15gallon Riparium/Paludarium Hybrid tank - The Planted Tank Forum

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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 04:24 AM Thread Starter
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15gallon Riparium/Paludarium Hybrid tank

Back into the aquarium hobby after a 5year break. A young family has kept me fully occupied for the past few years, but for birthday and father's day this year I was surprised with a gift from the fam - a gift certificate to the fish gallery here in Houston.

The tank is about 10 weeks up and running at this point.

The layout is built around a pair of juvenile musk turtles, which is why the setup is a hybrid and not a true riparium. In the center of the display, driftwood and rocks have been arranged to allow for the turtles to come out of the water if need be. This creates a great focal point as the appearance is that of a submerged tree. The perimeter of the tank has planters and floating trellis which host a variety of plants. This setup has allowed me to not only include bog plants, but terrestrial plants as well. the air plant, for example, would not be possible in a traditional riparium setup.

The tank sits in a shelf system that divides the dining room from the kitchen. In order to maintain a nice aesthetic in both room, I had to be be very particular in creating scene with minimal hardware visible. This not only keeps the focus on the inhabitants exclusively, but also keeps the house looking nice - as nice as it can be with a 5year old and a 22 month old running around.

I selected a rimless and seamless-front tank, it happened to fit perfectly in the open space between both rooms( I measured the space and chose an aquarium that would fit, but this is an amazing fit) an external cannister filter, and a kessil 150 LED light which is drilled into the cabinet above the tank.

My hope is that this can not only be a great little getaway for me, but also add some beauty to the house, and act as a teaching tool for the kids.

Here's a picture of the tank from today


Specs:

Livestock:

Plants
Corkscrew - Juncus effusus spiralis
Umbrella Sedge - Cyperus
Variegated Basketgrass - Oplismenus
Ficus - unknown
Venus Flytrap - Dionaea muscipula
Airplant - unknown
Two other plants that I'm not sure of the name

Invertibrates
2 milk snails - Otala lactea
5 nerite snails - Neritina natalensis

Vertibrates
2 Musk Turtles - Sternotherus - a.k.a. Stinkpot
1 Chocolate Gourami - Sphaerichthys osphromenoides
1 Peacock Gudgeon - Tateurndina ocellicauda
1 Juvenile Fish - unknown (aquarium store hitchhiker)
1 Juvenile Toad - unknown (collected as tadpole from rain puddle)

Tank:
15gallon, 50cm wide
All glass, seamless front, rimless

Lighting:
Kessil A150W LED Amazon Sun 6700K
11.5hour cycle with 30min break 5 hours in - to inhibit algae growth.

Filtration:
ZooMed 501 Turtle Canister Filter

Substrate:
Sand w/ a few small polished stones

Water Changes:
50% Weekly
Top off - up to 1/2 gallon throughout the week

Feeding:
Fish
A ground pinch of flake every other day

Turtles
Staple diet: Dried krill, shrimp, and veggie pellets every other day. As much as they can eat in 10 minutes.
Local fare: Tadpoles, mosquito larvae

Last edited by senor0kun; 09-03-2012 at 04:36 AM. Reason: wanted to add a little background to the setup.
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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 04:51 AM Thread Starter
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That previous shot was from 6 weeks. This is from today. Notice how the umbrella sedge is taking over the space above the tank. The lack of heat that the LED puts off has created an interesting situation with the plants growing right up to the fixture. the only burns occur where the plants touch the green ring of the fixture, everything else is cool to the touch.



Here's some photos of the inhabitants




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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 07:42 AM
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Nice tank
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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 10:10 AM
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Oh that looks great! I love how all the plants are growing in! It's looking like a marsh. :-)
That turtle looks sooo happy to be snacking. :-)
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post #5 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 04:02 PM
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That is really nice!

Those turtles are super cute! How much bigger will they grow?
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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 04:04 PM
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Very very nice


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post #7 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 06:07 PM
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This is actually beautiful !! Make sure the snail doesn't escape !!

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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 07:00 PM
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Awesome tank!
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 07:28 PM
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I love musk turtles! Love the tank!

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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 08:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hydrophyte View Post
Those turtles are super cute! How much bigger will they grow?
Musk turtles stay between 3-5 inches. Mine are about 2 1/2 inches
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post #11 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-03-2012, 08:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by senor0kun View Post
Musk turtles stay between 3-5 inches. Mine are about 2 1/2 inches
Oh cute! Teeny turtles. Just watch out for rats teaching them ninjitsu
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post #12 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-04-2012, 04:43 AM Thread Starter
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post #13 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-04-2012, 04:52 AM
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Wow!
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post #14 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-04-2012, 04:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by senor0kun View Post
Wow that's awesome I would bust out those shelves and put in a bigger tank


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post #15 of 40 (permalink) Old 09-04-2012, 04:55 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sethjohnson30 View Post
Wow that's awesome I would bust out those shelves and put in a bigger tank


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If only I wasn't renting...
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