I finally have water in my tank...
> From: Mike Bateman <vandi at well_com>
> I have recently completed my initial planting on my new 75g tank. I've
> been working on this thing for 3 months. I want to thank everyone on
> the list for their input and assistance.
Congratulations, Mike. Sounds like the kind of tank I would like to
set up :-).
> I have not added anymore of the daily fertilizer because the iron test
> still shows plenty of iron in the water and I don't want to risk
Monitor the iron carefully since the tank will use a lot as the plants
and nitrifying bacteria are establishing themselves.
> Since I have not been able to convince any of my local shops to order
> SAEs for me (yet), I have 4 Black Mollys, 3 Ottos and a dozen ghost
> shrimp. I'm looking for a few more Ottos but the 4 Mollys seem to be
> active enough to do the job.
Let us know how the ghost shrimp work. I would like to try some in
one of our tanks sometime.
> The tank has been planted for about a week. I noticed yesterday that I
> was getting my first bit of Algae on the walls of the tank. I cleaned
> it off since I didn't want to look at it.
A farlowella will do a great job on that kind of algae.
> Q: The new E. cordifolius leaves are a reddish color. Is this normal?
> They look perfectly healthy otherwise, they just aren't the same bright
> green as the other leaves are. The plants were raised emersed, would
> this have anything to do with it?
With good light and proper iron levels, quite a few plants will get a
reddish color to them. I see this as a good sign, but if you don't
like it, you might reduce the light a bit. As the bulbs age, this
will happen "automatically".
> Q: Should I limit the lighting period at all on a new tank to help
> prevent algae until the plants have grown and filled in a bit? I know
> Dennerle suggests a darker rest period although I'm not clear if this is
> expressely for algae control.
No, let the plants get a good start and use algae eaters to control
algae. You will have various types of algae appear as the tank
settles in over a period of months. A variety of algae will cope
nicely with this. If you do implement a dark period, try a "reduced
light" scheme (half the bulbs off) instead of total darkness.
> Q: How is my plant selection? I don't know anything about some of these
> plants and some aren't listed in any of my books. I suspect a few of
> them may not be true aquarium plants. Are there any recommendations or
You have the right idea - try everything you can find to see what
likes your conditions. You might avoid crypts until the tank has
settled down, perhaps 6 months.
> Q: Algae eaters ... what type of fish is good for keeping the glass free
> from algae? My tank is acrylic so I don't want a fish with hard
> rasping teeth that could scratch the walls.
Get a farlowella or two. Don't worry about their rasping teeth.
It sounds like you have an excellent start.
George in Northern Colorado