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I have a community tank and would like to make it look good by putting some nice plants in. When I get the plants home, they look really good and are a great hiding spot for the smaller fish. A few weeks later, they are nearly all gone :) . It's not the apple snails because they keep dying. Does anyone have any tips because it is pricy getting plants all the time.

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What have you got in the tank??? This may be the clue to your mystery.

Ive had the same problems with little mouths nibbling on my plants till theres nothing left , but have found that anubias are the go as the fish will graze on the algae on the leaves but dont eat the plant.

Ive watched Kribenses graze like cows till there is bare stem on some plants.

Just curious...D you add salt to your tank ?? Just wondering as this could be killing your snails and some plants dont like it.

Edited by jusdeb
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tank occupants:

about 9 female siamese fighting fish

10 neon tetras

3 angelfish

1 pair of guppies

1 bronze catfish

1 siamese flying fox/algae eater

no I don't use any salt at all. The only thing that I use for the water is "Vita Pet SAFE START" which is just a dechlorinator.

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What kind of plants are they? Are they definitely getting eaten or are they dying?

Well, I'm a newbie to aquarium plants so I don't know what they are. I did have some grassy plants in there but they are just about gone. I have a sort of bushy plant and the leaves look a bit like water lillies. I will have to send a pic so you can see what they are.

At first i thought some were getting burnt because they were to close to the heater, so I moved them. Now I can see holes in the leaves and have caught my fish taking a bite out of them. Are there any plants that are not as tasty for my fish?

Also I don't put aquarium plant food in, but I think the fish poo would help with that.

I just have gravel as substrate in the tank.

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What kind of light do you have? I don't know what plants you have, even a picture probably wouldn't help me (LOL!) but some of them do require really special expensive lighting. They may be dying. I just had a brief read around as I suspected your angelfish might be eating the plants, but I've since read that they don't usually. Which fish did you bust eating them? Were they actually eating them of just picking off dead bits or algae?

Now just out of curiosity - they are definitely angelfish aren't they? People always call my silverdollars angelfish - silver dollars are notorious plant devourers and will make short work of even an anubia. They don't like java fern very much though and once they get a taste they tend to half eat it and then let it grow back because apparently it tastes bitter.

Try some Java Fern next time you buy some plants. It self propogates from it's tap root and also from the tips of it's leaves, there are fast growing varieties, and you'll soon end up with heaps from your own bunch (if the buggers don't eat it). It looks nice and green too and doesn't need much light. I've some growing in a bowl on the coffee table which only gets about 10 minutes of afternoon sun.

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And I wouldn't rule out the apple snails, they are hungry little devils and they love a bit of plant.

I'd say there is a good chance the plants are dying before the fish are nibbling at them, as none of those fish are known plant chompers (unless you have silver dollars like Beano said). Is there any chance you can grab a photo of the plants?

Java fern or anubias are good fishproof ones, and they don't need much light.

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I suspect you are purchasing "bunch plants" these are bog plants that will tolerate a short stay underwater, but wont live for more than 2-3 weeks. These are the most commonly available type of plants sold in stores.

Try some hardier true aquatics - java fern, anubias, java moss, aponogetons, crypts etc

Unless you upgrade your lighting and substrate, others such as ambulia, rotala, wisteria will struggle.

HTH J

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I'd put money on them not being aquatics as well. There seems to be more lfs' selling mondo grass and aluminium plants for aquaria than ever. Pretty much guaranteed to rot within a couple of weeks - which id great if you just payed 5x what they'd cost from a nursery.

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