I'm debating on transforming my 75gallon 18x18x48 corner cut "plant display" tank that i bought from petland when they went out of business into a cichlid tank. Currently have a fine gravel maybe 1/2mm to 1mm that i would want to keep, maybe mix some aragonite sand in with it to bring up the ph. Only limiting factor is I dont want to upgrade my filtration from the fluval U4 that I use now, it has done very well for me since I got it with the tank and I don't have room for a canister and am unwilling to put a biowheel on the tank in my bedroom because of noise. If i did go with cichlids i would estimate around 7 of them but I haven't done much research into compatibility and adult sizes on the sub species yet.
Tank currently houses 2 painted and 2 musk turtles all hatching which can join the others in my 150g until their large enough to release as well as an unknown number of darters who refuse to let me catch them without removing every rock in the tank.
My other option is to attempt to grow a dwarf baby tear carpet in this tank using a peat and clay substrate and then eventually breed shrimp in it with some kuhli loaches and other small fish. Would be an amazing tank but would require more lighting and potentially a Co2 system and there's no instant gratification going this route, more of a long hope it grows high maintenance project
So opinions? Ideas? Criticism? Decided to join this forum today for some brainstorming so we'll see what you all have to say