My First 55 gallon planted tank Journal.
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My First 55 gallon planted tank Journal.

This is a discussion on My First 55 gallon planted tank Journal. within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I started a previous thread but a lot has changed since then so I wanted to start a new one. All I know is ...

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My First 55 gallon planted tank Journal.
Old 10-04-2011, 12:14 AM   #1
 
My First 55 gallon planted tank Journal.

I started a previous thread but a lot has changed since then so I wanted to start a new one. All I know is want a really nice natural looking tank with lots of plants, a few schools of fish and maybe a few larger fish as the center piece or just lots of smaller fish to give the tank a bigger feel. I dont really know what kind of fish I want and your suggestions will help. The tank has been up and running for more than 2 weeks. I have been testing the water every other day and all my readings are fine. Ph is around 7.4, I will be able to get the gh and kh of the water with the next few days.

It is currently running:
1 aquaclear 70g HOB filter
300w heater
right side has a 55 watt 9325k high output compact fluorescent strip-lite (got it for 30 bucks, original price was $130. The guy at the LFS said it was really good)
left side has a t5 full spectrum daylight lamp
substrate has 60 lbs of fluorite mixed in with gravel

I am not sure what the names of all the plants are since I bought them from my LFS without any prior research. Most of my plants seem to be doing great, the grass already has other little grass plants coming off of them (what is that called? runners? shoots? im not sure at all). I have changed the setup 2-3 times since the beginning of it all but so far i am the happiest with how it looks now. The left side of the tank needs plants that do well in low light so recommendations for that are welcome.

There are currently 6 zebra danios, 2 Glo fish, and 2 HY5(?? Im not sure if that is what they are called or please look at pic below and help me identify them). I would like to get a couple bristle nose pleco to help out with the brown algae problem but i dont know if that is a good idea. In the future i could like to get a group of corys, i prefer pygmy corys. Other than that i really dont know what to stock the tank with.

1st pic is of the tank before
2nd pic is of the tank as it is now. I did a lot of cutting and fitting. So I am curious to see what you guys think
3rd pic is of the tetra i need help identifying
the pics after that are just random shots of the tank, notice the algae.

Please guys your opinions, comments and constructive criticism will help. THANK YOU!
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:13 AM   #2
 
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Hi! Very nice! I really like your use of the wood, the plant on top of the driftwood, and the uneven substrate. Awesome! The right side especially looks very natural. Perhaps some smaller, rounded rocks would look nice scattered in small groups as if they'd tumbled down the hill/mountain naturally and landed amongst your plants. The right side would look lovely with a few floating plants, such as frogbit, or something like pennywort which can trail along the surface. Though, the val or sag you have in the back right corner will fill in to cover a bit of surface area, too.
On the left side, perhaps some hornwort and vallisneria would be taller plants that do could well in moderate to lower light. Water wister might do okay, but will be slow. And pygmy chain sword (narrow or wide, one of them gets taller in low light, can't remember which one is which) or various cryptocoryine sp. would be nice shorter plants. Java fern or various anubias would do well secured to a rock or wood.

Others will be better than me at IDing what plants you already have, if that's what you're looking for. There's some smart cookies around here!

On the tetra ID, I don't know if this thread might help- Tetras for a Rio Ucayali-ish tank? I was trying to ID a similar and probably related fish, and Byron's comment near the end of the thread may help you.

In any case, good luck! And its looking wonderful, good work!
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:20 AM   #3
 
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looks great, maybe some floating plants
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Old 10-04-2011, 07:20 AM   #4
 
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Looks really nice it will look awesome once it grows some more good job.
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Old 10-04-2011, 08:10 AM   #5
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MinaMinaMina View Post
Hi! Very nice! I really like your use of the wood, the plant on top of the driftwood, and the uneven substrate. Awesome! The right side especially looks very natural. Perhaps some smaller, rounded rocks would look nice scattered in small groups as if they'd tumbled down the hill/mountain naturally and landed amongst your plants. The right side would look lovely with a few floating plants, such as frogbit, or something like pennywort which can trail along the surface. Though, the val or sag you have in the back right corner will fill in to cover a bit of surface area, too.
On the left side, perhaps some hornwort and vallisneria would be taller plants that do could well in moderate to lower light. Water wister might do okay, but will be slow. And pygmy chain sword (narrow or wide, one of them gets taller in low light, can't remember which one is which) or various cryptocoryine sp. would be nice shorter plants. Java fern or various anubias would do well secured to a rock or wood.

Others will be better than me at IDing what plants you already have, if that's what you're looking for. There's some smart cookies around here!

On the tetra ID, I don't know if this thread might help- Tetras for a Rio Ucayali-ish tank? I was trying to ID a similar and probably related fish, and Byron's comment near the end of the thread may help you.

In any case, good luck! And its looking wonderful, good work!
Thank You for your feedback! I really like the Pygmy chain sword idea I will be on the look out for this in my local stores.
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Old 10-04-2011, 08:48 AM   #6
 
So I woke up today and went to go feed the fish when i noticed one of the yellow glo fish were missing. I looked as hard as i could for it everywhere and i still cant find it. Another thing i noticed was one of the zebras danios was swimming really slow and to one corner on the top. This one looked way skinnier and sickly since day one so in fear of this one vanishing on me i took it out and put it in the 10 gallon tank. If he starts looking better in the next few days ill put it back in the 55g.

these fish have been in the tank for 4-5 days. all the other fish are very active and look normal.

Im gonna assume that the yellow glo died and its body is somewhere in the tank and i cant find it. Will the decomposing dead body throw off the balance on my tank? Do i need to tear up the tank to get the body? or will my snails and one ghost shrimp be able to take care or it?
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Old 10-04-2011, 11:11 AM   #7
 
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Very nice aquascape. My suggestions would be a floating plant for the right side to lessen the brightness of the light a bit and even out the overall light perception, and some hardscape for the left (darker) side. Getting some largish chunks of bogwood, or even using largish rocks, to build up that side will make the dimmer light look very natural.

The tetra is Hyphessobrycon rosaceus, it is in our profiles, click the shaded name. It must have a group. In this sized tank, I would have 9-11 of them.

I would not get 2 Bristlenose pleco yet. Diatoms (brown algae) is temporary in new tanks. Wait until the tank is established (a couple months) and see how it develops. If you do go with a pleco, one will be sufficient. That also is explained in the profile.

Fish do die periodically. I wouldn't expect any ammonia or nitrite issues with the plants, so it was probably just something with the fish. If I see a dead fish, I remove it; but usually it just disappears, and this is OK.

Byron.
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Old 10-04-2011, 11:58 AM   #8
 
Thanks for your input byron. Even tho the tetra in the fish profile does not have the white tip dorsal fin that mine does its the same fish?
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:09 PM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alwaysoc0nfused View Post
Thanks for your input byron. Even tho the tetra in the fish profile does not have the white tip dorsal fin that mine does its the same fish?
The fish in the profile photo is a male, the larger black dorsal is the clue. Your photo is a female. Should have mentioned this previously, sorry; when you go for more of these, observe those in the tank carefully and get a mix of male/female. The females are pretty but rather "ordinary" whereas the males will be displaying to each other whenever the mood strikes them--usually after each water change, or on a low pressure (cloudy) day. And to see the males in pairs, sometimes 3, with those fins fully extended, sidling up to each other among the plants (they like shade), is truly a sight to behold. The colouration of the fish in the store tank will proably be pale, but carefully look at the dorsal fins and anal fins, they are longer on males and black; plus their interaction if you just stand and watch them quietly for several minutes may clue you in.

Last edited by Byron; 10-04-2011 at 12:13 PM..
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:28 PM   #10
 
thats awesome! so if i get a total of 8-9 tetras plus my now 6 danios how much more room do i have to get other fish? and would dwarf rainbow fish be an option for me?
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