Roy's 30G Planted 'Old Skool' Bay of Bengal Biotope - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-06-2019, 04:40 AM Thread Starter
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Roy's 30G Planted 'Old Skool' Bay of Bengal Biotope

Hi All,

New Year's day I was feeling energetic and 'broke down' my 30 gallon that has been set up since 12/3/2009 (9+ years). During that 9 year period I did several re-scapes and one major clean up in 2016 but the substrate and equipment remained the same until I replaced the 2X39W Power Compact with and LED fixture in 5/16.

I decided to reuse the 9 year old montmorillonite clay substrate (Soilmaster Select) and all the other equipment so, without further ado, here is my 30 gallon 'old skool' which I am going to stock with plants from countries that surround the Bay of Bengal!

Day 1, Immediately after filling



Definitely 'milky'

12 hours after filling


Not quite so milky

24 hours after filling


Almost perfectly clear, filtration is a Marineland 160 gph canister filter and the underground filter (yes, this tank has a UGF). Water parameters were: ph=7.2 (de-gassed); dKH=3.0; dGH=2.0; Nitrates=0 ppm

4 days after filling


On Day 3 I turned on the CO2. On Day 4 I attached the Microsorium pteroptus 'Trident' and 'Windelov' to hardscape, added Ceratopteris thalictroides, Limnophila chinensis, Cryptocoryne wendtii 'Green Gecko' (TC), Pogostemon erectus (TC that I waited 2 weeks to plant), Hygrophila polysperma 'Sunset', Rotala 'Vietman / H'ra' (TC), Nymphoides hydrophylla (aka 'Taiwan'), Hydrocotle tripartita, and a few non-Indian Ocean plants just to fill in some spaces temporarily like Ceratopteris cornuta, Nymphaea micrantha, Helantium tennellum, Ludwigia inclinata 'Pantanal', I still have some Limnophila rugosa and some Hygrophila serpyllum that I am growing emerged to add to the tank this week. After dosing fertilizers the water parameters were: pH=6.2, dKH=15, dGH=21, nitrates 10 ppm (Yes, I badly overdosed my dKH and dGH booster). The drop checker with 4.0 dKH indicator solution reads approximately 48 ppm of CO2.

Last edited by Seattle_Aquarist; 01-07-2019 at 04:45 PM. Reason: ..
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-06-2019, 06:52 AM
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I really like your "Old Skool" approach (along with the biotope you created).

They come, they go, they fizzle out... nice to see a tank with stamina (9+ years) that still continues to be in it for the long haul!
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 02:38 AM Thread Starter
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Hi All,

Day 7 and a few changes and additions. I removed most of the Pogostemon erectus because it was dead but salvaged 3 small shoots.



I added some plants from my emersed plant bank. Added some Eleocharis sp. (hairgrass) behind the Microsorum pteropus 'Windelov'


I also added some: #1 - Ludwigia simpsonii; #2 - Hygrophila sp. 'Araguaia'; #3 - Limnophila rugosa


Also added: #2 - Hygrophila sep; and #1 is Rotala 'Vietman / H'ra' which was a tissue culture (TC) that I added a couple of days ago.

Also earlier I planted some emersed grown Hydrocotyle tripartita (aka sp. 'Japan')
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle_Aquarist View Post
Hi All,

Day 7 and a few changes and additions. I removed most of the Pogostemon erectus because it was dead but salvaged 3 small shoots.
I can never get that to start well in any of my tanks. Is there some secret to it? Always seems to deteriorate very quickly and then just completely falls apart. Doesn't even really get a chance to get started so I don't think that it's any particular water parameters. I've tried it several times from both cuttings and tissue cultures never with any success.

Quote:
Also earlier I planted some emersed grown Hydrocotyle tripartita (aka sp. 'Japan')
That grows much better out of the water doesn't it? I draped a few little strands over a big piece of wood that I have coming out of the tank a couple of months ago. It's now completely covered the entire piece and about 1/3 of the tank beyond and cascades down the outside. The bunch underwater from where I took the cutting the growth rate isn't even remotely close. Same with pennywort. Once it gets to the surface it really takes off. Seems most Hydrocotyle sp would much rather be above the water vs under it.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Hi @Mike A.

The Pogostemon erectus was my fault, I purchased it two weeks prior to planting it. I had hoped to do the tank before Christmas but didn't get to it until New Year's Day. I typically don't have an issue with P. erectus in tanks with CO2. I have even grown it emersed in the past (please excuse the mis-spelling).


I even had success with it converting it from emersed to submerged in a non-CO2 10 gallon tank.


Yes, I have grown Hydrocotyle tripartita emersed for many years in my 'plant bank' where I grow species for future 'scapes'.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 03:46 PM
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Looks good, Following along
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My 30g Journal:
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 04:18 PM
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Following along Interesting to see some of the old school filtration since I am quite new to the hobby (2yrs)
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 04:47 PM
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Interesting to see an UGV filter still being used. I had one in my 40g long for a long time. Worked like a charm. Only went wrong when I put root tabs in the gravel as a beginner....

Excited to see where this tank goes!
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 11:38 PM
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Hey Roy good thread!

Nice looking start to a tank. Subscribed.

One thing though, once that Hygrophila polysperma 'Sunset' gets going you better keep your scissors sharp. And absolute wild weed that could fill that tank in no time.

This will be fun to watch, and I am looking forward to seeing updates.


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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-08-2019, 11:49 PM
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Looking forward to seeing where this goes (especially with you behind the wheel, should be great!).

I also like the concept of using the same substrate for 9 years and reusing again. Very cool!



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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-09-2019, 12:00 AM
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Here you go- freshwater aquarium fish endemic to Bangladesh

I know your scope is wider, countries that surround the Bay of Begal... but,


https://fish.mongabay.com/data/Bangladesh.htm

Or, are you not considering going down that rabbit-hole, lol?

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30 g. low-tech Shrimp tank - wild-type neocaradina and Caridina cf. babaulti "Zebra"
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-09-2019, 05:17 AM Thread Starter
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Hi @Discusluv,

Thank you for the link. Yes, there will be fish! I am adding some Trigonostigma heteromorpha (Rasbora Het / Harlequin Rasbora), a SAE (Trigonostigma heteromorpha), since Corydoras are native to South America (SA) I am thinking of loaches for the housecleaning crew. I may have include some Otocinclus since diatoms are an issue with the soft water here in Seattle even though they are a SA species as well unless someone can suggest a good diatom eater from Asia.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:13 AM Thread Starter
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Hi All,

It's been a busy week but I did take some pictures on Day 10. I moved some fish into the tank on day 7. The drop checker (with 4.0 dKH indicator solution) showed pH 6.2 - 6.4 which would mean about the ppm of CO2 was likely over 60 ppm. The Trigonostigma heteromorpha (Harlequin Rasbora) that I put in went to the surface and started showing distress within five minutes. I immediately turned off the CO2, added an airstone, and cranked the output to maximum. Within 5 minutes the fish were showing less distress and after 30 minutes were swimming normally....only one casually.




The Hydrocotyle tripartita (aka 'Japan') has started pearling so I am guessing they are definitely liking the tank. Currently the light is [email protected] and the CO2 is 30 - 48 ppm. The nitrates are still low (10 ppm) so I dosed KNO3 again today. The phosphates (PO4) are 2.0 - 5.0 ppm, in two days I will be doing a water change to get the 15.0 dKH and 21.0 dGH down to a more normal level.



I noticed some hair type algae starting so I added a Crossocheilus oblongus (Siamese Algae Eater / SAE) to the tank as well along with three (3) Otocinclus (yes not Asian) to control the diatoms to always show up in new tanks here in our soft water.



The Rotala 'Vietnam' is starting to put out new 'submerged' leaves and the tissue culture leaves are dying. The Hygrophila sp. 'Araguaia' is showing signs of life (look closely and you will see one of the nine Eriocaluon 'Vietnam' in the photo as well).



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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-18-2019, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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Hi All,

A week has gone by and it is time for another update on the tank. Yesterday I did my regular weekly water change and after filling the parameters were:
pH - 6.4
dKH - 5.0
dGH - 11.0 (197 ppm)
Nitrates - 10 ppm



In the last 7 days I moved several species placing, most notably moving the Hygro Sunset behind the Microsporum pteropus 'Windelov'



You may notice that in the last week the Hydrocotyle tripartita (aka 'Japan') has started to fill in nicely. Here is what it looked like 5 days after planting:



And here it is yesterday:



You can see that the Ludwigia simpsoni, Hygrophila sp. 'Araguaia', and Limnophila rugosa are all starting to show signs of growth.

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle_Aquarist View Post
...even though they are a SA species as well unless someone can suggest a good diatom eater from Asia.
While most Nerite snails are from Africa or S. America, there are at least a few Asian ones.

Clithon diadema or Asian Spiny Nerites are Indo-Pacific

Of the 6 or so Zebra Nerite species, there are 2 from Asia (or so I've read) but would have no clue how to distinguish them

Really enjoying following along on this tank, btw!

92% of all statistics are made up on the spot.
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