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Discussion Starter · #61 ·
Hardscape is in and it’s flooded.
Fluval Stratum
Dragon stone
Spiderwood
I used my old fluval 106 and glass lily pipes from yesteryear.

I tested my local water and it’s as follows out of the tap. I live in San Antonio which is aquifer based. I also have carbon filter on the house so chlorine and some other things are filtered out already.

Tap Parameters
PH 7.6-7.8
Nitrate 0
Nitrate 0
Ammonia 0
TDS 208
GH 12-13 drops or 215+ppm
KH 8 drops or 143ppm

Once the tank establishes I was thinking of doing shrimp. For that I’ll prob switch over to RODI which I have stored in the garage from an old reef tank that was taken down a while back.

Here’s a photo. The scape is not as high as I wanted but it’s a start.

228D47A8-EEE8-412B-B63C-18DA56E32557.jpeg
 

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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
Update: Officially planted today.

The hardscape took a lot of patience to make work. It was a bit of a jigsaw puzzle of not so great rock and sticks. I’m pretty happy with how it’s coming together though. Not bad for taking a low price gamble with eBay random stuff. Fingers crossed I don’t knock it all out of wack later during maintenance.




The plants are:
Anubias Nana Petite
Ludwiga Super Red Mini
Cardinal Plant Dwarf
Corkscrew Val
Dwarf baby tears


Other updates:
- CO2 is hooked up and running. 8 bbl per 20 seconds 1hr before with lights. The co2 is controlled on a zigbee plug-outlet through smart things. I have another plug (two pack) that I’ll use for ATO+Ferts later on.

- cycle is going. I added some api quick start today. ammonia is 5ppm

- general water params are looking good for neocardinia. I’ll be adding those once the plants grab hold and the tank finds an equilibrium in general.

- I have two more plants coming in the mail. Another shot coming soon.


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Discussion Starter · #63 ·
3 week update:
  • algae is growing now, couple dif kinds, I have been adjusting lights to compensate, Hoping to have a moderate amount for shrimp additions, hopefully it will be manageable
  • I trimmed the plants in the back
  • lots of plant melt from shipping likely, new growth is looking just fine
  • I tested Nilocg S and I get about 1ppm nitrates per pump. I discovers this by pumping till I saw the nitrate test raise up. I probably over dosed nutrients in the test (maybe spiking the algae) so I did a big water change to reset the water.
  • I started using api quick start bacteria and dr Tim’s ammonia to kick start the cycle. Nitrites have been 0 since the first week and ammonia has been .25 - I dosed about 5ppm today
  • the fluval nano light is awesome- I run a cool sunset and eve dim cycle on the lights. Photo below.






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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Nitrites finally spiked the other day after dosing ammonia.

I did a trim, clean, and a little water change to try and reduce some algae and get more light on the vals.




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Discussion Starter · #65 ·
Shrimp added yesterday. I found a local seller for 2 high grade blue bolts and 8 mosuras.

Algae is still Mheh. But not getting worse.

HCCuba may not make it but it was a try. I’m pulling co2 off so I don’t have high expectations for. It wasn’t growing well with co2. May just pull it out later and stay lower light/tech.






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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
Put some Amano shrimp in and the diatoms and algae are no longer an issue. Also allowed me to turn lights on longer and brighter to ensure some algae as is still growing for the shrimp amd to enjoy tank more.

Dosing thrive and about to start dosing potassium as I’m seeing some related issues with leaves and small holes.

Photos:




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Discussion Starter · #67 ·
3 month update today:

-All the females appear to be berried. I counted 4 females. Males have been super active the last few weeks ;)

-TDS is 170, doing a small water change today. First water change since adding the shrimp. I am dripping the new water in.

-I’m starting to feed a little less since I’m seeing a bunch of detritus worms. I was feeding extra to encourage breeding. I don’t know if I was too much but the worms are pretty high and there is still a green film on all the rocks. I’ll crank up the baby food when the newborns appear.

-Added a catappa Indian almond leaf





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I like the hardscape layout. Too bad the plants are not looking too good. Try leaving the dwarf baby tears for a bit longer to see if they come back. I have grown them very well only using Seachem Excell. But you might be lacking something else. Some of the plants show nutrient deficiencies or something. How many hours are the lights on for? I would do twice a week water changes until tank stabilizes. Those shrimps look very pretty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #69 ·
Thanks for the suggestion. Yes I do have a deficiency with the plants. The primary one is nitrate. I bought some nitrate from Seachem but I’m pretty sure it has some kind of ammonia type source that is harmful to the shrimp. It’s on the shelf for now.

I am dosing thrive s 4-5 days a week. I started adding seachem potassium about a week or so ago. I have pin holes and decay on leaves. I’ll see how that changes the new growth.

Raising shrimp is the tank purpose so I will not be doing excess water changes and I’ll be taking small steps with dosing. If the potassium doesn’t cure the deficiency I’ll prob move to a dry ferts pack and find a better nitrate source.


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