Okay, I want to lay out a game plan and hear what you guys think about it and what changes/suggestions you have. Basically right now I have a 29g tank with 3 "sharks" and 6 barbs and I'm looking to move out the two bigger sharks (Silver Tipped and Raphael) to a proper tank, but things are much more complicated than a simply throwing water and fish into the new tank of course.
I'll be watching Craigslist for the next month or two until I find a good deal on a 75-100 gallon tank and then starting the whole adventure. First let me say I've reviewed the nice guide here: Starting a new Planted tank 101
and that is a very helpful start. I plan on putting down a layer of the plant stuff under the substrate and then reading more into what substrate I want based on what plants I'll want, but more on that later.
I can't find the picture again, but I basically envision finding suitable rocks around town and doing the whole boiling thing to make the middle half and back of the tank a nice rock structure. I plan on leaving lots of areas within the rock formation for those who want to hide to hide. When fish get bigger down the line I think it might be best to put some better cover for them, but I'm not sure. From there I want to spend several weeks just planting the tank (something I'm only starting to experiment with now in the 29g tank. I plan to keep this low-tech. I envision some mossy type stuff on the rocks with maybe a few very short growing plants, and then high plants off to the sides of the rocks, and then in front of course medium to short plants moving forward.
Once I'm happy with the plant growth I'd like to transport the two before mentioned sharks over and make sure they do well there. (Quick question, when filling the new tank should I use some of the water from the old tank?) Now the question becomes fish stocking. Basically I'd like to add a pleco, rope fish, and an eel, but I don't know if that would be too many things competing for the bottom even in a large tank, what say you guys? If it is okay, or even if I can't have all of those there is a question about the rest of the tank. With my current tank being Barb based I'm thinking either doing a Cichlid tank or a Gourami/Community tank up top. I know Cichlid's are aggressive, so are they out or would they leave my bottom fish alone?
As I've only ever maintained a simply 29g tank I'm sure there are many flaws in my plan and many things I've left unanswered, so please grill me and let me know what you think so as this things starts to materialize it can be as healthy and awesome as possible, thanks!