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
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