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MikeC90 last won the day on December 19 2019

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  1. Thanks for the feedback Okay, I'll continue to do my research. Ideally, I'm looking for something along these lines: https://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/fishkeeping-answers/articles/Discover discus!?rq=discus This tank is actually going to be very lightly planted. I've had 3 heavily planted tanks in a row, so this one is going to be a bit closer to an 'authentic' amazon setting, with sand and few submersed plants. I'm still going to retain a few amazon swords, but that about it. Maybe something floating if I go with the hatchet fish as well. Here are some pics from the past few weeks, showing the progression from the early chaos to something I'm quite pleased with now. First morning after the fill, interesting light coming through a window in the garage. First evening, with the Kessils just sitting on the tank either side of the existing fitting. Shelf constructed for hanging lights, routing power and storing a few odds and ends (food, test kits etc) Some more morning light, now that the water and surface have cleared up (other than tannin). After a series of daily water changes the water was looking pretty good Unfortunately the 'picture frame' that the builder put around the niche doesn't quite hide below the substrate line or the brace along the top edge. I've temporarily run some black tape along the top edge to remove the bright light sneaking through there, but I guess I'll redo the framing around the tank with something a bit wider one day when I'm feelin enthusiastic... How the tank is looking this evening, after the addition of some more 'debris', and some ore tannin... I'm really enjoying watching the different behaviour of each species in this tank. I guess it's partly down to the size, hopefully also the naturalism, but everyone seems to have settled in really well The pygmy corydoras are loving having some nice fine sand to sift through, the lemon tetra are enjoying the swimming from end to end and battling the current from the FX6 outlet, the cardinals are extremely considered in their activities by comparison. They don't so much school as waft in roughly the same direction as each other. They also seem quite happy to peck along the bottom with the corydoras or sneak in and out of the debris.
  2. So after many different tanks over the years, I found myself with the opportunity to incorporate a good sized tank into the build of a new house - something my teenage self could only ever dream of! I've always had a soft spot for Amazonian style tanks, as I like the aesthetic and the variety of fish that fall into that region. So I thought an 8 x 2 x 2.5 'flooded creek' tank would be perfect With that in mind, I organised for a wall niche between the garage and dining room to be included in the build, with the intention being that all the messy aspects of the tank could be attended to from the garage, with only a peaceful vista to be seen from the dining room. The tank itself is a pretty basic 8 footer with rims and braces, as I didn't need anything fancy for this application (none of that is visible). The stand is DIY because 1) it needed to be a custom size and height to align with the wall niche and 2) it's so much cheaper. One slight complication with the whole arrangement is that I really needed to try and accommodate the residents of my old 5 foot tank, which needed to be dismantled before the sale of our old home. Knowing this, I was torn between trying to source another small/cheap setup as a temporary home or just doing something quick and dirty in the big tank to keep the fish happy/healthy until I had time to do it all properly - I opted for the latter... Rarely seen in aquaria, the Ford Falcon... The stand before painting was completed (all of the stuff I could get to later was done before it was positioned). I had the tank cycling while I was away with work, running one of the filters of my established setup with a few carry-over bits of wood and bit of sand to hold down a few plants. I didn't bother washing that first tid bit of sand that went into the tank to hold down plants, and paid the price with foamy stuff all over the show... It was easy enough to clean with a few water changes, netting the surface and the surface skimmer on the old Jebo, but looked a bit troublesome at first! I than also had the issue of trying to get the rest of the slightly damp play sand into the aquarium with out disturbing the recycled ADA Amazonia. As it was damp, it couldn't be 'poured', but rather dropped in large clumps, which made more of a mess haha! I also mixed the final bad of play sand with some really fine (2-3mm) gravel and some other 'flash' sand that had some more colour and texture variety to give everything a less homogenous and more natural look. Anyhow, I did eventually get it all in and looking nice. With all the fresh wood, it's a tannin soup right now, but the fish are enjoying that In terms of the overall plan for the tank, the key points would be: Equipment - 2 x large external canisters, currently 1 Jebo and one FX6 - 1 x 300 watt heater seems to be doing just fine so far - Carry-over 5 ft LED fixture (no name) combined with an A160 TS and a A80 TS. I'll later replace the old LED fixture with another 2 Kessil's s that I can ramp the whole system up and down, and from right to left to match what the sun is doing (the tank runs east-west) - I've still got the chiller, dosing pump and CO2 systems from my old heavily planted 5 foot, but I'm not planning to use either on this setup as I want to keep it as low maintenance as possible Current Stock - 12 x pygmy cory - 24 x lemon tetra - 20 x cardinal tetra - 1 x otocinclus - 30 odd cherry shrimp (not SA I know, but I've had them for ages and they won't stop breeding!) - 1 x khuli loach, again not SA but I've had him/her for 6 or 7 years now, onto their 3rd tank haha! Planned Stock - 30 x pygmy cory - 30 x lemon tetra - 40 x cardinal tetra - 5 otto - a few pairs of apisto, type yet to be determined - 15 x marbled hatchet fish, if I opt to keep the lids on - 6-10 discuss, all of the same colour variant to keep things looking natural (any advice on sourcing these would be appreciated) More to come!
  3. I've recently used Bunnings play sand in combination with smaller amounts of used ADA Amazonia, a really fine gravel and slightly darker/more variable sand from Petbarn. I wanted to end up with fairly natural looking substrate (i.e. not homogenous), and am happy with how that combination turned out. The Bunnings play sand itself does have some impurities in it, and also caused a bit of froth on the surface after filling. Colour wise I would say it's a touch on the grey side, but still looks good in the tank (for my tannin-rich setup anyhow). This pic might give you a bit of an idea, but there is a lot of tannin making it look yellow...
  4. Series of tanks from over the years. New project to come...
  5. Hi all! Long time hobbyist but new member. Setting up a new tank in my new house and always looking to gain some new knowledge My first foray into planted aquariums during high school. Running the classic yeast reactor for Co2 and all! This pair did spawn on a few occasions, but the eggs didn't last long between them and the rummynose Smaller apisto and crydoras setup. Unfortunately I ended up with 4 males from the 4 cacatuoides I purchased... 5' tank that was running up until we move house a few months back. Amazon community tank with proper lighting, CO2 injection and dosing. I only got as far as adding the tetra community fish before I realised we'd be moving... I've got the beginnings of a new tank in the new house, which I'll start a thread for over the coming weeks
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