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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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New to the hobby

Greetings

I love this forum!

Back in August, my daughter received a betta as a birthday gift. I went online to learn how to take care of it as I've never had fish before. Well, I started seeing all these beautiful planted tanks and that really appealed to the gardener in me, so... I started reading. I have learned so much from all who share here.

The beginning of November I set up my very first aquarium, a 44 gallon pentagon. It did fine for 2 months until I came downstairs one morning and found it cracked from top to bottom - a definite nightmare!
Fortunately ALL of the water didn't leak out and I was able to save the fish and shrimp that were in it. My LFS babysat them for me for a few days. The aquarium company determined it was a stress crack, honored their warranty and gave us credit for a new tank. After the nightmare with the pentagon, I just couldn't bring myself to get the same tank, so we ended up with a 46 gallon bowfront - which I like a lot better actually. I DO still hold my breath when I come downstairs in the morning LOL.

So... it's been up for a month and I thought I'd share some photos:
http://www.acwitness.org/aquarium/5.jpg

http://www.acwitness.org/aquarium/6.jpg

http://www.acwitness.org/aquarium/10.jpg

http://www.acwitness.org/aquarium/12.jpg

I wanted it to look like my garden, so there are a lot of plants - though nothing too fancy or difficult!
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 07:26 PM
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very nice... it's hard to believe you're a beginner!
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 07:37 PM
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beautiful tank .......what kind of lights are you running?co2?


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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 07:55 PM
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Fantastic start! You did your homework, and the tank looks great (very "Walstad-looking"). And you chose an excellent tank size...but, I'm biased . Congrats on your seamless entry into the hobby .

Is that a point-source light you're using? That's quite a distinct shadow being cast by the frame support.

Ted


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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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thanks...

..for the kind comments!

I am using a 250 watt metal halide pendant, 10 hours a day. Kind of bright for this tank, but I purchased it to go over the 44 pentagon which was 24" high and 22" x 22" - tough to light adequately any other way. There is quite a shadow in the center in the photos, but it isn't as obvious when actually looking at the tank.

I am using pressurized Co2, Co2 Reactor 200 With Rio Pump, Milwaukee SMS122 pH Monitor and Milwaukee regulator.

And... if I plug anything else into the wall, my husband will lynch me
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 08:26 PM
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Fantastic start! And that pacifier on your avatar is priceless. I almost missed it...

Have you had any trouble with your clown loaches? Ich? Feeding? How many are in there?
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 09:14 PM
eds
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Any other long-time posters support a moratorium on these self-professed newbies coming in here and posting pics of tanks that put ours (at least mine!) to shame?
I'd say "nice start", but instead, think it would be more accurate to say "nice tank!"
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 09:34 PM
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Wow - certainly nice tank for a "newbie".
And you must have been lurking and reading a lot. The equipment - and a 250W light!
Congrats! Watch out for tankcollectoritus


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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 09:49 PM Thread Starter
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um, thanks

eds, I'll take that as a compliment I think, even if you are calling me a liar

I truly am only three months into this hobby - and really enjoying it. And I tinker with my tank daily, though I'm sure that'll wear off in time

Hi Hoffboy - no problems with the loaches. I have two, they really like shrimp pellets and sinking wafers - and the snails I have in my tank! As for ich, I keep the water temp at 78 F and I ran a diatom filter before adding them just to be safe. Bought that when my first tank (that cracked) got cloudy and I thought it would turn green. One of those quick purchases I didn't really need to make at the time, but I have made use of it!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acwitness
and really enjoying it. And I tinker with my tank daily, though I'm sure that'll wear off in time
I doubt it!

Shiny start for a newb...Kudo's Debbi

Craig

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 11:51 PM
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Debbi - very very nice. I'm definitely not posting any pictures of my tank here any time soon I guess I need to read some more....
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2006, 01:41 AM
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Unfreakingbelievable!!! There is no way you just started. You must be one hell of a gardener. That is a mighty fine piece of wood you got there too. Two questions; do you fertilize and is that just common gravel as substrate?
Great job.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2006, 07:27 AM
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Another quick question...

What's the front right red plant? Is that a lilly? I saw an article somewhere recently about a low light red lily (Nymphae something) but you're certainly don't have low light, so I thought it might be something else.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2006, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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fertilizer

Yes, I am using the Flourish products to fertilize. I'm not too strong with math or chemistry to figure out dry ferts and EI stuff, but the Seachem dosing chart gave me a starting point that seemed less intimidating to me.

The substrate in the original tank that cracked was small gravel mixed with eco-complete and some laterite and peat moss thrown in for the bottom layer. That was topped with more gravel. This all got mixed together and thrown into the new tank, and then topped with some more new gravel. I am also using Flourish tabs, and some spot fertilizing.

The plant in front is a red tiger lotus (Nymphaea lotus). It has been trimmed back a bit.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2006, 06:28 PM
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beautiful Tank
I love gardening too and with the onset of winter it's great to
have an aquatic garden to tinker with during the snowy months
Have lots of fun with it
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