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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-16-2003, 08:31 PM Thread Starter
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Lo all-

Just thought I'd stop by and say hello. I've had a ~25gallon tank (36x?x?) that my parents bought me when I was just a wee lad. I recently moved and took the tank with me and decided to start stocking it again. I first placed a bunch of platic plantlife & two great pieces of petrified wood that I've used in there for ages and stocked up (so far) with 1 Red Tailed Shark, 6 (now 5) Black Skirt Tetras, 1 Neon Blue Dwarf Gourami & 1 Bamboo fan shrimp.

This is a really strange tank. It's a great length, but it's pretty darn slim. It almost doesn't seem like I'll have enough "depth" to get a good aquascape going, but I'm sure I can pull something off. I've already decided to take out one of the petrified wood pieces to make room for some Malaysian driftwood I purchased, but my shark seems to really like the other piece so I guess I'll keep it. It's got a nice dark deep hole in it that he calls home.

I guess my biggest problem is I've gone "fire, aim, ready!" with my setup since I originally was just going plastic. I've currently got about 5 clumps of Anacharis, 2 Jungle Val's (unsure on identity), 2 potted sword lookin plants (brazilian maybe?), and two plants I'm sure to rip out when I get home from work....what looks like milkweed. :?

See, in the past when I ran this tank I had several clumps of Anacharis in there. Now I'm seeing the beauty many of you (an others throughout the net) have created (and believe me, I'm astonished at the beauty ya'll have created) and I'm trying to read up on what I need to do and what I need to buy...

I guess first things first it to fix a few things...
  1. I'm running a single 20w Aquaglo. I'll have to bump that up to atleast 50w from what I'm reading. I was looking at THIS though I'm wondering if 110w is over doing it. Mayhap.
  2. If I want to get this going well, I've got to cure my water hardness. I live in San Diego and a test I did last night (and I assume I did it right) put me at around 14rH. :shock: Is reverse Osmosis my only option?
  3. I guess if I want to get a lot of plantage going here I'll have to not only balance everything else but I'll have to get some CO2 in there beyond what my scaley friend make. The DIY CO2 injector & reactor don't look too difficult. How quickely should I get on the CO2 wagon? I just planted a few days ago.

My current electics are...
  1. Aquaglo 20w
  2. Penguin Biowheel 170
  3. Some heater of unkown wattage. (it seems to keep the tank around 78f)

What I'm thinking I'm going to need...
  1. A water pump. Looking at this one.
  2. CO2 diffusion
  3. More lighting

Tank has been cycling, with fishlife, for about 3 weeks. Plantlife for a little under a week.

So, whatcha think?

EDIT: Additional thoughts...
The substrate I've got is some rather old generic aquarium gravel that looks like the coarser grade in THIS product. I think I'm running about 1 to 1-1/2". Should I go to the pains to remove this and replace it with something like Flourite with my friends still in the tank? Should I just go and mix abit of something else in? Am I basicly stuck?

You're patience is appreciated.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-16-2003, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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As long as I'm talking I might as well keep it up... :lol:

Regarding bioload-
1 - Red Tailed Shark
1 - Neon Blue Gourami
5 - Black Skirt Tetras
1 - Bamboo Fan Shrimp

I would like to add...

2-3 - Clown Loaches
1 - Pleco (smaller variety like a Yellow Prince Tiger Pleco)
2-3 - Angelfish

What is a good measure on how high you can go with your bioload? Is it variable with the amount of plants you have in the tank?
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-16-2003, 10:32 PM
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Too many questions for me to answer. Here's a great How-To article.https://www.plantedtank.net/basics.html

Marcel
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-17-2003, 07:00 AM
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Hi, I have the same size tank you do... check my fishload in signature... sure you can go more allthough the loaches does up the ante a bit (I use juvenile corrys).

Got my tank to start pearling yesterday for the first time, after a few weeks of taking advice on this site...

I have a small 200litre/hour internal pump, quite a bit weaker than the one you are looking at, but it does move all my plants a little, allthough the big buys here would probably laugh at anyone not using a Rena or Eheim, as they tend to inject their CO2 into the water pumping system with a sort of chamber thingy, which probably isn't meant for DIY (I don't know).

Be carefull of not agitating the surface with the penguin.

I am only Using 76 watts (20 x 2) and (18 x 2), got DIY CO2 made from 2 x 1.5L coke bottles pumping into small waterbottle, pumping into hagen (nutrifin) CO2 difuser. Its looking nasty right now (and would have the fire inspector close me down in a minute), but when I build my new hood I will make provission for all of this.

I think in retrospect the lighing and CO2 issues at first seemed like the big issues, now I'm strarting to panic about fertilisers etc... lol still a newb at this. If you allow the plant enough light, lets say 2.5 to 3watt, and some CO2, it should start makeing realy good use of whats in the water at the time, well at least untill those nutrients run out.

I think thats where the real fun for me is gonna lie, trying to keep plants growing without giving algae the idea they are overly welcome.
Seems like its true, we don't keep fish or plants, we keep water.

Good luck, I have posted because we do have some things in common in terms of setup, and the things I posted are working FOR ME, I gradualy apgraded to that point and there was no significant change in plants until I took the last step to 3watts and CO2, and in future we may both have algae in common too...

Welcome, and may the advice and experiences of the good guys here give you the confidence and reasurance it has me.

Cape Town, South Africa.

Hi. I'm back.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-17-2003, 07:15 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply Nordic. I think I got my tank to display in my sig, but if it doesn't here are the dimensions...

36Lx10wx16h = ~25g

It's a weird size to be sure. I haven't seen many other tanks around as slim yet long. Luckily this puts me in a position to get some nice ligh fixtures going. I've also got this rather large blank wall in my apartment and it livens it up a bit.

RE: Loaches - I saw some clowns in a Petsmart and fell for them. Reading up I think I'll have to pass. I hear the grow slow but anything beyond 3" is going to make a pretty big differance to me, especially since I may end up going with a lot more tetras after all. I primarily wanted the loaches for their attitude, bottom dwelling & snail eating capacity. Now that I've been reading up Yo Yo's sound like an economically sized option if I can find them at a good price. They seem to have all the same aspects as the clowns but they're just not yellow.

RE: The Penguin. Can you expound on agitating the surface? It seems that that's all the thing is built for with its fountain unless I top the tank off every day. I'm trying to top it every 2-3 days since I hear my gourami can be kindof sensative to sound.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-17-2003, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauser101
As long as I'm talking I might as well keep it up... :lol:

Regarding bioload-
1 - Red Tailed Shark
1 - Neon Blue Gourami
5 - Black Skirt Tetras
1 - Bamboo Fan Shrimp

I would like to add...

2-3 - Clown Loaches
1 - Pleco (smaller variety like a Yellow Prince Tiger Pleco)
2-3 - Angelfish

What is a good measure on how high you can go with your bioload? Is it variable with the amount of plants you have in the tank?
Adding 2-3 Angels would not be fair. I understand the bioload concern, however, you've already got a fish in there (red tailed shark) that can get fairly big and be a pest to a fish like an angelfish. Your Dwarf gourami can also be a pest to an angelfish. They love to nip at the fins.

I like to give my fish room. The less room, the more aggression problems you will have. I'm sure there are people that have all these fish in their tank, but I, personally wouldn't reccommend it, even if it's planted. You're tank doesn't have much room. It is as wide as a standard 10. It's just seems like it's long, narrow, and short.
Of course it could be awesome with the addition of plants. But I wouldn't start overcrowding it with too many fish. But, if you're gonna add more fish, I reccommend that you do it slowly and not all at once. If you want to keep multiple angels with many other fish in a community tank, I'd suggesta bigger tank. Your tank dimensions, to start with, will make it very cramped for angelfish.

Anyway. I'd love to see a picture of your tank when you set it up with plants.

good luck

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