So I pretty much failed at dry start. I don't know if I used too many nutrients, not enough nutrients, too much water, not enough water.....it was frustrating to watch my HC slowly die.
So I decided to fill today. Finally got to test my aquatek regulator and it works great, solenoid is operational, and it took me only a few seconds to tune in a flow rate. Seems great so far - will see how it holds. I have my drop checker running into the near-yellow as I have no fauna at this time.
Also got to set up my first Eheim - the 2232 was easy to set up, quiet, and self-primed like a champ. I am stuck with the green inflow and outflow at this time until I decide on lily pipes. I got screwed over by a TPT member selling me a set. I do have the outflow ball valve choked down a but as the open flow from the stock outflow is a bit strong.
I dosed with Prime, Excel, and macros to start the fill and we will see how the HC fairs in the coming weeks.
Waiting at a starbucks for my new apartment to call me so I can move in!
I filled the tank just over 2 weeks ago and have seen an amazing improvement in the HC growth. It is really vibrant, bushy, and starting to spread out pretty well. I filled the tank and have been dosing KNO3, KH2P04, Excel, and Flourish on an EI schedule with the CO2 keeping the drop checker in a green/yellow. More CO2 than I would use with shrimp in here but the plants seem to like it - I am only using about 1.5 BPS through my bubble counter to achieve it. Will update with pictures later.
On a side note I am wondering if I should add a second plant species for the background or in a single corner. A smaller, bushier stem maybe. Any suggestions?
As far as fauna go I am still planning on adding my RCS colony with a single fish species. Either CPDs or microrasboras - how many do you think I could have?
In a tank of this size what do you think would be a good amount of Amanos and Otos to place in - as well as how many other fish I could keep....Hmm...
While moving my tank to a new apartment - the substrate shifted and ruined my slope, scape, and buried all of my HC. I was very sad.
I unburied all of my HC and went to replanting the tank. It was nice to plant with large masses of fresh HC. Hopefully it roots quickly submerged since this time it doesn't have a dry start prior to filling.
At this time I have a small handful of RCS and 6 otos in there. Will be getting my fish school next week and still trying to decide on a second or third plant species to add some height to the corners. Ludwiga, DHG.....hmmm
As a note I broke my diffuser too. The ugly and poorly functioning airstone is a placeholder until my box from china arrives tomorrow with a new diffuser, bubble counter, and check valve.
Got my fish and shrimps in today from Msjinkzd and I am super excited. I got 15ish boraras brigittae, 6 CRS, and 4 amanos (asked for 2 how generous!).
Well the first thing I noticed after drip acclimating all the new friends was that the amano shrimp were huge and wreaking havoc on my HC. I think my tank is just too small for the XXXXL Amanos she sent. Luckily I have a buddy with multiple planted tanks who took them off my hands for free. So he got some great quality shrimp.
The boraras brigittae colored up fast and look great - they are so small!
They are too hard to snap a pic of with an iPhone - my dad has had my good camera for a few weeks but I will get it back soon!
The CRS are awesome - so cool and they honestly make my RCS look even redder. Maybe they are just coloring up as they adapt to their new tank. The CRS got great color fast and eat like crazy.
Any thoughts on their grading? I know the pictures are bad but I am thinking A?
Busy little tank! Can't wait for my HC to grow in.
Sorry for the inactivity of my posts - I had some failures and some successes. At one point I had an almost solid carpet when a mishap during a water change caused all my soil and HC to uproot. Following that was a massive shrimp die-off due to elevated nitrates.
My CRS all died in the prior noted event. Many RCS died as well but a few hardy ones are still around. Strangely the Otos are all doing well and the Chili Rasboras are all doing well.
The HC has had some periods of string algae abut other than that it is grown well. I have green algae on the rocks and diatoms in the lily pipes but will be doing a big cleaning on the tank early next week.
Here is the tank today:
Updates to follow next week as I am leaving for Vegas now!