I am in the process of giving my 75 gallon tank a "makeover." It is currently housing 9 fish and very few plants-just some pieces of driftwood with Java Moss and Fern. There are also two mangrove seedlings that have done well in this tank. It was originally setup this past January to be a paludarium setup. The water level is only half of the tank. Current fish are two Archers, three Clown Loachs, two SAE's, a Rainbow Shark, and a Red-eye Puffer. The gravel was originally Flourite with the rest of the gravel transferred from a 29 gallon-that was mixed with laterite.
I plan on covering most of the gravel surface with sand and planting Eleocharis. I also plan on getting some more large stones and growing Java moss on them. I also purchased an Eheim canister filter as currently the tank is only filtered with a Duetto and a power head with a sponge filter. Lighting consists of 220W of PC at 6500K. I plan on leaving the tank about 3/4 full so I can still view the Archer fish behavior.
I use RO/DI exclusively. Should I start using Tap or a mixture of RO/DI and Tap?
For dosing CO2 I have purchased Seachem's organic Carbon. What are the experiences anyone has had with this product? If I have to, I can use a DIY CO2 reactor (soda bottle).
The Eleocharis I was looking at purchasing is in 2" squares. How do I plant these in the substrate?
Lastly, is it o.k to leave my fish in the tank during the setup process?