Oddball nano, help needed
I've procured some pieces of glass and plan on building a nano tank to keep on my desk at work. The tank will be roughly 24"x8"x8" maybe as long as 30" if I've got enough glass. Once built the tank will sit under a single 48" 6500k flourescent tube that is mounted under the bookshelf in my cubicle. Because it will be in my office it has to be low tech and pretty low mantinance, while I could possibly get CO2 from the weld shop, I don't think mantinance would understand the necessity of running a pipe into the office area and I don't really want to deal with stinky bottles of yeast under my desk. Flourish Excel may be an option if absolutely necessary but as with anything else less is more. I plan on using topsoil under fine gravel or large grained sand for substrate, this should give enough ferts that I won't need to dose fertilizer for quite some time right?
The light fixture has a primitive reflector that isn't much more than a sheetmetal box painted white and there's a diffuser over the bulb (which could be removed) With a very shallow tank I'm inclined to think a 40w flourescent tube will be way too much light so the diffuser and inefficent reflector may work to my benefit, will I need to further shade the tank?
What do I need in the way of filtration or circulation? I've got an AC10 powerhead I was thinking I could hook up to a sponge and make a very simple filter, but with the shape of the tank I'm not sure if the powerhead would have enough umph to circulate all the water. The Azoo HOB is on sale at Drs. Foster and Smith for about $6.00 so that's looking like a really good idea as well but again I'm not sure if it would circulate the water efficiently. I've never done a nano tank so I'm not sure what's really needed for circulation and filtration.
What about stocking, I've got a little duckweed that I expect will soon take over my 29g, I could put some of that in the little tank to filter the light a little further. I've got a few java ferns that have some runners that could be seperated and some Rotala Rotundifolia that could be kept in the tank for a nice contrast but I'm not sure if it will need too much pruning in a small tank. I'm not a very experianced aquatic gardener so I'd prefer to keep hardy species. What else should I consider for a small tank.
I think I'll keep a few Endlers or maybe a paradise gourami or some kilifish and some shrimp. I'm on the fence still as to rather I need a heater or not, the office is kept pretty cool year round it's probably 68F year round, so I'm sure Endlers would appreciate a heater but others wouldn't mind a little cooler tank. What is a good heater to use on these tiny tanks? All the heaters I've used would be too big.