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6 foot South East Qld Biotype Journal

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Hi all,

Recently acquired a nice second hand 6 footer from Justin69 (thanks bud and can't beat the price). Thought I would post up a build journal of a SE Qld Biotype I am attempting. Will be going low tech on this. No CO2 gas, minimal ferts, basic lighting and filtration.


Basic 6 footer (180cm x 45cm x 45cm) with lids

Tank Stand

Basic Pine 6 legger (what else can I say)


Mix of Coarse Potting sand, Coffs Gravel and some mixed black gravel with Calcium Carbonate chips through it

Home made mix of 1 part garden loam, 1 part Laterite, hand full of calcium carb substrate/coral/shell grit spread only in section of tanl were rooted, hungry plants are going (rear corners and back basically)


1 x Resun 280U

• Dacron wool

• Ceremic rubble

• Purigen (once tank is cycled)


1 x Aqua-One T5HO 4 Foot Light (But will ikely add another 3 footer to suppliment this once plants are in)


1 x Jager 250 W


Will be using Dino-pee and spit once plants established.

Suppliment substrate with Manutec Water Garden tablets or DunoDung


Three nice pieces of Melaleuca Roots

Assorted small rocks for substrate mounding and some varaition in substrate type for fish.


Still investigating and colleccting speciemens from the wild, but will be a mix of








1 x Saratoga (ring in but will persist for now)

2 x Jungle Perch

Rainbows (M. doubolayi)

Gudgeons (M. adspersa, H. galii, H. compressus)

Blue Eyes (P. signifer)

Hardiheads (c. stercusmuscarum)

May alter this to drop the rainbows and Purple Spot in place of a large shool of Ornate Rainbows (Rhadinocentrus ornatus).


Mixtures of pellets, flake, and frozen foods supplemented with live Daphnia, mosquito larvae, bloodworms and black worms.

So anyway here are some progress shots.

Week 1 - Test the tank, and size up the driftwood



Week 2 - Hardscape the tank




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Love what your doing. How do you reackon that toga is gunna go with the smaller fish? JP's will be ok I have kept them with toga's before...

Also I would have to be a leicharti to fit the theme...

Cant wait for more piccies & fishies in!

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Yeah the Toga (leichardti) is a bit off the SEQld biotype theme, but just love the thing, since I got it. I wasn't planning on selling at this size but just can't yet, and there has been a stack of togas on the forum the last few weeks. It is about 25 cm and the JP’s are about 8 and 12cm so no probs with the mix. I am more worried the larger JP may get too big for his boots and start bossing the Toga or rainbows. I’ll keep them together until they outgrow the tank and then move them on for some smaller natives. I really like the idea of a mixture of Ornate Rainbows, blue eyes, Hardiheads and some glass fish but will wait for these bruisers to outgrow the 6 footer. I currently have the toga with some smaller gudgeons and he doesn't bother them but I keep it well fed with pellets, prawn flesh, insect etc so should have a need to chase down gudgeons. As for blue-eye, it would knock a few off I'm sure.

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Week 3 and I have planted out some of the tank with what I had lying around.

Plants so far include about;

10 Vallisnera nana,

10 stems of Bacopa monera (bay tears),

bunch of Ceratophyllum demersum,

10 or so stems of Hydrilla verticilata,

10 stems of Hygrophilla (not SEQ biotype but will replace with some Aponogeton when I can find some),

a bunch of Marsilea drummondi (Nardoo or four leaf clover),

some java moss (another ring in but the rainbows and blue eyes love it),

one Nymphoides aquatica (banana lilly, just one tuber so hopefully will sprout again when I heat the tank),

and finally some form of emergent Eleocaris (yet to ID it whn it flowers this summer).

No fish yet as tank is still cyling. Water level is a bit low due to planting and getting cannister primed and running.

Plans are to source some larger leaf speciments like Otelia for rear corner and some low growing forms for amongst Melaleuca roots.

Will also start adding nutrients soon and possibly add an additional light to fill the ends of the thank.

Can't wait for the fishes.





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Thanks kasman, a lot of the val and hydrilla is very short at the moment so you don't see it. I left a space between the melelueca roots and the rear wall of the tank and have planted most of the vallisneria in there so hopefully it will grow and form a wall of robbons. The canister output comes out behind the main trunk of the wood so it should create really natural looking stream flow effect as the vallisneria sweeps across the middle of the tank. I really hope the banana lilly comes to life when the heater goes in to create that underwater feel of lily stems reaching to the surface with some floating leaves. I have never had any luck with lilies or the nardoo (four leaf clover), not sure if it is insufficent nutrients for the roots to feed on or not enough light. I have used aquatic plant feeder tablets under these planst in the hope they will not be short of nutrients. I know the light is a little under done now, but where the tank is it will recieve a couple of hours of sunlight in the afternoon during spring/summer and I'll be experimenting with a second t5 light once I see how things gof for a month.

More plants to come in a few weeks time hopefully and then some fish.

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problem with perch and toga is.... that while they kinda fit the bio-type...... they do consume the other fish you have listed to add.

Its like trying to setup a tank for blue whales..... but then making it an antarctic bio-type by adding krill.....

still its worth a shot and I hope it works out awesome

my one concern is that it needs more tandanus

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Yeah your right deadfish, i'll be watching the toga and if he missbehaves and starts picking off fish, he's going, and in his place will be schools of smaller species like Rhadinocentrus and Pseudomugils (well not a mass of Rhads until I can breed them up of course).

The only perch i have are 2 Jungle Perch and they are earmarked for sale if anyone is chasing some. 2 of them for $100. They are about 8 and 14 cm. They have already made short work of some Galaxias i collected a few menths ago, so Toga be warned, you eat your house mates, you'll get evicted too.

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Week 5: Tank getting close to being cycled, all parameters pretty stable and similar to the holding tanks with my stock in, so bit the bullet and started adding fish.

First, progress on the plants.

All going well, the Nardoo (4 leaf clover) is sending out plenty of runners but leaves are only unfurling about 10cm from the substrate. Not sure why I suspect these won't go well in the long run under artificial light.

Vallisneria is starting to take hold and sending up new leaves, so should start to fill in the background over coming months. Will be adding some more Val shortly to help fill in background.

New additions include a bunch of Hydroctyl and some mosses on the driftwood that is extending above the water line.

Still on the hunt for some large rosette plants like Aponogeton or Ottelia. Will be going to Maroochy later in the month so will do some creek exploring, otherwise will be going on-line to Aquagreen.

Now to the exciting part, the Stock List:

First additions were the Guinea Pigs, (me ol favs Purple Spotted Gudgeons). Had them in the tank for a week to make sure nothing was astray before considering other fish. And what do ya know they started spawning behaviour and may have eggs in next day or so, so i guess the water is ok.

Next to go in was Bullrout. Settled in well but still a bit shy on the artificial foods.

This weekend added two Jungle Perch and a nice baby Saratoga.

All feeding well and settling in nicely. Looks like the Toga has taken up residence in the rear right hand corner amongst the small Melaleuaca roots. I recon it would be pretty close to it's native habitat so good too see the effort is appreciated by him.

Currently fish are eating dried shrimp, flake, pellets and frozen brine shrimp and bloodworm. Have added some small live shrimp to keep the Bullrout's sustenance up while it gets used to prepared foods.

Went on a collecting day with the young fella today and scored some nice striped gudgeons, tandanus, fire tails and empire gudgeons and one very nice flat-head gudgeon. So will quarantine them for a few weeks while getting them on-to prepared foods before adding to the tank. The only think left is a school of Rainbows (Doubolayi) to complete the biotype.

Oh and don't mind the small blue shark bubbler in the corner, it was little gift for the young fella to try and get him involved in the tank obsession. Start em young I recon.

Current Tank Shot


Purple Spotted Gudgeon in courting display


Bullrout doing what it does best...sitting on it's arse


Shot of the right side of tank with the Toga on patrol with JP's in tow


Shot of the left side of the tank with that awsome piece of Melalueca wood I had up for sale a while ago.


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Guppy Guy,

Yes I am not really trying to achieve an SEQ urban biotype (or by the sounds of it a Nerang Biotype).

Yes agree Corbii, the sharks days are numbered but the son insisted this was his contribution to the tank. I'll work on him to move it to his sordtail tank in time.

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All is not well with the new tank mix, the JP's are hassling the Saratoga. I may need to move these out. I don't think removing the toga will help, they'll probably just start harrassing the next tank inhabitants I put in there. Looks like I'l be making the move to rainbows sooner than later.

Is anyone interested in two JP's. Would take $50 each for them.

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It is confirmed the Purple Spots have laid eggs, four weeks after setting up the tank up. Of course they choose the most densely planted area of the tank, in behind the melalueaca roots and on the back side of small piece of driftwood to lay. Anyway managed to squeeze in beside the tank and with the flash got just enough light in there to make out the large male on guard and the eggs, probably a hundred or so, not bad for their fist batch, I have raised these from about 2cm long.

Any ways here are some photo's hope to show the nearly hatched embryos in a week or so.

Still have an unhappy Saratog from the hiding it copped from the larger JP, lucky I came home for lunch that day or it might have ended differently.




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