75g North American Natives - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-27-2014, 03:58 AM Thread Starter
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75g North American Natives

Current pic Feb 2015


Jan 2015


It's been a few years since I kept a planted tank due to the demands of military life. Anyway, I picked up a new 75 gallon reef ready tank last week and I'm pretty much planning to make everything else. Details below:

Tank
Marineland 75 gallon Corner Flow with dual bulkheads

Stand
DIY "primitive" stand. This will be 2x4 framing with reclaimed pallet wood exterior and doors. It will also have hidden removable side panels for access options. This is currently in progress, pics below.

Filtration
DIY Wet/Dry filter, still researching my options on this. I've seen many designs but my space is limited, so I probably won't be doing the plastic tub/plastic drawer unit model.

Lighting
Ecoxotic E series 48"
2x AquaticLife T5HO (4x 48W bulbs) I guess I lied, these obviously aren't DIY, but the mount will be.

Substrate
Dirted, capped with play sand or whatever else I decide when I get that far. Pool Filter Sand, in an effort to save money more than anything else. I don't plan on going hi-tech, even though I do have a pressurized CO2 system from my old 50 gallon tank.

Hard Scape
Standard DW and rocks, maybe slate, maybe river rocks.

I have not even put thought into plants and fish. It will be low-tech, so the usual flora suspects I suppose. As for fauna, maybe rainbows and a big school of Pygmy Cory. Well, what do you know, put some thought into it.

Stand pics:



Last edited by knm<><; 02-01-2015 at 05:47 PM. Reason: Update stats
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post #2 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-27-2014, 04:01 AM
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post #3 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
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Finished the doors and test fit the tank.



75g North American Natives Riparium | 20 Long Riparium | Mr Aqua 7.5 Cube Paludarium | Zoo Med Nano Tall & Small Tall Vivariums
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post #4 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 05:05 AM
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Nice stand KNM! I like the idea of removable side panels.
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post #5 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 05:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I haven't finished the side panels yet. I need more pallets.

75g North American Natives Riparium | 20 Long Riparium | Mr Aqua 7.5 Cube Paludarium | Zoo Med Nano Tall & Small Tall Vivariums
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post #6 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 05:22 AM
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that is very neat, esp the doors. Well done!
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post #7 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
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Went to HD today and picked up the MGOCPM and play sand that will be my substrate. I also picked up some garden edging in hopes of containing the MGOCP to certain areas of the tank. It's too tall right now so I will have to cut it down, probably in half.

I went ahead and picked up some egg crate material to help with placement of my DW as well. The DW is currently soaking in a 20 gallon trash can in my garage. By the looks of it, I have a couple weeks to go as far as leaching is concerned. It is already heavy enough to sink without being soaked through. The egg crate will make sure it doesnt shift after it's been in the tank a while.

The biggest surprise purchase of the day is my wet/dry filter. My original plan was to build my own out of a spare tank I have stored at my mother-in-law's house. However, while visiting a local saltwater shop that is about to stock freshwater fish and supplies (BTW, it's going to be a good one. If you're in northern VA, check out the thread about it New LFS in Springfield, VA). I was talking to the owner about my DIY wet/dry filter idea when, out of the blue, he offered to sell me a used one he had at the shop for $50! I couldn't pass that up.

Spoils of the day:


Several large pieces of DW soaking:

75g North American Natives Riparium | 20 Long Riparium | Mr Aqua 7.5 Cube Paludarium | Zoo Med Nano Tall & Small Tall Vivariums
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Last edited by knm<><; 10-29-2014 at 05:01 AM. Reason: Added link
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post #8 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-29-2014, 01:28 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hetzer View Post
that is very neat, esp the doors. Well done!
Thank you. I'm not sure I like the trim around the door.

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post #9 of 93 (permalink) Old 10-29-2014, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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I said to myself, after reading all the posts where people got fish before the tank was ready, "I'm not going to be that guy". Well, today, I was that guy. I picked up 10 juvenile Corydoras pygmaeus. They had 20 in stock, so at least I didn't hoard them. Besides, they have to temporarily live with my white clouds until the 75 is ready. I don't think 20 of them would be happy in there. They are all about 1/2" long right now. I've heard that they are shy, but I guess they are in exploration mode at the moment. They also keep going up and schooling with the minnows. These little guys are so cool!

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post #10 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Update - Pics!

Time for an update!

A lot has changed with my plans for this tank. Most importantly, I decided to do a single species native tank, Pumpkinseed Sunfish. I'm still undecided on sticking with native plants only. I'm leaning toward yes as I learn about the options. I may not go with the Virginia biotope like I wanted, but opt to go with a more broad North America native theme for the plants.

I decided to forego the MGOCPM in this tank after getting some advice on the NANFA forum. It seems my fauna like to dig in th substrate to make nests and they will undoubtedly make a mess of the soil. I went with pool filter sand.


NEW SINCE LAST UPDATE:

1. I got some static cling window tint and finished the background.

2. Finished plumbing the overflow and wet/dry filter, got loofahs for biomedia and some cut-to-fit filter pads. Tested the system, all is a go.

3. Finished the scape and filled the tank.







Please feel free to comment on any changes you think I should make to the hardscape. I am always open for suggestions. Remember, I'm doing rather large native sunfish. They get territorial and need breaks in the sightline of the tank so they can get away from each other when need be. That is what determines my placemet of the hardscape and plants when I get them.

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post #11 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 11:31 PM
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That's an awesome aquascape!
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post #12 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 11:35 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NotCousteau View Post
That's an awesome aquascape!
Thanks! Do you think it's a good environment for the pumpkinseeds? I'm planning on 5 of them.

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post #13 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 11:44 PM
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I've never kept them, but I'm sure they'd be happy in that tank.
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post #14 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-05-2014, 01:58 AM Thread Starter
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I scouted a pretty large creek near the house today with my ultralight tackle and a small jig. I caught a bunch of red breasted sunfish and one green sunfish. I didn't catch any pumpkinseeds. The tank cycle should be done this weekend, so I might just go with whatever I can pull out of the creek. According to the department of game and inland fisheries, I can collect 5 specimens per day, but because they are game fish, I have to get them with rod and reel. Judging by today's action, that shouldn't be a problem. I'm thinking two red breasted and 2 green. If I'm lucky enough to catch a pumpkinseed, I'll bring it home too.

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post #15 of 93 (permalink) Old 11-05-2014, 03:25 PM
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Do NOT put green sunfish in your tank unless you want to have one fish in the tank. They are they meanest sons a guns...

How would I know? This was about 3 years ago:

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