new tank setup, any thoughts, comments?? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-11-2010, 02:36 AM Thread Starter
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new tank setup, any thoughts, comments??

hello all , im new to planted tanks. Ive been in the hobby for close to ten years now, and like many other have decided that i hate fake plants and decorations, and want the look of a real natural looking tank, how else to acomplish this that by using real and natural plants and decorations.

I have a 30 gallon long aquarium. as for my setup.

I use a hob penguin emporer 280, and 2 aquaclear 50 powerheads on an rfugf.( ive been told not to run the rfugf, but i have no problem of it up rooting plants and the plate is only half length of tank, centered).

After a few trips to the lfs and home depot , put a custom light fixture I built on top that houses 2 24'' t5 power glow bulbs, putting out 1.6 watts per gallon.

As far as substrate, Im using a mix of seachem flourite, and seachem onyx sand, its actually a very nice looking mix of red black.

I got myself the full line of seachem liquid ferts( flourish, excell, trace, iron, nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus), i wanted to go dry ferts, but this is just easier at the time. Ive only been using the flourish,excell and trace so far. The others say to use only if you see signs of need. although i was gonna start dosing the 3 macros once a week, just to add some more nutrients.

The tank had cycled for a week and i added 2 upright peices of driftwood( on the ends) and a nice big chunky peice( in the center). after that i added 2 agrentine swords. 1 java fern( attached to wood). 1 dwarf anubias(attached to wood). 1 anacheris(elodia). and one moss ball( i think its java moss rolled into a ball held with fishing line, lfs was selling for 1.99, thought it looked cool) it floats and is held down by a small peice of line attached to a sinker.

Its been about a week since Ive added the plants now. The anacheris has about doubled in size, lots of lush green growth. Ive noticed a few new chutes on the 2 sword plants(been told they grow much slower than the anacheris) and they look very good and green. As for the javafern and the anubias, no new growth but they look very healthy(been told they are the slowest of my growers).The odd mossball has also almost doubled, covering all the fishing line that was holding in ball shape.

Im planning on adding fish, next week sometime. maybe monday or tuesday. Im planning on going with malabar Dwarf puffers, they are one of the few truly freshwater puffers. I used to keep African cichlids, and love them but they would destroy all of my gardening work so far, so no africans. From what ive read dwarf puffers love heavily planted tanks. so they should go quite well i think.

So if anyone has any tips or comments for me, i would love to hear them. anything from setup, to plants, to fish. As i said im fairly new to the whole planted thing. I really love some other suggestions on some other plants i could add that would do well with my lighting. I would love to get some for color, someone recomended red temple plant and red ludwigia. my lfs can order just about any fairly common plant so let the suggestions flow. Ill try to upload some pics soon. after this post is up for a while, im planning on starting a tank journal. hope for lots of posts, thanks Dwarf puffer man!!!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 09:25 AM Thread Starter
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so im wondering why no one has posted any comments at all on my journal. is it that my post is to long or, do you people think im a jerk. im new to this site and trying to make some friends. hmmm, id really like some advice for my tank am i doing this right, should i change anything, add anything??? anyone please give me some feed back.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 10:21 AM
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Hi there,
I think there is little what one could say to it, at least I find myself not really having any opinion on it.

What is missing for me is a picture of the tank, for example. And what water readings do you have? Be sure your tank is cycled before adding any fish.

These dwarf puffers are very small and camouflaged, and they will get somehow lost in a heavily planted tank, especially as you are used to big, colorful africans. You need a good snail population for them. They will eat also red mosquito larves, but the snails are mandatory!

The plants doing fine is good to hear (but it sounds as if there is too little plant mass?), even if the light is on the very low side.

Do you have specific questions, perhaps?
Without picture and questions there is really little to say... ;-)

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 10:45 AM
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all i can say is that you just be on your mood to design your tank to be able to show whats really a aqua scaper is
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
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thanks guys, well basicly like i said, im tried of bland looking tanks, im going to upload some pics tomarrow so hopefully that will help. i was mostly wondering there are any other plants i should put. maybe something with some color that will do okay in low light.
nitrate and nitrite are at 0. ammonia is almost there about 0.3. should i be doing anything else with ferts???
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 08:05 PM Thread Starter
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I do plan on using a diy Co2. i got the parts. pop bottle, some silicon, yeast, sugar, baking soda. I was planning on using my powerhead driven rfugf to dispence it into the water. about the light, yes it HO like i said there are 2 24watt HO POWER GLO bulbs. The tank isnt very tall so the light hit the bottom of the tank very easily. I also agree with you that the puffers dont have the color of africans, which i love, but after 8 years of africans, my baby of eight years died, I want to go a different direction with the fish. Im fairly confidant that i can handle the puffers. Ive started a snail population in a 10gal about 3 weeks ago. got a good bit of them already.
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