Wy Renegade's German Blue Ram Planted Pseudo Paradise
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Old 12-19-2012, 06:38 PM   #1
Wy Renegade
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Wy Renegade's German Blue Ram Planted Pseudo Paradise


I've wanted to do some German Blue Rams for a while now, but they are never available locally. I finally go the opportunity to aquire some on-line, and they will be shipping sometime after the Holidays. So I started researching the habitat in which these fish are normally found in order to determine set-up and other inhabitants. I've decided that this will not be a biotope, but rather just a simulation of their biotope, as this is my first attempt at a true planted aquarium. So lets get started;

Tank: Aqueon 30 gallon (36" long, 12" wide, and 16.5" high)
Light: Aqueon 2x21watt NHOT5
Filter: AquaClear 30 (may update to an AquaClear 50)
Hard scape: Cottonwood and Apple driftwood
Substrate: Riparium Supply's Ionic Clay substrate
Fertilizer: Flourish; Excel, Comprehensive, and Nitrate as needed
Flora: Mosses; Christmas, Flame, Java, and an unknown or two. Plants; Crypt wendiss; red, brown, and green and Crypt pontiderfolias. maybe some anubias as well.
Fauna: Single German Blue Ram pair, and undetermined tetras (open to suggestions yet).

I used the following two sites as reference sources:
http://www.aquatic-experts.com/ARTICLE_swimming_with_cichlids.html
http://orinocobiotope.blogspot.com/

I started with a couple of large pieces of driftwood (cottonwood) and because I wanted to have an environment where they could swim in and out of the "roots" like they do in nature, I added several more branchy pieces of driftwood (apple).

Here's a couple shots of how the hardscape is currently looking, as I'm waiting for the substrate to firm up on pH before adding any plants.





I'm thinking of adding some additional branching pieces in the back right corner, but I"m open to suggestions or input at this time. Thanks for looking.
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:16 AM   #2
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That's going to look nice. I'm setting up something similiar for a 46g. I'm going to do a large group of cardinals and 8 pepper Cory's
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Old 12-20-2012, 05:11 PM   #3
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Thanks, sounds like the cardinals are a pretty popular choice.
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Old 12-22-2012, 01:14 AM   #4
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Default Moss and Plants Added!

Ok, oak leaves are on the way! pH finally balanced out today, so we got some plants added; couple three or four varieties of moss, couple types of anubias, several types of crypts, some elodea, and some unknowns that came with the moss.

You all can feel free to critique my planting, cause I've never done a fully planted tank before;









I did end up adding another branchy piece to the right side.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:20 AM   #5
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Ok time for an update and hopefully some advice on this one. I'm definitely going to have to work on the photo skills a bit, I can't seem to get the nice pictures in these freshwater tanks that I'm used to getting in the saltwater ones.



First off, a FTS;





Right End;





And left end;





As you can see the mosses and water lettuce in particular appear to be doing really well. The stem plants on the other hand, not so great. One of the narrow leaf Java ferns has lost almost all the leaves (turning brown), and a lot of the other stem plants leaves are developing black spots. Any suggestions on what I should be looking at?



The Christmas moss is doing really well;





As is this unknown stringy moss that came with some unknown plants growing in it;





Interestingly the applewood that I peeled completely has developed a large growth of the infamous white fungi, while the pieces that I left the inner bark on have not;





I'm not worried about the fungi except where it is threatening to over run some of the tiny anubias plants;





Should I attempt to scrap the fungi off around the plant or will it be ok?



The cottonwood piece hasn't developed any of the fungi at this point, and the anubias plants on it appear to be doing ok, a few black spots, but not much;

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Old 01-09-2013, 05:14 AM   #6
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It looks like you may have buried the rhizomes of java ferns. That may be why they are not doing well. Lift them up or tie them to driftwood.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:41 AM   #7
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I am liking the gbr - rummynose combo
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:51 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vvDO View Post
It looks like you may have buried the rhizomes of java ferns. That may be why they are not doing well. Lift them up or tie them to driftwood.
I noticed this as well. Some things in your tank were ideas I had of doing in some of mine. I like it. Get those ferns out of the substrate and you should be good. Are you dosing ferts? With mosses I would avoid Excel, but have you thought about C02?
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vvDO View Post
It looks like you may have buried the rhizomes of java ferns. That may be why they are not doing well. Lift them up or tie them to driftwood.
Thanks, I pulled the one up and I do believe that you were correct, it was buried too deep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuddha View Post
I am liking the gbr - rummynose combo
Sounds good, haven't had a lot of luck find any locally, so still kind of looking at this stage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dude View Post
I noticed this as well. Some things in your tank were ideas I had of doing in some of mine. I like it. Get those ferns out of the substrate and you should be good. Are you dosing ferts? With mosses I would avoid Excel, but have you thought about C02?
I did dose some Flourish nitrogen as well, and I also have some root tabs, but I haven't used them at this point. I really would prefer to avoid the CO2, which was why I was trying the Excel, what is the issue with it and moss?
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:12 PM   #10
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Messing around with the camera a little bit more today. Some of these turned out a bit better.

Several shots of the black stuff that is growing on my leaves;






The Java ferns as they were (I have pulled them up and will be tying them to the driftwood soon);


The trailing roots of the Water Lettuce and Duck weed (as you can see they really took off), kind of a neat effect;


Little better picture of the Christmas moss, I really like the growth pattern on this one;


And what I believe is Flame moss on the Cottonwood DW;
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:40 PM   #11
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ok Randy, i apologize for missing this. first off, if that is o2 you have bubbling, dump it. it's raising your pH and causing a co2 deficiency. second, consider adding some form of carbon because that looks like the beginning stages of bba. it's either that or diatoms, in which case all you can do is wait it out as long as it takes for the filter to mature. the plants you have listed in the pic as java ferns are actually anubias. very important here, anubias and java fers/bolobitis, roots can be buried, but the rhizome MUST stay above the substrate. i tie mine to rocks so i can position them wherever i like. if i don't like the position, i just move the rock. otherwise, it is looking good. you can scrape tyhe fungus if it starts to intrude on the other plants, but it shouldn't harm anything. i do like the use of cotton wood, nice touch Teach
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishies_in_Philly View Post
ok Randy, i apologize for missing this. first off, if that is o2 you have bubbling, dump it. it's raising your pH and causing a co2 deficiency. second, consider adding some form of carbon because that looks like the beginning stages of bba. it's either that or diatoms, in which case all you can do is wait it out as long as it takes for the filter to mature. the plants you have listed in the pic as java ferns are actually anubias. very important here, anubias and java fers/bolobitis, roots can be buried, but the rhizome MUST stay above the substrate. i tie mine to rocks so i can position them wherever i like. if i don't like the position, i just move the rock. otherwise, it is looking good. you can scrape tyhe fungus if it starts to intrude on the other plants, but it shouldn't harm anything. i do like the use of cotton wood, nice touch Teach
Hey Bill, thanks for popping in. So the air isn't straight 02, but I assume that air period is best to go? In regards to the BBA, I'm using excel, which I've read is a viable source in a low tech planted tank? Should I be increasing the dosage? I'm hoping to move a couple Horned nerite snails into the tank, which I've read are good for both the BBA and diatoms. So the plant is a variety of anubias rather than a thin-leafed Java fern thanks much, do you happen to know which variety of anubias they might be. I'll try tying them to rocks idea, I assume just tie them on and the roots will find their own way into the substrate? Appreciate the input!
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Old 01-11-2013, 05:21 PM   #13
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Yup, the air is doing a multitude of things. It's off gassing co2, it's increasing o2, and also creating surface agitation that is basically negating adding the excel. I would stop the air, you could run it at night, then it would be beneficial. Adding flow to the tank would help with the bba. Also, shorting your light.period, cutting down a bulb or raising the lights are another option for the bba.
The anubias appears to be either lanceolata or angustfolia.
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Old 01-11-2013, 05:34 PM   #14
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Oh, and as a side note, the air bubbles are also increasing you pH level
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Old 01-11-2013, 06:23 PM   #15
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Otos are also good for diatoms
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