Best light setup for a five gallon? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 5 Old 06-17-2012, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Best light setup for a five gallon?

So I'm dedicating my current tank to raising cherry shrimp, and having a betta in there just won't do.

I'm moving him to a 5.5 gallon with no lid, light fixture, nada. I'll be placing plastic mesh over the top. I do have some java ferns and anubias nana I will place in the five gallon, but seeing as they are low-light plants, I'm not sure what I should do about the lighting. Would placing a small light such as a lamp above the tank be sufficient? Or should I buy a clip-on light designed for plant growth?

This tank will be right next to my cherry shrimp tank so it will also be getting a small fraction of light from there.
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post #2 of 5 Old 06-17-2012, 03:51 PM
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Practically any light will be adequate in this situation. For a clean appearance I prefer tank hoods and an incandescent with two 10w CFL daylight bulbs. But a clamp-on bookshelf light will work, although try to avoid the old basic incandescent bulbs as they are hot and waste energy.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #3 of 5 Old 06-17-2012, 08:50 PM
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On my 2.3 gal I've got one of those desk lamps from Walmart ($8) set up pointed at my tank, with a CFL in it. it's not the prettiest set up, but it certainly works.
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post #4 of 5 Old 06-17-2012, 09:13 PM
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I agree with Byron. The incandescent fixtures with screw-in compact fluorescent bulbs work very well. Coralife makes them and they are available in 10 and 20 watts.

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post #5 of 5 Old 06-18-2012, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input, guys, I appreciate it! I've got a desktop lamp with an energy efficient CFL that I'm planning on using (the GU24 bulbs). Certainly not pretty, but I'm not doing it this way for aesthetics at the moment, just practicality.
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