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New to aquariums - seeking advice

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Hey everyone,

Just decided to get into the aquarium game and have picked up a little 20 Litre Nano real cheap. I understand the smaller the tank the harder to maintain water quality but I am willing to put in the effort.

I am just looking for some advice on what I need to purchase to get it all up and running before I introduce some animal life.

Was thinking of just starting out with a Shrimp tank for now based on the size of the tank and focus a bit more on having healthy plants growing.

The tank is an Aquatopia 25L Aquastyle Nano (Cube version not the rectangle) just to go in my office.

Can anyone give some advice on what products I will need to start things just so I dont forget to buy anything. even just the basics that in your experience find people neglect to mention.

Also any advice on what plants I should look at to start with. I was thinking of something with low maintenance to start (eg: Java Fern, Crypts etc) however can anyone recommend some foreground plants that will stay small and wont need too much pruning. I am also not sure if I need a C02 kit for these plants, everyone seems to have differing opinions as to if it is necessary. The tank has a 3.5W LED light, is this sufficient lighting for these plants or too much?

Was looking at a simple layout, something like a piece of driftwood in the middle, with some hiding spots for the shrimp, larger plants up the back and a few little rocks or smaller driftwood with small plants in the front/middle. Do not really want to overcrowd the tank however. (ie: Do not think I want to carpet the floor with HC or anything)

Any ideas or suggestions or advice anyone has would be greatly appreciated.


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Thanks for the advice Donny,

I also read that Java Fern is not planted under the substrate, so is it simply just placed in the tank with something to hold it down? for example just wedging it between the forks of the wood or something.

In terms of mosses and suesswassertang, for a tank of this size how much do you think would I would need to purchase, not sure on its growth levels. Would I need just one bunch of each and spread it around and let it run wild or are they attached to the driftwood?

Another point I forgot to mention was the tank is Acrylic, is there any suggestions on best ways to keep it clean without scratching. I noticed some places sell cleaning tools for acrylic, but not sure on what best works.

Oh also the tank comes with just a standard Aquatopia Internal Filter 100, just wondering if that is going to be sufficient. I was looking at replacing it with a hang on filter, but more concerned about the well being of the shrimp if they start to breed. Read that sponge filters are good for the shrimp, but not sure how they would go for the plants. Suggestions on a filter?

Edited by Fergy666
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yea the java works well attached to a display piece of wood, as of course does anubias.

You want to start with a small amount of moss and other plants, as this gives them a chance to grow.

its like planting a garden, you dont buy full sized trees usually.

Not sure on the filter as its been a long time since I used one. They are the ones where the blue sponge has a carbon core arent they?

Not sure if they will suck in shrimp.

main thing to be aware of with plastic tanks, is having gravel stuck to scrubbers that then scratches.

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Will sponge work with the plants though. I read that the water disturbance is no good for co2 production

in terms of what I need to put in the tank I'll need a dechlorinator but what other chemical products would I need do I need a fertiliser for the basic plants or will shrimp substrate provide enough nutrient

I think the water quality side of it is kind of freaking me out as I am not entirely sure what I should be putting in daily and weekly or if once setup it will just run itself with me doing regular partial water changes. some forums make it seem so simple and others so complicated

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