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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started this tank a few months ago and have posted pictures in a few threads here and there and thought i would like to get everything all in one place and just do a journal. This tank was originally supposed to be an African cichlid tank. I have kept cichlids in the past for years and when i first began assembling the tank it was with cichlids in mind. I started off buying egg crate, aragonite sand, a slimline 3D background and about 100 pounds of rock with no plans for plants. Here is the beginning of the initial set up

Eggcrate


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3D Background


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Cutting to size

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Background installed

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next i took a trip to the landscape yard in search of rock. I tried two different kinds and was not happy with either so they ended up here


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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Next i decided that i would try drift wood and plants! i had never had plants before because cichlid tanks are usually all rock. So, i went in search of drift wood and got two pieces, put the aragonite in the tank and filled it up. I had trouble with clouding from the beginning. I have used aragonite in the past but i have never had a bag that was so dusty! (and yes, i rinsed it first)


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As i learned more about planted tanks i finally had to let go of the idea of this being a cichlid tank. 29 gallons is a little small for cichlids anyways. So i got 10 tiger barbs


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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
over the past few months i have looked through many of the images on the forum and was not happy with how white sand looks in a planted tank. Also, i was not having very good luck with trying to grow plants in it. I switched the aragonite out and put in eco complete and am much happier with the look of the tank :D



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The dark substrate looks so much better!
I am crazy for those 3D backgrounds. Even though the plants will end up covering most of it, I think it looks much more "finished" than a plain painted back glass. Your tiger barbs will love hanging out under the leaves of the swords - mine do!
Very nice tank!
 

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wonderful tank the background looks great i love the way tiger barbs look in a medium planted tank also im doing something like a little expiriment now to see if i can get my banana plants to tangle together and you could try it in the back right corner it would look really good and hide your thermometer
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The dark substrate looks so much better!
I am crazy for those 3D backgrounds.
me too! i have seem some REALLY amazing ones. I got a slim line because this is not a very big tank but one of these days i wanna get one of those REALLY 3D ones that have enough space behind them to hide all the equipment

fishman: i love the way the barbs look too. the orange on the tips of the fins on mine practically glow! after looking at the picture i think if i just place the thermometer lower it will do some good

Now i just have to find another group of fish to do. I have been doing tons of research and STILL have not found another schooling fish that i like the look of and wont be killed by my barbs. I wanted cardinals because the colour would be a nice contrast but i have been told the tigers will kill them. So there goes that idea
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Beautiful tank, you will need to go with barbs or danios to find something that will survive the tigers most likely.
that was pretty much my thought also. my LFS had some very pretty albino tigers and i was considering them, they are a nice peachy orange colour. I also saw some glowfish (pink ones) at my LFS that i was thinking about. They are more colorful than standard danios
 

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I must have weird tiger barbs. They are in a community tank with neons, black tetras, rosy barbs, 5 male guppies (what a mistake! lol) an oto & a cory. They never bother a thing, keeping strictly to themselves...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I must have weird tiger barbs. They are in a community tank with neons, black tetras, rosy barbs, 5 male guppies (what a mistake! lol) an oto & a cory. They never bother a thing, keeping strictly to themselves...
i HAVE heard that also. Some people have said if you have enough tiger barbs they will only bother themselves and leave the other fish alone. what i wanted to get was a school of cardinals but i'm a little nervous to try. how big is your tank? and how big are your barbs?
 

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LOL - My barbs are huge. They are the Orson Welles of fish.
They were the first fish I added to the tank, which is a 40 breeder. They are also the largest fish in the tank, followed closely by the Rosy Barbs. I have 5 Tigers, and 3 Rosys. Since it's so easy to sex Rosy Barbs, I know I have 2 females & 1 male. I haven't a clue on the Tigers.
The Tigers are fat & lazy. They bob along like blimps. They don't school, per se, but they do hang together in a loose crowd. Where one goes, the others follow - as they muster the energy - lol. They used to hang out under the overhang of the driftwood, until I got this fantastic Amazon sword from a seller here. Now that's their favorite space. They never look twice at the fish swimming around them.
I'll try to get a pic later...
 

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fat fish

The only thing they chase is food...
I should add that they are close to 3".
The light "halos" you see are water drops on the glass, not anything on the fish/plants. Thankfully, this is a healthy tank!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
nice looking tigers! a few of mine are getting pretty fat but they are young and still active. Most of them are about the size of a quarter or or maybe more like one of those gold dollars. They are little food hogs. they come straight up to me whenever i come anywhere near the tank and beg for food. Mine still school pretty well a lot of the time. maybe because they are still younger
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Having a bit of trouble with my plants. They are not looking too great. Getting a lot of brown around the edges. I am new to keeping plants so any advice as to what i should i be doing or need to change would be appreciated. I am not really sure what most of my plants are but there is a picture above of my tank. I have eco complete as substrate, two fluorescent lights (1 6500k zoo med ultra sun and 1 8000k daylight bulb) and i use flourish once a week. what else should i be doing for happier plants?
 

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Hmm, firstly, from the picture you posted the plants in the middle of the tank don't appear to be aquatic. I'm assuming you probably bought them from somewhere like petsmart?

And it's a little hard for me to be sure from the picture, but the rest look like swords, anubias, microsword, and jungle vals, which your tank parameters should be ok for. But it seems from the pictures that you have your anubias planted in the substrate with the rhizome (the bit where the leaves and roots both come from) buried. You need to raise the rhizome and just bury the roots with that plant, else it'll rot. And it'd be even happier attached to some driftwood or rock.

Beyond that the browning could just be the plants acclimating to your tank, a deficiency in some area, or even just diatoms settling on the leaves. If you had a clear picture it would be a lot easier to say.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
anyone have any advice?....also one of my lighting fixtures just crapped out on me this morning so i will be looking into new lighting. I was told that a dual T5 would be too bright but would a single T5 be good? or should i go for the double bright LED?
 

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I wish there was more info on how the double bright LEDs work with plants in different height tanks - I love the look they give, but it's my understanding they don't put off the right/enough light for a planted tank?
 
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