6 gallon planted nano questions - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-18-2017, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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6 gallon planted nano questions

Hi!

So a bit of background, I am a college senior who has been intrested in building up a new tank for over a year now. This is my first planted tank although, I have a 10 gallon tank with 15-25 guppies who all are doing well, never had any issues for over 10 years. All of them are still doing well and breeding as well as displaying bring colors and normal behavior.

I have a 12x12x12 acrylic tank, I plan to put about 1-1.5 inches of soil with a 1 inch cap of pool filter sand or gravel. This should leave around 6 gallons of water.

I am planning to stock the tanks with:
  • 5 thai micro crabs
  • 5 Wild Form Neocaridina Shrimp
  • 3 marbled limpets/ mystery snails (1 large and 2-3 small)/ ramshorn snails/ chopstick snails/ MTS
Plants:
  • green hair algae
  • java moss
  • micro sword or baby tears
  • maybe Madagascar lace plant

So my questions are:
  • Would having 5 shrimp, 5 crabs, and some snails be too much bioload / not enough space for a 6 gallon tank to handle?
  • Not sure which snail would work better for the tank either? I have heard that ramshorn snails and shrimp are really funny together.
  • As I understand from the research I have been doing, it would be okay to feed these guys fish flakes mixed with shrimp flakes? The reason I am asking is because I am in college and need a way to feed them over my breaks when I am at home. (1-2 weeks at a time) and would be purchasing an auto feeder.
  • Would that be too many plants?

One last question, I am in college and in a year I will have to move back home (2hr drive). If anyone has experience with moving, how hard is it to move a planted tank?

Thanks So Much!!!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 07:22 PM
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Your bioload looks good. A lot of people will tell you that the bioload of invertebrates is negligible, and I tend to agree. If you're keeping up with maintenance you can get away with much, much more than that. One thing about Thai micro crabs: you will probably add a hundred of them and never see a thing. They're incredibly reclusive.

Snails are tricky. I personally don't like them at all since they always find their way into every aquarium I've ever set up. With that in mind I suggest zebra nerites since they won't proliferate. The other option is to start without snails. Then when you're plagued by little ramshorn snails add assassin snails to clear them out.

For feeding, most garden variety shrimp will subsist on biofilm and algae. Mine do at least. I add shrimp to well-established tanks, and they never seem to go after shrimp pellets.

When it comes to plants, I say stay away from the lace leaf. It's painfully slow-growing, goes dormant randomly, and if it thrives there's no way you can fit it in a 6-gallon tank anyway. Also I've had HC cuba in my tank for a year and it takes some work to make it look good. Contrary to popular belief it grows pretty well without CO2 injection, but it's not exactly easy to grow. It's algae-proof and fills in as a really dense carpet for about 6 months, but then you have to start trimming it aggressively. For a truly low-maintenance tank I suggest a small Bacopa species or some other stem plant to your liking mixed with the slow-growing stuff. The stem plant sucks up nutrients and fills in the tank, and are really easy to trim.

As for moving a planted tank, it's really hard. I've never moved one between cities. Since you don't have any delicate livestock, I suggest you get a friend to take it for the summer. An all-invert tank like that can be fed once a week and just needs good light and water changes.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-21-2017, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much!

Yeah, the move for me may be dificult depending on where I get a job. Plus I don't know any LFS that are within walking distance from me.
The more and more I think about it I am turned away b/c of the fact I will have to move in a years time.

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Originally Posted by Blnd View Post
Your bioload looks good. A lot of people will tell you that the bioload of invertebrates is negligible, and I tend to agree. If you're keeping up with maintenance you can get away with much, much more than that. One thing about Thai micro crabs: you will probably add a hundred of them and never see a thing. They're incredibly reclusive.

Snails are tricky. I personally don't like them at all since they always find their way into every aquarium I've ever set up. With that in mind I suggest zebra nerites since they won't proliferate. The other option is to start without snails. Then when you're plagued by little ramshorn snails add assassin snails to clear them out.

For feeding, most garden variety shrimp will subsist on biofilm and algae. Mine do at least. I add shrimp to well-established tanks, and they never seem to go after shrimp pellets.

When it comes to plants, I say stay away from the lace leaf. It's painfully slow-growing, goes dormant randomly, and if it thrives there's no way you can fit it in a 6-gallon tank anyway. Also I've had HC cuba in my tank for a year and it takes some work to make it look good. Contrary to popular belief it grows pretty well without CO2 injection, but it's not exactly easy to grow. It's algae-proof and fills in as a really dense carpet for about 6 months, but then you have to start trimming it aggressively. For a truly low-maintenance tank I suggest a small Bacopa species or some other stem plant to your liking mixed with the slow-growing stuff. The stem plant sucks up nutrients and fills in the tank, and are really easy to trim.

As for moving a planted tank, it's really hard. I've never moved one between cities. Since you don't have any delicate livestock, I suggest you get a friend to take it for the summer. An all-invert tank like that can be fed once a week and just needs good light and water changes.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-23-2017, 04:52 AM
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Hi! The tank you plan to set up sounds almost like one I have except that mine is a 4 gal cube. I currently have it stocked with carrabian white sand, a rock (elephant skin I think it's called), reneckii, dwarf hair grass, baby tears, and some stem plants. I have (or had, as I haven't seen them in a while) 6 or so Thai micro crams, 10+ ramshorn snails, 10+ Bloody Mary shrimp.

I love Thai micro crabs, especially when they make an appearance. In my experience they are more active when it's warmer, or at night when I'm asleep. I love them enough that despite their shy disposition I would continue stocking my tank with them. I used to have a mini heater in my tank but have since learned that shrimp are not keep to warm water.

I have chopstick snails in one of my other tanks. I don't put them in my cube tank because they can get large for a nano tank. I also found that since they like to burrow they often uprooted some of my plants. I prefer
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-23-2017, 05:12 AM
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Oops, I'm new here so I posted my article before completing it. But to continue:

I prefer ramshorn snails because they do not get too big. They eat dead or melted plants and even dead tankmates. This is good especially since leaving dead shrimp can negatively impact water quality. However, ramshorn snails multiply fast! And they poop a lot. When I have too many snails I just feed them to my dwarf puffers. As far as cleaning- that takes elbow grease especially considering the type of substrate I have.

If you're getting cherry shrimp they can be pretty hardy and take a wide range of parameters. And if you're lucky enough to get males and females you may soon find yourself the proude owner of twice as many. There's a lot more to learn on cherry shrimp!

I don't think there's an issue with getting a tank when you will be moving in a year. It's a small tank and you can easily rescape anything that gets moved around. Make your decision based on how much time per week you want to spend maintaining your tank. The time it will required comes down to the type of plants you select and the snails (remember they poop. A LOT).
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