My Natural Aquarium - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-09-2005, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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My Natural Aquarium

Tank:All-Glass 29g

Lighting: 2x65w PC 10-14 hrs/day

Substrate: 3" Local creek sand and gravel w/peat

Circulation: Small powerhead, no filter

Gambusia holbrooki

Ludwigia palustris
Ammania coccinea
Alisma subcordatum
Myriophyllum brasiliense
Rotala ramosior

All of these plants and fish were collected from a pond near my house. It's a shallow depression that is regularly renewed by a creek when it floods and is home to a large amount of plant and animal life. The substrate is highly sedimented and is a rich silty-clay. In the interest of tank hygiene I used gravel collected from a less sedimented portion of a different, but representative, creek. When adding the plants I made sure to keep as much of the substrate attached to the roots as possible to enrich the aquarium substrate with native microorganisms.

The fish get fed a standard flake a couple times a day and the tank gets topped off every few days or so. Aside from the peat in the substrate those are the only non-collected things that have gone into this tank.

There is algae on the plants and substrate. The collection site is a highly eutrophic environment and algae are all over the place. I feel that it is an important element of the both the natural site as well as the aquarium. Only when it gets overwhelming or too unsightly will I remove some of it.

Some of the Rotala had fruits on it when I collected it and they dropped seeds in the tank. There are a bunch of little sprouts growing up in patches at the front. I'm excited to follow their growth progress.

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-09-2005, 02:09 PM
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fantastic work. I'm a huge fan of collected plants / fish in a local "biotope" style tank. I was actually coming to the board right now to request assistance in finding photos or sketches of the emmersed form of north american aquatic plants, as I'm sure there are some great finds in the local streams, lakes, ditches, and marsh/swamps. I've already found d. diandra, lysimachia "aurea", hydrocotyle, and a moss that looks a lot like "xmas" growing at a local stream. I would love to start a tank of only collected species of plants (and perhaps fish, as i'm pretty sure there are mosquito fish, darters, dace, shiners, and topminnows that could adapt to such a setup, i'm just more reluctant to try that). Anyway, great tank, great idea, and keep us updated!


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