Planted Tank Enthusiast
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Kingman, Arizona
Ariel301's 55 gallon Angelfish tank
Ok, I'm finally getting around to starting a journal on my tank, currently the only one I have. It is in bad shape because in the last two years it has been moved from northern Colorado to southern Colorado, then across town, then back to northern Colorado, and then to Arizona...it hasn't had more than a few months at a time without being torn apart and moved. And I've been dealing with massive equipment failures and plant die-offs and no money to replace it all.
So here's what I've got.
55 gallon tank that I got used from an LFS in Colorado for just a few bucks.
Lights: I'm using Shoplight fixtures that I got at Home Depot that each hold 2 48" T12 bulbs. I've got 6500K light bulbs that I also bought at Home Depot, they sell them as 'natural daylight' or something like that. Not the ones that say 'plant and aquarium'--I tried those and they don't seem to work on planted tanks. So I have a total of 160 watts of light, but am only running half that right now because I don't have a lot of plants and I was getting algae.
The heater I had was just a cheapo from Walmart, but it broke in the last move. However it's been so warm in our house all the time that I didn't need it. Will have to get a new one soon since it's cooling down.
Right now I'm using a cheapo HOB filter, also from Walmart. My good filter broke and I had to put the backup on there plus a powerhead for extra flow--then the backup and the powerhead both also broke. Now I'm on the backup backup filter, which was meant for a much smaller tank. So...I'm looking for a good deal on a filter, maybe a used one.
I've got pressurized CO2, it's a 2 1/2 pound bottle. And my glass diffuser got broken in the move, so that needs replacing when I get the cash. I've got the CO2 off right now anyway because none of my plants need it currently.
I've been using dry fertilizers, but am not dosing anything right now. The tank is sort of sitting at low-tech for a while until I get it filled back up with plants.
My substrate is sort of an unconventional mixture, but it works for me and it was cheap. I have a layer of 'Hyponex' brand potting soil on the bottom (it's terrible for potted plants--really sandy--but I found it works nicely in the fish tank!) and then a layer of cat litter, and on top of that a layer of sand, fine gravel, and small stones I collected myself.
I have locally collected stones and wood for hardscape. The wood is from 'jumping cholla' cactus that grows native in this area. It's neat looking, with all the holes in it, but is very light and floats even after it's been submerged for months.
Now on to the plants. Currently I have lots and lots and lots of green hygro (it was supposed to be sunset, but they shipped me the wrong one!), corkscrew vals, anubias coffeefolia, red ludwigia, crypt wendtii green, crypt pontederifolia, and a mystery crypt that was supposed to be spiralis but isn't. I'd like to get some different plants to fill in the holes, and take out most of the green hygro. I am thinking rotala of some kind, a couple of ludwigia species, sunset hygro, and blood stargrass. Small leaved stem plants, since there's not much depth to a 55 and they take up the least space.
Two angelfish--a large female dark gold marble standard fin and a small gold blushing standard fin. Hoping they become a pair.
One male opaline gourami
One pair of orange swordtails
One albino cory (lost its mate to a gold gourami I sold off yesterday)
One ancient silver sailfin molly, female. Has been 'going to die any day now' for over a year
One female Australian rainbowfish whose mate jumped out of a bucket and died
One male Bolivian ram
Lots of ramshorn snails that hitch-hiked in on some plants.
Ok, that's all the information on it. I'm going to go do a water change and try to get some pictures. It's a mess right now; hopefully I'll get it looking good again soon.