My first tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 02:07 AM Thread Starter
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Hi all! New to the forum and aquascaping. I just designed my first tank. I have very limited space so went for a 9 gallon tank which fits perfectly in my apt. I planted it 5 days ago. Some pics attached:

Used:
- Ada Amazonia 2
- Aquaclear 20 (didnt use the carbon, but used the media)
- Bacterkit Soil from Prodibio
- A few Seiryu stones to support the brazilian bogwood
- ONF flat nano (6 hours for now)

Plants:
- Weeping Moss
- Repens
- Rotala Walichi (I realize co2 is recommended but gave it a try, gotta admit it was for pure looks) Losing the red color, but looking good.)
- Anubias
- Mayaca Fluviatilis (same co2 comment)
- Crypt Lutea
- Dwarf Pennywort
- Jave Fern
- Alternanthera reineckii mini (same co2 comment)
- Crypt spiralis
- Cryptocoryne undulatus red
- Ludwigia Palustris (will probably loose some red)

Its looking pretty good overall, although the Alternanthera turned pale and I think its melting. The Crypt lutea has a few melting leaves but not the whole thing. The Mayaca, the Ludwigia and Rotala float up so easily! Kinda frustrating. Luckly they can grow floating so its not damaging them. The moss is loosing hairs, overall It looks pretty good but i keep finding hairs at the bottom.

Here are the results of two tests:

Day 2
Ph: 6.5
Amonia: 2ppm
Nitrite: 0.50 ppm
Nitrate: 15 ppm

Day 5 (today jan 15)
Ph: 7.5
Amonia: 4ppm
Nitrite: 2 ppm
Nitrate: 10-15 ppm

Have done two 40% changes like ADA suggests for the Amazonia 2. The last water change was today jan 15.

———-

So for the questions:

Am I on the right track? I realize Amonia and Nitrite needs to be 0 for the tank to be cycled. And I guess the presence of Nitrates is good cause means bacteria are doing their job? Any advice or comments?

Also, once it’s cycled, thinking of putting some livestock. Was thinking:
- 5-7 neon tetras or 10-12 chili rasboras or 10-12 ember rasboras
- Red cherry shrimp
- One snail

Any advice or recommendations on livestock possibilites, plants, or anything at all is highly welcome!

Thanks!
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 02:12 AM Thread Starter
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The full shot
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 02:18 AM
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Beautiful. You must have done your homework!
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Style: Organic potting soil, sand, gravel, wood, plants, moss, snails, shrimp, small fish
Tech : Small tanks, Fluval Plant 3.0 Nano, Top Fin MF10, Eheim Skim 350, Tunze 3161, Neptune Apex EL
Tanks:
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 02:33 AM Thread Starter
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Beautiful. You must have done your homework!
Thanks! Have no idea what’s supposed to be happening to the water though before they go to 0.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Juango View Post
Thanks! Have no idea whatís supposed to be happening to the water though before they go to 0.
So first of all, yes you are on the right track.

Secondly, you clearly did a lot of research before you set out to do build this tank, its lovely and so so so much better then my first planted tank.

As to what will happen with the water? Well basically you are growing bacteria. Thus its not a clean and perfectly predictable process. Instead generally speaking over the next few weeks you will have your bacteria colonies grow to a point where they are able to eat all the ammonia and produce nitrite and then different bacteria will eat all the nitrite and produce nitrate. Just be patient with it. A month after you start you can add your fish though potentially sooner if/when your cycle completes.

My strong advice is to not obsess over numbers from your test results. I wouldn't even bother taking another reading till at least 2 weeks after the initial fill date.

Other suggestions, if considering cherry shrimp you should also consider an amano shrimp or two. They do wonders for algae.

Good luck!
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juango View Post
Thanks! Have no idea what’s supposed to be happening to the water though before they go to 0.
So first of all, yes you are on the right track.

Secondly, you clearly did a lot of research before you set out to do build this tank, its lovely and so so so much better then my first planted tank.

As to what will happen with the water? Well basically you are growing bacteria. Thus its not a clean and perfectly predictable process. Instead generally speaking over the next few weeks you will have your bacteria colonies grow to a point where they are able to eat all the ammonia and produce nitrite and then different bacteria will eat all the nitrite and produce nitrate. Just be patient with it. A month after you start you can add your fish though potentially sooner if/when your cycle completes.

My strong advice is to not obsess over numbers from your test results. I wouldn't even bother taking another reading till at least 2 weeks after the initial fill date.

Other suggestions, if considering cherry shrimp you should also consider an amano shrimp or two. They do wonders for algae.

Good luck!
Many thanks for the explanation and advice!
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 02:33 PM
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Beautiful tank. The chilis or ember tetras would look nice in there. If considering neons, look at the green neon tetra. They're a bit smaller and much nicer IMO.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 09:39 PM
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Only thing I would have you change is move Aquaclear a bit to right so water flow partially goes around wood so there is a little bit of circulation across front area of tank.

Great 1st try. Wish my 1st tank in 80ís had looked that good. Of course back then we didnít have all the great online resources these days, just idiot advice from LFS.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by SueD View Post
Beautiful tank. The chilis or ember tetras would look nice in there. If considering neons, look at the green neon tetra. They're a bit smaller and much nicer IMO.
m

Will look into the green ones, thanks!
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by DaveKS View Post
Only thing I would have you change is move Aquaclear a bit to right so water flow partially goes around wood so there is a little bit of circulation across front area of tank.

Great 1st try. Wish my 1st tank in 80’s had looked that good. Of course back then we didn’t have all the great online resources these days, just idiot advice from LFS.
Good idea! Was trying to hide it, but i guess the flow is more important
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 02:33 AM
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Very nice presentation.

Well done!


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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 06:33 AM
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Its beautiful. I hope mine can turn out like yours.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 06:43 AM
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Hi

Try a black background on the back glass.
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Its beautiful. I hope mine can turn out like yours.
Looking good! Mine looks alright cause its been 1 week. Some plants are struggling though and leaves are melting, so not sure for how long it’ll stay looking like this!
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-17-2020, 05:46 PM
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Looks great!
Just FYI, the nitrates you are already detecting might come from your tap water (they do here in Laramie, WY at 5-10 ppm), assuming you used tap water.
You are right though, that ammonia and nitrites need to go to zero to consider the tank cycled. Nitrite to nitrate step tends to be the slower one.
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