.  We are down to (5) green neons at the end of 2015.

4 thoughts on “2015 Fluval Spec V Aquarium Journal

  1. I couldn’t find a section to contact you, so I’m posting here. I recently ordered 2 Spec III’s from Petco. They were significantly different than the ones I own (III and V). They have updated the aesthetic design, box, and given it a SIGNIFICANTLY brighter LED light. I made a post about it over on plantedtank.net.

    I thought you would like to know, maybe you can run an article about it at some point.

    Here’s the link: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/22-planted-nano-tanks/1001689-petco-shipped-me-new-version.html

    • Very interesting. Thanks for the update. I will be thinking of getting one to detail the changes.

  2. I am new to the planted aquarium world and am about to setup a low tech Spec V. Your site is very informative and helpful for a newbie like me. I’m researching as much as I can right now and still need to pickup a few more items. I’m a little confused about the fertilizers. Can you please tell me what is the brand or what the fertilizers you use is called? I see that you use KNO3, csm+b, and KH2PO4. I’m trying to figure out exactly what I need to purchase.

    • Can’t really help you yet. I hope to write a page on this in the future. In the meantime – Googles is your friend.

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