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Greetings all,

I've had a muddled mess of a tank for several years now, and I'm just about ready for a teardown and restocking. The aquascaping has never looked right due using too much bogwood - I ended up with tons of spots to place Anubias and Java Fern, but little ground space for planting. My carpet of Marsilia went downhill, and ultimately I had to remove most of it (although I saved some for cultivation). Within the last few months, I somehow got contaminated with duckweed. And the sheer randomness of my stocking, both of fish and plants, has gotten to me with time. To top things off, I'm a father now, and the rickety open stand gets me worried about what my daughter will do when she starts walking.

Here are the tank parameters:

Size - 55 gallon

Lighting - Hagen GLO T5-HO with two 4 foot bulbs

Substrate - Currently Florite Dark - will switch out with mineralized mud afterward. Thinking of using Florite Black Sand as the capping material.

CO2 system - not sure about my regulator since I'm not in front of my tank. I've run the same large tank from my closet for two years yet I'm still getting bubbles in the bubble counter. That said, I need to downgrade to a smaller tank I can hide underneath the new, enclosed stand for safety reasons.

Anyway - stocking:

Plant ideas - these are all neotropicals.

Foreground/Midground:
Bacopa australis
Echinodurus tenellus
Hydrocotyle leucocephala (or H. verticillata if I can find it)
Lilaopsis brasiliensis
Staurogyne sp. 'Porto Velho' (If I'm lucky)

As a larger feature, some larger swords - I'm thinking Kleiner Bar, as they don't get too large to be out of scale in the tank.

Stems - want to minimize these because I hate replanting, but neotropical plants outside of swords are mainly stems, so these are my ideas. I would also love to find Eriocaulon sp. 'Goias,' but I'm not holding my breath.

Alternanthera Reineckii 'Rosaefolia'
Ludwiga inclinata
Potamogeton gayi
Polygonum sp. 'Sao Paulo' (if I'm damn lucky)

Oh, and my favorite floating plant - Phyllanthus fluitans.

Stocking fish will be easier. I'll move along my fairly large group of Ember tetras, along with my Nanostomus beckfordi pencilfish. I also need to restock my oto population - I know I still have them, but I have no idea how many these days.

Beyond this I'm unsure. I could have another school in there, and people say good things about rummynoses. I've also considered getting more corys (I'm down to a lone habrosus - long story), and since I'll be removing all the shrimp to other digs, I can have a pair of small chiclids like apistos or rams now I suppose.

Feedback is much desired.
 
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