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Old 12-02-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
Fishly
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Silver 25g (Pic warning)


Here's my 25g that I set up a few days ago. The substrate is MTS capped with black sand with some RootMedic thrown in for good measure. It also has an AquaClear 50 filter, 65w CoraLife light, 50w Stealth heater, and DIY CO2.

Unfortunately, all the plants came from my 55g emersed tank in their "help, we're suffocating!" stage, so it looks pretty bad. However, I did get some pretty good pics of the setup, so hopefully that will tide you over until the plants recover.

Substrate Base Layer - Play sand and mineralized topsoil mixed:






Now the sand. I didn't bother washing it; I just poured it straight out of the bag. And I forgot to wipe the dirt off the glass before I put in the sand. Oh, well.



Now the plants and the ferts. I opened two RootMedic capsules and poured out the balls, pushing them about 1/2" into the sand. I wasn't sure how to plant the bulbs, but I put them pointy-end down.


Now for some cool snail pics:


Thirsty, anyone?



Trumpet snails hitching a ride:



As always, comments, suggestions, and critiques are welcome!
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:51 PM   #2
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I like the idea of mixing the soil with the sand - just like using sand for aerating your garden soil! I think I'll try that on my next tank...
the pics of the Cup O' Snails was so disgusting it was funny ; )
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:28 PM   #3
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I mostly added the sand to make the soil go further. I was going to use PF sand for the mix, but I was worried the large grain size would eventually work its way up to the surface and mess up my pretty black sand.

I'm glad you liked the Cup O' Snails. You should have seen them when they were moving... my mom said the MTS looked like maggots.
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Old 12-09-2011, 06:46 PM   #4
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I made a few changes in the past week. The trumpet snails seemed to be bothering the mystery snails and digging into the bulbs, so I put the mystery snails into a 10g and the bulbs back into my 55g, where they are growing very well. I know better than to try to remove the trumpet snails.

The plants seem to have recovered now that I added some DIY CO2.


I don't have a diffuser, so I poked a hole into my AC filter and shoved the CO2 line into it. It makes a ton of noise every time a bubble pops, so I'm trying to figure out how to make it quieter.



The water evaporates from this tank very quickly, so I put some Saran wrap over the filter outflow to keep the CO2 from being lost too quickly.


This tank was originally going to be called the Rainbow 25g. It sits just to the side of a window, and at certain times of day, you can see some awesome rainbows. This is what the tank looked like before I planted it. It was supposed to be a quarantine tank, so it's not really decorated.



Isn't this a cool pic?



You guys let me know if I'm adding too many pics or if you want to see anything specific. I'll be adding driftwood soon, so stay tuned.
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Old 01-16-2012, 07:30 PM   #5
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About the bulbs, I have a lotus/lily bulb. I placed the pointy end up and buried it halfway. I have had my Lotus Bulb about 2 months or less. And I already have 5 leaves and some large roots.

PS Love the Cup O' Snails.
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Old 01-16-2012, 07:48 PM   #6
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Yeah, after I moved the bulbs back to my 55g, most of them sprouted from the pointy end. The others seem to have sprouted out the sides.

Sorry for the lack of updates. I had a massive green water bloom and all the pictures I've taken actually make the water look greener than it is. I don't know what caused the bloom, but adding micros (as part of my not-so-regular attempt at EI) seems to make it worse and a water change didn't do any good.
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Old 02-01-2012, 04:50 PM   #7
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An (extremely late) update:
I added some stem plants, guppies, and blue ramshorns. I've been having trouble with my CO2 and getting my ferts right, so algae has taken over. The water has cleared up, but I'm getting a lot of GSA. The guy that sold me the stem plants also sold me some light legs, so the tank now gets a much more even spread of light.

January 8th FTS:


Close up of the stems:


January 13th FTS:


Here's the lastest FTS (from January 28th, I think). I messed with this pic a bit to brighten it. With the algae and the frogbit, it's hard to get a decent exposure.



The guppies are two pairs of Japan blue doubleswords and a trio of delta Japan blues. Japan blue is a metallic color, so if the light isn't hitting them directly, they look mostly greyish with a tint of blue. The flash washes the color out a bit, but this is pretty much what they look like in real life:


The deltas are in the floating breeder trap.


The blue ramshorns look great, and they've bred, but the adults have been dying one by one every few days since I bought them. I'm down to my last two or three, so I'm considering putting them in a different tank.


I plan to do a lot of maintenance on this tank in the next week or so. It desperately needs fresh CO2 and a good scrub-down.
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