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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was shopping around for a tank when a friend offered this one up for free. I decided to make it into a planted tank.

I'm VERY flexible on what I'm doing. I have a vague plan, but nothing is set in stone. My original plan is to fill this 3/5ths and have some plants growing at the top with their roots in the water as well as plants on the bottom. I guess that would make this a Riparium (or is that a paludarium)? I can't get all the names strait.

Here is my progress so far:
A base layer of some planted tank substrate from petsmart
a layer of black gravel on top of that
some boiled wood.
currently a single sun-glo 18" bulb (15 watt maybe)




After the water set for a day or two, I picked up some plants and some shrimp from a store I'd never been to. Very nice guy but he had no idea what this stuff was (he was a salt water guru).



So far, I have
-what I think is Nana or petite Nana, the guy didn't know.
-What I think is Jungle Val (again, he didn't know)
-some duck weed
-3 little brown shrimp with a lighter stripe down their back. (again, he didn't know)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Todays plan is to get some more plants from a different store as well as a few ghost shrimp and possibly a few fish.

I have several questions:
1. Lighting
I had considered getting a new hood with dual tubes. I'm worried that this one won't give enough light.

2. Temperature
It is freaking cold in there. roughly 23C. All of those plants say that they are fine in that temperature. For some odd reason I was thinking I'd have to heat this tank. (the plant tank at the fish sop was warm to the touch)
 

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It sounds like you bought Amano shrimp. Is your tank cycled? If not, then you'll more than likely loose the shrimp since their sensitive to ammonia and nitrites. The plants are jungle val and anubias, just be sure not to bury the rhizome on the anubias. It would be good to tie it to the driftwood (and tie down the driftwood so it's completely submersed) so its roots can attach to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks! I will promptly un-bury the rhizome when I get home. I'll keep my fingers crossed on the little shrimpies too.

They are considerably darker than the pictures of Amano I've found. the tank was labelled cherries, but their color is almost the same as a wood shrimp, but with different patterns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I took a quick trip to the pet store to see what they've got.

I'll be picking up some zebra danios, a couple more plants, and possibly an additional light.

I believe I'll be picking up an "aqua-glo" or maybe a "power-glo"(both rated 1800k). Not sure which though.
 

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How big is your established tank? Something else that's really good to do to speed up the cycling process is to squeeze the filter media from an established filter into the new tank (better yet is to add the filter media itself directly into the new filter, but that's only if you won't be taking that media away from a tank that you're continuing to keep fish in). There's different ways to add an ammonia source for the beneficial bacteria to establish/feed on, you can either put in some flake food and let it decompose or you can use Ace brand pure ammonia. If you're willing to slowly add fish (after cycle is complete add only 1 fish, wait a few days for the bacteria build to handle the ammonia produced by that fish, then add another fish, wait a few days, etc/repeat) in the tank then the flake food method would be a good way to. If you want to add a large fish load right away then the pure ammonia route is the way to go. Just be sure if you go that route that you definitely get pure ammonia with nothing but ammonia in the ingredients... no other chemicals, surfacants, perfumes, dyes, etc.

Oh and the whole "fill the tank with water from an established tank" is not a way to have an instantly cycled tank. There's very very little beneficial bacteria floating around in the water, the bb likes to settle onto things like gravel, plants, filters/filter media... especially filter media... the bb's really like the oxygen flow of a filter/filter media.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm responding on my phone, so I'll be brief.

Established tank is 10 gallons. The new tank got a rock, a plant, a sprinkling of gravel from the old. I also took the cartridge from the old filter and just dropped that sucker in the new tank.

Don't worry, I'm not using charcoal anymore. I bought some nice filter material and cut new inserts for the old filter and the one I bought tonight. Both are HOB.

My water level wasn't high enough for the new one so it is hanging *inside* the aquarium till tomorrow when I'll have more deck primates water.

I got the additional light and some plants. I'll ask questions about proper planting tommorrow when I can post pictures.
 

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Did you leave any old filter media in the old filter? If not, then you may throw the 10 gallon into a cycle. If the old cartridge is sitting in the new tank with no filter/oxygen/airstone then a lot, if not all, of the beneficial bacteria will start dying. Don't forget to throw some flake food in the tank so the bb's can feed on it... starving bacteria = dead bacteria.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Did you leave any old filter media in the old filter? If not, then you may throw the 10 gallon into a cycle. If the old cartridge is sitting in the new tank with no filter/oxygen/airstone then a lot, if not all, of the beneficial bacteria will start dying. Don't forget to throw some flake food in the tank so the bb's can feed on it... starving bacteria = dead bacteria.
There's a sponge and a cartridge in the old tank. I've changed that cartridge 5 or 6 times this year with no problems. Problably due to the fact that theres just a guppy, a pleco, and a shrimp in there... Along with a lot of generic plant. This should basically be the same. The several month old cartridge is now floating in the new tank with the new filter running.
 

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There's a sponge and a cartridge in the old tank. I've changed that cartridge 5 or 6 times this year with no problems. Problably due to the fact that theres just a guppy, a pleco, and a shrimp in there... Along with a lot of generic plant. This should basically be the same. The several month old cartridge is now floating in the new tank with the new filter running.
Cool, if it's got old sponge material in it still then that will definitely prevent a cycle when the cartridge is replaced. :proud:
 

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It's actually a 35g, the same tank I have. You'll need far more light than 15W if you want to grow anything more than crazy low light plants. I have 2x24W T5HO lighting in my tank and I'm medium light. Let's get some more info, what are your actual fish plans, what kind of filter is that? If you can give us some more info people on here will give you some great ideas on how to achieve what you want, rather than you having to do trial and error figuring out what you want and what works for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Haha, had a little too much wine last night and was using some online conversion.

Anyway, I've been posting from work since my home Internet is out, so I got some stuff wrong. Upon further inspection the day-glo bulb is 20w. I added the 18w aqua-glo last night as well.

My original plan was to go low light, low tech, rip/viv. I wanted a section at the top for some semi aquatics. However I stupidly went HOB and this sucker is big. To have it down at the water line would take up considerable space. Should have gone cannister! Oh well, I'm flexible.

Fish plans: I figured I'd get something tough and fairly small. After some research, I settled on a few zebra danios. I'm thinking 5-ish. Other than that I might add my current pleco or get some other similar, but smaller.

I love inverts, so I planned on having shrimp as well. Still researching to make sure I'm not overcrowding, but I was thinking roughly 10.
 
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