25 high low tech re-scape. "Angel scape"
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:18 PM   #1
spiraling
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25 high low tech re-scape. "Angel scape"


I have my 25 high that is somewhat neglected. The inhabitant is my angel fish "sanchez". I didn't plan to keep him in this tank, but since he didn't do well in the larger community tank I want to make this tank a nice home for him for now (larger tank in the plans for him later).

tank: 25 high (24" x 12" x 18")
lighting: coralife 48 W T5HO
filter: aqueon hob
CO2: none (do not want to add any)
Ferts: none (but plan to change that)
Substrate: play sand and petrified wood (gonna stick with this for now)

Current fauna:
a bunch of broken up marimo balls with hair algae on them
a little bit of java fern widelov glued to the rocks that isn't growing.
anubis (behind the rocks)
the green plant on the right - I don't know what it is but its one of the few I haven't killed regardless of my bad plant-keeping habits
amazon sword (small and behind the rocks, currently wilting)
new crypts - balanese

current fish:
1 angelfish
2 otos

It had an aluminum foil background, which wasn't bad, but I would like to try something new.




The plan:
1 - rearrange the rocks. I added tape crosses to see where a focal point should be. So far I haven't hit any of them
2 - add healthy plants. I think I will keep the crypts and java fern, but get rid of the rest. The crypts shoud get tall so I will move them to the background. I'm looking for a nice leafy midground - maybe some Ludwigia repen. Then I want some pigmy chain sword around the rocks as a foreground plant. KISS with 4 plant types. That should be enough for now.
3 - add bottom dwellers. Sanchez always swims up high. Maybe a few peacock gudgeons would be fun.
4 - get a brighter background to show off the rocks. maybe light blue?
5 - Keep lots of swimming room for Sanchez, and open areas and caves below.


I don't have very good local selection so I will have to mail order most plants and fish. Wish me luck!
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:37 PM   #2
spiraling
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I worked on the background this weekend. I coated a piece of acrylic with the glass frosting paint. Then I added a piece of fabric to give a little color.

I took out all of the petrified wood and scrubbed it down to get the algae off. It looks better but is still green in spots. I'm not sure I love this arrangement. Maybe with plants it will look better? I ordered my plants and they will hopefully arrive next week.

My camera is adding the light splash on the tank. Sorry about that
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Old 09-26-2013, 03:28 AM   #3
spiraling
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Default 25h low tech 'Angel Scape'

The plants arrived today.
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Old 09-26-2013, 03:56 AM   #4
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whats the rating on the bulbs? 6500? For how deep a 20high is I would say 6500 is a minimum, especially with those plants who are also going to need ferts and co2. I highly suggest DIY co2, cheap and easy and very very helpful to all plants.
Consider adding a branch like driftwood piece or two just to add some height to the tank, and help your angel like the place better with some cover. this also gives you more options for more plants/moss. Consider maybe anubius to try and grow on the rocks? It grows slow generally, and won't consume the rock making it impossible to see over time.
Also with only having play sand as the substrate you'll need to keep giving root tabs or something similar fairly often. If you like the look of the play sand then consider using a plant substrate below the sand, since you just put the plants in this would be a good time to do it before they try and get established. If you go this route then get something that won't float, scum up your water, etc. Most flourite's are good for this an easy to find at most LFS. EcoComplete is another option, but mine tends to turn the play sand a black color. Avoid light substrates like fluval's, though they look good and could actually cap over the sand.


PM me info and what happened with trying to move the angel to your community, I'm curious about that.

Last edited by Nestle_; 09-26-2013 at 04:02 AM.. Reason: weeeeeeee
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Old 09-26-2013, 02:58 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback Nestle. I absolutely agree with everything you suggested, but I may not go that route at this time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nestle_ View Post
whats the rating on the bulbs? 6500? For how deep a 20high is I would say 6500 is a minimum, especially with those plants who are also going to need ferts and co2. I highly suggest DIY co2, cheap and easy and very very helpful to all plants.
One is 6500, the other is slightly pink (I'm not sure of the rating for those bulbs). 2x24 watts should give me 'medium' light? I chose plants that people had said could be grown in medium light without CO2. I plan to start with excel though. But I really don't want to go down the slippery slope of diy CO2 at this time
I have:
Cryptocoryne Balansae
Windelov java fern on the rocks
Ludwigia repens
Pygmy Chain Sword

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nestle_ View Post
Consider adding a branch like driftwood piece or two just to add some height to the tank, and help your angel like the place better with some cover.
I've already been looking for something a bit taller. Sanchez doesn't seem to mind the open spaces. He likes to hang out and look around. When I get near the tank he begs for food. I had higher cover in the tank before and he didn't really use it. When the plants get taller I think he'll like to hang out in them though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nestle_ View Post
this also gives you more options for more plants/moss. Consider maybe anubius to try and grow on the rocks? It grows slow generally, and won't consume the rock making it impossible to see over time.
No more moss for me! My two experiences with it is that it never looked good (possibly due to neglect) and it gets all over the filtration. I have the java fern on the rocks for now. It has grown well on them in the past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nestle_ View Post
Also with only having play sand as the substrate you'll need to keep giving root tabs or something similar fairly often. If you like the look of the play sand then consider using a plant substrate below the sand, since you just put the plants in this would be a good time to do it before they try and get established. If you go this route then get something that won't float, scum up your water, etc. Most flourite's are good for this an easy to find at most LFS. EcoComplete is another option, but mine tends to turn the play sand a black color. Avoid light substrates like fluval's, though they look good and could actually cap over the sand.
I just added root tabs. I have tried the 'capping' with both flourite and dirt in the past and I always found it to be a lot of trouble. When I re-do my large tank I think I will go with 100% flourite this time, even though its expensive. I do need to increase the amount of sand - there is only 1 1/2" and I can already tell that is not enough.

If I go with EI dosing do I need the root tabs too?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nestle_ View Post
PM me info and what happened with trying to move the angel to your community, I'm curious about that.
It wasn't anything horrible. It's just that Sanchez is a REALLY BAD swimmer. I guess its his long fins. He only uses his little pectoral fins for swimming. Then he gets blown around in the current and takes a bit to right himself. It's not that he is sick, he has always been this way. I think its just bad genetics. But he's a nice looking and interactive fish.

When I put him in the community tank (72g with canister filter, red line torpedo barbs, bolivian rams, rasbora) he had a few issues. First of all the current was too strong. I tried moving the filtration and turning it off for a few hours a day to give him some rest, but he just stayed in one spot or got blown around.

All of the fish were afraid of him and left him alone. But he was also afraid of all the other fish. He was skiddish all the time even though that tank has a lot of driftwood and some higher plants. He wasn't eating much, even when I hand fed him. And after two weeks he just looked so sad. He never really acclimated to that tank. So I moved him back and now he comes up to the glass and dances for his food again. He also likes the new plants and has been checking the new arrangement out.
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Old 09-26-2013, 06:39 PM   #6
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That's a beautiful angel!
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Old 09-26-2013, 06:42 PM   #7
spiraling
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Thanks GMYukon!
Its my first angel and I really like his personality.
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:14 PM   #8
spiraling
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Default 25g low tech 'angel scape'

The plants have been growing nicely. Then I ordered some fish from wet spot tropical and I needed more quarentine space. I moved Sanchez to the QT and added the new fish in here for a couple of weeks. 12 congos, 10 rhombo barbs and a pair of apisto.

Yes I added plastic plants and bio balls from the heavily cycled QT tank. I figured this tank has more space but might be light on bio filtration. They have been in a week and all are doing well.

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