180 Gallon Low Tech Tank - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 58 (permalink) Old 07-31-2018, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you @tamsin

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #17 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-05-2018, 12:45 PM
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I agree on the black background. I used to paint all my tanks, but have switched to using window tint. On a large tank it ends up being cheaper, and is certainly much faster.

I'd put the val in the back in the center of the tank. I think it would create greater depth. Also the Anubias are fine with low light, which says the big ones would be great for the back corners - and you'll be less likely to have leaves covered in algae. Nice tank!

Bump: BTW Crinum Calimistratum grows in my low tech tank. I love the uniqueness of it. It does grow slowly though!
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post #18 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 01:56 AM
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Gorgeous geos! They are the fish that keep drawing me inexorably closer to a monster tank. The plant conflict is a real challenge, though. I think I might try some "terraced" plots to fit a few stems in -- make a little lava rock mountain and fill some depressions with substrate. There a few The Green Machine scaping videos that do similar things. I have no idea if that would save them from sifting, though.
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post #19 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 02:25 AM
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I agree with jnboone Crinum would be a nice addition. Also to increase plant mass frogbit might be worth looking into. It would diffuse the light intensity and help with algae. Frogbit don't like surface agitation though. Your black brush problems are probably from the light intensity and not enough co2.
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post #20 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Next week am getting some tannin products from Tannin Aquatics to add to this tank. I think with the added tannin tinting water and leaf litter will get a more authentic "bio-tope-ish" look overall.

Here are the two product pkgs will be mixing.
https://tanninaquatics.com/collectio...-pack-20-items
https://tanninaquatics.com/collectio...pack-15-pieces

Here are the before pictures, will do the after sometime next week.


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180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #21 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 07:50 PM
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Looks great! If I was being nit picky...You have too much negative space on the right with the combined white sand and open water. I would add more hardscape/plants so it takes up ~half of the sand area on the right. (I wouldn't add height just more length) I would also move the Vals and Hornwort(?) to behind the hardscape on the left leaving a space between the glass and hardscape with no plants to add a counter weight to the negative space on the right. Its hard to tell if you have any anubias nana petit but I think the size variation would look nice and also you can attach those to rocks so they won't be moved easily. Great job though!
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post #22 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2018, 07:22 PM
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Your tank looks great!
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post #23 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-16-2018, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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Looks great! If I was being nit picky...You have too much negative space on the right with the combined white sand and open water. I would add more hardscape/plants so it takes up ~half of the sand area on the right. (I wouldn't add height just more length) I would also move the Vals and Hornwort(?) to behind the hardscape on the left leaving a space between the glass and hardscape with no plants to add a counter weight to the negative space on the right. Its hard to tell if you have any anubias nana petit but I think the size variation would look nice and also you can attach those to rocks so they won't be moved easily. Great job though!
Sorry, just saw this. I dont know how I missed it.

I wish I could take up that negative space but Im already pushing my luck with the type of fish I have. These fish are geophagus, eartheaters, and take up the sand and sift it all day to feed. Typically when you see these fish in tanks there is very little to no plants and hardscape.
When I set this tank up last year the cichlid "purists" were appalled that I was going to put in as many plants as I did and told me no plants could survive in the tank except plants grown on driftwood because the geophagus would dig them up--- obviously not the case.

I may need to open more space up as the geophagus grow, they are at about 6.5 inches and will grow to about 8 inches-- I have eight of them.



I do have some anubias in here, but I want to add much more to the driftwood and maybe some more java fern.

Bump: Took a video this morning at breakfast-- the geophagus are always straight up and ready to eat. @OVT--look at the Ludwidgia grandulosa, its growing great! Thank you!
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180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope

Last edited by Discusluv; 09-16-2018 at 05:26 PM. Reason: add
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post #24 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 04:34 PM
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I just saw this thread, not sure how I missed it. I have always liked Geophagus but proper tank size has kept me from keeping them. You mentioned round rocks not being good for the aquascape. Personally, I like round rocks, it is what I see in rivers and streams all the time. As for larger Anubias, I really like coffefolia as they have a different look to them and they grow kind of tall. Anyway, I like your tank, great job!
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post #25 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-18-2018, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
Sorry, just saw this. I dont know how I missed it.

I wish I could take up that negative space but Im already pushing my luck with the type of fish I have. These fish are geophagus, eartheaters, and take up the sand and sift it all day to feed. Typically when you see these fish in tanks there is very little to no plants and hardscape.
When I set this tank up last year the cichlid "purists" were appalled that I was going to put in as many plants as I did and told me no plants could survive in the tank except plants grown on driftwood because the geophagus would dig them up--- obviously not the case.

I've looked into the species and saw a bunch of caveats that came with keeping them so to see you breaking a well established planted rule is a feat within itself. Yes and indeed you have Geophagus (who look really happy as displayed by their coloration) but you've managed to create a balance and I find that inspiring.

Obviously others may disagree but I believe the negative space is part of why your Geophagus/plant combination works. Thanks for posting!
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post #26 of 58 (permalink) Old 10-07-2018, 04:51 PM
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The tank looks great, i am into Amazon Biotopes
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post #27 of 58 (permalink) Old 10-18-2018, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Added the substrate enhancer from Tannin Aquatics. As it breaks down, will get a more natural look at substrate level, instead of a look of beach-sand.





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180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #28 of 58 (permalink) Old 11-16-2018, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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I placed my first order of plants with Hans Aquatics. Has anyone else ordered from this company? The reviews seem really good.

I thought I would try some more delicate stems in the 180 gallon. Test how far I can go with those earth-eaters
I am also going to put a couple stems of each in my 30 gallon- just in case- so if the first stems dont make it- I have some back ups. This tank really has turned in to a plant nursery.

These are what I ordered:
Microsorum pteropus 'Philippine' (Philippine Fern)
Rotala sp. 'Green'
Rotala sp. 'Yao Yai'
Rotala sp. Enie
Rotala Wallichii

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #29 of 58 (permalink) Old 11-16-2018, 06:56 PM
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I know him and had bought from him before.
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post #30 of 58 (permalink) Old 11-16-2018, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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I know him and had bought from him before.
Oh good! Thanks OVT

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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