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So, where do I start?

I've been frequenting this website for about 6 months now, reading all of the fantastic 'tank journals', seeing what creative and beautiful things people have to share. After a while of hmm'ing and haa'ing about starting up a journal on this site, I figured I would tank the dive and share my story.

A bit about me: I grew up with my father keeping fish and having a 150 gal, lemon tetra's, plants, and at another time discus. He started travelling more for work and the hobby kind of left him. I spend more of my teenage years knowing the tank to hold other things besides fish for more time than I could remember after that. I never really got into it myself after that; I was pretty young when he had it running but always had warm and fond memories of what I could recall. I definitely remember going to the LFS many times, looking in wonder at all the pretty things in the floor to ceiling shelving of tanks.

Fast forward to June of this year - and the reason why this journal is titled the way it is.

My partner is a Montesorri teacher and one of the things that she's always prided herself on is having an aquarium in her classroom. She loves having it as a focal point of the space, for the kids to watch - enraptured with the fish, the plants and teaching them how we take care of living things, not just as pets. Anyways, when the shutdown happened in March, she had very little access to the school and as a result the tank was only looked after by the owner of the school. Let's just say that didn't go well...



Miraculously, one fish survived - a lone platy. We named him Lucky. My partner called me at work that day and said if he made it the next couple days, would I want to start up a tank at home instead? I said 'Sure - why not?' A lot has changed since then. I decided he needed some plants to brighten up the space and some friends. Did some research, got an AQ20, an air pump, some driftwood and a water testing kit:



Then a background, some Java Fern, an LED hood and some rocks:



And then finally some more plants and used an old record player cabinet as my new fish cabinet:



Unfortunately in that time, Lucky had passed. I found him one afternoon, laying on his side. He started to swim again at some gentle prodding but his whole back half was limp and had lost colour. Since starting up this tank, he had seemed a bit odd but swam around happily and ate regularly. Whatever it ended up being, he at least had a comfortable and bright two months and lived out his life.

As the summer wore on, my partner took a new position at a new school and decided that she would need a tank for her class. After some back and forth, she decided that she would take this one and would let me invest in a new tank :grin2:

I had already spent a lot of time researching, dreaming and planning what I would get. After sometime, I decided on the new setup:

Tank: 90P Crystal Seapora (was originally looking at a 65 gal but thankfully I talked myself out of it, as it was rimmed and was a 90H
Light: 36-48" Fluval Planted 3.0
Filter: Eheim Pro4+ 600 (LFS sold me the 600 for the price of the 350), in hindsight, I would probably go with a Oase Biomaster Thermo 600 but the Eheim has been fairly flawless (after learning the quirks of ignoring the priming button)
Stand: Aquatlantis Elegance White
CO2: COArt Reg, with an AAA Aquatis Elite Reg backup running a 5lb CO2 tank
In/Outflow: Glass VIV Lily and Skimmer (was using a Eheim 350 skimmer for a time, while I waited for the glass skimmer to come back into stock) I also have back up glass in/out flow
Heater: Inline Hydor 300 (I put pipeclamps on both attachments to make sure they don't move or slip off.
Airpump: Eheim 100 to a O2 diffuser

Getting it all set up:



And I also decided that I would do a DSM with the following plants:
Cuba
Eleocharis 'mini'
Riccia Fluitans
Alternanthera 'mini'
Bacopa Caroliniana
Rotala H'Ra
Rotala Wallichii
Ferts: Nilocg Thrive S

I will leave it there for now. This bring me up to August now, so there's still a ton a content to come. Safe keeping!
 
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