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senor0kun 09-03-2012 04:24 AM

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



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

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

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)

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

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

ZooMed 501 Turtle Canister Filter

Sand w/ a few small polished stones

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

A ground pinch of flake every other day

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

senor0kun 09-03-2012 04:51 AM

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

flowerfishs 09-03-2012 07:42 AM

Nice tank

Elppan 09-03-2012 10:10 AM

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. :-)

hydrophyte 09-03-2012 04:02 PM

That is really nice!

Those turtles are super cute! How much bigger will they grow?

Alastair-T 09-03-2012 04:04 PM

Very very nice

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izabella87 09-03-2012 06:07 PM

This is actually beautiful !! Make sure the snail doesn't escape !!

nightshadebel 09-03-2012 07:00 PM

Awesome tank!

moosenart 09-03-2012 07:28 PM

I love musk turtles! Love the tank!

senor0kun 09-03-2012 08:10 PM


Originally Posted by hydrophyte (Post 1999980)
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

Elppan 09-03-2012 08:57 PM


Originally Posted by senor0kun (Post 2000175)
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

senor0kun 09-04-2012 04:43 AM

hydrophyte 09-04-2012 04:52 AM


Sethjohnson30 09-04-2012 04:52 AM


Originally Posted by senor0kun (Post 2000640)

Wow that's awesome I would bust out those shelves and put in a bigger tank

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senor0kun 09-04-2012 04:55 AM


Originally Posted by Sethjohnson30 (Post 2000647)
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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