So I'm setting up a nano planted tank and figured I'd do a journal to get advice and opinions along the way and track my aquarium's progress.
Here's what I have so far:
-Fluval Spec V, all stock
-2 volcanic rocks found in my yard
-7ish lbs of seachem Fluorite
that's the thing, I'm still not completely sure! I was thinking of either doing some cherry shrimp or a dwarf puffer, or maybe try my luck in mixing them, and I was gonna try and mix some low light plants like Anubias and Crypts. I'm open to suggestions from anyone who'd like to contribute
In the past week I just started up a Fluval Spec V with drift wood, anubias, java fern, crypts, and hygrophilia along with red cherry shrimp (RCS) and it has been very entertaining. I recommend RCS. RCS are very active; cleaning all surfaces all day long...very fun to observe.
Puffers will make quick snacks of just about any shrimp, so I wouldn't mix the two. Pick one or the other.
For plants, Anubias nana 'petite' will look really nice around the base of some driftwood or rocks. Crypt parva is a great tiny plant for foreground use. The various types of Crypt wendtii can also be great background plants in a tank this small.
As far as cycling, definitely go the fishless cycle route. Will take you anywhere from two weeks to a bit more than a month. I'd err on the side of it taking at least a month. That'll allow plenty of time for beneficial bacteria to grow and to be nice and habitable for shrimp. (Or for a puffer)
You can have some of the micro fish along with the RCS. I have 9 Boraras urophthalmoides in mine along with 2 otos and I can't count how many RCS that are breeding really well. I added the shrimp as the fish are so small I wanted more activity in there - and I got it. The shrimp swim all over the place, making the school of fish look even larger.
you people just keep making my decision more difficult! The micro fish with shrimp sound really good too! well either way, picked up some nice dark green Java Ferns today to start my low light planting, what do y'all think?
bitFUUL: That's a fact! I think Dwarf Puffers are one of my all-time favorites and I can never get enough C. parva. It's just so tiny and so easy to care for. I mean, it never, ever melts on me - which is odd for crypts.
PaulThePlanter: You'll want to make sure your Java Fern isn't buried in the substrate. The rhizome will rot if it is beneath the substrate. Needs to be tied or glued to a rock or piece of wood.
It'll be a tough choice between those and the dwarf puffer! quick question, how did you cycle your tank and about how long did it take?
I used water from another one of my tanks so that I was able to add shrimp in 7 days since the seasoned water already had good bacteria established. You will probably want to take more time on the tank cycling (couple of weeks) just to be safe before adding any fauna.