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Old 11-02-2011, 02:52 AM   #1
Erica
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My First Planted Tank...Low Light 40B


I started this tank on Sept. 22nd, but I wasn't happy with it so I didn't post about it. Things are still far from perfect, but it has progressed enough that I'm not completely embarrassed by it now.

Tank: 40 breeder
Lighting: 2 dual Coralife t5no fixtures spaced far apart (started with one, then added a second later on)
Filter/PowerHead: AquaClear 110 and 425gph Koralia Nano
Substrate: Pool filter sand
CO2: none
Ferts: root tabs

Current Fauna:
9 Sterbai Cories
6 Orange Von Rio Tetras
1 Pearl Gourami
1 Longfinned L144 Pleco
1 Amano Shrimp
1 Spotted Nerite
1 Olive Nerite
1 Horned Nerite

Current Flora:
Java Moss
Anubias Nana
Trident Java Fern
Crypt Wendtii Green, Red, and Brown
Red Jungle Val
Italian Vals
Ludwigia Repens

Pics in Order shown:

Sept 22 (Day 1): I only had one light so the tank was pretty dark. A. Reineckii in this pic quickly melted away into nothing.

Oct 6: A Reineckii is gone. Lonely anubias whose name i cant remember removed. Added second light fixture. Java fern on right side is moved. Lots of C. Wendtii Green added.

Nov 1: Added Ludwigia Repens, Crypt Wendtii Red, and Red Jungle Val. The Red Jungle Val was really small so for now I just put it in front of the Italian Vals. Moved some crypts around and moved the Java fern yet again.

Also Nov 1. The moss rocks in the back of the tank were growing much better than the ones on the front left so I switched them around.

My pleco: just because I love it
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Old 11-02-2011, 07:40 AM   #2
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I really like how u arrange the wood as a canopy of some sort. pretty awesome scape.
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Old 11-30-2011, 02:32 PM   #3
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I like this tank a lot!! Looks great and a cool pleco!

Do you have any floating plant cover for the gourami? Also is it open-topped? I've heard they are jumpers.

I will be building a canopy for my 40B soon so I have the option of adding "jumpers" to my own tank. I haven't decided on if I want to go gourami or not because I'm not a fan of floating plants and my last gourami was unhappy (which may have been due to them or other unknown issues so I'm not sure)


Reading your other threads - i think if you do decide to go pressurized CO2 you will be quite happy with the options you have with those 2 lights and CO2. I had trouble with Cabomba species but who needs'em anyway!

My tank is an absolute mess compared to yours ... I need to start moving my "starter stems" out and putting in fore/mid/background groups so I have a good looking tank like yours!
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Old 11-30-2011, 07:20 PM   #4
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Thank you! I've actually made some more changes to the tank since I took these pics. General layout is the same, but I got rid of the crypts in the background and added rotala rotundifolia. I also redid all of my moss rocks so that less rock was showing but now they need to grow out again. I've also got 4 ugly tiger lotus bulbs sitting on the substrate waiting to see if they turn into anything useable so it's just not quite picture ready yet, lol.

I've also added two more gouramis since these pics and I do not have floating plants. It is open topped. They seem to be fine...no attempts at jumping. I did actually just order some frogbit though, just because I think they would appreciate it.
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:19 PM   #5
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Well, despite just saying that the tank wasn't picture ready I decided to take a picture anyways. Excuse the floating rotala....I haven't felt like replanting it, lol.

The tank is fully stocked now:
3 Pearl Gouramis
2 Blue Rams
16 Orange Von Rio Tetras (I didnt plan on having quite that many. I was up to ten and when I went to the LFS to get a couple more they only had 6 von rios left in stock. They were in a tank with blue crays, and their fins were all tore up so I had to bring them all home, lol.)
9 Sterbai Cories
1 Longfinned L144 pleco
4 Amano Shrimp
1 Spotted Nerite
1 Olive Nerite
1 Horned Nerite
MTS

I'm having trouble with my vals. When I got them, they had been trimmed and the tips keep turning brown and rotting away. I've tried trimming off the brown, but then more comes back and I've tried just leaving them alone but the brown just keeps coming. I'm also getting algae on the tops where they are directly under the light. I"m not sure what to do with them.

My stems need trimmed and arranged a bit better and my crypt wendtii brown needs those long leaves trimmed. I seem to have a fear of trimming though, lol. And sadly my ludwigia is losing all the pretty red it had when I got it.

It's definitely a work in progress.
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Old 12-01-2011, 11:04 PM   #6
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Tank looks awesome. It is coming along nicely.
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Old 12-01-2011, 11:59 PM   #7
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this tank looks swweet, and for your first planted tank :O
great scape the wood really give the tank depth.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:09 AM   #8
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Wow...thank you both! I feel a bit better now

On another note, I think the blue rams I just got on Monday have bred. I noticed yesterday that they were hanging out alot in this one spot behind the driftwood on the right side of the tank. Today I noticed that they never came out of the spot at the same time. One always stays there if the other leaves. It's unfortunately a spot I can't get a good enough view of to see if there are eggs, but my cories keep trying to get to the spot and the rams keep chasing them off. So something is definitly up. I'm just really shocked because these were not an already mated pair. They were just two random picks out of a tank full of them. I know the eggs/fry will never survive in the community, but it's still kind of cool!
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:00 AM   #9
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i must say for your first planted tank that looks awesome! ihope mine comes out great!
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:05 AM   #10
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Lots of pics!

Male Blue Ram


Pleco
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:05 AM   #11
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grrrr....I have a bunch of photos but I can't get any more of them to show. Any ideas?
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:14 AM   #12
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Here we go. I got it to work directly uploading from my pc instead of using photobucket, but I can't do captions that way. Any ideas how to get it to work with photobucket
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Old 12-03-2011, 02:59 AM   #13
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You have just moved into my top 5 favorite tanks of all time. I can't believe this is your first planted tank. This is seriously gorgeous. Like stunningly so. Subscribed so I don't miss a post!
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:12 AM   #14
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Thank you so much!!! I never thought anyone would subscribe...I feel so special, lol!
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:16 AM   #15
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You should feel special! I've been on this board for over three years now and I am rarely taken aback by tank at first glance as much as I was by yours. Not to mention your photography skills are superior to match. I really think you could win competitions with that tank, no joking.

Forgive me if I over looked this, but what kind of wood is that?
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