12 gallon low tech dwarf puffer tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-26-2010, 02:55 AM Thread Starter
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12 gallon low tech dwarf puffer tank

After joining the forum, I was inspired to redo my tanks. This one was the first to get done. It's a 12 gallon Marineland Eclipse and the home of my two dwarf puffers. Sidenote: DPs are really great!

The lighting is just the 13W light that came with the tank.
No CO2.
Ecocomplete substrate and dosing of Excel every other day.
Manzy wood collected by Tom Barr (thanks Tom).

Fish: 2 dwarf puffers

Plants: Java fern, wisteria and m. minuta

More plants and 3D background to come.

Comments and suggestions are more than welcome please
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Last edited by LICfish; 12-02-2010 at 02:19 AM.
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-26-2010, 02:57 AM
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Originally Posted by LICfish View Post
After joining the forum, I was inspired to redo my tanks. This one was the first to get done. It's a 12 gallon Marineland Eclipse and the home of my two dwarf puffers. DPs are really great!

Manzy wood collected by Tom Barr (thanks Tom). The lighting is just the 13W light that came with the tank. No CO2. Ecocomplete substrate and weekly dosing of Bloom and Grow.

Right now I feel like something is missing but I can't quite figure out what. I'm thinking whether or not to add more plants and, if so, what kind. Comments and suggestions are more than welcome please
You're missing a background That will really help clean thins up.


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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-26-2010, 03:03 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks dkbmxr18. I'm thinking of one of those stone shaped 3d backgrounds. I thought that might look cool against the gravel.
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-27-2010, 12:27 AM Thread Starter
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No other suggestions?
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-27-2010, 08:54 AM
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Those ferns are not aquatic so ditch them add some anubias or crypts they are low light and will be fine.
Watch how much your dosing cuz you may end up with algae.if that happens invest in a ton of snails to eat algae and to keep populated so they are not all eaten by the puffers.


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I sell plants but not green thumbs, sorry.
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-27-2010, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Those ferns are not aquatic so ditch them add some anubias or crypts they are low light and will be fine.
Watch how much your dosing cuz you may end up with algae.if that happens invest in a ton of snails to eat algae and to keep populated so they are not all eaten by the puffers.
Thanks. You mean the ferns on the right and left sides of the tank right? Yeah I had my doubt about those - Petco. And thanks for the advice on dosing. So far I do very little.
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-28-2010, 06:49 AM
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Yup, those are indeed non aquatic ferns on the right and left sides.

Your tank looks great! The java ferns look extremely healthy, and I like your driftwood placement too. Nice job!

Adorable little puffers too.


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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 10-29-2010, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks AzFishKid Hopefully I'll be able to keep the plants healthy.
Yeah those puffers are really cute. Such personalities too. One finally stopped being shy after I re-did the tank. Now they both come out to the front of the tank to greet people.
I'll ditch those ferns too. Surprising how long they've lasted considering they're not aquatic. LOL.
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-09-2010, 02:33 PM
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I have a suggestion. Move the centerpiece to the left or right a bit. It is too centered. If you like the look of the ferns, look for something called 'bolbitis' fern. It's aquatic and may give you the look you are after.

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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
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I have a suggestion. Move the centerpiece to the left or right a bit. It is too centered. If you like the look of the ferns, look for something called 'bolbitis' fern. It's aquatic and may give you the look you are after.
Thanks. I'll try moving it around to see what works. Not too much space in that little tank. I've taken out that fern and replaced with with wisteria that was taking over my other tank.
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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 01:56 AM
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Any updated pictures with the wisteria? I just realized how tight the manzanita is in that tank. Maybe moving isn't an option.

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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 02:34 AM Thread Starter
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I'll take some photos tomorrow after I add some moss. For a more finished look
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 02:59 AM
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My suggestion: LOTS more stuff. Dwarf puffers aren't really content until you can't see the back of the tank - more plants! You might have to sacrifice this particular aquascape in order to have a happy fish.
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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 03:08 AM Thread Starter
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My suggestion: LOTS more stuff. Dwarf puffers aren't really content until you can't see the back of the tank - more plants! You might have to sacrifice this particular aquascape in order to have a happy fish.
Yeah I think the wisteria will do that even if I don't want it to. LOL. They seem much happier with this set up than what I had in the past. Now even the shy one comes out to greet people so I think that's a good sign (I've had them for about 9 months now - both female).

Oh and I'm waiting for a few supplies to arrive before adding more plants. This tank has the LEAST growth of all my tanks. Had to save some plants by transferring tanks.
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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 11-28-2010, 05:37 PM Thread Starter
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I was supposed to update with photos but after being away for a week, I came back to a HUGE hair algae problem. The algae took out more than half of my java fern! Amazingly, all the other plants (wisteria, m. minuta and the nana) were fine. So I had to cut away the leaves. Added Excel to the tank for the first time and have to see how that goes.

On another note, my 3D background arrived but it's so thick and the filter intake is so close to the back, I'm still trying to figure out how to make it work.
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