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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my 10 gallon Walstad Riparium setup. I decided that this tank would be totally natural, and I would try to balance the tank without trying to get rid of any organisms if I could help it.



I used two whisper filters because having just one left the tank with a film on the surface. The plant in the left filter is a dormant bat plant that I'm experimenting with, but the rest are doing very well (fittonia, cat palm, dwarf papyrus, peace lily, baby panda bamboo, java moss mat in the middle)



Underwater are Anubias, Banana Lilies, Cryptocoryne wendtii, Anacharis, more Java Moss, Micro Sword, Brazilian Pennywort.



When I first set up the tank, I used E.B. Stone Organic Potting Soil, which created some crazy ammonia spikes, so I had to let the tank adjust a bit before adding fish. By the time the chemistry had evened out, I had a large layer of biofilm covering everything. This was perfect for the lady endlers I was adding to the tank. They had the tank sparkling clean within a day, and I haven't had any chemical swings since. I also added some cherry shrimp and a few Thai micro crabs, and they seem very happy. Since then, I have seen Malaysian trumpet snails, a couple of springtails, a freshwater limpet, leopard ramshorns, and one daddy longlegs that has taken up residence behind the tank.

The lighting is a SolarFlare for the riparium plants and a Marineland Hidden LED for the downstairs. I had one fittonia die on me, so I now have an open space on the left. I'm thinking about trying an Arabian jasmine and winding it around the back of the tank as it grows, but I'm not sure if it'll work. We'll see!
 

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Very clean and healthy-looking tank; I like it!

For some reason, I never considered the in-tank Whisper filters for a riparium, but they look kind of perfect for the job (they match the riparium planters very well).

Question for you. It's going to sound kind of callous, but how do you keep your micro-crabs alive? I had 5 of them in their own 10-gallon planted tank. I couldn't figure out how to feed them (or even keep them engaged in the business of living) and they seemed to just burrow into little niches around the hardscape and slowly die of... "apathy"?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks! The micro crabs seem to be almost completely nocturnal. I usually wait until the fish are asleep in the evening and push some standard fish flakes, which they seem to like, to the bottom with an R2 Target Feeder Wand. Also, I think they are filter feeders, so they like a tank with a lot of microorganisms. They're pretty still during the day, but at night, they're crawling all over the place.
 
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