Starting a nano tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 12:28 AM Thread Starter
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Starting a nano tank

Hello everyone,

I'm thinking about starting a nano tank one of these days. I have a 1.5 gallon tetra tank and i saw a video on youtube of how someone took of the old lights replaced them with better lights and then took off the rim and made the tank look snazy! Anyways there are a few questions i have on setting up the tank. First is plants. I want to use a substrate mix of miracle grow organic choice potting soil and clay. I'm also open to using sand aswell but i don't have much of it. Dustins fishtanks on youtube shows how Dustin uses dirt and clay for his planted tanks and no co2 and makes them look beautiful from the organic nutrients and minerals that are in the soil and clay. I really want to start a nano tank because i love watching shrimp and snails, and i like the idea of a small planted tank. I would like some suggestions on the plants and livestock i would want for the tank too. I want some mosses and smaller foreground plants. I also would probably put some stones from my yard in there to complement the mosses. I really want it to look good and invest a lot of time into setting it up and making sure everything is correct. Some items i was going to purchase for it is..... ... 709&sr=8-1 ... f_se_shvl3 ... roduct_top ... 75&sr=8-70

I figured a 13 watt would be enough light but i'm worrying if that would be too much light, and if there is an alternative. Also for livestock i probably want to put some ghost shrimp or Japanese algae eating shrimp. I would like to put 6-8 shrimp and then have a netrite snail or 2 for the glass and too prevent any algae that may form from the excessive light and window. I was also wondering if i could put a few 4-5 of he feeder guppies in there because they're so small that they probably barely produce much to the bio-load plus there only 10 cents and i would like to give them a shot because they are very small and pretty fishes that would add some action to the tank and would just help complement the shrimp and alll of the plants and would look really nice. I want my tank to look like.... ... eBw&zoom=1

I also wonder about plants and if they would require co2 because i know how to make a DIY co2 system. Also would i want to do fertilization, and what percent water changes would i want to do? Also how long would i want to leave the light on?

Sorry for so many questions but i really want to set up a nice looking tank and you guys and girls are a big help and have some good information to share and lots of experience.

Thanks, Braden/Fishguy8558

I was suggested to get 10-20 red cherry shrimp and 1 netrite snail
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 08:37 AM
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First off, the amazon links don't work :< ..

Second, I think for such a small tank you're better off staying with shrimps and snails. Keep in mind that you will probably still need to feed them because I doubt you'll be getting enough algae for the nerite snail to eat and whatnot (same goes for the shrimp, depending on what type of shrimp you get).

Third, I really really disagree with the mentality of experimenting on fish due to their price and availability. Fish are living, breathing creatures. They feel just as much pain as you and I. Here's an article ANYWAY.. I think for a 1.5 gallon you'll be good with shrimps and snails. Keep in mind the 1 inch of full grown fish per gallon rule.. Even if they're small, it's not fair to throw them in such cramped conditions. Shrimp on the other hand don't need as much swimming room since they're scavenging most of the time

You should probably start setting it up, growing your plants, getting a feel for what works and what doesn't..then by that time your nano tank should be cycled and you can start adding shrimps.. one step at a time!

All I can tell you is that you don't want to rush anything. Take the time to do your research, look into some easy plants to start out and take it from there. Some easy ones I can recommend are anubias, java fern, mosses, anacharis and some crypts.

Regarding diy co2.. in my experience, diy co2 and shrimps don't mix (unless you have an airstone or something... there are so many mixed experiences with this). I unfortunately killed off a few of my shrimp in my fluval edge from diy co2, probably from the small surface area and lack of oxygenation at night.. :/ For such a small tank I would probably stick to Seachem Excel.. I think if you buy the basic Seachem Flourish box with the 3 bottles of ferts you should be good for taking care of your more basic plants.

I am by no means an expert, but I hope this helps a bit. Feel free to pm me if you have more questions
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 08:42 AM
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Also, a 13 watt should be fine. I would suggest sticking with more basic, slow growing plants.

Here's a great thread showing how cfl wattage, positioning, etc.. really affects the aquarium.

And here's a thread on low light plants. Slower growing plants, less trimming and maintenance.. which I imagine on such a small tank is a pita lol
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