Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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tophat665 06-29-2007 05:36 PM

Upgrading to a 75 - a log
You may remember this rascal from an older post:
He started me on the slippery slope to MTS last year, starting in a 10, moving to a 20, and eventually into a 75:
Well now he's gone back to the lake from whence he came. (That sunken green area off to the right of the arrow? Lily pads - lots and lots of lily pads) And I have a free tank to play with.

The plan is to move my South Asian critters from the 55 to the 75, them move my Amazonian critters to the 55, move the 55 to the space freed up in my library, and put a big ol 110 High in the living room with Angelfish and another Amazon set up.

Meanwhile, I kept the gravel that was in the 75 (Peace River Gravel), and moved it to the center of the tank, hemmed in by granite. Left and right I put in Eco Complete. That Big driftwood to the left has been soaking in the tank for about 4 months now. The Ecocomplete kicked up a hell of a cloud:
That's a 260 watt CF light with a 10000K, a 420 nm, and 4 blue moonlights. I'm going to switch the actinic and the daylight, and add a 6700K in place of the actinic at some point. No filter at this point, and the heater (200 watt) isn't plugged in yet. The green stuff over to the right is some Rotala indica that had come loose in the 55, so I just replanted it here. The only livestock at this point are 10 Malaysian Trumpet Snails

It gets better: Here come the plants....
Still no filter. Trimmed the Rotala in the 55 and planted it to the sides of the left zone. Trimmed the Wisteria in a couple of tanks and planted that along the back. One of my Anubias Nanas had grown about 7 inches of rhizome, so I cut it up into a bunch of pieces and tied it to the Driftwood. There's also some Cryptocoryne retrospiralis, some dwarf hairgrass, and a couple of stems of Ludwegia repens. The heater is plugged in now.

Couple more angles:
Close up of the Left zone. Got a flowerpot buried in there for my loaches to congregate in. Going to stick a couple more over on in right zone and pile java moss laden rocks on and around them for more loachy goodness.
Reverse side of the driftwood. I am going to pull that out of there at some point and go to town with epiphytes and put it back in, but not just now. I want it to soften and sour the water first.

Tuesday night, I put the filter on it. It's an Eheim 2217. Cleared the water up beautifully, but I had the spray bar in there in such a way that left the surface still. Still surface + low plant load + zero fish load = No Dissolved Oxygen to speak of. Silly me. Wednesday I put in 9 Harlequins and 8 Cherry Barbs, and they all went straight to the top gasping. I reconfigured the spray bar to disturb the surface, and frantically scrambled to get a bubbler running. The fish all survived.

Yesterday I went and got: More Dwarf Hairgrass, Four Leafed Clover, Cryptocoryne wendetii "red" (an awesome one - must've been a dozen or 18 offsets in this one plant - I divided it about 8 ways.), and some pearlweed. So here's how it looks now:

Pardon my crappy photo skills: Here's the left Zone, now nicely planted, and the reflection of my kitchen counter:
You can see the harlequins racing up the side of the tank to bodysurf on the current from the spraybar.

Here's the right zone:
Gonna stick some long stems in the back corner behind the driftwood, Maybe Elodea, Maybe Ambulia. Also, Gonna put some odd colored stems near that knee on the left, between the pearlweed and the Wisteria. Maybe Ludwegia, Maybe red temple, maybe ammania if I can find it. I have some nicely planted flat rocks that I am going to lean up against or lay atop the granite cliff between the white and black gravel.

One more for now: the Back side of the driftwood.
Harlequins up top, Cherry Barbs down low.

Did water tests last night. 0.5 ppm ammonia, 0 ppm nitrite, 5-10 ppm nitrate, pH 7.8. Going to test again in a few minutes and see if the nirobacter in the filter has started doing it's thing yet (there ought to be a ton of it - it was keeping a fewking turtle tank sparkly clean.)

Over time, the fishload will be:
12 Harlequins, 8 Cherry Barbs, 8 Botia striata, 5 Botia almorhae, 3? Pangio myersi, 3 SAEs, and 3 Blue Gouramis (a Gold, and Opaline, and a Three Spot)

Nuff for now. Plaudits gratefully accepted, criticism gracefully heeded if well though out and written.

Lupin 06-29-2007 08:21 PM

Nice setup and :nicefish: .

cullens089 06-30-2007 12:01 AM

looks good

tophat665 06-30-2007 09:16 AM

Yesterday's Tests had ammonia at 0 and Nitrite at 0. I'll check again this evening. If it stays 0, I'll put the Gouramis and, if I'm lucky, the one Harlequin who I couldn't lay a net on the other day in there.

Need to get the plastic strips for the back of the versatop before I put any loaches or SAEs in.

Mr.Todd 06-30-2007 05:33 PM


Great setup. I love the plants! Absolutely beautiful! :D :D :D :D :D

tophat665 07-01-2007 09:16 AM

Thanks for the kind words all.

This morning, one of the bulbs blew, so today I think is the day to take care of that. I'm going to see if I can lay hands on a 10000K to replace the 12000K that blew, and a couple of plant bulbs in the 5500-6700K range to replace the actinics, which look nice but do nothing for the plants.

tophat665 07-02-2007 07:32 AM

Well, checked on cycling again, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate between 5 and 10. So I added the Three Gouramis. I also put in two of my planted rocks, one with Anubias Nana Petit and one with Java Fern, Java Moss, and Anubias Coffeefolia. Picked up some more granite pieces that I need to run through the dishwasher and make into caves for under the driftwood.

The Wisteria along the back of the tank is visibly growing.

Put an order in with Big Als yesterday for 2 coralife 10000K daylight lamps and a 2 6700/Plant Grow bulbs. (Also replacement gaskets and quick disconnect valves for a Magnum 350 I have on the Loach Motel).

Next thing to get: Replacement strips for the back of the versa-tops so that I can move the SAEs.

Left to move: 3 SAEs, 8 Botia striata, 1 Harlequin, and an unknown number of Kuhlis from the living room tank, and 5 Yoyos from the Loach Motel. (Remaining in the living room will be 2 Male Bristlenosed Plecos. One is going into the Loach Motel, and one to a Holding Tank while I move and rescape the 55.)

More Pictures tonight or tomorrow.

miagrrl 07-04-2007 01:11 PM

i just love harlequinns, they look so nice in a planted tank. i have a tank with a mix of black and harlequinn rasboras and they all school together!

leifthebunny 07-04-2007 01:52 PM


Originally Posted by miagrrl
i just love harlequinns, they look so nice in a planted tank. i have a tank with a mix of black and harlequinn rasboras and they all school together!

I agree, I have gold and regular in a single tank and they are great.

MattD 07-04-2007 04:24 PM

A fine tank indeed. I really like how the plants go from clustered to spaced out in the foreground. A superior setup imo.

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