Etane's New Glass Box w/ Silicone Glue: ADA 60-F - Page 3
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Old 06-03-2012, 11:31 PM   #31
etane
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Quick update:

Nothing constructive to report. Actually, tank wise, it's been a frustrating week.

About a few days after I got my aquarium set up, I wanted to clean some debris in the aquarium. There's no substrate at the moment, so it's really easy to see debris. And, this one in particular really bugged me cause it's in the corner behind where the branch is held. So, I had to take the branch out of the tank in order to get to it.

When I took the branch out, the Java moss came loose. I never tied it up. But, with the water resistance in play, moving the branch around pulled the moss loose. Also, the Taiwan moss that was sandwiched between the branch and yamaya rocks started flying all over. It has already decayed since it was only half alive when I planted it. So, pieces are all over the tank.

What made matters worse is after a day or so the branch started the white fuzz syndrome. After reading up about it, I realize that perhaps me removing the branch from the water killed off some beneficial bacteria and allowed fungi to grow on the branch. I read this will only last a few weeks. I also read that shrimps will feast on the fuzz, but I don't see the shrimps touching it. And, tanin seems to be leaking more after I moved the branch. Tanin level went down a few days ago but has gone up up up since then. Here's a current state of the tank shot:



So, I planned to redo the scape this weekend but plans kind of fell through. I couldn't make up mind on what I want to do.

One thing I have in mind is to create a carpet out of mini pellia. Reason for mini pellia are 1) shrimp friendly 2) low maintenance 3) slow growth therefore, I suspect there's no floating leaves to clean up or pruning needed. Also, pellia doesn't really require soil, so I don't have to replace soil in the future.

I ordered some mini pellia last week and arrived on Friday. Kinda disappointing with what I received. When removing the plant from USPS box, I found it to be dry with the paper towel holding the plant to be somewhat moist. The leaves are already 10% brown. Not sure I want to use this as it might just decay just like the Taiwan moss did as I received the Taiwan moss in similar condition. Here's a pic:



Would you use it in this condition? Does it even look like mini pellia in this condition? Anyways, after seeing the clump of mini pellia, I figured it might be easier to plant if it were already on mesh. So, I ordered 3 portions from AFA. It should come later this week.

Another thing I want to do is to add a hard ware to the aquarium. Want to do it for two reasons. I think it would look nice if there's something behind/under the branch on the left side of the tank. Plus, I worry that the shrimps doesn't have enough hiding places when they molt (and I don't want to get those ceramic tubes). Yesterday, went hiking specifically for the reason of finding rocks that will compliment the tree as well as having some irregular slopes for the shrimps to evade nosy neighbors when molting. Here are what I found:



I want to use two rocks. Want to put two rocks close together, so there's a bit of a crevice in between for the shrimp to hide. I did pour some vinegar over the rocks to see if they fizz. But, all I have are cooking rice vinegar. Not potent enough? Well, it didn't fizz. I soaked the rocks in vinegar and salt overnight to kill off some bacteria. I read you have to boil it but don't want to do that with my pots.

Anyways, that's it for now. I got some mesh coming. Going to order some UP shrimp sand (damn Amazon just sold out! Guess I will get the Fluval). Going to cover a thin layer with the sand then cover the whole tank up with the mesh except where the rocks will be located. This way, the mini pellia will eventually carpet the whole tank.

Just did some research on Fluval Shrimp Stratum and seems it doesn't support CRS shrimplets well. Not that it is a big deal as I don't intend to breed shrimps or anything. But, I do have some Amazonia ADA soil left, about two hand fulls. This soil is supposed to support shrimplets because it has more nutrients? So, maybe I can just sprinkle some of this stuff over the Fluval. I don't want to get another bag of Amazonia as it leaches a lot of ammonia so I've read.
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Old 06-04-2012, 04:33 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etane View Post
I ordered some mini pellia last week and arrived on Friday. When removing the plant from USPS box, I found it to be dry with the paper towel holding the plant to be somewhat moist. The leaves are already 10% brown. Not sure I want to use this as it might just decay just like the Taiwan moss did as I received the Taiwan moss in similar condition.
Perhaps they came from an area that has summer temp. Thus now best to get shipments with ice packs or wait until the temp decreases.

Brightwell aquatics Floriaxis may bring them back to life. It helped with some plants that are sensitive to shipment.
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Old 06-05-2012, 03:59 PM   #33
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Perhaps they came from an area that has summer temp. Thus now best to get shipments with ice packs or wait until the temp decreases.

Brightwell aquatics Floriaxis may bring them back to life. It helped with some plants that are sensitive to shipment.
Thanks for the suggestion but, man, I am not sure it's worth the effort to revive that clump of worts. It will violate my low maintenance endeavor!

I have it in a cup of water, and it hasn't improved but also hasn't gotten any worse.
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Old 06-05-2012, 09:43 PM   #34
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Nice! I guess welcome to this habbyt, a mix of hobby and habit. Lol!

My advice, the more plants and filtration you can have with the least light is the key for low maintenance lush good looking clear water tanks.

Pressurized co2 makes it much easier against algae and plant health.

Have fun!
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Old 06-06-2012, 02:39 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by pejerrey View Post
Nice! I guess welcome to this habbyt, a mix of hobby and habit. Lol!

My advice, the more plants and filtration you can have with the least light is the key for low maintenance lush good looking clear water tanks.

Pressurized co2 makes it much easier against algae and plant health.

Have fun!
I see you're a word smithereener! Thanks for leaving your footprint here.

More plants on the way sir, and they are the low light variety: mini pellia. Putting them in the tank this weekend. Hope the addition of mini pellia will contribute towards lower maintenance.

Been contemplating CO2. Pro is as you've mentioned. Con is don't want the plant growth to be so high that the shrimps cannot support it with the amount of CO2 they naturally produce.
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Old 06-06-2012, 02:41 AM   #36
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Took delivery of API water tester today. Here are the results. I am a little bit astounded that everything is pretty much 0ppm. pH looks to be 7.4. The tank has been up for more than a week now. My tank is cycled?

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Old 06-06-2012, 03:09 AM   #37
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Took delivery of API water tester today. Here are the results. I am a little bit astounded that everything is pretty much 0ppm. pH looks to be 7.4. The tank has been up for more than a week now. My tank is cycled?

It may not, the spike IME is like around week 2. Wait to add livestock and focus on plants. Are you adding ammonia or anything to create ammonia? Like some food?

The reason is that both plants and algae like NH4,NO2 and NO3; if there is available nutrients in the tank and there is light photosynthetic will happen (you decide if you want the plants to do it or algae instead ) that would keep you busy for about a month. Then add lil dudes. Scape and rescape because you won't bother anyone!

It's better to wait.

The only way I know to help the cycle to do its thing on time (1month IMO) is to have surface agitation by lowering the water level so the filters splash or with an airstone. All those bacteria juices you can buy are snake oil IME.

Ps. The other good reason for heavily planting from day 1 is that a lot of the bacteria you want lives in the plants.
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Old 06-06-2012, 03:14 AM   #38
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Probably not cycled. Your tank will be cycled when you have some nitrates, but no ammonia or nitrites. Since you have no nitrates at all, I'm guessing that you never had any ammonia to begin with. You'll have to introduce a source of ammonia somehow like pejerrey suggested to get the cycle going.
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Old 06-06-2012, 03:22 AM   #39
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Probably not cycled. Your tank will be cycled when you have some nitrates, but no ammonia or nitrites. Since you have no nitrates at all, I'm guessing that you never had any ammonia to begin with. You'll have to introduce a source of ammonia somehow like pejerrey suggested to get the cycle going.
+1
No3 will tell you when the last stage of the cycle is happening.
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Old 06-06-2012, 04:14 AM   #40
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Thanks for the comments peoples. Some additional information. Been testing the tank water with Tetra strips until about 4 days ago when I ran out. There's always been a good amount of ammonia and nitrite in the water. So, I am a bit awed that there's no trace of either in the water now at least that's what the API tester is telling me. Wondering whether one of these tests is less accurate than the other.

I was scratching my head about the lack of nitrate too. Could the moss be sucking it up? I've got 7 shrimps in the tank, and I read somewhere that you only need one to produce enough ammonia to kick start the cycling process? (I know I shouldn't add the lil guys into the tank until the tank is cycled, but I purchased the snowballs even before I got the tank...)

Lastly, as you can see in my fts, I am not using substrate at the moment. So, I can see the excrement on the tank floor. I took delivery of an Eheim vacuum couple of days ago and cleaned up maybe 40% of the excrement. Still lots left. Anyways, here has to be some ammonia in the water....
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Old 06-06-2012, 04:48 AM   #41
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I have it in a cup of water, and it hasn't improved but also hasn't gotten any worse.
That reminds me of my moss in a tank in front of a south window with no additional lighting. Thus wonder if more light would help.
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Old 06-06-2012, 05:34 AM   #42
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Strips are inaccurate is said, never used them tho.
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Old 06-08-2012, 03:52 PM   #43
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I took delivery of 3 mini pellia mesh yesterday. It looks very thick, lush and healthy. Can't wait to get this planted. These are on mesh.

Question:

I want to get the m pellia to eventually grow to carpet the whole tank. I got 4 sheets of mesh, 12x8" each, to cover the entire tank, for the m pellia to grow on. So, do I place the m pellia mesh on top or below the 4 sheets of mesh?

I am leaning towards placing the m pellia mesh under the mesh sheets.
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Old 06-10-2012, 07:26 AM   #44
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Well, it's another rescape day. My objective is to keep things very simple and utilitarian. The rocks provide shrimps with hiding places to molt peacefully. Some plants are in place to clean the water and provide shrimps with some biofilm. Tossed the branch as it was probably restricting water flow. Tossed the Java moss as it was leaving brown stuff at the bottom of the tank.

I put three portions of mini pellia underneath ss mesh that is covering 75% of the tanks bottom. Here's a pic of one of the the mini pellia placed in the UP shrimp sand just before I placed the ss mesh over it. I hope, in months to come, the mini pellia will propagate on the ss mesh and cover the rest of the tank's bottom. For now, I just hope it doesn't die from lack of light as the steel mesh is on top of it.



Here's a pic of the tank getting filled. I sorta messed up my first scape when I used the lily pipe to fill up the tank. So, I got a mister to fill up the first few inches of the tank.



After the water level reaches above a few inches, I started using the lily pipe to fill the tank. Water is from a bucket where I kept the old tank water. I used about 3 gallons of old tank water and about 3 gallons of RO water mixed with some Crystal Geyser.



Took a water test. Everything is still zero. pH is somewhere between 7.4 and 7.8. I hope the pH comes down a bit. Now that I am using shrimp sand, I assume pH should drop a bit within a few days.



Quick shot of the tank although it's not completely filled. Waiting to receive water hardness tester, so I know what water to use to fill the rest of my tank. Of GH is too low, I will use more Crystal Geyser. If it's too high, I will use RO water.



Well, that's it for now. Shrimps are back in their vase for the next few days while I let the water run through the filter a bit and get the water hardness tested.
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Old 06-10-2012, 09:49 AM   #45
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cool scape and I LOVE how you write your journal in detail.
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